First DriveAlfa fits six-speed TCT transmission to its spritely 'Cloverleaf' version of its ageing supermini
First DriveTwo-cylinder Mito proves occasional good fun when pushed hard, but predictably fails to deliver on the claimed economy front
What is it?
This is the cheapest and most frugal Alfa Mito diesel. It's powered by a Fiat-sourced 1.3-litre turbodiesel that's used to good effect in the Punto and Vauxhall Corsa.
This version is priced extremely competitively and like the rest of the range is impressively equipped, especially when compared with similarly priced Minis.
The great looks, inside and out, are also part of the package of course. No wonder the smallest Alfa has been such a big hit for the brand.
What's it like?
No doubt that the 90bhp common rail motor is a seriously good unit.
It's smooth, free-revving and punches through the mid-range harder than you'd expect, even with 148lb ft of torque. There's the possibility of 62.8mpg too and, crucially, CO2 emissions come below 120g/km.
It's fun to drive too. It turns in sharply, clings on gamely and doesn't mind being hustled through bends, while feeling surefooted and stable at high speeds too.
Yet the Mito is seemingly inept at smothering road scars.
It's constantly fidgeting and so unsettling its occupants whichever one of the three settings of the DNA electronic damper controls you're in.
At least you're sitting in great surroundings. The Mito's driving position is spot on and there's plenty of space, front and back. It's also well laid out and uncommonly well made for a low-priced Italian.
Should I buy one?
No doubt the Mito diesel makes a great case for itself in the showroom.
By just about any measure it makes a good buy, being both cheap to buy and cheap to run. That said, make sure that you can live with the ride.
Until Alfa engineers manage to make it work properly in the UK it's little better than average. Which is a shame for a car that's got so many other things going for it.