Test Alfa Romeo Crosswagon Q4 | Motors TV

23 May 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Test Alfa Romeo Crosswagon Q4 | Motors TV

Alfa Romeo Crosswagon

Q4 test


The appearance of a new Alfa Romeo always pricks up the ears of automobile enthusiasts. The Crosswagon is no exception to the rule and its diesel motorization didn#146;t scare us off. In fact#44; we really wanted to try out its all wheel drive transmission#44; because in the near future it will equip Alfa#146;s real 4X4#44; the Kamal scheduled for a 2006 release.

In the meantime#44; Alfa Romeo chose to add it on to the 156 Sportwagon to give it a modern look#44; that of a battler#44; similar to Audi#146;s Allroad and the Cross Country from Volvo.


Aesthetically#44; the adaptation is a hit. The Designers at the Alfa style centre in Varese took the roof bars and fenders of the 156 and enlarged them on the Crosswagon. For the invisible areas#44; steel protectors on the chassis rail covers were chosen. For the visible#44; however#44; the front and rear bumpers are specific and integrate metal reinforcements.

The Alfa Crosswagon was concocted for taking on several types of road surfaces or terrains; the ground clearance has been raised by 6.5cms. The Q4 is shod with specific Pirelli #34;All Season#34; tyres and they go handsomely with the rest of the general line of the car. In the interior#44; the Q4 hasn#146;t been given any specific equipment. They made an effort despite it all in terms of finish in adopting the lining from the GT#44; and that#146;s about it.

We did#44; however#44; note the presence of a Blue Tooth telephone system where you can answer the phone without distraction. For the rest#44; while not going over the top in terms of habitability#44; the 156 conserves its original qualities.

Motorization: NOTHING BUT OIL

The Q4 is powered by a diesel motor. Up until now#44; there was nothing to mention#44; especially when it comes from the 1.9 litre JTD group including the power it provides at 150 horsepower. But we wanted more from the six#45;speed gearbox with which it was coupled to the motor itself.

For anti#45;pollution reasons#44; the gears are too short and one cannot fully make use of the engine#146;s power. And thus#44; one is forced to rely on the torque#44; and the Q4 obliges the driver to cool his heals due to a disappointingly staged gearbox. For a constructor who built its reputation on the sporting characteristics of its line#44; this is a real set back. Obviously#44; the market dictates the rules and in Europe if you don#146;t offer a diesel#44; you don#146;t sell cars.

One thus hoped that Alfa Romeo would have been more original in its choices.

On the road: IMPROVEMENT

With the raising of the ground clearance#44; the suspension was obviously modified. It provides the needed smoothness#44; all the while retaining the rigidity that allows the 156 to hold on to its original road going qualities. In terms of handling#44; it is clearly thanks to the all#45;wheel drive transmission that the Q4 has increased traction and precision.

This transmission is the real strong point of the Alfa. Firstly#44; it uses three differentials#44; including a central self#45;locking Torsen type differential. It is the first of this type have been adapted to a transversally mounted engine. It allows for better control of the torque between the front and rear wheels and can redistribute the power depending on the grip.

Up to 80#37; of the torque can be transmitted at the back while accelerating versus 40#37; at the front under braking. For the rest#44; it is a reassuring transmission in any circumstance. Linked to precise steering and excellent braking#44; it leaves one to imagine what it would be like if it was installed on a 156 GTA.

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