Originally Posted by Cuore_Sportivo_155
so, how does it drive then? we've heard a lot of how it looks already....
As expected? or a bit on the slow side maybe?
hey yeah, i haven't commented on this. in summary, i love it, especially knowing the suspension is currently clapped out, and awaiting upgrades.
it's easily fast enough, with enough poke to keep me happy. not exactly super fast, but good enough to keep up with local traffic and to meet my needs. so i'm not disappointed in this regard. i haven't checked the factory-claimed specs in comparison with my old 2L 156 series 1, but it feels similarly quick. and my wife drives a 2.5L Subaru Impreza, and it doesn't feel shamed by that 'by the seat of my pants'.
handling and balance around corners is great. i presume the Eibach ARBs help in this regard, so i've no idea what a 'standard' 155 would be like. the Bridgestone RE001 205/40/17 tyres seem great too: plenty of grip, quiet, and good compliance, so it's comfortable by my standards. the lighter front-end is very apparent, compared with my V6 GT, so turn-in is nice, so too the chuckability.
steering feels nice and tight, though i would love the quick rack of the widebody. gearshift is a bit slow, especially as i have to 'nurse' it into 2nd gear when the oil is cold to avoid a missed-shift and clunk; hopefully fresh, synthetic gearbox oil will fix that.
though overall, it's not nearly as refined as my old 156 or the GT. everything is a bit noisier, rattlier, and rough. trim pieces squeak and rattle, but i'm yet to address them (replacing broken door trim clips, using silicone spray on rubber seals, etc). things like vibration through the pedals, noise of the heater-fan; and the absolutely poor ventilation! i see what is meant by this in 'older' alfa's, in terms of force of air out the vents, even with the fan up full. might be challenging in the hot aussie summer.
of course, the aftermarket exhaust adds to the noise, but in a good way. i'll have to post photos of the system under the car when i have it jacked up, but it's a full system. cat converter is in place, and presumably not stripped; it would have been required for 'compliance' when it arrived to australia. centre silencer is gone, leaving a straight pipe from the front to the backbox. so it makes a wonderful gruff alfa noise under load.
basically, i have a smile on my face when i drive it. i really, really love it, for both its uniqueness over here, and how it sounds and drives, and i guess i'm proud of what i've done to it so far, and know that it's only going to get better!
i haven't driven my GT in about 2 weeks!