Alfa Romeo 156 Saloon 1997-2002

Alfa Romeo 156 Saloon 1997-2002

Review by Creditplus
Monday, May 16, 2016

Pros:

  • Fantastic range of engines
  • Sharp Handling
  • Attractive looks and sleek design
  • Comfortable cabin space for passengers

Cons:

  • Mediocre luggage space
  • Difficulty in loading luggage due to the boot opening being too narrow
  • Concerns about the reliability of the car

Overview

The Alfa 156 (97-06) Saloon and Sportwagon is the ideal car for those drivers and enthusiasts who are looking for a sensible car with exciting features. The sportswagon estate has attractive looks and features that are sure to impress the enthusiasts. The range of engines in the Alfa 156 is substantial, and it is this that makes it unique from other vehicles in its class. The large range of engines together with its sleek looks is more than capable of make its owners happy. For drivers it is certainly an exciting car with sharp handling, stunning looks and being reasonably economical.

Exterior and Interior

The Alfa 156 Saloon and Sportwagon are superior in body shape and design than any of its predecessors. The rear seats in most models do fold down giving a greater boot space, however the suspension does take up more than its fair share of space in the boot. In spite of that, there is ample room in the front of the car giving a comfortable space for both the driver and the front passenger. Other features include inbuilt climate control, airbags in the front and rear, electrical windows, and a leather trimmed steering wheel.

Performance and Economy

The Alfa 156 was made to be sporty. With great looks, sharp handling, an engine that performs crisply and an exhaust that has a suitably sporty note, it certainly manages to pull it off. With the top of the range 3.2-litre GTA giving out 247bhp, a top speed of 155mph and lowered and stiffened suspension, it's as sporty as they come. There is also the option of a diesel engine ranging from the 1.9-litre JTD to the 2.4-litre JTDm, all of which are hugely economical giving between 40 and 45mpg.

Like to Drive

This is a great car to drive and is a real pleasure to experience. As soon as you leave the vehicle you find yourself wanting to get straight back in it! Alfa got the styling just right and the car is a joy to drive. The engines feel like they want to just keep going and going, and the only thing that might hold you back from doing so is the level of fuel economy. As long as you are not too worried about a few of the in-practicalities such as luggage space, then you will enjoy this vehicle.

Faults and Repairs

In multiple surveys conducted to find out what the customers had to say about the Alfa156, the model received poor reactions and reviews about the number of faults and the high repair costs. The main problems being the suspension and axle closely followed by the electrics, engine, cheap quality of materials used and the services by the dealers.


Overall Rating:
Review by Whybacktiger
Monday, May 16, 2016

Overview

"Don't believe what Topgear say."

Exterior and Interior

The exterior has the sport pack 3 full body kit with out the hideous rear ring on the boot. In Cosmos blue this flips between blue, green and black. It also has 16inch cloverleaf rims. The interior is black Momo leather with leather steering wheel and carbon dash board. It has electric windows/door mirrors and the rare electric sunroof. Blaupunkt up-graded sound system with CD multi-changer in the boot. Very comfortable to drive, even on long distances.

Performance and Economy

Performance was not exactly hair raising but was adequate and sounded nice too. Economy wise it was reasonable around town when driven reservedly. It is very good on a long journey.

Like to Drive

Great to drive and it felt planted in the corners. Brakes could be better and the steering position is a little off center. The car takes a while to get used to. The sport pack suspension was very hard and unforgiving over pot wholes but gear changes were nice and reassuring. Practical in size for a small family, but not for large people. The seats are very narrow and as a driver I have experienced better leg room in a Mini! <

Faults and Repairs

The brakes including discs had to be done. The wheel bearing and wishbones also had to be replaced but I think this is more due to condition of London roads and the age of the car than reliability issues.
Quality
Performance
Comfort
Value