156 2.0 JTS vs 2.0 TS - Alfa Romeo Forum
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156 2.0 JTS vs 2.0 TS


I'm trading in my current 156 2.0 TS - I've test driven the newer 156 2.0 JTS instead (the 2002 version, not the new 2003 nose job version) and am considering getting one. I am impressed with the JTS engine. The sales manager says that the engine, electrics, radio and climate control are all improved as they are partly taken from the 147. However, what I'd like to know is:

a) is the JTS version a lot better in terms of reliability?

b) is the radio better?

c) how much better is the air con/climate control compared to the old 156? (The sales guy says it is better but still not up to German standards). Does the dual-zone facility work well?




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Hi Edwin
I traded my 156 2.0 TS in for a JTS in March, so I have experienced both cars.
Reliability:, I think it's to early to tell really mine has been fine, but then apart from a Cambelt tensioner, so was my TS. There are reported problems with the Lamda sensor on the JTS, the wiring is fixed too close to something hot, which seems to cause it to send wrong readings, it is a simple fix, re route the wires. BTW It's not been a problem on mine.
The JTS unit isn't as characterfull as the TS, it pulls better from lower revs, but isn't quite as keen to rev as a TS, tho mine has got 13K on the clock and is starting to loosen up and go better now. Overall the performance is slightly better, as is economy, but only slightly. It doesn't sound as sweet tho, (this is reletive you understand it is still an Alfa and sounds great!) it isn't a smooth either, no balancer shafts may be the reason.

The face lifted cars (not the latest one but the last one), got a Bose unit as standard on the 2.0 and above, so the sound is definatly better, my radio reception is OK, but I have had loan cars which were crap, so look out for this, and complain to the dealer if necessery.

The dual control AC is clever but I don't think it is a vast improvement over the old one, I had a fault on a Car which I rejected after a fortnight because it was underspec, the AC on that Car just didn't work properly. The one on my car is fine now, but it is complicated to use, best thing to do is set it how you want and leave well alone. If you fiddle with it, it tends to get confused. (Well... perhaps it's me ).

Other things to watch for are, short spec Cars, a number of UK supplied Veloce's had things missing, ie, no Electric windows in the back, and no Headlamp washers, these should be a bit cheaper, this is why I rejected mine and got a replacement.
Insurance on the JTS is up two groups on the TS, which makes it as expensive as a V6, this is a bit anoying considering it isn't much faster than a TS. If you don't do many miles and Economy isn't an issue, think about a V6, if you do a lot of miles think about a JTD, it's as fast but more economic and cheaper to insure.

I still like the JTS and it is a good compromise, they handle better than the V6, and JTD, being lighter at the front, should be some bargains about at the moment as well. Good hunting and keep us posted.
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You're right about short spec cars Ian. A-R have not denied that at the end of 2002/early 2003 a batch of Turismos were dressed up as Veloces with skirts and alloys but with standard suspension and in all other respects Turismo spec but sold to unsuspecting buyers as Veloces and at a Veloce price. White dials, no headlamp washers or Veloce badges are giveaways. When challenged they termed them 'misbuilds'! Don't know how they got away with it. I agree with all the advice Ian has given you here, Edwin, just be sure you are aware what you're looking at!
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(Post Link) post #4 of 5 Old 14-12-03 Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info guys. As long as the radio is improved and the air con works better than the one on the older 156 TS which was feeble at best then I'm going to be happier.

I'm actually looking to get the Lusso version, not Turismo or Veloce. Seems to be lots of Turismos around. Although a Volvo dealer actually offered me more for my Alfa 156 than the local Alfa dealer did so I'm going to have to go back to Alfa and do more haggling.

I'll keep everyone posted on what happens...
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Watch out for wrongly badged lussos. I was sold one missing cruise control, headlight washers and electric windows in the back, basically a turismo with leather and wheels. It took one hell of a struggle to get Alfa to accept my rejection of the car. This was, according to Alfa, a one off, but have heard of many such problems with the 02 import batch. These cars were built between June and November 02(check for seat stickers in mag pocket)
My new style JTS lusso is tops, it is a bit hesitent upto 1500 rpm, which can lead to the odd hairy moment at junctions, but once past this barrier it flys. Outside noise seems much reduced from TS, especially at speed. Radio okay, but much fiddling needed in order to stop it retuning to the nearest local station. However, the reception is tons better than it used to be on TS (mk1 spec)also handling seems a bit better, but that could be because all the nuts and bolts on my present car are nice and tight (I hope !) climate control clever, but is it really worth it ? also the cold end of the range aint that cold, other controls clearer than mark one, and easier to ajust/activate when on the road, in my opinion.
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