Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: United Kingdom
County: Greater Manchester
Germanized Alfa 159
I know Mel Bonkers' 159 write-up is very old but here's my two-pennorth. My first Alfa was a 147JTDM Ti, 5 years owned and I only really got rid of it because of its age (only 8yo) and, more so, fairly rigid ride (suspension/tyres). The roads in my part of Manchester are not good.
I test drove a Giulietta and thought it a bit plasticky on the inside and the performance not quite as thrilling as the 147. Also, my master plan was to replace wife's MPV, so I wanted the biggest Alfa I could fine: 159 SW. Then she or I could get something 147-sized or smaller. She isn't yet convinced about that plan so we currently have 2 large-ish cars.
I am disappointed with my 159 JTD (170 PS). While I am wary of the obligatory new-fangled in-car devices the 159 (2011) doesn't seem even to have the good bits I liked from the 147 e.g. Mono control of Climate Control. Perhaps I haven't read the manual fully yet. The Leather feels cheaper and the switchgear more flimsy. It's 3 years younger than the 147 was: progress?
It looks great - Alfa red (147 was Silver) and that gorgeous front end. And while it is not a Ti it's got lovely Optional 17" wheels. So it's quieter and rides out the bumps better. So my wife is much happier to be in it that the 147. But it's slow and feels SO heavy. Very Germanic. I knew there was a German guy in charge when they made this and also that it was a shared GM platform but it's all too 'solid'. The doors must be > 2x the width of the 147's.
Sorry but, to me, under the skin, it's not an Alfa.