After 14 months of ownership and , I’d like to let you know my feelings on the the 159SW 2.4 JTDm Lusso I have just traded in for a new 159SW 2.0 JTDm Lusso. You will see from my signature block I’ve had a couple of 156s before the 159 but this was only half the argument for buying one. At the back end of 08 my good lady and I migrated from holidaying in a tent and moved to a caravan. At the time we had an Avensis 2.0VVTI T-Spirit; an absolutely fantastic weekend commuter car but with only 144 BHP and 147lb/ft of torque is was not up to towing the caravan we owned. The hunt for a new car was on, and my short list consisted the 2.0 and 2.2 versions of Avensis, Mondeo, Jag X-Type, but one day my good lady said why not have another Alfa. So after a wizz down the figures it appeared that only one would do (as above).
In 14 months I’ve done 25,000 trouble free miles (35000 now on the clock) and this I put down in part to this forum. Very soon I noticed wear on the inner edges of the rear tyres which had obviously been rotated from the front (the car is running 18 inch horseshoes with the 235/45/18s). So after replacing these at 14,000 miles I had the wheel alignment set to parallel and no more inner tyre wear
. The tyres on the front were replaced at 20000 miles (believed to be the tyres originally on the back) and wear is still constant across the face of all four tyres. The other fear I did have was over the DPF and EGR valve, but my fears were unfounded. Having run the car on ‘supermarket’ diesel for the first month the DPF regeneration was happening every 360 miles or so, but moving to BP diesel moved that up to 1000+ miles and it has continued like that to this day.
Do I have any disappointments? Yes, just one, why is it so uneconomical over its older brother that I owned (156SW 2.4 20V MJet). The 156 would amass 49 to 50 mpg on the weekly commute of 165 miles, prior to rolling through 30,000miles the 159 would average 33 mpg, But passing this mileage has seen a change in character in the car, it is more responsive and more economical. Is it now run in?? In an effort to eek out some more mpg I have taken to staying in 6th for as long as possible, sometimes down as low as 40mph especially through an extended length of roadworks on the M1 and even ‘sprinting’ in to and out of these I am now managing 37mpg.
For those of you who don’t tow, skip this paragraph. This is a fantastic tow car. We have a caravan that is 6.3m overall and 4.8m in the body, it weighs in about 1070kg with the amount we have loaded, and I have never found a hill to defeat it. To illustrate this, if any of you know the A429 through the Cotswolds, we negotiated the hill up into Stow on the Wold from the south at 55mph with very little effort. If there is one problem, its pulling away on damp roads……..wheel spin!! Rolling start from 10mph to the legal limit of 60mph on the motorway is in the order of 13-14 seconds. I’d love to have tried a Q4 (maybe someone has).
Comfort, fixtures and fittings – all up to par although I would have prefered the drivers seat to drop a little further to give a sit in rather than a sit on feel, but the adjust reach and rake in the steering column make up for this. Wear and tear on the seat and carpets has been neglible and a recent valet had the interior looking as good as when I bought it. Being a late 07 (but on an 08 plate) car it appears to have been fitted with a 08MY rear seat which has helped the once in a while full load.
Why am I changing? I was contacted by the supplying dealer asking if I was interested in part exchanging the car. I drew up a shortlist based on wanting to get some more mpg, a torque figure not too far off the 2.4, cheaper tax and cheaper tyres especially as my commute will continue for at least another year and the dealer came up with a price that was acceptable to me. So now I am driving a 10 plate 159SW 2.0JTDm Lusso in black with silver roof bars and tan leather. Within a week or so I will post first impressions. If you have got this far thank you for staying with it.