Nine versions of the new Alfa 159, priced from £19,995 to £28,195 on-the-road, will become available here in the first quarter of 2006, seven of which will be available at launch, (25 February), with a choice of five powerplants. Three new direct injection petrol engines – 1.9 litre 160bhp and 2.2 litre 185bhp 4-cylinder units, and a 3.2 litre 260bhp V6 available from March 2006 – combine the JTS (Jet Thrust Stoichiometric) direct injection technology of Alfa Romeo with continuously variable valve timing, (both inlet and exhaust), for the first time.
With specific power outputs of between 81 and 85bhp/litre, and almost 90% of maximum torque available at just 2000rpm, all three new JTS units boast outstanding performance, yet offer significant fuel savings and readily comply with stringent Euro 4 exhaust emission regulations.
The two diesel engine options which complete the launch range exemplify the company’s on-going pre-eminence in the field of diesel technology: a 1.9 litre 16 valve 150bhp 4-cylinder unit, and a 2.4 litre 20 valve 200bhp 5-cylinder powerplant, both of which feature the company’s renowned JTD MultiJet common rail direct injection systems.
Both units also feature variable geometry turbocharging, and incorporate a ‘for life’, maintenance-free particulate trap (DPF) in anticipation of Euro 5 emissions regulations. Alfa Romeo’s widely acclaimed twin overhead camshaft 1.9 JTDM 16v unit now combines a power delivery of 150bhp with a remarkable 236lb.ft of torque – a figure comparable to that generated by the company’s four overhead camshaft, 24 valve, all-aluminium 3.2 litre JTS V6.
All five engines are mated to smooth, precise 6-speed manual gearboxes. Six-speed automatic transmissions will become available on 1.9 and 2.4 JTDM and 3.2 V6 JTS versions of the new Alfa 159 later in 2006.
3.2 JTS engined versions of the new Alfa 159 are equipped, as standard, with Alfa Romeo’s state-of-the-art Q4 permanent four-wheel drive system. Q4 employs three differentials, with a self-locking Torsen C unit at the centre of the system which divides drive torque by a ratio of 57% to the rear wheels and 43% to the front in normal driving conditions. Torque is split between front and rear axles and constantly modulated by the central Torsen differential on the basis of available grip, with a bias towards the rear axle promoting handling characteristics appropriate to an Alfa Romeo sports saloon.
Two models are available – Turismo and Lusso. Standard equipment on all models includes seven airbags, automatic Dual Zone climate control, cruise control, ‘Follow Me Home’ headlamps, heated, folding electric door mirrors, a multi-function display and trip computer, fog lights, 16″ or 17″ spoked alloy wheels, and an RDS 8-speaker stereo radio with CD player.
Lusso models add leather interior trim, Visibility pack (rain and dusk sensors), rear parking sensors and 17″ alloy wheels.
Optional equipment includes Tri Zone climate control, xenon headlamps, satellite navigation (either independent or incorporated within bCONNECT), electrically adjustable front seats, a Bose sound system, Bluetooth mobile phone connectivity and 18″ alloy wheels.
Basic Price £
Retail Price £
OTR Charges £
1.9 JTS Turismo
2.2 JTS Turismo
2.2 JTS Lusso
3.2 JTS V6 Q4 Turismo
3.2 JTS V6 Q4 Lusso
1.9 JTDM 16v Turismo
1.9 JTDM 16v Lusso
2.4 JTDM Turismo
2.4 JTDM Lusso