Alfa Romeo GT 2005 review
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And if you like cars, it's also very much about the motoring experience. Sometimes in such special places, a special kind of car can add immeasurably to the enjoyment.
A car such as the Alfa Romeo GT, the quintessential "little Italian job", which seems to demand the wearing of the polo neck sweater, the gold jewellery and the three-day stubble.
What a neat thing it is. In the two-litre JTS Selespeed test model, the temptation is to find a quiet stretch of road somewhere and let it stretch its legs – it's a car that dedicated "drivers" will really enjoy.
Explore the 2005 Alfa Romeo GT range
For the DOHC engine seems to spin very freely, producing a most authoritative treble note from the oversized exhaust.
But if you're in the market for a sports "cross" – the sort of car which will whiz you around for a bit of excitement when the mood takes you, but double effectively as a versatile family shuttle – look elsewhere.
The Alfa GT feels very much the serious sports car, doing its best work when the revs are up rather than crawling around the suburbs or stuck in traffic.
The five-speed Selespeed transmission, which functions best as a clutchless manual, does have a "city" mode where all the thinking is done for you, but timing the changes yourself makes for a far more satisfying drive. And the car steers – and stops – with marvellous sure-footedness, with none of the old-fashioned understeer, which used to be associated with front-wheel drive configurations. So there's a great deal to enjoy about the GT JTS.
Inside, the finish is superb, with even the scuff plates polished to a reflective finish. The beautifully trimmed seats hug you tight around the ribs and the ride is firm but comfortable.
And everything that should be adjustable, is. The seating position is infinitely adjustable, the wheel position is exactly right and everything comes to hand naturally.
And earlier comments notwithstanding, there is leg room enough in the back to make for a relatively comfortable ride for rear seat passengers, so long as they are not too lanky.
The car is also crammed with a range of nifty features. The trip computer tells you everything you need to know – and more – about how far you've been, how far you've got to go, how much fuel you've used, etc etc.
And for that trip to Thredbo, the front seats are heated to take the chill out of your spine after a hard day on the piste.
The outside mirrors are also heated, so fogging up is not a problem, and there are washers for the headlights.
As you would expect, it's got cruise control, climate control, the mandatory six stacker, central locking, and airbags everywhere.
According to the technical specifications, the two-litre version will consume just 8.7L/100km, which averages the urban cycle (12.3/100km) and the economical rural cycle (6.8L/100km), so fuelling the little Italian rocket won't require an overdraft.
And for those who are impressed by such stats, the blurb states the car will propel you from 0km/h to 100km/h in 8.7 sec.
So yes, a whole lot to like. And not much to dislike. But one thing. The sound system is probably terrific, but unless your girlfriend is an audio engineer, you might run into a snag getting the thing actually turned on.
Changing modes, selection stations, activating the CD – an hour or two with the operator's manual would probably offer solutions to all those problems, but does it have to be so complicated? And another picky thing – the wing mirrors provide a good rear vision but they seem too big and too high, cutting the forward line of sight, particularly in right hand turns.
Tiny little things. All in all, the Alfa Romeo GT JTS Selespeed is a very cool conveyance.
Range and Specs
|3.2||3.2L, PULP, 6 SP MAN||$6,500 – 10,010||2005 Alfa Romeo GT 2005 3.2 Pricing and Specs|
|JTS Selespeed||2.0L, PULP, 5 SP||$5,500 – 8,580||2005 Alfa Romeo GT 2005 JTS Selespeed Pricing and Specs|
Lowest price, based on third party pricing data