After multiple delays, Alfa Romeo’s 159-replacing Giulia is reportedly being readied for a 2014 launch.
The design is close to being finalised, with a production version to be launched within two years, according to UK mag Autocar.
Delays on the long-overdue new model had been put down to “architecture problems”, but Alfa owner Fiat has also pointed to a lack of suitable engines as a hurdle.
Speaking at a press conference in Geneva earlier this year, Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne said he was waiting for an engine line-up that "matches the DNA of the brand".
The Autocar report suggests that the new model will be based on the Giulietta/Dodge Dart/Fiat Viaggio platform, but with a longer wheelbase to rival the interior space of key competitors BMW 3 Series, Mercedes C-Class and Audi A4.
Entry-level versions will reportedly use a version of the Fiat 1.4 litre MultiAir engines, with a new range of Alfa-exclusive - and DNA matching - turbocharged petrol engines expected for up-spec models.
A Giulietta-based platform suggests the model will be natively front-wheel-drive, though all wheel drive is expected as an option.
Like the 159, the Giulia is expected to be produced in sedan and wagon bodystyles, though the wagon is expected to be launched separately.
The Giulia is expected to spearhead the brand’s return to the US, while boosting its entry into the Chinese market, giving credence to Marchionne’s focus on ensuring the model’s competitiveness before such significant forays.
A concept version of the new model is expected to be revealed sometime in 2013, likely at Geneva or Frankfurt - although New York or LA dates could also be on the cards.