Drinking from the
heavy oil fountain
Join Date: Feb 2016
New 147 owner
New owner here from Liverpool.
I've only ever had space for 1 car at home before, so my only car has had to do everything, but the miles and the regular track day & trips to the Nurburgring have put 140,000 miles on my Z4MC since I bought it.
So after my first 'at fault' accident pre-Christmas, and the delay in getting my car sorted, I decided that I needed something to take over the daily driver duties, that would pay for itself in fuel/maintenance savings. My Z4 does about 27mpg on my Monday/Thursday motorway commute, so my thinking was that if I could halve that I would have £250/month towards a lease deal, or a used car. The lease deals weren't working out for my level of mileage (25k/year), so I started looking for a used diesel.
I was having to hire a cheap car every week, as the insurance company are taking their time in repairing mine (currently at 12 weeks) - and don't provide a courtesy car for at fault claims (goes down as my fault as I've got no way of identifying the other driver as he didn't stop). Don't mind hire car per se, but got a bit bored with having to swap it over every week and paying £100-£140 for the privilege.
Had my eye out for something cheap, that will do the 250 mile each way commute (Mon-Thur in London), and won't break the bank doing so. I wasn't looking specifically for an Alfa, and just put in some search criteria in to Autorader to show me my options (around 100,000 miles, less than £2.5k, diesel 50+mpg, full MOT, decent service history, trader offering warranty, etc.). Saw lots of 'immaculate' yet scabby-looking cars for sale at traders who were stating that they were 'part-ex to clear' and thus no warranty, so after filtering those out I found a few that caught my eye.
Drew up a short-list of a Alfa GT JTD, Alfa 147 JTD, Seat Leon, Seat Ibiza, Audi A2, and a Toyota Corolla - all turbo-diesels, all 100-125bhp, all (except the GT) offering 60+mpg.
Alfa GT was sold by the time I got to the garage, so headed off to the the 147.
It turned out to be very nice. A 147 JTD Lusso 5-door in Gabbiano blue, with my preferred black cloth interior, everything working, no corrosion other than on the brake disks (normal if it's been standing in the damp), and an unused/original spacesaver/jack. Was very happy with it, so bought it there & then.
Dealer took a bit off the price due to a patch of paintwork missing on the driver's door pillar, but it will come with 12 months MOT, and 6 months RAC warranty included. Pick it up next weekend - assuming the SORN/change of owner/tax is sorted by then.
Not planning on doing anything major to it other than putting some all season tyres on, and getting a bit of paint damage sorted. Maybe put in an aftermarket DAB/USB/bluetooth head unit? Does the standard CD player support MP3 CDs?
I'm sure I'll have many of questions over the coming weeks/months, so please be gentle.
(aka mmm-five on M5 & Z4 forums)