This was never supposed to be a straightforward petrol v diesel question but thanks for the input anyway.
Unless you only drive a relatively short distances, the real world affordability of the 3.2 v6 is questionable for me, so that rules the v6 out. Having driven a 159 3.2, it is no Busso v6, so I would not push the boat out on cost to run one.
In my opinion the 2.2 is too inefficient a package - neither fast nor economic. Plus it has the combination of the most problematic engine with the most problematic gearbox (I accept that the 1.75 might also have the dreaded M32 box).
This quote says it all "It's not a great engine to start with, I wouldn't be putting it under further stress."
I don't do short runs, so no great worries about DPF problems and despite having had six Alfa or Fiat diesels, the only trouble I have had with EGR valves have been component failure.
The 2.4 20V diesel engine was excellent in every way in the 156 sportwagon the we ran for over 4 years. Apart from tickover when cold, you would be hard pushed to tell it was a diesel. It even sounded good when you gave it some work to do - not in a "take it to the red line TS/ Busso way I readily admit - but still worth winding down the window to hear it growl.
The 4 cylinder jtd engines (especially the 8 valve) may deliver decent power but they certainly do not sound like anything other than a diesel.
I will make up my own mind but it may come down to availability, since it has to be the right colour and have the right wheels.
"When you sit in a Focus RS or a Golf R32 itís like sitting in a commercial for Lynx aftershave. When you sit in an 147 GTA itís like sitting in a Venetianís hand-made suitcase." J.Clarkson 2003.
Current fleet: 156 Sportwagon jtd 16V (facelift) 2.4 Spider, Leon Cupra SC
Projects: Spider S4, Matra Murena 2.2
Last edited by driver33p4; 07-12-14 at 20:49.