Do you want to rent a sedan for five passengers? Something that is a step away from the Toyota Camry or Honda Accord? There are many great year-end deals out there. Maybe a 2020 Nissan Maxima? That’s $ 309 a month for 36 months and $ 3,859 lower. Or a 2021 Toyota Avalon for $ 389 for 36 months, with $ 3,688 to be paid at signing. Or a 2020 Lexus ES 350 for $ 329 for 36 months, with $ 2,899 lower.
Or do you want to be a little adventurous? We will explain in a moment what that means.
The lease agreement that struck me: A new Alfa-Romeo Giulia for $ 279 per month for 39 months, $ 2,278 due to the unsecured signature.
A Giulia? For less than $ 300 a month? And best of all, it’s a lease? Because Alfa has not had much respect for its build quality since its return to the US. Fortunately, it is not ranked in the current Consumer Reports edition which contains brand reliability because, like eight other brands, there are not enough cars to collect data.
But there’s no argument that the Giulia’s reliability rankings in CR’s New Cars publication are one of the red balls with two down arrows that manufacturers hate to see. But hey, so does the Dodge Durango Hellcat. And you would take one of those, right?
But the other side of the coin: Consumer Reports gives the Giulia two green arrows to be happy with owners, which means owners like it, and apparently dealers fix the cars as they break down quickly and satisfactorily.
Which should not be difficult. Every Alpha test vehicle I have driven in the last three years has had at least one problem, in all but one case, something small and electric, like a light that cannot turn on or off. People at Fiat Chrysler have told me that things are better, and if I have a green owner satisfaction rating, I have to believe it.
So when I say adventurous, I mean it in two ways: in the above sense of reliability, and in the conventional Italian Alfa-Romeo sense, which means the car is fun to drive. Even the base model I’m talking about here, with a 2.0-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder with 280 horsepower and an eight-speed automatic transmission. The interior is nicely presented; even the rear seats are surprisingly spacious.
The basic 2020 car, which costs $ 40,695 per delivery, is well-equipped, including with a warning of forward collision and automatic braking standard. Mileage is 24 mpg city, 33 highway.
And apparently there are many. Alpha tells me in ‘my environment’ there are 66 to choose from.
Car people who have not paid too much attention to Alfa’s quality issues correctly regard the car as one that handles excellently, and this car does too. Non-car people think of the Alfa-Romeo brand in the same category as for example Maserati and Aston-Martin and will think of you as a high roller until someone tells them that your car costs just a little more than a charged one. Toyota. Camry XSE.
So if you want to impress people, you need to fix the hook quickly. Name the Formula One team. Just not the last time they won. I do not endorse the Alfa-Romeo Giulia (pronounced Julia; do not embarrass yourself), but it will be on my shortlist for $ 279 a month.