Re: 159 Owners - Impressions of real world performance
Having test driven a 159 2.2 JTS and not given it entirely feedback from some points of view (I have an image issue with the car).
I can honestly say that despite weighting a lot more than my current 156 2.0TS it feels lighter, quieter, faster and more nimble from the outset. This is all due to more power and much a better suspension system (also I think the steering is higher geared which might help).
Whatever the mechanics have done under the covers with the 159 it is a case that more is less, possibly that stiffer chassis needed to be a lot heavier to be that stiff but the payoff from that is much tighter handling that ultimately gives the car a lighter feel.
The 2.2 JTS engine has a lot more low end pull than a 2.0TS and this really contributes to a lighter feeling car too.
I've also driven a BMW 320 recently and in my opinion it is a comparitively good drive to a 159, it also doens't feel particularly heavy and as usual BMW have got a lot about drivability right with it. If anything to do with image is put aside and the aim was to tour europe and do a serious amount of mileage in either a 159 or a 3-series it would honestly be a tough call but I think I would choose the 159 because it feels more comfortable and spacious.