Please make it
Join Date: Apr 2011
147 Buying Advice
Hi guys, another newbie in need of some advice and re-assurance (but you've never seen that sentence before huh?)
I guess i'll start with what i need... A 1k runaround, capable of not only a 70mile per day round trip to work, but also a once a month trip from norfolk to northern germany (via dover, so 12 hours continuous drive per leg).
I've been looking for days through endless ebay and autotrader listings to get a good idea of what i'll get for my money - basically 12-15 y/o audis/focus etc or 8-10 y/o 147's - it's a no-brainer to me that the younger car would be the way to go, but of course i now need to decide what to get and allay my nerves.
Looking at the 147's i'm focusing on; i have 2 on my radar - one a 2002 with 115k miles, and one 2001 (former cat c) with 100k miles.
I understand that i should be looking for the following things:
FSH - with cambelt/variator/water pump changed within the last 36k miles.
Any clear electrical issues such as odometer flashing
Suspension knocks, especially on the front
Re-call work completed (such as the alfa self-opening bonnet at 50mph system ;-))
High clutch bite (as with any car)
Is there anything glaring that i should have an eye out for? I'll obviously give the steering and brakes a fairly hard time when test driving.
Also, is there anything that would concern me on a test drive that is normal for this car? Things like wobbly gear stick, rear washer not working etc?
Finally, am i letting myself in for an expensive life?? I'm setting up a business right now so money is a bit tight. However, i'm fairly happy to have a crack at DIY stuff. I'm good with electrical stuff, and have done basic things (on an A4) such as filter changes, ABS sensor changes etc and have replaced alternator and starter on my Renault master.
I know this car would like oil more regularly than others - but the odd bottle of 10/40 (or 10/60 as i've read) once a month wont break the bank! I just don't want major problems to occur - stuff that's going to leave it sat in a garage for weeks. Much happier with something that takes some ebay shopping and a weekend to fix!
A little more detail on the two cars i'm looking at . The 2001 is a former cat C no repaired (front bumper damage). It has up to date service records, new tyres and looks very tidy. Price 1100gbp.
The other is a 2002 with 115k miles - its priced at 1300, and has a fsh BUT its cambelts etc were last done at 88k miles, so it's getting to the point of needing doing again. Would this be a case of using this fact as a bargain chip over a couple of hundred quid off the price - or should i just be walking away from this one (or both) and continuing my search??
Thanks for reading everyone, you can put your ropes down now - i'm done! :-)
- any tips would be great.