Up until last week, I had only seen one 159 and that was in the distance. I have seen Breras (as that was the car I was originally interested in...before launch, anyway) close up and been rather disappointed. I thought from photos the 159 looked better and less tubby...I was most impressed in the flesh.
Avis kindly gave me a 159 1.9 JTM for 4 days on my hols in Italy (rather than the 3 series or A4 I was expecting...guess should have thought about Italian patriotism!). Anyway I was quite pleased when I found this out as I knew it would look better and it was going to be good to have an extended test-drive.
Exterior (black metallic) was awesome - even better than I thought it would be...even with what I think were standard 17" wheels (correct me if I am wrong). Interior was beige cloth - was ok as cloth interiors go and given the 37 degree temperature in the lakes I was quite glad of no leather! Some bits didn't seem finished very well (e.g. roof lights moved around the whole roof lining and housing when pressed, and the air con display looked fairly low quality (and impossible to read in the sun) but overall I thought looked pretty good too. Clutch was good, gear changes were very "clonky" but that might be me not having driven a manual diesel for a long time...do they all sound like that? Engine more pokey that I expected and the fuel consumption was rather good...850kms in 4 days and about 7/8 of a tank used...haven't been in a car that could do that for...ever
I think I am going to try and drive a 2.4 diesel to see what its like on English roads that I know and am used to driving around in big petrol engines...diesel convert?