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THE EYE MAGAZINE

Car review

Alfa Romeo MiTo

A

s a young man (some years ago, admittedly), the Alfa Romeo was one of the cars I and my friends yearned for. Alfa had a superb reputation for making stylish cars that were great to drive and even better to be seen in and that has continued to this day. The Italian firm celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2010, and Alfa's current range now comprises the MiTo Super-mini, the VW Golf-rivalling Giulietta, the Ford Mondeosized 159 and the Brera, Spyder and GT sports cars. I was keen to check out the newest version of their rival to the Mini and while it is a typically superb Alfa model I found it a bit of a contradiction. The MiTo was first

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introduced in 2008, but changes to the 2012 version include an attractive chrome grill and chrome door handles that both add a touch of class. But even though three-door hatches always feel sportier, some would feel that an immediate disadvantage of the MiTo is that it is only available in that format. So if you’re a small family looking for five doors you’ll have to look elsewhere! On the other hand, there’s a decent interior and equipment levels include air-con and cruise control. Owners also receive a luxurious key fob with red leather strap. The real plus is that the MiTo is a stylish, upmarket small car that is cheaper than the MINI, has more rear space and a bigger boot. The range comprises six engines and five trims, and stretches from very economical diesel models to the high-performance Cloverleaf version. The line-up of petrol engines kicks off with a 77bhp 1.4, but you’re much better off going for one of the turbocharged Multiairs. The 133bhp version is particularly impressive, with a strong and smooth power delivery. The 0.9-litre Twinair pulls strongly from low revs, continues on page 20

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