I'm thinking of taking on my father's 52 plate 147 2.0TS. She's only done 32K (my mother owned from new, before she passed away), has F(AR)SH, leather heated seats etc and aside from a car park dent near the fuel filler cap is in great condition.
However, she has an intermittent but persistent problem with the Selespeed. I haven't experienced this problem first hand (as the car is Torquay and I'm in London), but will do my best to describe it in the hope that someone can point me in the right direction.
Sometimes when the car is stationary she decides to jump into Neutral and then refuses to shift out of it, regardless of whether the buttons or gearstick are used. Eventually she concludes that maybe it would be a good idea to stop holding up traffic and eventually finds first again! The problem originally occurred only in City mode, so my father drove her on the semi-automatic setting. That worked for a while, but then the problem started happening in that mode too.
A trip to the nearest Italian marque specialist garage in Newton Abbot proved fruitless, as the car refused to repeat the problem at the garage and nothing showed up during their ECU scan, so they were reluctant to change anything other than the door (?) relay.
The problem still occurs intermittently which my father found very unnerving. He was worried it might develop into happening when the car was moving, so the car has been laid up for around 6 months now (no tax, MOT or insurance), meaning the battery is completely dead and won't take charge.
That's all the background I have at the moment, so on to the questions:
- Any ideas what the problem might be and how to fix it? ECU? Sensors? Calibration? Actuator? Fluids? Contacts? I realise I'm probably going to have to fork out £150ish for a new battery, VAGCOM lead and AlfaDiag to get to the bottom of the problem, but a pointer towards the most likely suspects would be great. Or....
- Anyone in the Devon area know about fixing Selespeed and fancy earning some beer tokens? Or can recommend a good garage. Or...
- Is it worth attempting to fix the issue (preference, as she's otherwise good and holds great sentimental value), or am I better off breaking/selling the car?
Thanks for reading and any advice given.