It seems that I have not properly introduced myself.
My name is Colin and I live in Northamptonshire, near to Wellingborough. I recently purchased a '56 Alfa Romeo 159 3.2 V6 Q4 Lusso from Chris Variava's in Nottingham. It is black with the grey leather interior and champagne dash (I think that is the colour).
This was a replacement for my old car, a Mitsubishi Galant VR4 2.5 V6 twin turbo, tuned to 320 bhp. It was a monster of a car but it had done over 120k miles and I had had it for 4 years and so was wanting something different.
My first impressions of the Alfa are... its like Marmite! You either love them or hate them. There are some things about the Alfa that I absolutely love; styling, comfort, quality of the interior, the aural delight of that V6 and the ride quality. There are also some things that I don't like; the lack of torque low down, clunky/notchy gearbox, looong clutch action that makes it a challenge to drive smoothly, ESP that seems to kick in a little too often and a tendency to understeer (although that may be down to the cheap *** tyres that are fitted to the front wheels).
Overall however, it is a car that I really like a lot. It has bags of character and presence, which you just don't get elsewhere. I was looking at the Beamers (330i and 335d) and Audis (S4 and A4 3.0 TDi) and they just did nothing for me. The S4 was a real hoot to drive but it just felt a bit.... dull. Dull to look at, dull to sit in; not for me. So we settled for a car with real soul.
I also have a '55 Black Vauxhall Astra Sporthatch 150 Design (currently running 204bhp), which is a tyre shredding monster. It is an absolute hoot to blat around in and covers the back roads like you would not believe, and it still does over 40mpg! In the garage is a '71 BRG MGB Roadster, which comes out when the sun is shining and the roads are dry (even in the winter despite the lack of decent heater).
I am a bit of a petrol head and a devote follower of all things Top Gear (even though it has been going off the boil a bit lately for my liking). As they say, any true petrol head should own an Alfa Romeo at some point in their life.... so here I am.
It seems I have gone on a bit, so I will leave it there for now.