General advice - buying a 156 - Alfa Romeo Forum
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General advice - buying a 156

I'm thinking of getting a 2nd hand 156, probably a 1.8 TS of 1998-1999 vintage. What sort of things should I be looking for ? I've read one or two horror stories about some 156s, but know from 5 years of pain-free Citroen ownership that cars with a 'reputation' needn't be all trouble. Do you think it's worth spending a bit of extra cash on an Alfa approved used car ?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
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Can't advise on 99's specifically. But generally speaking the cars are extremely reliable on the mechanical front.

Most problems are with interior fit. Although the interior finish itself, is to a pretty high standard, rattles do appear. Most, though can be sorted.

That's really about it. Otherwise, a incredible lump in the back of your throat, hair standing up driving experience.
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Save money and buy privately and then buy a 3rd party warranty - Friend bought one for his 156 for £250.
I prefer the 156s with the Sports Pack - orignally just to get rid of the wooden steering wheel, but in hindsight, the stiffer suspension and bigger wheels are also nice.

Watch out for dodgy paintwork at the top of the windscreen as this can be damaged if the windscreen has been replaced.
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Hello Mike

I've just recently bought a 2nd hand 156 myself and if you read about my "little" problem with the cam belt you'll gather that that is one area that you will DEFINATELY have to look out for. I agree with Kristian in that you should seriously consider some sort of warranty for the car. Other than my misfortune I am very impressed with my car...its fun, fast and looks gorgeous and it's better, in my opinion, than the A4 I was driving before.
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I have owned my 1999 Selespeed from new. The only problem I think is on the way is from the front suspension.
I have read a number of guys have had to replace the wishbones and bushes and I feel that is the problem with my car.
Other than that I have had no problems. If you can get a warrany it sounds like its worth the money.

But best of all the car is a joy to drive. It looks great and you feel good every time you drive it.
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Mike, I moved from a Rover 200 to a new, imported 156 over 2 years ago. There's no comparison between the 2 (the wife now has the 200), but you should expect to have some hassles with the Alfa. Generally speaking, my Alfa has given me 41000 miles of trouble-free motoring. Minor niggles have occasionally spoilt the ownership experience though - glove box door coming off, creaky interior, faulty airbag warning light etc. But I think you can get these with any manufacturer. My experience of Alfa dealers is not good - so I'd agree with Kristian - buy privately but get a warranty.
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Mike_Nicholls - you have a PM.

So does Kendr, but that's only because I pressed the wrong button - sorry!!
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