So...47K on my '05 156TS Veloce. What a lovely motor, still brings a smile every journey.
From new, the cambelt was changed after a year with a 50% 'apology' discount from Alfa Central, following the Warning Notice to Dealerships. Still under warranty, I had to fork out another £300 on top of my annual service. Ouch etc. Three years later - here it comes again - main dealer service + another cambelt = £690. Grr etc. Three years later, Indy Essex Alfa Specialist - surely this will be less expensive - at a whisker under £700, not so.
By my count, that is FOUR cambelts in less than 50K miles.
It's major service time again in February and, as I am now retired and barely use the car for anything other than local distances, I am reluctant to part with another £700 for yet another - I wonder if - completely unecessary new cambelt.
The word from Alfa is that the cambelt needs replacing after every three years REGARDLESS OF MILEAGE. Why? FFS what is it made of that is so crappy that it goes - TWANG - after three years -can it not be improved by a re-design, and why has this not been done?
Yes I do have a factual question for you guys - here it is. Do these ****-poor belts fail due to withering - perishing - and becoming brittle - or do they just prematurely wear out due to friction in normal use etc.?
My future use of my much-loved Alfa depends on my keeping it on the road, fully (short) serviced of course, but staying within my much-reduced Pensioner's budget. In short, I can't afford another cambelt - I can't afford a breakdown either, nor the engine valves rebuild that would follow a snapped belt. But is that really going to happen?
Apologies for an overlong post, but I wanted to make myself clear. I would love to hear from anyone with either specialist knowledge of the engine layout and its fatal flaw, or from anyone who, sadly, has had the unthinkable happen.
Finally - what would YOU do in my place?