The early CF1 TS is the best of the lot, although I do appreciate that it's highly unlikely that you'd wish to buy a very old mid-90s Alfa to appreciate the difference.
Imagine the squeaks and rattles, green-on-black dials, and lack of a trip computer, rather like my 164 then
I was really miffed to learn that my CF3 TS is 15bhp down compared to the earlier engines, but when I actually drove the car for the first time, all was forgiven (I can't tell that it's only 150bhp).
I'm glad I can agree with Symon on the economy of the Twinspark vs. the V6.
On the trip home, I tried driving super-gently, slowing down going up hills, barely reaching the speed limit rolling down the other side. Average speed 71km/h, average consumption 6.8L/100km. Not bad, I thought.
For the next 200km leg of the journey, I drove at the speed limit all the way, tearing up and down hills, ripping around corners, making the most of the Selespeed and the SOUND and generally enjoying the drive. Average speed 93km/h. Brim-filled the tank again and worked out the fuel consumption, turned out the trip computer was accurate. 6.6L/100km!
I was stunned, and realised that this really is my kind of car. More economical than a 1.2L Punto driven to average 93km/h (this is not motorway cruising, this is NZ main roads), the 2.0L Twinspark is a big enough engine to have the power to do the job, yet small enough to run efficiently.
I'm fairly certain that if you drove a Honda Civic Hybrid to average 93km/h (I had one for six months in 2007) the average would be 5.6L/100km. Is 1L/100km worth all that hybrid technology? I think not. (The Civic Hybrid did average 4.5L/100km if driven gently).
Although the JTS has the direct-injection technology that's now being flaunted by most manufacturers as the solution for best fuel economy, I somehow doubt that it would improve much on my trusty old Twinspark. This is a much more economical car than a V6 (and especially a V6 auto) can be. My 164 uses exactly twice the fuel of my 156.
So personally, I recommend a 2.0L Twinspark Selespeed (or manual) for economy, but I expect the JTS is OK too.