I finally took the plunge, and put a deposit down on an 07 3.2 Q4 SV Brera in alfa red last Friday - after being on the look out / working up the cash and nerve to splash on the V6 since March.
Test drove a 2.4 a couple of months ago and liked it, but definitely more a long distance / cruiser and not as dramatic as the Arese I am used to. My wife hated it though - wrong colour (bluey/grey metallic, dealer told my wife it was dolphin grey but more likely diamante I reckon) and nowhere near as exciting and nice to drive as my '99 156 2.5 V6 she said, plus the moon must've been in the wrong phase that day!
Ironically I couldn't test drive the 3.2 as had a knee op last week, so was reduced to squashing in the back whilst my wife gave it (the car
) (not enough of) a thrashing! Being just over 6' tall, I was rather surprised to be able to get in the back at all. Had to lean forward as no way would my head get to the back rest, so definitely only good for short trips.
After the diesel test drive woe, my wife now likes Breras!
Can see what people mean with comparisons of GM derived to Arese engines, but still sounded sweet - and I liked the deeper tone it has. Felt like it went fast enough to live with and certainly felt glued on the corners, where the FWD V6 156 has always suffered from understeer powering out of bends due to the lump in the front - and my wife didn't even get the Q4 braking / traction control kicking in.
Anyway, looking forward to getting my hands on her and she does look every bit as good as I felt the 156 did when I first got it 9.5 years ago - plus it does feel great to get an alfa in red! Please don't disillusion me just yet with tales of stonechip woes - the front was nearly chip free and it has the (TI?) mudflaps fitted plus film in front of the wheel arches, so I am doing my best to be optimistic about it.
Will perhaps update on the dealers when I get her and can check things out at my leisure but will say that on our round trip from Bath via Amersham and Nottingham to look at a couple of cars, they were all pretty good, as tehy have been in sorting out the details for the delivery - but of course when they have my cash and I have the car we will see how things are!
Getting her delivered Friday, so not long to wait now and knee passed fit & safe to drive - just in time to give the 156 a farewell spin. Had almost forgotten she has a rev limiter!
One final note, if MPG tales on here are to be believed, I won't notice much difference from the 156, which invariably hit about 23mpg though since 4 new tyres and service earlier this year and knowing I'd be trading in soon, I did get only 17mpg on one tank - way lower than any other time in nearly 10 years of owning her, so at least I had fun saying goodbye!!
Sad goodbye to my 156, but long live my Brera!
See you soon when the steering rack goes....