The Alfa Romeo Mito has a great deal going for it and a fair amount resting on it. As Mini has shown, the logic behind a small, fun, affordable car from an iconic brand is sound. 

With the Vauxhall Corsa/Punto platform and engine selection there's the basis to create an interesting and rewarding car. And unmistakably Alfa Romeo styling brought bang up to date helps in a market where the key purchase decision is based on its visual impact.

The Mito offers great engines in a usable, fun package, but the DNA system frustrates.

And in some respects it’s a charming car to drive. The DNA system is a nice try, but we’d swap the variability for one setting that works really well. The big disappointments, though, are the damping and steering, both of which are frustratingly unresolved.

More than the problems these issues cause in isolation, it is the fact that they cheapen the overall feel of the car that most damages the Mito’s case.

The use of Fiat’s Multiair engines is also a big plus, you’ll get a perky, refined and economical engine. But there are significant dynamic – and financial – risks with choosing the Twinair. And it’ll take many, many miles before the price premium makes the diesel models pay. 

Still, the Mito is a likable hatch which is also equipped, good looking, cheap to run and practical. But it is those dynamic flaws which make it a class also-ran in a congested segment headed by the Ford Fiesta and Mini.

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