Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Sexy Alfa GT's a Real Show Stealer

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Sexy Alfa GT's a Real Show Stealer

Article excerpt

The name's back, and it could be just what the doctor ordered for Alfa Romeo.

To the Playstation generation the words Gran Turismo mean one thing - blasting round street circuits in the hairiest cars on four wheels.

For the rest of us, the GT image is more of elegant classics like the Maserati 3500GT and Alfa's Giulietta and Giulia Sprint GT.

And from today the latest supercar to carry the badge, the Alfa Romeo Alfa GT, will bid to seduce cool coupe lovers with its sexy lines and potent performance.

Many will fall under its spell, as this is one of the most inspired models the Italian manufacturer has produced in a decade.

Everything about the car's design - which is by Bertone - oozes style, whether it be the trademark Villa d'Este style Alfa shield grille with its low-slung menace or the wrap-round headlights and 16-spoke alloy wheels.

Move inside and the touches are again chic. There's a sporty three-spoke steering wheel, simply organised dash area and seats that are covered with Alfatex, a new micro-fibre cloth.

As for interor space, room is ample up front and sufficient to accommodate two adults in rear. Otherwise there's reasonable storage, a more than adequate boot - larger than in most coupes - and high quality finish.

The GT is based on a modified version of the Alfa 156 chassis and at launch comes with a choice of the excellent two-litre JTS engine used in the 156, the proven 1.9-litre JTD MultiJet turbodiesel and a flagship 3.2-litre V6. A 1.8-litre Twin Spark engine will be available later in the year.

I drove both the two litre petrol and 1.9 oil-burner during the launch on the north coast of Scotland - bleak at this time of year but the long, winding roads are excellent.

Slightly the better of the pair, and the one expected to account for the lion's share of sales, is the petrol unit which offers spirited performance allied to reasonable economy. …

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