I really don't know what to say to all those individuals that brand Alfa as a car that "will give you the best 100km drive of your life, but will fall apart at 101km...".
I am not sure about this opinion in Europe, but in South Africa, people thought I was absolutely nuts to buy an Alfa, and I can honestly say that for the first time since I first earned my drivers licence (about 12 years ago), I enjoy driving again!
After receiving my Alfa, I spend quite some time perusing the Owners' Manual, and learnt how special an Alfa really is. It is the first car brand I have ever come accross where the manudacturer refers to their product as a living, breathing being with a beating heart and robust personality, and I can honestly say I have finally experienced what all the fuss is about.
I must also admit that going through your manual carefully is a definite must, as there were quite a few tips / guidelines I would never have followed, had I not been informed.
I also think that many people who experience problems with their Alfa don't treat them as the manufacturers' intended. They perhaps don't service their cars when needed, skip out on checking oil etc. regularly and cheap out when replacing parts or having a service.
No - one said an Alfa is an economical car to own, but it is simply fantastic.
Mine is as solid as a rock and I can't imagine anything going wrong, apart from something stupid I could have done!
My previous car was a VW POLO TDI SPORTLINE, which was apparently an unshakebly solid car to own. Although I had no turbo / injector / clutch issues, this car cost me a sh_tload of money to maintain. Services were very pricy and by far outweighed the money I saved due to it's impeccable fuel economy (diesel 5.2 / 100KM).
Anyway, opinions differ, but I adore my Alfa.