Thanks for the welcome.
There were a few things in the 156s favour, colour , red leather, v6 and the sound!
I'd driven a few 1.9 diesels in italy about 9 or 10 years ago and liked them (apart from the turning circle which made getting out of the car park at Rome airport more challenging than usual).
I had my last car for 11 years (an E28 528i auto) and wanted something a bit more sporty (mid life crisis time!)
Other potential cars on my list were e36 BMs, 944s , VR6s along with the odd jap car.
Its got a few minor faults to sort and then I plan to take it to le mans next June. I'll have to pack a little less next year as the BM swallowed 3 peoples gear without problem.
The Alfa should be more fun and quieter on the motorway (less wind noise) and its got aircon!