From the early days of motoring manufacturers have always used attractive female models to promote their wares, which I always thought was a pointless exercise.

Surely people wanted to study the car rather than the model. Perhaps the only exception to the rule was when Alfa Romeo used actress Uma Thurman to promote their Giulia car. Both model and car were equally stunning.

That was some years ago and now there is a new Giulia which has caught the eyes of the critics and won award after award.

The latest was the Performance Car of the Year (under £100K)’ from Octane Magazine’s 2017 motoring awards ceremony.

Now in its seventh year, the category was judged by an illustrious panel of car experts, including TV host Jay Leno, Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason and five time Le Mans winner Derek Bell.

Between them they probably have the best private garages in the world and they were looking for a model that appealed to head and heart, providing drivers with the latest advanced technologies and an exhilarating driving experience for under £100,000.

The Giulia won hands down making it Alfa Romeo’s most powerful car ever created for road use thanks to the Quadrifoglio’s 510hp, 600Nm Bi-Turbo V6 petrol engine, which can achieve a top speed of around 180mph and move from zero to 62mph in under four seconds.

This model costs £61,595 but you can get a two litre version which will cost you under £30,000 and that is brilliant as well. I should know because that’s the model I’ve been driving and I didn’t want to give it back.

Because it is well balanced it as good to drive as it is to look at, pretty fast and is brilliant on the road. It is an all-round performance car which anyone would love to have and a bit of a change from the German manufacturers who look boring next to it.

The 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol model gives you 0-62mph in 6.6 seconds and emits 138g/km of CO2 and while the manufacturers reckon they will sell more diesel models I beg to differ.

Joe Public is worried about diesels because of Government misinformation and with the petrol model doing just short of 50 miles to the gallon it looks like a good deal for drivers.

The first time the name Giulia was used was back in 1962 and it has been constantly updated since then.

The latest model has a broad range of engines and all Giulias have an 8-speed automatic gearbox and paddle-shift levers, which I can take or leave.

The Giulia has the Alfa Romeo DNA selector which means you can choose from three driving modes in the standard cars: Advanced Efficiency, Natural and Dynamic.

There’s plenty of space up front but a little tight in the back if you are above average height where your long long legs might be a problem on a long journey.

There’s a good sized cubby hole between the front seats and a large glove box.

All models have lane departure warning as standard but there is adaptive cruise control, blind spot warning, a rear parking camera and autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian protection as options. It’s easy to pick up £10,000 worth of extras. Standard models get 16-inch alloys.

Each Giulia gets Bluetooth and USB connectivity, a DAB radio and handy rotary controller for the central mounted screen – 6.5 inches on the standard car and seven inches on other specs. Super and Speciale models also have sat-nav.

If you want more you can have the Connect 3D NAV system for around £1,000. That has a larger 8.8-inch screen and TomTom nav software which is easy to use. It has a TomTom-derived interface which means it benefits from map updates via USB, plus easy-to-read directions on the display.