Alfa Romeo to switch to centrally-mounted numberplates

alfa romeo giulia qv review 2024 01 cornering front
alfa romeo giulia qv review 2024 01 cornering front

The tradition started with the 1955 Giulietta Spider, and still continues today

Future Alfa Romeo models, including the next-generation Giulia and Stelvio, will end a long brand tradition by featuring centrally mounted number plates, due to new pedestrian safety regulations.

A significant number of the Italian firm’s models feature offset number plates mounted on one of the front wings. The tradition started with the 1955 Giulietta Spider, and continues today with the current Giulia, Tonale and Stelvio. The offset placement enables Alfa’s triangular ’scudetto’ grille to be seen unobscured.

The recently launched Alfa Romeo Junior hatch features a centrally mounted plate, and the firm’s design chief Alejandro Mesonero-Romanos confirmed that would be the same with the electric Giulia and Stelvio replacements that will be revealed in the coming years – and future models beyond that.


“We cannot put the number plate on the side any more because of the homologation regulations for pedestrian [safety],” said Mesonero-Romanos. The change relates to changes made in the European Union’s new General Safety Regulations to better protect pedestrians in the case they are struck by a car.

“Some die-hard Alfisti, who think an Alfa Romeo isn’t an Alfa Romeo unless it has the numberplate on the side won’t be happy, but there are plenty of beautiful Alfa Romeos in history which have the number plate in the middle: I own an Alfetta and a 1968 Giulia which have a central plate and look beautiful.

“This will allow us to have symmetry anyway, so I am happy - I’m one of the guys who likes the plate in the middle.”

The next-gen Stelvio is due to be launched next year with the Giulia following in 2026, and both models sitting on the new STLA Large electric platform.

Mesonero-Romanos confirmed that the design of both models has now been finalised and signed-off, adding that they “are fantastic. It’s what people would expect from a Giulia in terms of sportiness, with a super-cool coupe – and I don’t tell you anything else now.”

Mesonero-Romanos did confirm that the next-generation Giulia and Stelvio EVs would feature a “fresh interpretation” of the scudetto, although he wouldn’t detail how it would be altered to accommodate a front number plate. But he did confirm that, because of the lack of radiator cooling requirements for the electric powertrain, it will feature a closed-off graphical design similar to the zoomed-in 3D effect logo used on the Junior.

“Putting the logo in a big size shows we are proud of it, and it’s a modern interpretation graphically, it’s pretty strong to have it in a big size,” he added. “when you look at sneakers and things, everyone is making big logos, and it’s nice as long as it’s subtle. If it was pink it would be too much.

“With Alfa function and design always go together: the next generation of cars will have a closed logo because they will be electric cars, and we cannot have the function of the Scudetto as it was when it was conceived.”

Alfa is one of the few mainstream manufacturers to currently offer offset plate on its models, although they have been a feature of other vehicles ranging from the Mitsubishi Lancer to the Bugatti Chiron.