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ItalianCar | November 21, 2017

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Alfa Romeo 147 JTD

Alfa Romeo 147 JTD
Pete Accini

Review Overview

Performance
3.5
Comfort
3.5
Value
4

Summary

This is a great car, a really great car. This is a great car, a really great car. This is a great car, a really great car. This is a great car, a really great car. This is a great car, a really great car. This is a great car, a really great car. This is a great car, a really great car.

The Alfa Romeo 147 JTD is the latest version of the revised Alfa Romeo 147 launch in mid-2005.

Like its petrol cousins, the JTD shares a wide range of improvements and enhancements to Alfa Romeo’s awarding winning hatchback.

Styling Changes

The new Alfa 147, available with 3 or 5 doors, forcefully expresses all the creative vitality of the brand, a special way of appreciating motor cars that is very far from thinking of them as simply useful means of transport.

Alfa Romeos have always been designed for people with expectations that go beyond the strictly necessary into the realm of emotions: aesthetic taste, a passion for sophisticated engineering, the sheer pleasure of sitting behind the wheel and an expression of one’s own personality. The Alfa Romeo stylists and engineers took these premises as the base for a car that is quite different from the original 147.

A quick look at the outside tells you all you need to know. The car retains the tried and tested box shapes of the 147 and the biggest changes are reserved for the front end. The changes to the rear are more minor. The car features a new grille that is now bigger and enhanced by new design headlights. The final result is a front end that oozes performance and prestige.

It also looks more aggressive because the grille has been lowered in relation to the bonnet. This impression is reinforced by the elongated appearance of the headlights – a lip of glass enclosing three round chrome elements on a black background – and the air intake that is divided by three vertical elements, one in the middle and two at the sides.

The overhang is also longer while the bumpers and front spoiler are new. At the rear, the designers reworked the tailgate and made slight changes to the tail-lights to make them more stylish: the light clusters have now been lengthened into a more triangular shape emphasized by a chrome moulding.

The triangular motif so typical of Alfa Romeo design is referred to explicitly in the New 147. For example, the protruding shield that describes a jutting corner when viewed from above is emphasized at the front by the design of the bumper. The stylistic changes are based on triangular shapes and sloping lines that increase the perception of dynamism and overall sleekness.


The engine of the new Alfa 147

Inside the New Alfa 147 retains the same acclaimed driving position and the excellent balance between the compact, embracing boxes, uncluttered surfaces and smooth, spare lines.

Some exterior traits have been changed to underscore the look of sporty elegance that we have come to expect from Alfa Romeo cars. Firstly, a new combination (grey on grey) has been introduced for the two-tone facia which joins the existing classic combinations of black on black, black on grey and black on beige, though the latter have also been revised through the introduction of a more sophisticated ‘water buffalo’ embossing.

The New Alfa 147 features new instrument and control graphics, on a silver or black background, designed for clarity and legibility, a new ‘cannelloni’ trim for the door panels enhanced by a chrome frame that highlights the tweeters in the door handle panel – and a brand new design rear head-restraint that can be lowered for better visibility.

At the end of 2002, Alfa Romeo introduced its 140 bhp 1.9 16v M-JET, the first of the second generation of Common Rail engines in the world. The engine was adopted in Europe for the Alfa 147, 156 and Sportwagon with a sporty six-speed manual gearbox and has now been further developed for the Alfa GT, now offering a power output of 150 bhp and from now on also on the New Alfa 147. The unit is a 4 cylinder in line engine with a bore of 82 millimetres and a stroke of 90.4 mm, capable of delivering a power output of 110 kW at 4000 rpm and a torque of 305 Nm at 2000 rpm.

The new turbodiesel has undergone several engineering changes to increase performance and engine torque at low speeds and to reduce noise and vibration levels. For example, the Common Rail system used on the 1.9 JTD 16v M-JET includes two new strategies for automatically calibrating and balancing the diesel injected to lower noise and reduce vibration.

The New Alfa 147 guarantees extremely attractive performance figures:

  • the top speed is 208 km/h
  • acceleration from 0 – 100 km/h takes place in 8.8 seconds

All this comes with very frugal fuel consumption:

  • 8.0 l/100 km over an urban cycle.
  • 4.7 l/100 km over an extraurban cycle.
  • 5.9 l/100 km over a combined cycle.