My opinion of my Alfa Romeo 159 3.2 Q4 from rural Australia.
Hello everyone in Alfa Land,
This car is my 5th Alfa Romeo.Previously I have owned an Alfa Sud Sprint 1.5 1980,GTV2.0 1984,164Q3.0 V6 1992,and a beautiful but oh so flawed 156 2.0 2001.What a dreadful car! It bounced around any corner with the slightest bump in it,torque steered and was a huge disappointment hence I sold it and purchased a Subaru WRX.This car was dangerously fast,handled wonderfully, great brakes but was ugly and had no soul unlike an Alfa Romeo,I also didn't like the way turbo engines feel (all or nothing,everything happens too fast and then it's over).I then purchased a 2004 Liberty 3RB 3.0 6 speed,considered the best drivers car under $ 100,000 by Motor magazine at the time.The car was fast,handled fabulously, rode well on 18"wheels shod with 215/45 tyres and was a real wolf in sheeps clothing.I thought at the time ,why can't Alfa do this? WELL THEY HAVE ! only better.
Okay , it's heavy .but it is so comfortable.The Liberty feels tinny and cheap in comparison.The ride in the Alfa is magnificent compared to it, even with wider tyres.The engine's appearance visually is disappointing compared to the old Alfa 3.0/3.2liter engines however the torque spread of the old engine would not have handled the 1660 kg weight or the current car.Furthermore,the old engine had obviously reached it's practical power potential otherwise it would had more than 184kw of power and 300nm of torque for a GTA engine.This current engine is a much gruntier engine, more suited to moving a heavy car and it has7kw and 22nm more as well as producing 80% of its torque from 2000RPM.The Subaru Liberty felt even heavier in 0 to 100km per hour and it produced 180kw and 297nm and weighed only 1530 kg,it is the constant 4WD that saps the energy from both cars however I believe the handling advantages far outweigh a front wheel drive arrangement anyday.
The grip and chuckability of this 159 is outstanding and bumpy corners do not throw it off line ,point it and it stays on line and the steering is well weighted, communicative and accurate. The brakes are magnificent.
Finally,Alfa have gone all out to compete with BMW and Audi,they had to build a car that is solid and comfortable on all road surfaces. Alfa could have made a lighter underengineered platform but then it would have felt down market and tinny like a Subaru,you can't have it both ways.The 159 3.2 Q4 does take time to get used to than any other car I have owned yet once you do a couple of thousand miles in it you are rewarded with a magnificent driving experience.Alfa is back !