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Virtual Adviser's™ opinion
Well, these are two pretty similar cars we have here! It's only details that could potentially make the difference. Not only that they both belong to the large family car segment and utilize the same 5-door wagon body style, they are even powered by the same FIAT-developed diesel engine! There is not much there to point us towards one vehicle or the other. Or is it?Safety
Unfortunatelly, neither of the two vehicles was submitted to the European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP) testing. This makes it virtually impossible for me to pick one over the other and I'm generally against buying such cars as the safety should really always come first. That aside, let's consider some other aspects which affect safety. Both vehicles belong to the large family car segment, which is generally a good thing safety-wise, still it doesn't help us solve our dilemma, does it? Furthermore, taking kerb weight as an important factor into account, 156 offers a marginal difference of 6% more metal.Reliability
Reliability is not the best thing to consider on the make level, but it is worth mentioning that FIAT is significantly less fault-prone, when all the models are taken into account. That's the official data, while our visitors describe reliability of Alfa Romeo, as well as FIAT, with the same average rating of 4.2 out of 5. Some independent research have also placed 156 as average reliability-wise, and Marea is more or less at the same level.We should definitely mention that owners of cars with the same powertrain as these two vehicles rank it on average as 4.2 out of 5.Performance & Fuel economy
Alfa Romeo is a bit more agile, reaching 100km/h in 0.3 seconds less than its competitor. In addition to that it accelerates all the way to 188 kilometers per hour, 5km/h more than the other car. When it comes to fuel economy things look pretty much the same for both cars, averaging around 5.9 liters of fuel per 100 kilometers (48 mpg), in combined cycle.
FIAT appears just a bit more reliable, although the difference is truly marginal. The most important thing when deciding between any two vehicles should always be safety, both passive and active. In my opinion, everything taken into account, 156 offers slightly better overall protection and takes the lead. It all continues in the same direction, with Alfa Romeo offering somewhat better performance, just enough to call it quicker. It does come at a cost though, and that's the fuel consumption... It's really tough to make a final decision here, but if I'd need to, I'd say FIAT. Anyway, that's the most objective conclusion I could've came up with and it's based solely on the information found on this website. Aspects such as design, practicality, brand value and driving experience are there for you to measure them out. In case you have two minutes to spare I invite you to define your needs, desires and budget and see which car would be chosen by the virtual adviser™, among more than 12.000 different ones in our database.