I think it's about wages, Italian wages are much lower than what you would get here in the Netherlands or in the UK for a similar job(even if new cars are far cheaper, than still), plus in the bigger cities, Milan and Rome (I know as I am desperately seeking for a job that suits me in Italy however moneywise, it's not been attactive sofar), every car is dented so why risk a superb car, I think? However in Italy imo the Alfa is perceived as a more common car, though Italians are fond of it offcourse. Beamers, Mercs and Audi have a more prestigious look and a lot in Italy is about image... I remember a story I once heard, dunno it's true, after a football match there were some hooligans trashing up the neighbourhood, no car was spared, except and here comes out the real Italian hehehe, a Ferrari!!! They trashed everything else, Beamers, Audi's etc... - Wonder if it was an alfa if they would have spared it.