A product marketing executive at Alfa Romeo says the Italian firm briefly considered building a Stelvio GTA but ultimately decided it would be a step too far.

At the start of March 2020, Alfa unveiled two special new versions of its Giulia, slotting the GTA and GTAm newcomers above the Quadrifoglio. A total of 500 units will be built, although the production split between the two variants has yet to be confirmed.

Fabio Migliavacca, head of product marketing at the brand, suggested to Autocar the use of the iconic GTA badge on an SUV wouldn’t have made sense.

“The GTA is an important name for Alfa Romeo. Frankly speaking, we had a meeting on a Stelvio GTA but it’s just not in line with customer expectations. It has to be the best possible [on track],” he told the publication.

“On the Stelvio, we have a higher centre of gravity so it won’t achieve the same goals,” Migliavacca admitted.

He added the new Giulia GTA “had to be special compared to the Quadrifoglio”.

“It had to be lighter. We worked a lot to reduce weight and have better performance in terms of lap times over the Quadrifoglio,” he said.

“A lot of people are raising their hands and saying, ‘I want to have one’, ‘I want to have four’. It’s truly an amazing reaction considering the timing,” Migliavacca added, making reference to the global COVID-19 pandemic.

He described the Giulia GTA as “easy to drive, unbelievably quick and effective in corners”.

“For aerodynamics, the front and rear facias and side skirts have been redesigned to achieve downforce not achievable on the Quadrifoglio,” he explained.

Conceived to celebrate 110 years of the Italian brand (and, of course, pay tribute to the original Alfa Romeo GTA of 1965), the new Giulia GTA features four seats while the Giulia GTAm pares things back to just two race seats, complete with a roll-bar and six-point harnesses.

Both variants, though, draw their urge from an uprated version of the twin-turbo 2,9-litre V6 already used by the Giulia Quadrifoglio and Stelvio Quadrifoglio. In the GTA and GTAm, peak power has been hiked from 375 kW to 397 kW.

With the Giulia GTA, Alfa Romeo says its engineers worked to improve the aerodynamics (increasing downforce) and handling “but above all to reduce the weight”. The GTAm, meanwhile, gains a larger front splitter and a carbon-fibre wing.