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Should I buy an Alfa??

Hey everybody,

Just joined the forum and I am an imposter as I do not own an Alfa, though I do own a Fiat which is close enough I suppose!

I am thinking of selling my Punto once I finish college here in Dublin and was considering anything really. Obviously being just out of college, money is an issue so I was thinking maby an old Toyota MR2 or something like that. I never really considered an Alfa because I assumed them to be expensive to buy/run. But chatting to a friend who owns a 156 I was suprised that he said it was very reliable. Doing some further research I was further suprised to see how cheap they were.

So to cut to the chase, is it possible to buy/run a nice Alfa relatively cheaply and would you recommend it? As for individual models, this might sound nuts, but I have always been in love with the GTV since it came out. It's kind of a dream to own one, as sad as that sounds. Maby somebody here could tell me more about them? They seem quite reasonably priced second hand...maby there is a reason for this?

Anyway, hope I haven't bored ye too much with all that. I'm looking forward to hearing any replies that may be forthcoming

David
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Simple answer is yes you should buy an alfa. You wont look back.

You can get a 156 for next to nothing these days. Just make sure it has a decent NCT on it and you should be fine.

I currently own a '04 GT. Was my first Alfa and I like you was quite worried that based on reputation it'd fall apart in days. Thankfully I haven't had any major issues yet. (now I've said that it'll fall apart)

Alfa Romeo 156 T Spark.PremierCars.ie - €1,850 - Used Cars on Carzone.ie - New & Used Cars in Ireland

this one is from premier cars in phibsboro. I bought my GT there. The problem it has is it has no NCT so sort of going against what I said above but here me out. They're selling on Trade only no gaurantees. Get a guy from the AA to do a check on it. It has a great spec leather seats and is an '02 and a very low milage. Worth a look imo. Could be a steal if you get him down a few quid. Daragh is the main guy down there. Nice fella.

If you dont want to take a chance on that one theres plenty more but the milage will be higher and theres a lot of 1.8's out there too which will have higher tax obviously.

Whats your budget by the way??

You can get a GTV for decent money in the UK btw. Theres loads of them as apposed to the small range here.
Problem for you might be money running costs high tax on a 2 ltr or more if you want the 3ltr V6 which lets be fair you do!
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The reason Alfa's are cheap secondhand is down to the terrible deprecation they endure in this country, this is probably due to their reputation as being unreliable and troublesome.
I'm now on Alfa number 10, the last three were 166's and before them a 164, all using the 2.0 Twin spark engine, none of them ever failed to start, none of them ever broke down, I've never replaced a clutch, exhaust, shock all the things you'd expect. Things have gone wrong over the years but nothing that would suggest there were troublesome cars.
A lot of the problems suffered with Alfa's has been down to lack of maintenance, but this could be true with any other car.

I have a Citroen Dispatch Van, two years old, it has 37,000km up on the clock, it had a new gearbox at 19000km, front bushings are now gone, fuel pump, immobiliser a lot of problems for a two year old van.

It might be true to say an Alfa that has been poorly maintained may be more troublesome than another manufacturers car, problem is if the timing belts aren't looked after and they fail the damage to the engine is severe and expensive to put right..

point is try and find one with a service history, and if you can find someone who has experience with Alfas to come along with you all the better.

If you want to run with the crowd, buy a Toyota, there's no better expression of individuality than owning an Alfa (best kept secret in the motoring world)
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Hello, welcome along us.

I was in your position last year in August. I also am a student, and wanted a car with reliability to suit me, but in the end went with my heart rather than head, and it paid up. She's been really reliable so far exceeding my expectations, it may only be a little 1.6 but it can shift. It suits me in everything I do. Everywhere I go, when they hear I'm driving an Alfa, they are really impressed, even some chap from my insurance told me "really really nice car".

The point is, if you are prepared to buy it then GO and buy it. As Kieran said, there are good alfas, and bad alfas. Just make sure you get a good one.

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Welcome along David, you've come to the right place.

I was more or less in the same situation as you when I bought my Alfa. I finished college, year later bought a Golf then a year after that bought my GTV. That was almost 2 years ago now and it was one of the best decisions I have ever made.

I sold the '00 1.4 Golf for 6k and bought the GTV for 2800 privately but I bought purely on service history and that is exactly what you should do. If it is lacking a service history it should be priced accordingly and if the car really speaks to you (tends to happen with these cars) you should factoor in a good service with a specialist (see here) on top of what you are going to pay.

Also when you are looking at any Alfa whatever it may be have a look at the buyers guides on here here's the GTV one. They will tell you what to look out for and what should have been replaced on the car and when.

Lastly, I can vouch for the fact that a well looked after GTV is a joy to own, reliable, cheap to buy, tax is €615 though, but it is very economical with an mpg well into the 30's even with a heavy right foot (another thing that tends to happen with these cars ). Another plus is the fact that it is in no way chav-tastic, people who drive these cars have way to much class and stlye for that.

We'll keep a look out for any GTV's that may tickle your fancy and if there is one near any of us we'll gladly look at it for you.

Cheers

Gav

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As above where on Alfa number 8 and they have been all gravy
 
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As above where on Alfa number 8 and they have been all gravy
That's "we are" or "we're", Damo
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Hello and welcome to A.O, personaly i wouldn't touch one with a bargepole, and those Gtv's are pants !
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Re: Should I buy an Alfa??

I'm gonna be controversial but I'm putting my love for Alfas aside here.

If you just want a runaround to get you from A to B and you don't care how it feels then no I wouldn't buy an Alfa at all but if you are a budding petrolhead who wants a car to "drive" then yes buy one.
I'm trying to be objective, Alfas are not cheap to repair , running costs are higher than your average runaround especially if you go for a V6.
I'm not saying they are more unreliable than anything else because they are not , but if you buy a dog then it's gonna cost.

Saying all that, I'm not blessed with endless pots of money, but I'm expecting my next car to be another Alfa.

At 10,000 rpm , no one can hear you scream.
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(Post Link) post #11 of 126 Old 28-04-10 Thread Starter
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Hey,

Thanks for all the replies, been a great response. For some reason I recieved no notification of replies...don't know why.

I am, as the previous poster said a 'budding petrolhead', and have owned a few different cars since I passed my test just two years ago. I used to drive a Volvo 480 which I loved but was full of niggles and 'quirks' which went beyond being characterful to just downright dangerous. So I bought myself a little Fiat Punto to see me though college. Despite all the warnings I got about 'dodge Italian cars' it has been a really great car for me. In fact, if I don't find the right Alfa I wouldn't be too pushed 'cos I've still got a handy little daily runner.

Having said that, I do a heck of a lot of driving and find that I could really do the the extra cc/comfort. I had my heart set on a GTV but realise that they may be a bit out of reach for me budget-wise, ya never know though! I'll look into the 156 a bit more... There seems to be a lively little form here...!
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First the notifications will be received between 1 am and 6-7 am you will get like 8-9 e-mails depending how many threads you viewed.

And coming back to Alfas, the best engine is the 2 litre twinspark IMO.
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i took the bite after joining this forum 3 weeks ago
bought a GT 06 plate the following week.

looks great and you dont see many about
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Nice one Doormatty

CorkAlfa, what is your budget if you don't mind me asking?
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(Post Link) post #15 of 126 Old 29-04-10 Thread Starter
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well id have to sell my own car first or possibly use it as a trade, though I realise the likelyhood of that is slim but I'd be lookin at about 2 grand tops which i know is pretty limited. that 156 for 1850 seems really good...wish i had the cash right now!
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There are a fair few in England if you are willing to travel
http://www.pistonheads.com/sales/list.asp?s=243

This one sticks out purely becasue of the extensive history
Alfa Romeo : Red 1996 GTV 2.0 TS

Important thing ot not to rush it, be patient and the right one will come along, and in the mean time you'll have saved more money and increased your buying power

Last edited by GTV Gav; 29-04-10 at 22:46.
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(Post Link) post #17 of 126 Old 29-04-10 Thread Starter
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Hey Gav,

Thanks for that. Yeah true, I'm in no rush. I'd rather wait for the right one to come along than rush into buying something...

ps. your red GTV is savage! took a sneaky look at your pics there...exactly what I envisage myself driving some day
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Very welcome along Cork Alfa. The short answer is yes. Now here is the long one -
So your in Dublin? Well if thats so we might be able to arrange to meet you sometime and give you a quick spin. Then you will want to buy one trust me. Everything the lads said above is spot on. They are reliable and dont fall apart. They got a very bad rep in the 80s and rightly so and unfortunately havn't been able to get over it with the general public eveb though nowadays the cars are very good. Anyway as Davieb said as a runaround stick with the Punto but if your gonna do more mileage then a 156 or GTV is perfect. However a 1.4 145 or 146 wud be a grand runaround. None of the lads here can adequately explain what getting an Alfa on the open road feels like, you will have to do that and experience it.
Regarding price you are in the driving seat as a buyer. Dont be afraid to knock a few hundred off the asking price. There are shed loads of 156s out there for under €2000. If you need any advice just ask us or PM us directly. I currently have three alfas, thats how much I rate them
Best of luck with the search

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Re: Should I buy an Alfa??

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Looks far too good to be true, you could hardly get a spares or repairs one for £500 let alone one with 12 months MOT.
Something is definitely wrong with it.
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First the notifications will be received between 1 am and 6-7 am you will get like 8-9 e-mails depending how many threads you viewed.

And coming back to Alfas, the best engine is the 2 litre twinspark IMO.
You are so right about that! Nice one
 
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I'm gonna be controversial but I'm putting my love for Alfas aside here.

If you just want a runaround to get you from A to B and you don't care how it feels then no I wouldn't buy an Alfa at all but if you are a budding petrolhead who wants a car to "drive" then yes buy one.
I'm trying to be objective, Alfas are not cheap to repair , running costs are higher than your average runaround especially if you go for a V6.
I'm not saying they are more unreliable than anything else because they are not , but if you buy a dog then it's gonna cost.

Saying all that, I'm not blessed with endless pots of money, but I'm expecting my next car to be another Alfa.
Your next car? You've just bought new wheels for your current Alfa (good buy by the sounds of it) , methinks she'll be around a while longer.
 
(Post Link) post #24 of 126 Old 30-04-10 Thread Starter
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Very welcome along Cork Alfa. The short answer is yes. Now here is the long one -
So your in Dublin? Well if thats so we might be able to arrange to meet you sometime and give you a quick spin. Then you will want to buy one trust me. Everything the lads said above is spot on. They are reliable and dont fall apart. They got a very bad rep in the 80s and rightly so and unfortunately havn't been able to get over it with the general public eveb though nowadays the cars are very good. Anyway as Davieb said as a runaround stick with the Punto but if your gonna do more mileage then a 156 or GTV is perfect. However a 1.4 145 or 146 wud be a grand runaround. None of the lads here can adequately explain what getting an Alfa on the open road feels like, you will have to do that and experience it.
Regarding price you are in the driving seat as a buyer. Dont be afraid to knock a few hundred off the asking price. There are shed loads of 156s out there for under €2000. If you need any advice just ask us or PM us directly. I currently have three alfas, thats how much I rate them
Best of luck with the search

Hey,

Thanks for the reply. Yeah I'm in college in UCD but living in Arklow...never driven an Alfa! Funnily enough I had considered the 145/146 model before but was put off because I though they were the last of the 'bad alfas', for want of a better term. Yes, I was once an Alfa snob too - don't hold it against me please! There are lots of nice ones on the net...one example:00 Alfa Romeo 146, 1.4 for sale for sale in Wexford: €750 - DoneDeal.ie What are they like?? Might be a more sensible introduction to Alfa motoring for me than a GTV. I really want a GTV though! I would have to save for a good while though to afford one...
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Corkalfa, I'm a student so I know how difficult it is to get the car you want and then run it. I started off with a 146. I adored that car, it was 98 Ti spec so it had the 2.0 Ts engine and only had 48k when I bought it. 48k on a 10 year old car!!! Any way it drove like nothing I'd ever driven before and I was hooked. It was the ultimate street sleeper, people never knew what it was until they saw the Alfa badge on the BACK!!!!

Now I have a gorgeous Red 156 2.0 Veloce. Its got all the right toys and thanks to a trusted local indie it all works perfectly. I'd be lying if i said I didnt look at the GTV and think 'yummy' but I know deep down that this is the car for me.

Alfa ownership will change your life, they'll be good experiences and bad, hopefully more of the good. there arent too many cars that get the last look over the shoulder EVERY time you walk away from them

Do it, if you need any more info then start PMing people, we wont bite
 
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