Cross-eyed fiend!

159_intro.jpg

A Q4 4-wheel drive system? Rear Multi-link suspension system? A 3.2 V6 Monster? Oh My!

There’s this adage that says when dealing with recovering alcoholics, never believe the promises, only the evidence. Personally, I don’t care if Alfa Romeo has had a history of alienating its customers with teethy unreliability issues. The previous Alfa 156 series was meant to usurp BMW’s 3-series, and for a while sucked in the supposedly gullible only to be spat out indecorously (due to dodgy electronics).

However, the Alfa is a serious Italian underground film, not without its flaws, as the BMW is to a conventional summer blockbuster. And if you are the eternal optimist, you can waive these grievances aside the way you soon learn to shrug aside chronically poor relationships.

But I digress. What do I love about the 159? Firstly, its feral cadamuro grille and 6-pronged headlights; lighting the journeys to work, town, the heart of darkness and back again. Alfa designers have put together an improbable cocktail of slight chunkiness with curvaceousness. Think of the car as a liaison between Ray Liotta and [insert dream woman’s name] or masculinity and desire. Sure, my reasons for love are entirely superficial and I’m sure the V6 produces the most immaculate sound of thunder at 4000 rpm. But what can you expect from a car maker that wears its motto as La Bellezza Non Basta?

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