Re: Hello...newbie seeking mechanic recommendation
An update on my quest to find an alfa mechanic worth his salt,.....
I thought I would share a couple of sparkling mechanic recommendations with you......(in no particular order)
Fiat & Alfa Romeo Specialist in Bury St Edmunds, suffolk (near cambridge) (Eddie) - 01284 767914
Intaservice in Leicester (Don) - tel' no: is posted elsewhere on this site
Both these garages are relatively small Alfa Specialists with 3 or 4 ramps and owners who are former Alfa Main Dealers head mechanic types who have set up on thier own, as such the knowledge and expertise is very high and the hourly rate is very competitive. Being smaller garages the service is tip top and all round, in my opinion they knock spots off the main dealers and larger specialists.
Since registering with AO club just under a year ago I have been all over the country, have done approx 40,000 miles and despite 3 services, a burnt out exhaust valve, new brakes all round, cambelt change, new anti-roll bar, new airmass sensor thingy and just under £2k bills in total my 156 sportwagon still feels and drives superbly. For a 2001 car with 90k miles the whole car is in very good condition and even with the recent expense (£1200) I can't help but think that I made the right choice.
First up, I found Intaservice through an AO recommendation as I spent some time commuting to Leicester, I am a bit of a sceptic and when told that the car would benefit from a new airmass thingy I thought £120 sounded a bit steep, we did a before and after and there is no way I would now ever buy a non bosch OEM (the difference was massive). They know what they are doing, theyre friendly, professional and competitive - Thumbs up all round!
Secondly Eddie and Dan were 2 of the top guys from the Desira Alfa main dealer in Bury St Edmunds, they took the plunge on their own a few months ago and have spent the money in setting themselves up properly with all the right kit, the customer service was truly exceptional going way beyond expectations, they also open early and finish quite late so if you are an hour away (like me) then you can build it in around work commitments - 20 mins off the M11 (who in their right mind would want to take their alfa to a non-alfa specialist even if the chosen specialist is an hour away!!!). As the new kids on the block they are doing everything right...customer service, competitive pricing, gaining credibility and trust very quickly...in short if they keep this up then they will amass an evergrowing band of dedicated alfa owners who will not consider going anywhere elses...
Whilst I am on the subject of garages John Whalley (my local Alfa Specialist in Bishop Stortford) seem technically very good but carry a bigger garage hefty pricing policy and whilst the customer service is thoroughly professional and good you never speak to the actual guy who is actually working on your car (something which I personally value quite highly).
Enough of my rambling.....if my post comes in useful to even one my peers in the world of Alfa then it will have been worth the time in writing!