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Performance (manual gearbox)
Performance (automatic gearbox)
Virtual Adviser's™ opinion
Two significantly similar cars, no doubt about that. Still, each one has something different to offer. Having both cars powered by diesel engines and utilizing the 5-door wagon body style within the same 'Large family car' segment, the only major difference here really is their wheel drive configuration (front for the Alfa Romeo and rear in the case of the BMW). The first one has a FIAT-engineered powertrain under the hood, a 4-cylinder, 8-valves 120hp unit, while the other one gets its power and torque from a 4-cylinder, 16-valves 122hp engine designed by BMW.Safety
The first thing to look into here would be the results from European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP) tests performed on the two cars. Good thing is that both vehicles got tested, with the same number of safety stars gained in the process. Still, apart from the official crash test results there are other things we need to be aware of. 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, if we'd like to consider vehicle mass in this context too, which we definitely should, the German car offers a marginal difference of 1% more metal.Reliability
Manufacturers have been building their reliability reputation for decades now and, generally speaking, it appears that BMW does have a slight advantage, all the models observed together. These are the official statistics, while our visitors describe reliability of Alfa Romeo with an average rating of 4.2, and models under the BMW badge with 4.3 out of 5. Some independent research have also placed 159 50% below average, and 3 Series 29% above the first one. Above it all, drivers of cars with the same engine as the Italian car rank it on average as 4.5, while the one under the competitor's bonnet gets 5.0 out of 5.Performance & Fuel economy
Both of the cars accelerate exactly the same, so we couldn't put one above the other. Car No. 2 is faster though, reaching top speed of 204 kilometers per hour, 12km/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.
BMW 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, the German car offers slightly better overall protection and takes the lead. When it comes to performance, both vehicles provide similar experience, so I wouldn't point any of them out. the German car still consumps less fuel, which needs to be taken into consideration. It's not difficult to say then that if I'd need to make a choice, it would definitely be the BMW. 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 thousands of similar, yet so different vehicles.