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Alfa dealer trying it on with me?

On my last service report from my local dealer (Guest Knowle) they reported that my clutch was 'work hardened'. I did nothing about it and i had no problems with it slipping, then the other day i put my GT jtdm 1.9 into reverse and it was really juddery the all of a sudden I couldn't get it into gear. Seems reasonably obvious that my clutch has gone.

I have been quoted £710 for a clutch replacement by the dealer mentioned above and he told me that there is a 50/50 chance I would need a new flywheel (£700) because of the damper in the flywheel being damaged/warped. He also said that fragments of the clutch can damage the gear box housing costing £1500. Te thought of paying out a possible £3000 is frightening. The car is crrently sat on my drive and the dealer said I should get it towed in, as it may do it more damage to drive it.

Does all he is saying stack up? I have very little knowledge of this and at this rate i may no longer be able to afford to drive my GT which is upsetting.

I spoke to an alfa specialist garage recommended on here and he laughed at the need for a new flywheel. I am confused and dont want to just replace the clutch if the flywheel wil cause it to fail again stright away.

Any recommendations of garages close to Stratford Upon Avon would be welcome too.

Thanks in advance.
jez_gt is offline  
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Hi Jez

I had a clutch fail shortly after buying my GT jtd. It is going to be costly but in my experience not the sort of money the stealer you are talking to has quoted. Mine cost me £1250 with new clutch, flywheel, Q2 LSD and slave cylinder plus he also cleaned up the gearbox and put a new linkage in. The Q2 was £400 so take that off the worst case from a reputable specialist is about £850. I would recommend the Q2 however.

The labour was about 9 hours £250, clutch kit £190, DM Flywheel £390 give or take. What the specialist said to me about the flywheel was that it is possible it is fine and you cannot tell until the clutch is apart but that they are prone to failure and generally last the life of the clutch so if changing clutch they always recommend changing it.
Mine was still working but I didn't fancy a second huge hit in a year or so. Hope this helps anyhow.
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Mine went in similar fashion a couple of years ago. Cost me 3k euros (at an Alfa garage) all in for new clutch and (2nd hand) gearbox, labour etc. Not sure if they did the flywheel but didn't need the diff doing. I believe the 1.9 is an easier engine to work on than the 2.4 I had (more room in the engine bay) and I'm fairly sure the clutch has a lower torque rating so yours should be cheaper than mine was. I'd shop around for the clutch quote and take it to the garage that gives you the best price. There's a sticky thread for independent garages somewhere in here, should be one listed there that's local to you

hard lines, I hope it's only the clutch
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Were is that Dealer located ?
Just to know so I can steer away from it...
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Does sound like they are trying it on - that flywheel will be roughly half the £700 they quoted you.

Here's an interesting price comparison for you, for a new OEM clutch kit supplied and fitted, compare that to what the dealer is trying to charge you:


You could safely assume £300-£350 for a new flywheel if it turned out you needed one. And the Q2 diff kit at £450 extra is well worth doing while the gearbox is out, will totally transform how your car drives as well.
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Typical stealer prices, at least they are trying to make you aware of all the things that could be wrong so you don't have a shock bill (i.e. they are buttering you up ) ... find a good Alfa Indy, they will all charge similar figures to Autolusso
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If you are interested to know a little more below are a few links to explanations on DM flywheels. While DM flywheels do smoothen out engine firing pulses and help to protect the transmission the trade off is that they do wear out and can be very costly. In terms of budgeting it pays to factor in a replacement at some stage throughout the vehicles life. Warning!! do not let anyone tell you that a DM flywheel can be successfully machined. These things wear out internally and like many components these days are not designed to be repaired or machined. I'm sure many have tried and paid dearly for the disappointment.

Alternatively you might like to consider replacing the DM flywheel with a soild type which would most likely require that you at least fit a modified dampened clutch plate to replace the dampening otherwise provided by the DM flywheel. I've never done this on an Alfa JTS but it is a common replacement with other makes and models for those in the know. Note that if you do go down this path you may need to get an engineering shop to machine up a replacement flywheel as I don't know of any after market Alfa JTS solid flywheel options. 2nd note; There are usually trade offs with such modifications but these are generally minimal and the reduced servicing costs may proove to be worth it. As vehicles become older I expect that such conversions will become more common.
YouTube - 3D animation of dual mass flywheel
YouTube - Bad VW TDI DMF
Dual mass flywheels
YouTube - Dual Mass Flywheel Conversion (PART 2)

Last edited by patanga; 25-05-10 at 22:44.
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