ALFA ROMEO’S 159-based Brera V6 coupe is a tantalising blend of high style with a rorty V6 engine backed up by a proficient, all-wheel drive chassis.
Via a shorter wheelbase than the 159 with which it shares its basic running gear, the Brera feels more responsive on the road and makes good use of the full-time all-wheel drive to deliver secure, nimble handling in all weather conditions.
It’s a more sporting coupe than the 156-based Alfa GT, looks even better but costs more and offers less space in the cosy rear seat.
But the Brera doesn’t need to do much more than merely look good to be a hit.
Model release dates: August 2006 - February 2012
The GTV dates back to 1995 in Europe, but is based on the circa-1988 front-wheel drive Fiat Tipo platform.
Allegedly, the design is also from that time.
The GTV coupe and Spider convertibles were Alfa’s re-entry vehicles to the Australian market in 1998 after a six-year absence.
Appropriately so too, because they managed to embody traditional expectations of an Alfa, while not being unreliable rust buckets.
Engines are a 114kW/186Nm 2.0-litre Twin Spark four-cylinder or the firm’s classic 162kW/270Nm 3.0-litre V6.
A more prominent grille, revised bumpers and a mild cabin makeover make up the facelifted GTV range from late 2003.
The somewhat nose-heavy GTV V6 gained a 176kW/289Nm 3.2-litre unit, married to a six-speed manual gearbox, while the 2.0-litre JTS four-cylinder version offered 121kW and 206Nm.