Negative Brera Review - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 03:14 PM Thread Starter
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Negative Brera Review

The car definately has looks but it seems that much of the automotive press is unpleased with performance. I don't know enough about the auto press and their typical responses to Alfa Romeos except for the fact that most critics hated the design of the Duetto in the late 1960's. Is this all just biase or is it seeming more and more that Alfa has an under-performer on its hands?

From Autospies.com:

"Alfa Romeo hopes this car will deliver the marque back to the sunlit uplands of the 1960s when it appeared it could do no wrong. Yes, the Brera is beautiful, but a day at the wheel of the 2.2 revealed a car that simply doesn’t perform in the way you’d hope of a £25,000 Alfa. For a start it’s quite heavy at 3,240lb and with just 185bhp it needs 8.6sec to reach 62mph, a time more commonly found among lukewarm hatches costing 10 grand less. Flat out, it will do a decidedly average 138mph. The engine is smooth and willing but it is stifled by the sheer weight of the car it has to carry.

Once it has overcome its initial inertia it’s a decent drive, so long as you make good use of its excellent six-speed gearbox to ensure the engine is always singing its heart out. Neverthless, Japanese rivals like the Mazda RX-8 and Nissan 350Z have an explosive punch that the Brera cannot match.

Even European rivals such as the Audi TT 1.8T quattro and the Mercedes C230 SE sport coupé have no problem outperforming the Brera. Shame."
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 03:41 PM
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****.. the car isn't even out yet.. I wonder if Alfa will do something about that before it comes out. The U.S. return depends on the success of the Brera and the 159.


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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 03:55 PM
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Whats so negative about it? alfa always offered a snail like engine in their coupes, the older GTV had the 1.8 T.S., im sure that wasnt a monster. If they were critisizing the handling, ride, build quality etc.... then i would consider the failure. The fact that the only complaint the car has received is the dissapointing perfomance from a basis 2.2L isnt that suprising, the 3.2 is a different story, and hopefully the GTA will adress the situation.

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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 04:46 PM Thread Starter
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What's negative about it is everything if you ask me. Alfas should be performers on par with (or above) the capabilities of other sports cars of the day.

I find the comment about the Audi 1.8T engine outperforming the Brera a bit dissappointing since that particular engine sat standard in every VW sold in North America last year. It sounds to imply that a base model Golf could outperform a base model Alfa Romeo and that just doesn't sound right to me.
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 04:53 PM
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Not much a review (or reviewr). Absent are references to steering, ride, handling, turn-in, braking, exhaust note, which have always been the paramount attributes of Alfa's. Not as much "punch" as a Nissan -- who cares.

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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 06:00 PM
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I think it's stupid to compare the 2.2L BASE engine to these other cars...Why didn't they test out the bigger engine? I'm pretty sure it came in something much larger too. I think if they took their heads out of their biased **ses, then they would give more of an accurate review.

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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 06:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by silverspider
Not as much "punch" as a Nissan -- who cares.
Hmmm....

While we're in the mood to expound opinion:

I'd take the 350Z or the RX-8 over the (fwd) Brera any day. Who needs a pretty car anyway?

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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 08:40 PM
 
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...and I would take a V-6 Altima, for a lot less money....enough less to buy a decent older Alfa
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 08:52 PM
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Are you sure the Brera is FWD? I thought I saw the engine mounted for RWD? Maybe I was mistaken!

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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 09:27 PM
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woops! my bad! I guess I got this confused with the 8C. I hope they make an AWD version for this. I bet an AWD 2.2t would give Audi a run for it's money!

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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-25-2005, 11:16 PM
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They didn't "test" the 3.2 because it wasn't available yet (to them) and yes - the 3.2 will be 4wd.

Whether the added weight will do much for the performance remains to be seen but the 2.2 certainly isn't the screamer you might expect of a car from Alfa Romeo looking like it does.

Dissapointing? Slightly but it is also to be expected from such a heavy car being filled with the gadgets, safety equipment and comforts the buying public seems to expect from their bolides. I hope the GTA gets built with the rumoured specifications (yet without the restyling suggested by the spyphotos and sketches).
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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-26-2005, 05:13 AM
 
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Read this article in Autocar.

http://www.autocar.co.uk/FirstDrive_Summary.asp?RT=217609
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-26-2005, 07:27 AM Thread Starter
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The reviewer of the above link sounds like an enthusiast this time but the review is still lackluster at best. Here's what I thought were some highlights:

"No question at all, for all the zip of the engine and the slickness of the six-speed gearshift, the Brera is slow by the standards of the £25,000 coupé. A Mazda RX-8 costs £2700 less and offers nearly 50bhp more. The RX-8 will also hit 60mph in a claimed 6.4sec, a massive 2.2sec ahead of the time Alfa says the Brera needs.

Even cars like the Mercedes C230 Sport Coupé and the now-defunct Audi TT 180 Quattro out-power and outperform this Brera for similar money. And we probably shouldn’t dwell too long on the fact that for an extra £500 over the likely cost of this Brera, the entry-level Nissan 350Z offers six cylinders, nearly 100 extra horsepower, a sub 6.0sec 0-60mph time and a top speed of 155mph. The Brera’s all done by 138mph. You’re going to need the small rear seats real bad to make up that kind of difference.

Alfa might argue that statistics don’t tell the whole story and it’d be right, not least because the as yet undetermined UK spec is likely to include not only electric everything and leather upholstery but also the splendid Sky View glass roof.

But there’s another issue here. With the exception of the TT, all rivals mentioned above plus both the existing and forthcoming BMW 3-series coupés and the Chrysler Crossfire have rear-wheel drive platforms.

This is not a coincidence. Whether it is because their drivers really do appreciate the advantages or whether it’s simply a marketing tool, it doesn’t really matter: the point is rear-drive sells. And as anyone who has ever so much as sat in a well-driven Alfa 75 will tell you, these guys once did rear-drive better than anyone."


If I was a regular consumer that didn't love Alfas the way I do, this article would be decisive enough for me to move on to a 3-series, RX-8, or the now out-of-production Audi TT. The article concludes on a down-note that basically says there are better cars out there for your money. Here:

"The Brera is not without its problems, the biggest being the self-inflicted price-point that means it’s going to be outgunned by almost all its serious opponents. But I see it as further progress in the rehabilitation of a brand that means more to more of us than its size or significance in the global market should ever warrant.

I believe that Alfa Romeo is a marque that, like Lotus, like Jaguar and even like MG, inspires an almost irrational fervour among car enthusiasts that it should succeed. And I believe that, despite all the poor product and questionable quality that’s gone before, if you give us a good Alfa, we will buy it.

And make no mistake, the Brera is a good Alfa. Not a great one, mind, but a decent step in the right direction. Think about where Alfa was 10 years ago and then look at cars like the 159 and Brera. These aren’t class leaders, but they are at last serious contenders."

Last edited by Aghevli; 11-26-2005 at 07:39 AM.
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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-26-2005, 08:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elite38868
I think it's stupid to compare the 2.2L BASE engine to these other cars...Why didn't they test out the bigger engine? I'm pretty sure it came in something much larger too. I think if they took their heads out of their biased **ses, then they would give more of an accurate review.
I think the point the reviewer was trying to make was that the car was not impressive when viewed singularly. Base engine or not, it's an Alfa and I've never heard a 1300 GTjunior, for example, described so negatively.

AND, the base 4 cylinder engine usually gives better handling than the heavier 6s, but that didn't seem to be the case here either.

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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-26-2005, 09:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aghevli
The Brera’s all done by 138mph.[/B]
What! ONLY 138mph? You mean I can't drive to work every day at 150mph or drive past the speed cameras so fast that they get sucked into my slipstream? Sometimes these guys are real comedians. Those top speeds are really only for bragging purposes anyway.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Aghevli
And as anyone who has ever so much as sat in a well-driven Alfa 75 will tell you, these guys once did rear-drive better than anyone."[/B]
Go the 75!

Current Alfas
2010 159 ti 1750 TBI sedan (red).
2004 GT 3.2 V6 (Stromboli Grey).
2008 159 TI Sportwagon 2.4 JTDM (Stromboli Grey).
1987 75 3 litre (red). My first 75 and now my son's.
2000 156 2 litre Twin Spark, ( Cosmos Blu metallic), my daughter's car.
2000 156 Monza Twin Spark, (Cosmos Blue metallic), son’s girlfiend’s car.
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Past Alfas
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1990 75 3 litre Potenziata (grey, sadly deceased due to fire).
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