Well I've resurrected this thread to update with the latest in the saga - Brief background is:
Bought 2003 147 1.6 ts on 1st of December from Lyles - an alfa specialist dealer on West Road in Newcastle upon Tyne.
Broke down with a clatter at 60 mph some 5 hrs and 57 miles later so returned car - owner said he'd put the car right or give me my money back.
They took the engine apart to find damaged spark plug on no 1 piston as it had disintegrated. I got my money back and bought a JTD a few days later no probs - am a happy man !!!
Latest - I took the Reg V5 down as promised when it arrived from DVLA. (DVLA had said I technically owned it as I'd had it over one night)
The salesman then decided to get it off his chest the fact that in 20 years he'd never seen this and that it was due to my driving within that 5 hrs??? He said I must have over reved it by changing from 5 to 2 gear at speed causing the piston to disintegrate. This is such a load of rubbish as I was cruisin 60 at the time it happened in 5th. He continued to moan about how they'd had to rebuild the engine and that my inexperience as an alfa driver had caused the problem. He went on to say the engine had no signs of oil starvation etc etc and that he's seen nothing like it before. I was a bit taken aback as I wasn't expecting it and was well annoyed for being spoke to like anughty kid. So I cooly went about trying to explain this simply wasn't the case. I was most put out that he'd accuse me of negligent driving when I was totally looking after the bella driving along calmly. Grrrrrrr. I'd stay away from Lyles if I was buying again. They certainly wont be getting my car for any servicing or future work.
I also realised on getting the v5 the'd lied about the number of previous owners - yes I know I should have checked. He'd told me one previous but there were actually 2 . I was not happy about this and told him so after his accusation.
Well sorry to rant on - but has anyone had experience of a piston failing in such circumstances as to just be driving along and crash? The car was 3 yrs old with 34000 on the clock and the timing belt had been changed as I bought it and there was apparently no problerm with the belt when they checked it after the break down.