Looking to Buy a 159 TBi SW... BUT....... - Alfa Romeo Forum
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Looking to Buy a 159 TBi SW... BUT.......

Hi All.....Hoping to replace my 156 SW soon and considering a 159 TBi SW.....However I've been picking up bits of info here and there, and in this forum, that the Turbo's are starting to become an issue....and an expensive one at that. I read somewhere that there was a service update circulated to Alfa dealers about a modified Lambda wiring loom being available to overcome a problem with the original fitment. It appears that a fault in the loom could send signals to the ECU which causes a surge within the turbo followed by a dramatic drop in pressure which then somwhow manages to loosen the nut holding the turbo vanes.....result, a wrecked turbo. I also gather that a modified turbo had been introduced towards the end of the 159's production run, made from different materials ??
I don't for one second suppose Alfa UK would openly admit to this and effect a recall ???....It also begs the question are the Giulietta's with the TBi engine also affected.....Was the TBi put in the 159 to act as a testbed to iron out any faults before the Giuletta was launched !!!!!
Would be interested in hearing anybody's views before I commit my hardearned, especially current owners.....By the way how much is a new Turbo ???
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I have one and don't recognise this conclusion.

The only turbo failures I've read about seem to be late cars with incorrect torque settings of the main fixing.

The wiring loom update seems to be about fragile wiring that is heat sensitive.

The Lambda software may be an update to deal with excessive 'error counts' that put the engine warning light on.

I don't think you can join these all together to your summary.

It's a great car and will bring a smile to your journey.
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I changed my 3.2 GTV for a 159 TBi last October. (Family reasons dictated I needed to be able to put a child seat in the back!)
Whilst it is a totally different car, I've not been disappointed. Obviously not as quick as the GTV, but still nippy when you need it to be. I do miss the noise of the V6, the TBi is a very quiet car.
I guess I can't really comment on the turbo issue, but maybe take out a warranty for additional peace of mind?
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Reports of turbo failures on here have been from both cars with the old turbo and the new so that doesn't seem to be the driver for them.

I think someone here has a bill for 1700 for new turbo and fitting, but that's from a dealer so perhaps 1500 is possible. I imagine that a failed turbo may be re-conditionable which could be cheaper and also offer the chance to upgrade the spec of the turbo for more power and reliability.

If many more failures appear I might consider having the turbo taken out and modified as a preventative measure (but also because I want more power!)
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