Deliveries of the five door version of the award-winning Alfa Romeo 147 have started in New Zealand with prices for the
2001 European Car of the Year starting at $46,995.
"Although we launched both the three and five door 147 two months ago, deliveries of the five door versions have only
just started because the five door was launched in Europe five months after the three door," explains Lawrie Malatios,
General Manager for Alfa Romeo in New Zealand.
"With the arrival of the five door, we now have our 147 range opener available at $46,995 with the 2.0 litre 110 kW Twin
Spark engine, a five speed manual gearbox and sports cloth upholstery. With a hand crafted Momo leather interior, the
five door Alfa 147 costs $49,995, while the Alfa 147 Selespeed five door, which also has the Momo leather interior is
$53,995. All share a high standard level of equipment and a unique combination of style, performance and on road ability
that has made the 147 the hottest new car in Europe."
Unlike most car makers, Alfa Romeo has not created its five door version by simply adding two extra doors. The Italian
car maker has provided two different characters for its three and five door versions and it is this that is,
undoubtedly, contributing to its worldwide success.
By changing the angle of the upper and lower side window lines and the shape of the 'C' pillar, the 147 has been
provided with a sporting coupe profile in three door form. This is further enhanced for New Zealand buyers with the
standard fitment of 17 inch SuperSport alloy wheels and a sports leather interior. The five door Alfa Romeo 147,
meanwhile has a side window line that is less angled and this, along with a slimmer 'C' pillar provides the Alfa 147
with what the Alfa stylists call an 'elegant' side profile and which is more akin to a sedan profile. The five door 147
doesn't completely lose its coupe looks, though, with five door 156 sharing with the Alfa 156 hidden rear door handles,
made all the more prominent by the classic sculptured aluminium front door handles.
The distinctive character differences between the two versions of the Alfa 147 is so striking that it forced the
Australian importer of the Alfa 147, where the car is launched on 1 September, to change there plans to be a five
door-only Alfa 147 market and add the three door to its range.
One thing both markets share, along with every market in which the Alfa Romeo 147 is sold, is a remarkable demand for
the Alfa 147. In the United Kingdom, the Alfa 147 has driven Alfa sales up 84 per cent this year and doubled Alfa's
market share. Ahead if its launch on the other side of the Tasman, Alfa Romeo has advance sales of more than 300 147s
that, with an initial allocation for 2001 of 500, is going put the 147 in severe short supply. In New Zealand, the Alfa
147 sold as many in its first six weeks on sale - before even the arrival of the five door version - than the previous
model did in a whole year.
"The Alfa Romeo 147 is everything we believed it would be - and more," says Lawrie Malatios. "For us it has given Alfa a
whole new profile in the market place, for our competitors it has quite simply redefined the benchmark in its class and
for those people who are lucky enough to own an Alfa 147, they are now enjoying a supreme driving experience."
Alfa Romeo 147 recommended retail prices
Alfa 147 Twin Spark five door 2.0 litre 110 kW Cloth 5 Spd manual $46,995
Alfa 147 Twin Spark five door 2.0 litre 110 kW Leather 5 Spd manual $49,995
Alfa 147 Selespeed five door 2.0 litre 110 kW Leather Selespeed $53,995
Alfa 147 Twin Spark three door 2.0 litre 110 kW Sport leather 5 Spd manual $49,995
Alfa 147 Selespeed three door 2.0 litre 110 kW Sport leather Selespeed $53,995