Thanks guys - compiled from your responses:
Check list for an ideal used Alfa
1. Two working keys - possiby with code card (two identical red keys for older 156, two identical black keys for newer 156).
2. Code card for radio - see 4 below
3. Service history book fully stamped to date
4. Alfa Romeo branded zip up case containing: code card for radio, radio manual, big thick car manual, service booklet. The case may be zipped, it may be a plastic wallet or a hardbacked wallet with reinforced corners.
5. With the spare wheel & tyre: jack kit in an expanded polystyrene base, if any of the recesses are empty - something's missing.
1. Check if it's had a cambelt and waterpump change in the last 5 years, especially if it's a 16V or 20V,
2. Drive it and listen for knocks from the footwells/floor, a sign of wishbone/ARB bush/balljoint wear.
3. Build up speed and jump on the brakes, making sure the ABS light flashes while your foots flat on the floor with the brake pedal, when the car stops release the pedal and the light should have extinguished, this indicates the braking system is working fine.
4. Check all the electical items are working, windows, mirrors, wipers, heater fan (all speeds) etc,
5. Check the lights, make sure they are all working and that the bulb warning is not displayed on the rev counter, if it is then check the side, tail, number plate and brake lights for operation, if any are out replace them, if the warning remains on then it's a new rev counter.
Last edited by markoos; 24-10-09 at 18:49.