Premium Package - Test Drive by David Bateson
Can you marry Alfa with diesel?
Call it coincidence if you like – our first test drive for an ItalianCar Premium Feature was the new version Alfa 147 – our second Alfa test drive also a 147, also red, the only differences – 5 doors instead of 3 – and a completely different engine under the bonnet.
The Alfa 147 JTD marks a watershed for Alfa Romeo in Australia, a toe in the water for what many will see as a bold move – marrying the sporty Alfa image with a diesel engine. all it coincidence if you like – our first test drive for ItalianCar Premium was the new version Alfa 147 – our second Alfa test drive also a 147, also red, the only differences – 5 doors instead of 3 – and a completely different engine under the bonnet. In fact, as Alfa Romeo Australia stress at ever opportunity, Alfa Romeo and diesel have a long, and successful, history together.
In Europe 49% of all new cars sold are diesels - and 76% of all Alfas sold - period - are diesels. There are many factors at work here – European countries largely have tax regimes that assess cars on engine size and very high taxes on petrol – with lower taxes on diesel fuel. Those advantages do not (currently) exist in Australia but Alfa Romeo Australia are currently banking on a couple of trends continuing – rising fuel prices, increased interest in smaller cars, and perhaps a change in the car tax regime.
Is this a marriage made in heaven, or hell?
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