2019 Alfa Romeo Giulia vs. 2019 Audi S5 Sportback

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Both the Giulia and the S5 Sportback have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, front parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Giulia the rating of “Top Pick” for 2018, a rating granted to only 100 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The S5 Sportback was last qualified as only a “Top Pick” in 2016.


The engine in the Giulia has a single overhead cam for simplicity. The engine in the S5 Sportback has dual overhead cams, which add to the number of moving parts and the complexity of the cylinder heads.

The S5 Sportback’s redline is at 6700 RPM, which causes more engine wear, and a greater chance of a catastrophic engine failure. The Giulia has a 5500 RPM redline.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Giulia Q4 gets better fuel mileage than the S5 Sportback (23 city/31 hwy vs. 21 city/30 hwy).

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Alfa Romeo Giulia uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended for maximum performance). The S5 Sportback requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

Tires and Wheels

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the Giulia can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The S5 Sportback doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Giulia is 2.2 inches wider in the rear than on the S5 Sportback.

The Giulia’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (50% to 50%) than the S5 Sportback’s (56% to 44%). This gives the Giulia more stable handling and braking.

For better maneuverability, the Giulia’s turning circle is .9 feet tighter than the S5 Sportback’s (37.5 feet vs. 38.4 feet).


The Alfa Romeo Giulia may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 300 to 400 pounds less than the Audi S5 Sportback.

The Giulia is 4.5 inches shorter than the S5 Sportback, making the Giulia easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the Giulia Ti is quieter than the S5 Sportback Prestige:



S5 Sportback


74 dB

79 dB

70 MPH Cruising

69 dB

70 dB

Passenger Space

The Giulia has 1.1 inches more front legroom, .4 inches more front shoulder room and .6 inches more rear headroom than the S5 Sportback.


The Giulia has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The S5 Sportback doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The Giulia’s standard easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The S5 Sportback doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the Giulia offers optional adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The S5 Sportback doesn’t offer cornering lights.

Model Availability

The Giulia is available in both rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive configurations. The S5 Sportback doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the Giulia owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Giulia will cost $485 to $4300 less than the S5 Sportback over a five-year period.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Alfa Romeo Giulia will be $11084 to $12342 less than for the Audi S5 Sportback.


The Giulia was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” in 2018. The S5 Sportback has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

Motor Trend selected the Giulia as their 2018 Car of the Year. The S5 Sportback has never been chosen.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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