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Old 06-28-2006, 10:27 PM   #1
TT
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Default Alfa Romeo Brera 3.2 JTS V6

So, Alfa Romeos, some of the sexiest cars around probably, and now that general quality is at pretty good standards, more and more interesting.
I had the chance to test the sexiest models, at least IMO, the Brera and 159! And was lucky enough to find two different engines under the bonnet, to have a better idea of the whole range.
In both cases it wasn't a long test drive, but enough to understand at least some basic things.

Alfa Romeo Brera 3.2 JTS V6


More pics :arrow: http://www.motorworld.net/forum/show...=673001#673001

Specifications

Engine - V6, 3195cc
Power - 260 hp (191 kw) / 6200 rpm
Torque - 322 Nm / 4500 rpm
Weight w/ 75 kg driver - 1705 kg
Fuel Tank - 70 l
Max Speed (declared) - 240 km/h
Acceleration (declared), 0-100 km/h w/ driver + 30 kg) - 6.8 s. 1000 meters in 27 s
Fuel economy (out of town / town / mixed) - 8.4 / 16.9 / 11.5 l/100 km
Tranny - 6 gears manual

Seats - 2+2
Doors - 3
Lenght / width - 4413 / 1830 mm
Height - 1372 mm
Boot - 300 /610 dm3 (236 / 546 with Bose HiFi system)

Exterior

Well, since the first sketches were shown to the world, everybody seemed to fall in love with this new design, and you can't deny it's really something. Classy yet modern, it has an exotic feeling without being too much. I can see jet set members wannabe but also old and elegant grannies in there.
Actually, and that's just a personal opinion, the back 3/4 isn't THAT good. I find it heavy to the eyes while the front is so sleek and agressive.

Interior

Uhm. It's nice and cozy for sure, but I think the newer Alfas kinda tried to become a bit more "German" and lost some italianity as far as I remember, the 156 although maybe not better built, had a more special feeling, felt more unique.
The model on test had black leather and silver aluminium (or look-alike) bits in the console or steering wheel. It's nice, but too conservative. All the buttons have a good feeling, the fully electric seats are pretty comfy and hug you well enough.
I don't like the gearchange stick. It's short, which is nice, but well, ugly
The car had the panoramic roof option, which is always damn cool if you are used to have a normal roof above your head. The day was quite grey so sadly I couldn't really enjoy it, but given a very good and "roomy" feeling.
Roomy isn't the word I'd use for the back seats though. I aint tall at 170 cm, and yet to access the beack seats was no easy task with the front seat placed like it was for me to drive. Sure, I kept it a bit further back and average probably, but definitely two adults won't go on a long journey in the back of the Brera.. that makes it a real 2+2, where the last 2 are just emergency places or good if you have childrens to take around.
oh yes, the boot's access is not practical at all: small and high.

How does it drive?

First thought was that the engine note is almost completely kept outside the cabin thanks to some massive isolation I suppose. Not that outside the engine note is racer's like, but inside you would really struggle to guess it is one of those beautifully crafted Alfa V6! it is kinda obvoius from the first meters the Brera wasn't engineered to be a real sportcar but more like a relaxed and muscular cruiser. The engine has grunt and couple of course, but even when you give it full throttle, acceleration doesn't impress; probably because of the lack of hardcore soundtrack or the gearing, but you never feel like you are going on maximum attack.
The ride is not too soft though, althouh the road is very well filtered and the car is pretty poised in corners. Sadly I had no time to find a proper mountain road or any hairpin, so I couldn't really test the Q4 AWD system. It has been said in the press it is biased toward the rear, but on long sweepers of course it's hard to judge. While accelerating though, you feel there are four wheels putting down the power because you won't wheelspin at all. Like I was saying, into corners the car is neutral and I couldn't find the understeer limit. Felt very safe and steering quite precise. Stopping power seemed good with an easy feeling on the pedal. Pedals which are well spaced to do some heel and toe, but again, the Brera seems to transform you from a rally driver hooligan to a bank manager cruising from buisiness meeting to business lunch.
Instead of doing mad heel and toe you soon end up short shifting and driving it on the torque, 4th gear being pretty interesting.

What are the most positive features of the car?

Torquey engine, panoramic roof, cool look

What are the most negative features of the car?

Absent engine note, "fake" rear seats

How do you think this car compares to its direct competition?

Does it really have any real rival? Honestly I can't really see any. The Brera is quite special and unique.

Conclusion

I was expecting a different car, maybe because I had still in mind a picture appeared in evo with a Brera kinda powersliding or anyway oversteering into a corner. Instead I found a relaxed highway cruiser. At first didn't really enjoy it but with miles piling up I am sure it is a very good car if you know what it is meant to be :good:
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Old 06-29-2006, 04:24 PM   #2
Wutputt
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I have about the same opinions about this car as you had. I was also a bit disappointed, cause I was hoping for a very dynamic handling car, and in the end I found a relaxing cruiser. But that's just the way this car was meant to be, a cruiser, and not a boy's racer. It's more grown up compared to for example the GT.
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Old 06-30-2006, 07:48 AM   #3
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It might be a good idea if people make a mention of the cars price in their country, interesting to compare sometimes.

Lovely little car, would like to drive one myself actually. Thanks for the review TT.
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Old 06-30-2006, 05:11 PM   #4
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I didn't even know JW had a review section :shock:
Nice work on the Alfa's test. I drive 159's regulary; company pool cars; and I always enjoy the ride.
We had a Brera 2.2JTS in test this weekend but I gave it to a collague, I'm waiting for the 3.2 version in a couple of weeks
If I'll find the time I'll get some of my articles in the same format so I can post them here.
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Old 06-30-2006, 05:22 PM   #5
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Yep, the 2.2 is not worth the hassle IMO

And would be definitely cool if you could format your future reviews to fit the standards and post them here
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Old 06-30-2006, 07:43 PM   #6
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Never realised the car was that heavy! over 1700kg :shock: Im guessing you can feel that? I know its 4wd and everything but its a fat thing. I also agree with you on the look, I also think the back looks kinda chubby. Nice pics also its got a evil looking face for sure
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Old 06-30-2006, 07:59 PM   #7
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Yup, you definitely feel the car isn't agile and mass transfers take some serious time.
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