4 doors. 4 seats. A decent boot. A fixed roof that doesn’t move. A 2.5 litre V6 engine that definitely does….
Features and Specification
What's she like to drive?
What are we thinking? A saloon car that seats 4 adults and their luggage? Have we gone all sensible and middle aged? Well yes….and no. For those who prefer to proceed in a fashion no less briskly and entertaining than the rest of our fleet but a lot more discreetly with a lot more space, this is the car for you. It’s Alfa red paintwork and sharp suited styling signal some intent. At first glance it looks like a coupe but then you notice the outline of the rear doors and the hidden recessed door handles. So it’s another 4 seater rental saloon then, ho, hum.
But we don’t do ordinary at RentAClassic. You’ll note the automatic transmission also has a ‘H gate’ icon revealing you can change gears yourself if you want without needing a clutch. Getting interesting but so what? Well there’s also a tiny little button nearby marked “C/S”. “C” stands for city mode which keeps things economical, changing gear around 3000 rpm. “S” however equals sports mode which holds the gears for quite a bit longer, allowing those big fat shiny inlets under the bonnet to work things up to a howl and allowing you to proceed with a fair bit of due progress….up to legal speed limits of course.
What do I need to get used to?
Being a wolf in sheeps clothing and reining it in probably. You’d think it might feel flimsy and insubstantial but whilst the steering is light and responsive, the car itself feels seriously reassuringly solid and planted on the road. Otherwise it’s all a perfectly normal car with hardly any Alfa idiosyncrasies, apart from the usual one of the lock to access the boot hidden under the rear Alfa badge. But it’s even got a boot release lever sensibly positioned by the drivers seat along with one for the fuel cap for goodness sake.
What about safety and reliability?
Yes it is an Alfa Romeo and this one is regularly serviced and has to pass the Certificate of Fitness (CoF) test required for all rental cars every 6 months. You have ABS brakes, driver and passenger airbags, high level brake light and side impact bars, along with very predictable and sure footed handling.
What condition is she in?
Really good. Everything works as it should and it’s very smartly presented inside and out.
How much luggage can fit?
The boot can swallow a lot, including a full size solid suitcase and lots of bags, with a fold down cubby hatch in the central rear armrest for some skis or a very skinny Christmas tree, (you’re clearing up the needles though). Plus if you’re only two up there’s a lot of extra space on the back seats. For exact dimensions, refer to the Seating & Luggage tab above.
How fast will she go Mister?
Quite fast enough.
How would a certain Mr Clarkson describe it?
” Whoever designed this car had Castrol R flowing through his veins, he had a soul, he had passion. I love this car, I do, I do, I’m going to elope with it…”
And the RentAClassic description for the Alfa Romeo 156 V6 Saloon?
” Steady on Jeremy, you’d definitely lose your insurance excess bond if you didn’t bring it back…”