Alfa Romeo MiTo

Alfa Romeo has been known the world over for its luxury cars that only the most sophisticated drivers would choose. In 2008, the company unveiled its first premium supermini model aiming to compete with the MINI and the upcoming Audi A1.

The Alfa Romeo MiTo, known internally as the type 955 and also referred to as "Alfa Romeo Junior," is a three-door hatchback that is designed by Centro Stile Alfa Romeo. Its design is believed to be inspired by the 8C Competizione, and you can tell that the MiTo appears to be a "mini" version of this 2007 coupe model.

The "Junior" tag on its name was provisional. A European competition was held in 2007 where the public had the chance to name the car. The winning name was "Furiosa," which scored well on all of its European markets except Spain. On March 2008, Alfa Romeo officially announced that the name would be MiTo, an abbreviation of "Milano" (Milan) where it was designed and "Torino" (Turin) where it was built. The name is also a play on the Italian word "mito," which means myth or legend.

The MiTo is built on Fiat/ GM SCSS platform (or Small Common Components and Systems) used on Fiat Grande Punto, as well as by the Opel Corsa and Vauxhall Corsa. This platform for subcompact front-wheel drive automobiles was codeveloped since 2002 by Fiat and Opel engineers in Turin.

The car comes with the new "Alfa DNA system," which allows the driver to choose between three distinctly different driver settings best suited to the situation or the customer’s preference: Dynamic, Normal, and All-Weather. The difference between these settings lies on the behavior of the engine, brakes, steering, suspension, and gearbox. Dynamic is MiTo on supersporting mode, while All-Weather provides maximum safety even in difficult grip conditions. Such feature is the first in any automobile.

The MiTo also comes with LED tail lights and 250-liter boot space. It also features a Q2 electronic differential on the front wheels, which allows for faster and tighter cornering without the loss of traction. This aggressiveness on the differential is linked to the DNA switch.

The price of the MiTo models varies from the gas tank capacity, as well as the quality of its motor. In the United Kingdom, the range will kick off with a 95 PS 1.4 gas engine priced at £10,795 (US$16,855) and be topped off with a 155 PS 1.4 Turboject priced at around £14,000 (US$21,860). Prices in Italy range start at €15,000 (US$19,115).

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