New Alpha Romeo 169 Designs Could Worry Germany


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Latest alpha 169 shape could upset the market

There comes a time when the barrage of German executive efficiency saturating our auto market becomes a little tedious. It seems there will always be a new German luxury saloon being far better than all its competition, always better built, always out-selling. We live in an age of expectancy. If the gearbox can’t be customised to play Cheryl Cole on a down-change we make a face and if I can’t put my fake Ray Bans in an aviator shaped cubby-hole I’ll bloody well send the impractical  thing back.

Almost every day somebody lurking about in bushes next to the ‘Nurburgring’ sends in a mobile phone picture of the next BMW 5 Series or the new Audi A4. They exclaim with great enthusiasm how the latest model is ’the best looking yet’, how it ‘speaks to a new audience’, and how ‘living on the edge of a race track has its social barriers.’

The truth is, reporting on new German executive and luxury saloons rarely changes from year to year. They get better, there are more devices to hold fresh ground coffee on the dashboard, there are options to produce fresh ground coffee on the dashboard; ultimately they get more refined and people buy them. It is only when something quirky enters the market that being a business manager really becomes exciting.

Take for instance the Jaguar XF. It is so quintessentially British that you could be forgiven for thinking the interior wood came from the Duke of Edinburgh’s public presence and the seats were covered in Stephen Fry. The Jaguar’s 502hp V8 may not be as sophisticated as the BMW or Audi units, but the sound it produces coupled with the way it delivers its torque make the XF far more desirable.

Unfortunately this desirability doesn’t reflect on sales, in the business world where these cars are sold in their thousands, flair and design comes second to MPG and year-on-year performance.

Luckily though, Italy has been hard at work trying to upset the German party too, with their new Alfa Romeo 169. The car was first showcased at the Geneva Motor Show in 2004, where the 169 was a mere concept, nearly being fully released this year. Recession pushed things back for Alpha Romeo, who now thinks it could be released in 2011.

Alfas have always come from pure Italian passion for design, compromising on reliability maybe, but never falling short of delivering an exquisite driving experience. The picture above shows the latest proposed 169 shape and it should be enough to challenge the German car manufacturers for their huge market share. The 169 will be in direct competition with the 5 series and XF, with rumours of a 450hp V8 engine being more than enough to put this car in a strong position for the future.

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~ by Rory White on November 15, 2009.

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