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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've run a Tbi Sportwagon in Ti trim for a number of years. Alfa have abandoned the svelte Sportwagon market and gone SUV mad. I can't abide the jacked up truck look. And it doesn't make sense to have all the weight pushed skywards with fresh air underneath.

I've had to look elswhere. So I now have a 210 BHP wagon with a sculpted fastback. It has double wishbone front suspension almost identical to the 159 (image below). The rear is multi link but with a clever composite spring to eliminate the spring turrets and reduce noise transmission to the load area. It has an 8 speed super smooth gearbox. The drive characteristics can be adjusted by a toggle in the centre console.

Being more modern it's loaded with kit to include Autonomous Driving, Remote Start, Automatic High Beam and Cornering Lights. Also Powered Memory Seats with Auto Dipping interior and exterior mirrors. You can see the parallels with the 159.

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Their own. Not based on anything else and produced in house. Nearly always a 4 cylinder 2.0 litre that starts with a single turbo but goes up to turbo+supercharger+electric to give 320 BHP + 87 BHP
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 ·
Engines made by Geely (who owns Volvo since 2010)....in China....since 2016! Designed by Volvo....but hardly "produced in house".
Some in China (for chinese built Geeley cars) but most in the Swedish Skovde plant. More in house than most manufacturers.
The Volvo design teams are made up of a lot of ex Ford Dunton engineers. Even when Volvo were using Focus engines they innovated the accessories to improve cooling and induction flows.
So let loose under Geeley funding after Ford 'Value Engineers' had constrained spending.
 

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Discussion Starter · #47 ·
Interesting point on steering. We know the default setup on Alfa is a quick rack with too much toe out. This gives arrow straight stability at high speed with a quick turn in at low speed. So Volvo don't do this. The rack is slow and the steering toe out is virtually zero. At motorway speeds it is very stable. Around the corners it needs more input. Some might mistake that for understeer but it isn't.

One of the more interesting features is the Autonomous Steering. There's a camber change on the M25 that requires the Alfa to be steered against it. In the Volvo with the hands off the wheel there is no straightening necessary. The wheel stays straight and the car stays straight. So the Volvo is different and perhaps better on uk roads.
 

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Discussion Starter · #54 ·
Very nice indeed those light interiors, but a challenge to keep pristine!

Our nuova 500 has a white (with small blue blocks like from a chef's outfit), which is horrible to keep clean. It's fabric, so that makes a big difference probably (as the leather steering wheel is easily cleaned with some mild soap water). My personal favorite are the French cognac (tabacco?) interiors. With a sliding roof please, then you have plenty of light in the cabine. Unfortunately my car has German roots, so it's black inside. But stromboli on the outside (which has a warm sand teint under a bright sun).

But the VOLVO must beat that 159 TBI of yours on every inch regarding loading capacity? I can hardly imagine that if you put them side to side, that they are so similar dimensional wise. That new V90 comes across to me as a really large, spacious estate. Unlike the Sportswagon.
I can't think what happens in a 'Black Leather' car to hide dirt!
Your right. The load area is superb. It presents as a flat floor from the tailgate level but it hides a strut supported floor opening for a hidden storage. And the load cover motors upwards to aid access as the foot operated tailgate opens.
 

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Discussion Starter · #66 ·
Nice....I do like the tyres to line up with the body work.....cant stand the sucked in look some cars have as standard....some almost look like this!
View attachment 963173
That's the later 1500. My family had this one with side hinged load door. That narrow track allowed you to pull forwards into a parking space with the passenger dangling over the pavement,

Automotive parking light Tire Wheel Vehicle Car
 
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