What is it with the 166? When you look at it closely...
There's not much more room in there then either the 147 or the 156, nobody can question that. 4-door practicality? Both the 147 and the 156 are offered in that variant. The interior plastics are reminiscent of 8 year old FIATs, worse than 147 & 156. Features? No dual-zone climate control, no auto air-recirculation, no 3rd rear head restraint, no 3-point seatbelt in the rear... And where are the windowbags? Come on, even the mini FIAT Punto has got 6 airbags. And when is Alfa going to offer longer anti rust-penetration warranty? This is a factor for insurance and psychological factor for new buyers. Even the gauges are lit in boring green, almost identical to the 15 year old 164.
Not to mention the engine. I can only speak for the 3-litre, haven't driven others. It's great, but the consumption is awful, and 7.9 seconds isn't that fast, especially comparing to the competition.
Not long ago, I got the chance to drive the Audi A6 2.8 and the BMW 530i. Audi is bland, boring, but seems like a high-quality product. 530i with the sport pack is great, rides like on rails and has an interior of higher quality than the Alfa (though more sober and not as stylish).
Where I live the price is not much lower than competitor models similarly equipped, about 5%. And IT IS outdated. We have to wait for years for a restyling, so it can (hopefully) catch up with the rest of the bunch.
I should have seen the competition before buying this Alfa, not just listen to friends about the Alfa virus, improved quality, sportiness...
Let's face it, sporting heritage of Alfa is unfortunately just heritage. Current sporty models (GTAs) appear great, but the competition makes them faster. MUCH faster. Looks like we'll have to wait until Alfa makes a real 5-second sport machine.
Now here for some good and bad points about the 166:
1. It's Italian
2. Looks good (in my opinion)
3. Momo leather is great
4. Large trunk (490 l)
5. Nothing has gone wrong with the car
1. Outdated for a car in this class and price range
2. Needs more powerful engines
3. Technological and safety features not up to class standards
4. Interior plastics look and feel cheap
Okay, that's it. Just wait a minute or two, I'm putting my flame suit on.