916 Spider or no? - Alfa Romeo Forum
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Thumbs Up 916 Spider or no?

Hullo Folks.

Am contemplating buying a 916 Spider & going through what seem to be the ownership practicalities.

First off, I donít have a garage. Secondly Iíd like to use it all year round.

Am thinking a car-cover might be one answer.

Any advice would be appreciated, thanks.
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If it feels good ...its that type of car.
Don't throw up garages or other stuff...get & buy one...just get an Indie to check it first...the cost will be worth it ... good luck .
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Will it be your only car? If so, I'd be more concerned about the every day reality of constant rattles, crashing over anything but perfectly smooth roads, massive wind noise... the joys of ownership. Would I sell it? NO! The feeling the car gives - and the style - far outweigh the negatives But I do have a Giulia as a daily driver which gives some 'comfort'. And before anyone asks, I've invested £££ in sorting the car - these are just some of the quirks of the Spider, no matter how good an example. I'm talking as though you've never experienced one, so apologies if preaching to the converted.

This aside, I did have my Spider kept outside for a time and made use of a 'car cap' or half cover during the winter. It was OK, but the elastic snapped on a couple of occasions during really bad weather, and the alarm would go off all the time meaning I'd have to leave it locked without the alarm activated. I later invested in a full cover which was much better, but a bit of a faff if removing and putting back on frequently. Provided you maintain the roof properly, regularly waterproof it and keep the seals in good order, it should be fine on it's own. It's also reasonable in snow, other than being quite low. Not really any worse than any other reasonably heavy FWD car in my experience.

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Will it be your only car? If so, I'd be more concerned about the every day reality of constant rattles, crashing over anything but perfectly smooth roads, massive wind noise... the joys of ownership. Would I sell it? NO! The feeling the car gives - and the style - far outweigh the negatives But I do have a Giulia as a daily driver which gives some 'comfort'. And before anyone asks, I've invested £££ in sorting the car - these are just some of the quirks of the Spider, no matter how good an example.
Mine is garaged off site Oct-Apr so only out in the "summer" months, does very little annual mileage over a few long trips (meets/runs) and lots of short trips (errands etc (any excuse to be out with the roof down)). However, although I enjoy the car I couldn't use it as a daily driver, it just doesn't have the levels of comfort that I've become accustomed to with modern motoring. I use a fitted cover that goes on and off easily enough but needs storing when not in use. Over my three years of ownership I too have invested/thrown at, £££ in sorting.
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Almost every aspect of a car and driving it will be totally subjective. What one person thinks is a crashy ride, others might consider sporty and responsive. It is all relative. Does a 916 lack modern refinements? Iíve owned my GTV from new and up until I bought my Spider 18 months ago it was my only car and the only car Iíve owned with Ďmod consí like electric windows and central locking so to me seems positively space age to me. Is it impractical? Again, it is all relative. Thereís just me and the wife; thereís enough room for a suitcase in the boot and more storage behind the seats so space has never been an issue.

And the big one; are they expensive to own and run? I paid £750 for mine with a long MoT. I put it in for another MoT just to make sure and it passed with no advisories and a few compliments on the condition. I then took it to Alfashop for a cam belt, water pump, plugs and more compliments on the condition which was almost as much as the initial purchase price. Since then aside from normals servicing and wear & tear (oil, coolant, air filter, gearbox oil, tyres, battery etc) all Iíve spent is £35 on a new thermostat (eBay bargain) and a whole £4.50 on an oil pressure sender. I also replaced the rear window as I cracked the old one putting the hood down when it was too cold. Everything else has been through choice... 17Ē alloys, OEM boot rack, OEM mats, colour matched mirrors, strut brace, new boot badge, quad exhaust, Zender fuel flap and foot rest. Iíve changed the speakers too and replaced the stereo but that was only because I wanted one where the display matched the colour of the dials and the same as Iíve got in the GTV so I donít have to Ďlearní a new set of controls.There are a few niggles that need sorting but nothing major. I recently made the 450 mile round trip to Southern Alfa Day at Beaulieu and it didnít miss a beat, used exactly zero oil, never went above 90 temp wise and managed about 35 mpg. Not bad for a 20 year old car.

Driving a Spider is pure driving pleasure. You simply cannot beat it on a summers day with the hood down. Iíve been out for a 10 minute drive to the shops and got home several hours and hundreds of miles later. Mine sits on the drive or on the road outside my house all year round. Iíve had the odd hood leak but easily remedied with a few simple adjustments. Every year the hood gets a good clean and waterproofing. It gets put away for winter on 31st December and comes out for summer on 1st January.
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2000 Spider Twin Spark - 17Ē multispokes, colour matched mirrors, OEM luggage rack, Ultra Racing strut brace, Fox quads, Zender fuel flap cover
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I agree with all of the above comments. Maybe try finding someone local-ish to you to discuss further, its also worth doing some research on a local alfa specialist as even if you are good with spanners some of the jobs are a PITA.

It is possible to buy a hardtop for these cars but they are not cheap!
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I've had my Spider for nigh on 5 years now. I do about 12K miles in it every year. It's outside on the street year around and I drive it year around, summer, winter, rain and shine. For my daily 10 mile commute as well as for vacations to the Alps (we also have a second car that is less noisy, doesn't rattle, and is generally boring but that gets used a lot as well as it's a lot cheaper to run, being a company car).
No cover for my Spider. No hardtop either. When I need the car or fancy a drive, I get in it and drive. Top down when it's dry and over 10 or so degrees.

Regular maintenance is a consideration (expensive if you don't do a lot yourself), these cars are not cheap to run although depreciation appears to be less of a concern (at least here in NL prices seem to be pretty stable).

Drive one; if it gives you a smile or a beatific grin and you can afford it: get it and drive it.

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i've had my spider for nigh on 5 years now. I do about 12k miles in it every year. It's outside on the street year around and i drive it year around, summer, winter, rain and shine. For my daily 10 mile commute as well as for vacations to the alps (we also have a second car that is less noisy, doesn't rattle, and is generally boring but that gets used a lot as well as it's a lot cheaper to run, being a company car).
No cover for my spider. No hardtop either. When i need the car or fancy a drive, i get in it and drive. Top down when it's dry and over 10 or so degrees.

Regular maintenance is a consideration (expensive if you don't do a lot yourself), these cars are not cheap to run although depreciation appears to be less of a concern (at least here in nl prices seem to be pretty stable).

Drive one; if it gives you a smile or a beatific grin and you can afford it: Get it and drive it.
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Well.
A big thanks to everyone who has replied. The variety and experience shared ...... really informative.

My umming and arrring continued well into the early hours, and I was awake until 2 a.m.

Iíve a 159, which I love and, instead of a Spider, (all now considered, including my need to share my love of driving with my Wife as regular passenger.....but she wont contemplate a Spider) Iím going to invest more into looking after the 159.

Nothing that you lovely folk have offered has put me off the 916 though.👌
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but she wont contemplate a Spider
My wife was the same, right up to the point that i bought a Spider. She went from wary passenger to 'stealing' it as her own in a matter of weeks
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My wife was the same, right up to the point that i bought a Spider. She went from wary passenger to 'stealing' it as her own in a matter of weeks
I'm the opposite, i bought it for my wife (birthday) & I have ended up stealing it from her...my other choice of fun is a remapped decatted TTRS 4 wheel drive ...I am in the Spider 8 time out of 10...the other 2 is when it raining .
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.../...but she wont contemplate a Spider .../...
Neither did mine. All sorts of comments.

Now I have to fight her to get her out of the Spider.
But I have to admit that she looks pretty good when she drives off in it...
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I'm the opposite, i bought it for my wife (birthday) & I have ended up stealing it from her...my other choice of fun is a remapped decatted TTRS 4 wheel drive ...I am in the Spider 8 time out of 10...the other 2 is when it raining .
My wife has a TT quattro roadster now ,so i've got the Spider back. The only time i drive the TT is like you,when its raining (Spider is in a garage with its roof almost permanently down) and also when its very hot,as the TT has aircon. I was quite surprised how poor the TT is with the roof down compared to the Spider,anything over 50 and the wind noise and turbulence is comparitively terrible,even with the deflector.
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Originally Posted by Nellytheroc View Post
Almost every aspect of a car and driving it will be totally subjective. What one person thinks is a crashy ride, others might consider sporty and responsive. It is all relative. Does a 916 lack modern refinements? Iíve owned my GTV from new and up until I bought my Spider 18 months ago it was my only car and the only car Iíve owned with Ďmod consí like electric windows and central locking so to me seems positively space age to me. Is it impractical? Again, it is all relative. Thereís just me and the wife; thereís enough room for a suitcase in the boot and more storage behind the seats so space has never been an issue.
.
Ha! Spot on.........if I didnít already own one, your post would have me scuttling out to buy one
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My Wife is afraid of riding in any car, but is happier in a bigger car. She doesnít drive. Weíre over 70s too.
I just canít let go of a lifetime of being sensible and pragmatic.......I love Alfas, and will try to find a way to enjoy the 916 experience before me clogs is popped.
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My Wife is afraid of riding in any car, but is happier in a bigger car. She doesnít drive. Weíre over 70s too.
I just canít let go of a lifetime of being sensible and pragmatic.......I love Alfas, and will try to find a way to enjoy the 916 experience before me clogs is popped.
Im on the Devon Somerset Border near Taunton, Depending on where you are in Devon.. you're more than welcome to drive my Spider to see how you like it.
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Pretty much the same for me, although my daily is a Giulia. Try to drive the spider any chance I get. Get fun, especially with the roof down.

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I drove a GTV everyday from May 2013 to January 2019 (Twin Spark 2001 and later a V6 1999). It largely included a daily 50 mile roundtrip to work as well. Loved every moment of it and I still have the V6. I put around 30,000 miles on the TS and the V6 went from 112,000 to 151,000 miles from January 2015 to January 2019. Both cars were helped along as I was very hands-on with them, often doing something to them at all times. I put this down to anticipated routine maintenance, age, and my interest in repairs and DIY mechanics. There is something very satisfying about an oil change in a 916 that you do not get from a 159 1.9JTDM for instance. It is great routine in my opinion, and even though the V6 Oil Filter is perhaps a bit of a stretch, once you have the knack of it, it's oil worth having down your arm if that is the way it goes.

I cannot comment on the Spider, but both GTV iterations are great cars in my opinion, and particularly if you have a keenness for vehicle longevity. They're both spirited in their respective ways; the V6 sound is as close to how a young boy conveys a car noise and this never quite leaves you especially if the standard exhaust is fitted). The Twin Spark whistles along once you're up there and it is remarkably comfortable and holds the road well, again, whilst you're 'up there'. I remember when I wanted a GTV 916 V6, I used to watch this Japanese YouTube clip of a driver gearing down to Third Gear on a highway. A novelty, but that is what the car does to you. I'll probably go and dig it out now as well. Driving a 916 goes beyond comfort for me; it is commitment, and a rewarding one at that, and worth every penny spent. It wants for everything, but you will give everything for it.



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I drove a GTV everyday from May 2013 to January 2019 (Twin Spark 2001 and later a V6 1999). It largely included a daily 50 mile roundtrip to work as well. Loved every moment of it and I still have the V6. I put around 30,000 miles on the TS and the V6 went from 112,000 to 151,000 miles from January 2015 to January 2019. Both cars were helped along as I was very hands-on with them, often doing something to them at all times. I put this down to anticipated routine maintenance, age, and my interest in repairs and DIY mechanics. There is something very satisfying about an oil change in a 916 that you do not get from a 159 1.9JTDM for instance. It is great routine in my opinion, and even though the V6 Oil Filter is perhaps a bit of a stretch, once you have the knack of it, it's oil worth having down your arm if that is the way it goes.

I cannot comment on the Spider, but both GTV iterations are great cars in my opinion, and particularly if you have a keenness for vehicle longevity. They're both spirited in their respective ways; the V6 sound is as close to how a young boy conveys a car noise and this never quite leaves you especially if the standard exhaust is fitted). The Twin Spark whistles along once you're up there and it is remarkably comfortable and holds the road well, again, whilst you're 'up there'. I remember when I wanted a GTV 916 V6, I used to watch this Japanese YouTube clip of a driver gearing down to Third Gear on a highway. A novelty, but that is what the car does to you. I'll probably go and dig it out now as well. Driving a 916 goes beyond comfort for me; it is commitment, and a rewarding one at that, and worth every penny spent. It wants for everything, but you will give everything for it.



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I bought my GTV in 2001 and upto Nov 17 it was my only daily. It is now sitting on 130k and shares daily duties with my Spider. I bought it with the intention of keeping it a year or two til I got bored and sell it at a profit. 18 years later and boredom has yet to set in. I used to take it to a main stealer for everything and it became a money pit that I was growing to resent. Since I started doing my own maintenance I have very definitely fallen back in love with it. The satisfaction of keeping it on the road is immense.

That said, the Spider takes driving pleasure to a whole new level. I know having a favourite Alfa is like picking your favourite child but driving top down on a sunny day simply cannot be beaten. Yes they both have their niggles but I could never part with either. Iíve never driven a V6 and probably never will. I just know that if I do, then Iíll want one. One V6 will become two as Iíll want a Busso flavoured Spider and GTV. I just donít have the drive space for 4 Alfas, no matter how tempting it is.
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Im on the Devon Somerset Border near Taunton, Depending on where you are in Devon.. you're more than welcome to drive my Spider to see how you like it.
Hi Jowey. Thank you, Iíd like that.....particularly as itís your Spider that I was interested in buying Iím just off North on holiday for 10 days. Could you pm me please (Richard Starling on Facebook) so that we can converse?
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Hi Jowey. Thank you, Iíd like that.....particularly as itís your Spider that I was interested in buying Iím just off North on holiday for 10 days. Could you pm me please (Richard Starling on Facebook) so that we can converse?
What an interesting coincidence

Enjoy your time in the North Richard, Ill get in touch with you over on the facebuks
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So you 916 Spider owners who encouraged me, Iíve only been & gone & dunnit!

Anything goes wrong, itís YOUR fault
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So you 916 Spider owners who encouraged me, Iíve only been & gone & dunnit!

Anything goes wrong, itís YOUR fault
Enjoy. What could possibly go wrong?

What age, colour, engine etc did you get?
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Excellent news. Mind you, mines a bit broken right now but hey, its part of the fun.
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Excellent news. Mind you, mines a bit broken right now but hey, its part of the fun.
ah, yes, itís not good sometimes, eh? Last time I had Ďbrokení was with my beloved v6 156........gears trying to chew their way out of its gearbox Thereís a list of works for my 916 but Iíd pre-budgeted. Plus I have THE best of allies........Stu Mansell, AlfaRagazzi, whoís 5 miles away from Casa Sopranofan
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