I am 24, and I really enjoy anything creative, so reading and writing reviews is a great outlet for me! Some of my reviews may have appeared on Qype under the username Kaemi or Dooyoo or Amazon under the username Dinah93.
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You're not a petrolhead until you've owned an Alfa.
Fantastic driving experience, high quality finish, that growl
Bad image regards reliability, some niggles
Purchase Priceused £4000
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I purchased my Alfa 147 in 2005 after falling in love with the noise she makes. Nothing has the same growl as an alfa.
When I bought my 147 she was already 3 years old, and is nearly 6 now. I spend a lot of time driving each week for work, around 300 miles a week in fact, so I have experience of her on all kinds of roads and journeys. The first thing to be mentioned when I think of my car is the ride quality. I'm informed by passengers that she is very comfortable in the back, and doesn't make them feel sick. However as a driver she has nearly ruined my back. This is down to the fact that I live in a right hand drive country, and the car was designed to be left hand drive. Because of this nothing quite lines up correctly. Most importantly my seat is not straight on to the steering wheel, meaning my back is wrapped around the outer edge of the seat.
Lookswise the 147 is understated, sharp, but nevertheless understated. From the rear it is fairly non-descript, but the front has a sexy, leopard-esque wink to it. When they update this to the 3 eyed bulbs as seen on the new Braera the 147 will be a real headturner.
Now, everyone hears alfa and still hears alfasud, the notoriously unreliable, shoddily built alfa of yore. Build quality has improved hugely. I've even had kids inside mine and they didn't reduce it to it's bare component parts and they were in there a full 45 mins. I have had very few issues over the last 3 years, a new rear suspension bushel was needed, and I have a weeping power steering cable. Maintenance on her is pretty regular though, and I do get through an unbelieable ammount of oil. There have been a few niggles as well, tempermental speakers, and a dodgy contact for the rear left foglight means I get constant warnings that I need to replace the bulb.
I do 38mpg combined, which is acceptable for a car of this type. The tank seems pretty huge, 60 or 65 litres. There are lots of computery gadgets to tell you milage, mpg, average velocity etc.
I've thoroughly outlined the 147s faults above, and if you are still reading, you're probably wondering why I bought the car. And here's why I kept this part till last - the Alfa 147 is drivings best kept secret. Here you have a fairly practical small family car, with an amazing driving experience for no more than a used focus. And it is the driving experience that really makes this car. Behind the wheel is a thoroughly enjoyable place to be, even if I can't stand upright when I reach my destination. The car has a delicious growl and roar when pushed, and puts a huge smile on my face on a grey November day heading to a boring marketing meeting.
Would I buy an Alfa again knowing what I know now? Come and ask me in 3 months, I'm currently hunting for a shiny new GT, any other make just feels like stepping in the wrong direction.