Clattery when cold
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: United Kingdom
County: Greater London
I do wonder if the excessive oil consumption is due to break-in procedure. Most engines I've met seem benefit from bog standard mineral oil for the first few thousand miles to assist piston rings and bore wearing in properly. Friction is actually necessary at a microscopic level to tear up the ring surface a bit to a matt surface that retains an oil film. Full synth has such film strength that it largely prevents this, the rings glaze, and forever after the engine will be a bit less efficient and will use oil.
I'm a huge fan of full synth oil and use it wherever possible, but I've never used it in an engine I've rebuilt until it's run in, and I've never had any significant oil consumption. However none have been Alfas so maybe this is inapplicable. On the other hand, long service intervals require synthetic, so maybe the whole issue just gets ignored for customer and dealer convenience. The idea that you need a first oil change at 1-2k is probably unmarketable nowadays.