Alfa 159 Sportwagon
Safety was one of the priorities in the design and development of the Alfa 159 Sportwagon. Passenger protection starts with the ultra-rigid bodyshell and the well-protected cabin area, which acts as a ‘survival cell’ in the event of a head-on or side-on collision. Inside, seven airbags are standard: twin-stage front airbags for the driver and front seat passenger, side airbags, window airbags, and a special driver's knee airbag. A knee airbag for the front seat passenger is an optional extra. In addition there are anti-whiplash head restraints, 3-point inertia-reel seatbelts on all seats, and three Isofix mountings for child seats.
Driving enjoyment is inextricably linked with control, and here the Alfa 159 Sportwagon excels. Take the handling, for instance – the product of a finely-tuned suspension system that comprises high wishbones at the front and an advanced multi-link set-up at the rear. This combination ensures that the wheels always stay in contact with the road, and that the maximum amount of tyre tread is kept in contact with the tarmac. The reassuring feeling of control is enhanced still further by the incredibly quick and precise steering that requires just 2.3 turns from lock to lock.
Should the car swerve or start to take a bend too fast, VDC (Vehicle Dynamic Control) stability control cuts in automatically to reduce the power from the engine or apply the appropriate brakes and thus prevent understeer or oversteer – invariably without the driver even realising. Drivers can be completely confident in the Alfa 159 Sportwagon's stopping ability, thanks to the powerful Brembo disc brakes all round and the latest Bosch ABS with EBD (Electronic Brakeforce Distribution).
The torsional rigidity of a car's bodyshell is crucial to its dynamic behaviour, affecting not only its sturdiness, but its roadholding, handling, noise levels, and overall safety, as well. To achieve class-leading standards for the Alfa 159 Sportwagon in this area, Alfa Romeo's engineers introduced the new 'Premium' floorpan that utilises the latest dual-phase steels, multiple sheet metal and precision laser welding. In addition, the architecture of the bodyshell benefits from three high-strength load lines that run the whole length of the floor to prevent it from buckling in a high impact collision, and extra strong box sections. Some 55% more rigid than its predecessor, the Alfa 159 Sportwagon excels at cornering with minimal body roll, and can change lanes fast without fuss or drama.
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