In lurv with 159 TI
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: United Kingdom
Re: 159 2.4 Economy
Yes - beware the airflow valve (actuator) on the 159 2.4 JTDM. I had only done 10 miles after collecting it from the supplying dealer in Norwich when the EOBD light came on and a gong rang with a message telling me to "have engine checked". It also went into "safe mode" restricting power to the engine which borders on the dangerous as it has no acceleration to speak of. Not ideal when joining a motorway for instance. They diagnosed "crap" in the airflow valve, cleared it and reset the diagnostic memory. During the last 5000 miles, the fault has not repeated itself but the car has suffered a hesitancy/flat spot when accelerating moderately through 2000-2500RPM. Sometimes this worked into a full-on throbbing which could be cleared by releasing the throttle. Last week, cruising at 80mph on the motorway, on comes the EOBD light again, the gong and the safe mode and has stayed this way ever since. Interrogating the EOBD memory has thrown up a fault with...yes...the airflow valve. 10 hours required to fit a new one (new intake manifold and cambelt change too apparently...!) and replacement parts now on back-order from Italy. Must be over a £1000 job (imagine that happening when the car's out of warranty??!!) Limping along in safe mode for 6 days now and getting totally ****ed off! Temporary remedy = block the valves open, disconnect it and reset EOBD memory! So what do these valves do? None were on the 156 2.4 JTDM (10 valvers)!
Seems to me that all these Euro emission controls are forcing manufacturers to have to fit all sorts of cleaning, strangling, recycling and monitoring devices which are systematically over-complicating things and, ultimately, dialing in inherent unreliability (just when Alfa were beginning to get it right with the basic stuff).
33-36mpg is the best that I get out of the 159 2.4 JTDM, some 10-15mpg worse than my previous 156 2.4 JTD which was a real disappointment.
Otherwise, the screen was factory-fitted with parts of the glue seam missing, therefore leaking water and whistling at motorway speeds. The passenger's door wouldn't open cleanly because the rubber seal at the top of the window was misaligned and fowled the seal on the back door behind it. Also, the gear change is not quick and always crunches its synchro 1st to 2nd and 2nd to 3rd.
All in all not a great start, which means the usual falling-in-love-with-the-Alfa thing is not happening. Very seriously considering turfing it out and going back to late, facelifted 156 2.4 JTDM 20 valver. Pity!