I dont think you read my reply properly did you mate ? - I specifically said that the GT is an old design and also that Alfas are not built as well as BMWs so why would you feel the need to tell me "The Alpina i recommended for my mate, is much much better a car out the box than a std GT 170 q2. More modern and better built. Sorry if that is hard for you to digest mate, its the truth" when my reply effectively said the same thing ? Why would you waste your time telling me something I ve already told you ? Did you miss those bits ? Its hardly surprising that a 2005 designed Alpina D3 "is more modern" than a GT which is based on a car designed in 2000, is it ? I mean the clues are in the "2005" and the "2000" bits.
You clearly missed the bit I said about swirl flaps, which are far more likely to fail on the D3 than they are on the 1.9 JTD. The D3 is a great car, no doubt about it, I ve got nothing against the D3 or 3 series in general - I drive countless BMWs for work and love driving them. But if youre "not afraid to say things as they are" and youre into talking FACTS then you cant miss the whole BMW swirl flap thing, but it seems that your version of "not being afraid to say things as they are" doesnt include saying things as they actually are. If it did you couldnt fail to notice that youre moaning about a cars whose swirl flaps have failed causing engine damage and telling a friend to avoid this car partly because of this yet persuading him to buy a car that has MANY MORE INSTANCES of swirl flap failure !! Do you know what ironic means ?!
BTW I ve driven approximately 70,000 miles in Alfas, but I never drive faster than 15mph and I only drive them on days of the week with a z in. And much as I love driving BMWs, I cant stand driving Audis from the A4 up, theyre feedbackless, understeery, bland, boring cars for people who just dont like driving.
Anyway, I think we mostly agree, apart from that I think Alfas build quality is average and you think its cr*p.
er I disagree..
ALFADOIT is 100% correct.
they ARE fragile.....before I outline why I will just start by saying..
I love my \GT (it's my second) and Italian cars in general and Alfa and Maserati especially. I am half Sicilian and as such have uncles and cousins who have owned nothing but Italian cars , my brother in law has a lovely 81 spider ,but tellingly his daily drive is now a Honda and previously it was a Merc. Italians are well aware of the engineering foibles of their cars and they are loved like an unruly and slightly wayward child..but no Italian that isn't a FIAT employee would claim they are ''Good'' quality or even average, they are regarded with affection and pride but not because of the Quality! heritage,passion flair and class, yes.
beautiful,engaging,unique,and a true drivers choice yes. but Quality? god no !
some of the reasons they are fragile is down to the engineering ethos, they are built lightly compared to German rivals which in turn gives a more nimble and lively car, they have a shocking appetite for front upper and lower wishbones but again if the steering input is going to be responsive then it cuts both ways, the bushes will suffer as they are under more stress...these are engineering decisions and forgiven as they are deliberate and add to the sporty nature of the car.
I own two fiat coupes and they are much the same in having a lightweight build and a sportier steering set up ,this = more maintenance. that's OK, forgiven, you know that when you go in.
swirl flaps, you are correct they are as common in BMW and many other marques, the design concept is a poor one to begin with added to which the execution by Pierburg is poor. we agree. same for EGR and DPF (on the cars that have them) bad idea's in terms of engineering but required for emissions.
now having owned several BMW's I feel able to comment on the things that in my mind BMW do well that Alfa don't and these are the things that are NOT forgivable in my opinion.
The electrics in the Alfa's are poorly insulated leading to glitches and issues on a regular basis, from WCU problems to parking sensor faults, our climate does not help but its no excuse, taking the door card off I was frankly shocked at the poor insulation., I have had front and rear bumpers off as well and again wiring is just exposed to the elements in a way that is not on the German cars.
badly designed and poor drainage points that allow water to collect in places it shouldn't and can lead to leaking cars with wet foot wells which can cause even more issues with the already poorly insulated electrics and even floorpans rusting. one of the most common scuttle blockages on the GT channels water directly towards the electrics below the steering wheel!
cambelt failures are all to common and all of the recent Alfa offerings have had the intervals downwardly revised by Alfa due to early failures, 36k on the JTS and the TS is shockingly low by modern standards and even the JTDm is advised at 48k by many specialists with an original 72k specified by Alfa when they produced the car.
no other (non Italian) marque to my knowledge has fixed price for cam belt failures at specialists as they are not common enough to require it.
rust proofing is also a shocker and is not acceptable IMO and plays havoc with oil cooler and oil cooler unions and of course can lead to the early demise of a car if the owner doesn't deal with it.
The petrol's are shockingly sensitive to oil type and level in a way German cars are just not. oh and I forgot thermostat and slave and master cylinder failures being commonplace too.
door handles, don't even get me started, cheap crap and they should have done better, poor quality interior trim (which is none the less easy on the eye and nicer to look at than the German rivals) and in general poor quality exterior and interior rubber and plastics that begin to show their age earlier than the Germans, same for the paint job.
Go and look at a well cared for 10 year old Audi, paint and trim will be wearing much better than the same aged Alfa with less work by the owner to keep it that way.
and finally they are just not as well bolted together as the German cars, there are also silly choices of bolts like a female allen on the oil drain, and star and torx bolts in other places that are to small for the job and will just strip when trying to undo as they have will have rusted into place, and those stupid clips that easily break, to change light bulbs( which blow often) that you need the hands of a 6 year old to get too!
all that said I still love mine and wouldn't change it for anything this side of a 3200 or another Alfa, GTV V6 or an Aston DB7/9 or the Guilia when it finally arrives (please let it be good!)
when its working as it should, it is simply a fantastic car and I love it more than almost any vehicle I have owned ( The Ducati 996 I had takes the title) but it does without a doubt take more TLC than any of my previous German,Japanese cars to keep that way.
anyone who says otherwise has either been very lucky, does low mileage ,works for fiat, or lives in cloud cuckoo land.