FACTfile - Alfa GTV / Spider

New look and new engines for GTV and Spider

Once again Alfa Romeo have provided us with a comprehensive run-down of these 2 upgraded models. As we reported earlier in the year the new GTV has the honour of being the fastest production Alfa ever built. We have already test driven the Spider - we drove the JTS Lusso - read what we think in the test drive section of the site. We will - we hope - be driving the new GTV soon. Without further ado - here is the technical spec from Alfa...

The New Alfa Romeo Spider and GTV have arrived in Australia with more power from two new engines, including the 3.2 litre powerhouse from the 147 and 156 GTA that makes the new Alfa GTV, at 255 kmh, the fastest-ever road-going Alfa, and more style from the gifted Italian styling house Pininfarina, along with additional equipment and features.

"Alfa Romeo sports cars are the very definition of Alfa Romeo," says Kevin Wall, General Manager for Alfa Romeo in Australia. "They provide the character, spirit and passion that infuse all of the Alfa Romeo range and in the new Alfa Romeo sports cars all their abilities and skills have been revitalized, refreshed and empowered."

Pininfarina, the Italian styling house that designed and styled the first generation of the Spider and GTV have gifted the new cars with a strong, vital new appearance that enhances the original acclaimed wedge shaped sports cars with the more dominant use of the classic Alfa Romeo shield that is such a strong feature of the present generation of Alfa Romeos. Under the bonnet there are two new engines, the revolutionary 2.0 litre JTS engine that combines all the benefits of lean burn and direct injection technology with none of the drawbacks to produce a lusty 121 kW, while remaining remarkably frugal.

The quad cam Alfa Romeo V6 engine is nothing short of an automotive legend, from its effortless performance to its throaty, evocative roar under acceleration, it has provided the heart and soul of every Alfa Romeo to which it has been fitted. In its latest 3.2 litre incarnation it has provided performance and a spirit that has been universally praised in the Alfa Romeo 156 and 147 GTA. Now it is, for the first time, under the bonnet of the Alfa Romeo sports cars, providing them with astonishing performance in every one of their six gears, whether it is the 255 kmh top speed of the GTV or their ability to slash the dash to 100 kmh to just 6.3 seconds.

There are also changes to the Spider and GTV's already talented chassis that boost grip, enhance ride comfort and refine handling, while inside the Spider, the dashboard has a new trim, there's a new centre console with a new integrated audio system, as well as new upholsteries, while outside there are new alloy wheels and paint colours. The hood of the Alfa Spider has also been redesigned to make it quicker and easier to operate, quieter and more insulating when erect.

The new range consists of three Spiders, the Spider JTS, the Spider JTS Lusso and the Spider 3.2 24V V6, while the GTV comes as the Alfa GTV JTS and the Alfa GTV 3.2 24V V6. The standard Spider JTS has as standard, cloth seats and door panels, front seat-belt pretensioners, driver and passenger airbags, electrically-controlled windows and door mirrors, automatic climate control system, remote central locking and check control for door and boot closure, height and reach adjustable three-spoked steering wheel, radio and CD player, power steering, headlight alignment corrector, fog lights, electronic immobilizer and new-design 205/50/16" light alloy wheels. The Spider JTS Lusso adds Momo leather and an electrically powered roof and this specification is shared with the V6 Spider, but with 225/45 tyres and 17 inch alloy wheels. The GTV JTS has the same specification as the standard Spider, with the GTV 3.2 24 V6 also gaining Momo leather and 225/45 tyres and 17 inch alloy wheels over the GTV JTS.

Prices for the new Alfa Romeo Spider and GTV open at a recommended retail price of $55,000 for both the Spider JTS and the GTV JTS, with the Spider JTS Lusso at $59,990. With the 3.2 litre V6 engine, the Spider 3.2 24V V6 is $75,500 and the GTV 3.2 24V V6 is $73,500.

The Spider and GTV join an Alfa Romeo range which, by the end of 2003, will be revitalized and reinvigorated with the Alfa Romeo 147 GTA adding a new performance edge to the 147 range and the arrival of the new Alfa Romeo 156 and 156 Sportwagon and the new 166 sports luxury sedan completing an all-new range.

"Compared to the massive sales success of the Alfa Romeo 147 and the Alfa Romeo 156, the sales of the Alfa Romeo sports cars may seem relatively modest," says Kevin Wall. "But they are the latest incarnations of a long line of classic sports cars that have made the name Alfa Romeo a byword for style, performance and success, they are the inheritors of a heritage of which other car makers can only dream and the latest models started the Alfa Romeo revolution that has provided a re-birth for one of the most famous names in automotive history and heralded its return to Australia. They are, in short, the heart, soul and the very passion of Alfa Romeo and, therefore, of performance motoring."

The Full Details
Styled by Pininfarina, the Italian styling house that created the original Spider and GTV, the new Alfa Romeo Spider and GTV made their world debut at the 2003 Geneva Motor Show before a European launch in May 2003. Both models come with a brand-new look, a revised range of specifications and new power units, though their timeless appeal is unchanged: driving satisfaction in a sporty, stylish package.

Even a quick glance at the new Spider and GTV reveals the changes and improvements to the car's exterior appearance. Firstly, the front end is now more imposing and distinctive. This impression of solidity and dynamism is complemented by side pillars that are the source of the traditional V-shape on the bonnet: two converging ribs that delimit and emphasize a central bulge that hints at the presence of the powerful, beefy engine beneath.

The new Alfa Spider and Alfa GTV also preserve the same wedge-shaped line emphasized by a cut-off tail that gives the vehicle body a strong sense of aggression. Similarly, it was decided not to change the strongly raked windscreen and the emphatically shelved side that give both models their slender, dynamic looks. The much-appreciated profile of both sports models has also been kept, including the Alfa GTV's high cut-off end and the open-topped sports car's slender, tapering rear. The 16" light alloy wheels, on the other hand, are new, as are the three body shade options: Brunello Red, Racing Green and Cobalt Blue.

Several new features have been added inside the new Alfa Spider and Alfa GTV, beginning with a lower driver seating level in relation to the ground (H point) for improved driving comfort. The interiors have also been redefined to make them more stylish and user-friendly. This tendency is evident in the black facia and the brand-new central console panel that houses the minor controls and the new audio system. The lighting on the instrument panel and controls is now red while a new cloth trim is available for seats and interiors. All these factors help emphasize the concept of stylish sportiness that has always typified the Alfa Romeo brand.

The new Alfa Spider and Alfa GTV power units are also bound to arouse plenty of interest. Just for starters, the models now offer two engines that have already met with considerable success on other Alfa Romeo models: the 121 kW 2.0 JTS engine and the legendary 3.2 V6 24V in a new 176 kW form. The 2.0 JTS (Jet Thrust Stoichiometric) is a revolutionary petrol engine with direct injection that offers a specific power rating in excess of 60 kW/l and a specific torque of more than 100 Nm/l. The second power unit is the spirited 3.2 V6 24V unit, with a power output of 176 kW at 6200 rpm that boasts a torque curve of up to 289 Nm (29.4 kgm) at 4800 rpm and can ensure exhilarating performance during sporty driving and also during everyday use. More specifically, a GTV equipped with this engine reaches 255 km/h, a performance that makes this the fastest on-road car in Alfa Romeo's history.

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