Re: slower than other cars
Right, I have to throw in my two pennies worth of advice here, lol.
I am seeing alot of people saying 'You dont buy an Alfa for speed'.
Newsflash: That's the very first thing that attracted me to it! My 2.5 V6 156 comes with 190+ BHP. I was looking at getting a Ford Probe 2.5 V6 (163BHP), or another ST24 Mondeo 2.5 V6 (170BHP), and regretfully I was even comtemplating a Calibra 2.5 V6 (182BHP)!
The Alfa Romeo 156 V6 is one of the quickest 2.5 V6 Medium Sized Cars you can get, and on top of that it looks better than all the others put together!
You can't be afraid to rev the dickens out of the engine, it's what they're designed for. I'm not sure if your's comes with a limiter like mine, but if it does you can play a little game I do known as 'Change Gear Just Before The Rev Limiter Stops You In Your Tracks', lol.
If I am racing against anything (Obviously once the car's warmed up and temp is good) I change just before it hits the 7000 limiter, the car bloody THRIVES off of it! Just this morning I went up against a V6 Vectra and the Alfa just kept on getting further and further away from the poor sod.
One of the great things about your 147 mind is the handling, the 156 is great but the 147 being smaller handles even better. If they gain on you in the straights try and lose them through the bends / corners. You'll come out on top, I'm certain.
And don't listen to the 'Choosing your sparring partners carefully' post, lol. Go up against the meanest looking / sounding cars you can find, and really learn your car inside out. Getting beat will only make you stronger and more competitive and lead to you kicking ass all over the road!
Good luck and God speed mate.