Alfa’s three-year/unlimited mileage warranty on the Alfa Romeo Giulietta is broadly competitive. More important is Alfa’s improving dealer network and service back-up, which reached a nadir a few years back but is now fast improving – as is the company’s standing in customer satisfaction surveys.

The quality of the cars themselves is advancing, too, but the company still has much to prove – hence prices that are quite keen for a product at the premium end of the mainstream. This vast improvement has seen Alfa's return to the saloon segment met with much anticipation rather than trepidation.

The quality of Alfa Romeo's cars is advancing, but the company still has a lot to prove

Alfa's petrol engines are impressively frugal, especially the 1.4 MultiAir, while they also pack quite a punch, too. The entry-level 118bhp 1.6-litre diesel engine manages to break the 100g/km mark, while the slightly more powerful 2.0-litre JTDm’s manages 110g/km, while the range-topping diesel manages a commendable 113g/km.

Its forecast residual values are acceptable too, although predictably not up to Golf levels. More tangible is the excellent fuel consumption in the real world: for example, during testing, the higher-powered 2.0 JTDm achieved 40.4mpg.

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  • Alfa Romeo Mito Cloverleaf 2010-2011

Admittedly that's some way short of the official 60.1mpg average, but a decent result given the type of driving we did. Sensible CO2 emissions would also make the Alfa a viable option for company car drivers looking for something a little more interesting.

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Explore the Alfa Romeo range

  • Alfa Romeo Mito Cloverleaf 2010-2011