28 September 1998


All eyes at the Alfa Romeo stand in Paris will be turned on the Alfa 166: because this event marks the general public's first glimpse of the new Alfa Romeo flagship.The Alfa 166 will be flanked by the entire Alfa Romeo range: 2.0 T. Spark (outfitted with items from the "Lineaccessori"), 2.4 JTD, 2.0 V6 turbo, 2.5 V6 24V and 3.0 V6 24V (the latter fitted with an automatic transmission). Visitors will be able to discover the many innovative features of the Alfa 166, in dedicated information areas that describe the car to the very last detail: suspension, engines, Sportronic electronic automatic transmission and Cruise Control.

Visitors can also pass through a tunnel with cut-away passenger compartments at either side. They will feel as though they are actually inside the car, because the driver's seat and the left half of the rear seat are located to their left with the entire right side of the passenger compartment on the other side. Samples of the twelve different body colours are displayed above, together with the interior shades and cloths. Touch-screens display the many possible combinations. An Alfa 166 2.0 turbo on a platform shows off the new colour: Aurora.

The queen of the stand is naturally attended by the still-successful Alfa 156, Alfa Romeo's sports saloon has won 150,000 orders up to the end of July and notched up 26 prizes from the international motor press, not to mention numerous awards for design and technical innovation. Ambassadors for the range in Paris are the two range toppers: the 2.5 V6 24V and the 2.4 JTD.

The Alfa Gtv and Spider. are also on show. Both model ranges have recently been overhauled to offer new, more powerful engines. The list of standard equipment and options is much longer and aesthetic changes to the interiors and bodywork emphasise the different personalities of both cars more effectively.

Last but not least comes the Alfa 145 Junior, a new addition to the prestigious Alfa Romeo range, and the Alfa 146 1.6 T. Spark.

All these interesting cars are housed in a stand designed around the theme of red, the Brand colour, together with aluminium and glass surfaces that reflect and point up the car's sophisticated engineering.
As is now traditional, items from the "Lineaccessori" are displayed in showcases. Alfa-labelled items can be admired, particularly articles designed on purpose for the Alfa 166.

A few Internet stations are available to anyone who wishes to browse the Alfa Romeo site (WWW.ALFAROMEO.COM). Journalists will also be able to consult their own site at the address www.fiatautopress.com. This contains car news and photos in addition to exhaustive, comprehensive information on Alfa Romeo.

ALFA 166
The Paris Motor Show marks the world preview of the Alfa 166 and this is an important event for the Brand because the new model is a great saloon set to head the Alfa Romeo product range and conclude the stage that has seen a complete renewal of the Alfa Romeo range between 1994 and 1998. The new model is also eagerly awaited for its aesthetic and dynamic qualities and the technological and comfort features that Alfa Romeo designers have succeeded in concentrating in the Alfa 166.

As an example, the power unit comes in various gearbox-engine combinations, which feature some of the most powerful and efficient engines currently available on the market. These are wedded to suspension systems able to ensure absolute control over the car in all situations. A host of electronic solutions allows the great performance offered by all Alfa 166 versions to be enjoyed in absolute safety: from ABS with electronic brakeforce distributor to anti-slip regulation systems for automatic traction control.

Alfa Romeo presents the entire Alfa 166, range in Paris and really shows off all the technical and stylistic content that make a great flagship: solid and imposing yet also agile and ready to leap into action.

Firstly, the styling. Clean and muscular with no chrome plating (just two flush handles) on the sides. Smooth and flowing at the rear, with a slightly dropped tail that conceals a roomy luggage compartment. Plus a new front end of restrained dimensions and stylish appearance with the shield in its midst.

The colour range is also extensive. Of the twelve colours, two are pastel shades, eight are metallic and two are iridescent, produced through the use of special pearlised enamels: the now classic Nuvola and the new Aurora.

These aesthetic features, this wedding of sportiness and elegance, described by Alfa Romeo Style Centre engineers as 'the required good looks', is cleverly combined with 'interior good looks', i.e. the mechanical and electronic systems of the five power units. The result is a great saloon: great in terms of its size and also great in terms of its power and character.

This is borne out by the engines. They combine excellent levels of power and torque with outstanding technology, performance, reliability and environmental compatibility. The four petrol units are flexible and smooth (155 bhp-114 kW 2.0 Twin Spark 16V; 205 bhp-151 kW 2.0 V6 turbo; 2.5 and 3.0 V6 24V developing 190 bhp-140 kW and 226 bh-166 kW respectively); and the most advanced diesel power unit currently available on the market: the 136 bhp-100 kW 2.4 JTD, with a Unijet common rail direct injection system.

The 2.0 Twin Spark engine is the classic Alfa Romeo twin shaft unit used on the most advanced version, with multivalve head, variable valve timing, twin spark ignition and variable geometry intake manifold to optimise torque. The engine is also easy to drive, even at low rpm. The 2.0 V6 turbo combines all the power of a turbo with the satisfaction of a 6 cylinder unit: a combination unique in this category. The 2.5 and 3.0 V6 24V also offer superlative power and torque for their category.

The 2.4 JTD offers outstanding performance, high torque from low rpm and great driving flexibility due to the use of the innovative Common Rail Unijet direct injection system and a variable-geometry turbine.

The Alfa 166. gearboxes are also up-to-date and reliable. The manual gearbox is noiseless, accurate and easy to engage. The five speed version is fitted to the 2.0 Twin Spark and 2.5 V6 versions. The six-speed gearbox with power 6th enhances driving pleasure and the sporty features of the 2.0 V6 turbo, 3.0 V6 24V and 2.4 JTD. A gearbox with overdrive 6th which favours driving comfort and low consumption can be fitted on the 2.4 JTD.

The two aspirated V6 versions can also be fitted with an electronically-controlled automatic transmission - and the 3.0 V6 24V version on show in Paris comes in this specification. The transmission is a state-of-the-art, self-adaptive Sportronic unit. It is able to work in sequential, manual mode (i.e. the user is free to shift gear for typically Alfa Romeo driving satisfaction) but can also adapt to the driver's driving style and route conditions by automatically selecting the best gear change strategies on the basis of numerous parameters.

And so from gearboxes to suspension. The Alfa 166 owes much of its excellent on-road behaviour to its suspension configuration. The front suspension is based on a double wishbone system developed from the current Alfa 156 suspension, while the rear suspension is multilink. This sophisticated combination succeeds in putting together handling and comfort to ensure the car benefits from the best possible stability and driving precision.

Per offrire al pilota una padronanza assoluta della vettura in tutte le condizioni, l'ammiraglia del Biscione sfrutta anche numerose altre soluzioni tecniche d'avanguardia: l'impianto ABS a sensori attivi con ripartitore elettronico della forza frenante; l'Anti Slip Regulation e il Traction Control System, per il controllo della trazione; e poi lo Sport Throttle Response, che consente di scegliere lo stile di guida preferito.

To offer the driver absolute mastery of the car under all conditions, Alfa Romeo's flagship also comes with numerous other high-tech engineering solutions: an active sensor ABS with electronic brakeforce distributor; Anti Slip Regulation and a Traction Control System plus Sport Throttle Response, which allows a preferred driving style to be selected.

Lashings of comfort, sophisticated technology, powerful engines and original styling: these are the main strengths of the new model. Yet we must not overlook the minute attention to detail, because the new Alfa Romeo flagship is also highly satisfying to experience: as a driver or passenger, for short trips or long motorway journeys.

The generous passenger compartment is regular in shape for more effective use of space. The seats are sporty but also comfortable and easy to adjust. The environment offers unprecedented levels of comfort and pleasure due to its advanced climate control system, excellent soundproofing and effective suspension comfort. The excellent quality of life on board is enhanced by a Cruise Control system that maintains a cruise speed set by the driver automatically for a fully relaxing drive. The Integrated Control System is a piece of sophisticated electronic equipment that controls the climate control system, trip computer, radio, hi-fi system, GSM phone and satellite navigation system.

Alfa 166 buyers can choose between three different environments in different colours that are easily able to satisfy even the most demanding users in this market band: the elegant environment is designed around warm shades of beige; the sports environment marries dark grey and black while shades of light grey predominate in the classic environment. Red Style and Blue Style leather interiors may be requested as options. The former is reserved for Super versions (2.0 V6 TB and 3.0 V6 24V manual gearbox), while the other is available on all Alfa 166 versions.

On the safety front, the now-traditional equipment package comprising two airbags (one with passenger presence sensor), front pretensioners and a Fire Prevention System is extended on the Alfa 166 to include Xenon headlamps and sidebags. Not to mention 140,000 daNm/rad of torsional rigidity that constitutes an excellent base on which to build an intrinsically safe car.

The result is a saloon able to excel in many arenas. Indeed, the car's most outstanding attribute is probably the great balance it offers between comfort, performance, safety and style. For a car in this segment, these attributes are fundamental.

ALFA 156
Accolades, orders, the interest and admiration of many demanding motorists who are accustomed to choose with care: these are the Alfa 156's key success points.

So many reasons lie behind this accomplishment: the fact that the car's appealing line and powerful personality represents the latest in a glittering line of medium-sized Alfa Romeo sports cars, its lively, safe drive and its advanced engineering.

The Alfa 156 was the first car in the world to adopt the Unijet common rail direct injection system on its 1.9 and 2.4 turbodiesel engines. This device features electronic control of pump and injectors and is able to call on a very high injection pressure regardless of engine rpm. It also delivers a tiny amount of fuel at the precombustion stage to ensure a more effective, silent main combustion.

This is not all. The petrol engines also benefit from sophisticated technology. Two of these, the 1.8 and the 2.0 T. Spark 16 valve have a variable geometry intake system in plastic material (nylon strengthened with fibreglass) to ensure more effective cylinder air filling at all rpm. The 2.5 V6 24 valve engine comes with a new cylinder head and redesigned combustion chambers, new intake and exhaust ducts and a new electronic throttle control to replace the previous mechanical device.

Original solutions have also been adopted on the suspension: the front are double wishbone and the rear MacPherson suspension features asymmetrical rods. This special geometry ensures the Alfa 156 is able to offer maximum roadholding and the excellent handling that has always been one of the Brand's main attractions.

Visitors to the Paris Motor Show will be able to see the Alfa 156 2.5 V6 24V and the 2.4 JTD. The range is completed by the 1.6, the 1.8 and 2.0 T. Spark 16 valve and the 1.9 JTD.

The Alfa Romeo stand would not be complete without the Spider and Gtv. These recently updated models now offer even more comfort, sportiness and driving satisfaction.

The credit goes first and foremost to the new engines. The choice has now been extended to include a 144 bhp-106 kW 1.8 T. Spark 16V, a development of the engine already used on other cars in the Alfa range. With a variable geometry intake manifold able to ensure an adequate air flow to the cylinders at all rpm, this power unit offers more and ensures a prompter response. It is able to deliver plenty of torque at low and medium speeds (between 3000 and 4500 rpm) and excellent specific power (82 bhp/l). Its performance figures confirm the brand's sporty traditions: 205 km/h and acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in 9.3 seconds for the Alfa Spider, 210 km/h and acceleration from 0 to 100 in 9.2 seconds for the Gtv.

The variable geometry 2.0 T. Spark 16V also benefits from a power increase from 150 bhp-110 kW to 155 bhp-114 kW. In addition, the 200 bhp-147 kW 2.0 V6 turbo petrol engine previously fitted to the Alfa Gtv has now been adopted by the Spider as well.

The range is completed by the 3.0 V6. In the 192 bhp-141 kW 12 valve version fitted to the Alfa Spider, this engine reaches 225 km/h with acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in 7.3 seconds. The 24 valve unit fitted to the Alfa Gtv unleashes 220 bhp-162 kW and is combined with a six speed gearbox with a sixth non-overdrive speed. With an aerodynamic kit fitted, this solution allows the Gtv to reach 250 km/h and accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in just 6.7 seconds.

Appearance has also changed. The new features are designed to emphasise the different characters and personalities of the Spider and Gtv still further. The design of the wheel trims, 16" wheels and exhaust tail-pipe are now different. The front shield has also been changed and is now surrounded by a chrome-plated profile in the best Alfa tradition. The grooved sill plate is in black with Alfa Romeo written in aluminium-grey and another black band separates the hood cover and luggage compartment. The exterior colours have been revised, as have the sideskirts, bumpers and side panels which are body-coloured.

On board the car, the revised facia instruments and controls are immediately apparent, while the central console now extends between the front seats where the armrests and small oddments compartments are located. The new interior trim is completed by brand new seat and panel cloth plus other revised features such as the gear knob, carpets, luggage compartment trim.

The extension of the Alfa Gtv and Alfa Spider range offered an opportunity to improve the outfits of both models. The 'medium' package on show in Paris, for example, now offers as standard: cloth seats and panels, front seat-belt pretensioners, driver's airbag, electric windows (automatic on the driver's side), two heated electric door mirrors, central locking and check control for closing the doors and boot. Other benefits include: a three-spoke steering wheel with height and reach adjustment, provision for radio with aerial and speakers, power steering, third brake light, headlamp alignment adjustment, fog lamps, antiskid system, cloth hood and electronic immobiliser. The Deluxe specification has also been further extended to offer seats and panels in Momo leather.

More demanding motorists may also customise their cars to their own taste with many options. In particular, both models offer stylish Red Style and Blue Style interiors. In the first version, the facia, carpet, map and door panel body are blue, while the seats may be in blue or white Momo leather (on the Spider, the hood is in blue cloth). In the Red Style version, on the other hand, the facia and door panel are red, the carpet and mat are black and the seats are in Momo leather or black as preferred (the hood is in black cloth on the Spider).

Both models are fitted as standard with a conventional spare wheel. But customers can also opt (at no extra cost) for a special Tyre kit consisting of a sealant canister (for provisional repairs to a damaged tyre) and an electrically-operated compressor to re-inflate the tyre (it is plugged in to the cigar lighter socket). This solution increases luggage compartment capacity by 45 dm3.

ALFA 145 AND 146
A new 'Junior' has recently entered the annals of Alfa Romeo history. The Alfa 145, first introduced this April, is the latest car to use the glorious name - perennially the mark of an Alfa Romeo with very sporty leanings.

The Alfa 145 Junior's youthful, aggressive styling is emphasised by 15" special alloy wheels with 195/55 tyres and an aerodynamic sideskirt containing the wording 'Junior' to set off the side design. The sideskirt is body-coloured, as are the door handles and door mirrors.

The interiors are also very racy and trimmed in sporty cloth like the Alfa 146 Junior. The seats are branded with the Junior logo. The steering wheel and gearlever knob are in leather with blue top-stitching. The facia is dark grey with a dark blue strip.

The Alfa 145 Junior offers outstanding driving satisfaction due to the precision of its steering system, directly derived from range-topping versions, and high-performing 103 bhp 1.4 T. Spark engine. When propelled by this power unit, the new version of the Alfa 145 can reach a top speed of 185 km/h and accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 11.2 seconds.

The Alfa 145 Junior will be flanked at the Paris Motor Show by the Alfa 146 1.6 T. Spark 16V. When fitted with this engine, which is capable of a power output of 120 bhp-88 kW at 6300 rpm and a peak torque of 14.7 kgm-144 Nm, the car can reach a top speed of 197 km/h and accelerate from 0 to 100 in 10.5 seconds.

Since May this year, the Alfa 146 has also been available with new 1.8 and 2.0 T. Spark engines and a variable geometry intake system. This device is electronically managed by an injection system and uses ducts of different lengths according to rpm. It is therefore able to ensure more effective air flow to the cylinders at all rpm to increase efficiency and ensure a prompter response. This results in engines that are even more powerful and flexible than the engines in the previous range. The 1.8 T. Spark 16V develops a power output of 144 bhp-106 kW at 6500 rpm and peak torque of 17.2 kgm-168.7 Nm. For the 2.0 T. Spark 16V, the values are 155 bhp-114 kW and 19.1 kgm-187 Nm respectively.

The new T. Spark engines and the 145 Junior continue the process of renewal that has resulted in gradual updates to the Alfa 145 and 146 interiors, standard equipment, bodywork and power units to meet customer needs more effectively.

Models in the Alfa Romeo range can be customised by a great number of accessories and items from the exclusive Accessories range. Visitors to the Motor Show will be able to admire them in the stand showcases and see some fitted to the cars.

The light grey Alfa 166 2.0 T. Spark 16V on show in Paris is equipped with accessories that give this satisfying car even greater character and tailor it more effectively to individual lifestyles.

The range includes kits that give the body a sporty look without detracting from the original line. The kits include sideskirts, front and rear spoilers and are completed by exclusive design alloy wheels and wide tyres. The distinctive exterior looks are rounded off on the inside by sports pedal units and leather steering wheel, gear knob and gaiter designed to co-ordinate with car colours.

The Alfa Romeo Style Centre has also designed a range of functional leisure accessories for the new flagship. These combine state-of-the-art technology with painstaking design. The car on show in Paris, for example, features bags to be fastened beneath the bonnet or in the boot in washable, fire-resistant and waterproof material. A luggage restraint system keeps everything in order and prevents small luggage items shifting about unexpectedly.

Whoever buys a great prestige saloon such as the Alfa 166 may wish to express their own taste by buying everyday items that reflect a certain lifestyle and a brand preference. The wide range of such products produced by the Alfa Romeo Style Centre for the launch of the Alfa 156, has now been extended to mark the arrival of the Alfa 166. These products are the result of careful selection and research, which has affected the materials in particular. The products range from prestigious mechanical clocks housed in fine pear wood cases to up-to-the-minute sunglasses in 'grilamid', a material that is light, flexible and resistant to thermal changes. Cashmere sweaters, polo shirts and scarves, leather goods in printed cloth with leather trim and sports jackets in Microtene, a special microfibre.
Each item is carefully styled. The silk scarf, for example, is the work of the painter Sandro Chia. Attention to specific requirements underlies each selection. Ladies can now find feminine bags and clothing in an Accessories range designed until recently solely for men.

The Alfa 166 Accessories catalogue may also be consulted on the Internet at the address http://www.alfaromeo.com.

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