Alfa Romeo 159 Sportwagon Review

Alfa Romeo 159 Sportwagon

Alfa Romeo 159 Review

Alfa Romeo 159 Sportwagon Review | Part TwoAlfa Romeo 159 Sportwagon Road Test

The first sentence in the Alfa 159 brochure reads; ‘Style and sophistication’.

The first sentence in the Alfa 159 brochure reads; ‘Style and sophistication’.

I can’t argue with that. Designed by Guigiaro and Alfa Romeo’s Centre Stile design team, the 159 is a looker. Even in Sportwagon form, the car looks as if it was always meant to be that way and not just a derivative of the saloon. The proportions are just right from every angle and the large wheels fill the arches as if it were a concept car.

The front end is mean and moody with distinctive contour lines forming out of the impressive front grille and curving across the bonnet to the wing mirrors. Most noticeable however, are the triple light clusters - individual tubes that look as if they have no lenses. While at the back, the tailgate is topped by a roof spoiler with integral brake light for a sporty look.

The new car is longer and wider but lower than the previous model. This low, wide stance, together with the wide wheels gives an indication of the car’s demeanour.

Because the 159 Sportwagon is 105mm longer than the old 156 Sportwagon, there is more legroom for all. Alfa tells us that, despite being lower, access is improved. However, the design of the doors is such that they have a distinct slant towards the back of the car in the glazed area. This ends in a sharp angle, which although cushioned, is still quite painful when it digs in your shoulder on opening when getting into the car. You’d think I’d learn after a few times but no.

The front of the cabin is even more driver-focused than usual. The textured, metallic-effect, centre console is angled towards the driver and creates a focal point, which is both ergonomically sound and stylish. Within this section are three deeply recessed dials echoing the front headlamps while displaying the fuel level, engine temperature and depending on the engine, turbo boost (diesel) or oil temperature for the petrol units. Other features include the large slot for the key fob that works in conjunction with the start/stop engine button, controls for the dual or triple-zone climate control and an integrated stereo radio/CD player. The latter was especially designed for the 159 by BOSE.

The Alfa CONNECT system comprising Sat-Nav and on-line services with voice control wasn’t fitted to the test car but can be added at an extra cost of £2,000. If you choose not to have the online services, it saves £500.

Alfa Romeo 159 Sportwagon Review | Part TwoAlfa Romeo 159 Sportwagon Road Test
Alfa Romeo 159 Road Test Data
Model ReviewedAlfa Romeo 159 Sportwagon 2.2 JTS Lusso
Body TypeEstate
Performance (manufacturers data) 
0 - 62 mph9 Seconds
Top Speed 137 mph
Transmission6-Speed Manual
Fuel TypeUnleaded Petrol
CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures) g/km
Economy (NEDC Figures) 
Urban21.4 mpg
Extra Urban38.7 mpg
Combined29.7 mpg
Insurance Group13
Euro NCAP RatingTBA
Warranty3 Years / 60000 Miles
Price (when tested on the 14/09/06)£23,495

The information contained within this Alfa Romeo 159 review may have changed since publication on the 14 September 2006. The actual model road tested may feature options and functionality specific to that model, which may not be available as on option or be fitted to other models in the range. Options may not be available on UK specification cars. You may wish to check with your local Alfa Romeo dealer, before making a purchasing decision. E.&.O.E. You may NOT reproduce this car review in full or part, in any format without our written permission. © 2018