I have heard much anecdotal evidence that the TS cambelt really needs changing earlier than 72k, more like 36k. There are a number of cases on this forum of the TS cambelt failing prior to 72k, and it is far from certain that Alfa would pay up on a FSH car with a belt failed before 72k.
Again anecdotally, it appears that the V6s have less of a reliability concern over belts - although 72k is a long time. I let mine get to 72k before doing the belts, but I did feel a bit like I was playing roulette towards the end.
Have fun searching for the 166s. Don't discount the V6s though, as the cliff face depreciation means that they are not much more expensive these days. My 3.0 got better mpg (average 29-30) than many of the TS owners report too, so don't necessarily be put off by that.
My advice on things to look out for would be:-
- FSH, an absolute must. Not necessarily main dealer though.
- Is it due a big service soon (60k on the V6) or a very big service (72k V6). If so, budget accordingly.
- Do look at tyre wear. Mine wore the inside edge of the fronts, and outside edge of the rears despite being well within tracking spec. I had to rotate the tyres front to back every 5k miles. Mine had the 17" wheels though, maybe that affects this.
- If you are not fussed about leather, look for a cloth trim car. They depreciate even harder.
- If you do drive a V6 manual, don't be fooled by the stiff clutch. It takes quite a strong left leg, and I am told they are all like that.
- If it needs rear shocks, budget £700 to £800 for this (seriously
If I were doing less miles these days, I'd be shopping for a cloth trim 3.0 Super that has had the cambelt and rear shocks done fairly recently
Great, great cars. Enjoy.