Buying a 156 - Advice


Gernster
05-09-2003, 11:03 AM
Greetings all, after years of alegance to ford escorts ( mk3's) ive decided to get some money spent & buy a decent car to commute in, but me being me im not buying anything plain, so i fancy an alfa 156! ive test driven the cars & done a bit of research, and im on the look out for a 2000 W plate 2.0 TS Veloce, with leather & the big touring car style spoiler.

However, a mechanic friend of mine keeps disuading me about these cars as he says the 1.8 & 2.0 engines have a habit of dropping the bottom end, he says that the oil spray system which keeps the piston skirts cool fails as soon as the oil level drops below max, the pistons jam in the bores & chaos ensues.
How true is this??
He says the v6 is better but its will be a bit dear to insure & put juice in as i do 300 miles a week.

i dont want to but one only to have the engine let me down, im looking at spending 8-9k on one so i dont want the extra expense of an engine!!!

Stefanel1
05-10-2003, 11:10 AM
I just bought an Alfa 156 1.6 TS (2000) and am very satisfacted of it. It's an excellent car, though it's neither the 1.8 nor the 2.0. However, my mother had a 155 2.0 TS (1996) and sold it at about 90 000 km (60 000 miles), she had no problmes with it except electrical (windows and sunroof) but nothing with the engine. And it's the same engine in the 156 2.0 TS. Note that the 156 is far more reliable than the 155. Almost as reliable as a Peugeot or a VW.
So, I would conseil you this fabulous car ;)
Of course the V6 is one of the best 6 cylinders in the world with the Porsche and BMW one, but it's more expensive indeed.

Jimster
05-10-2003, 07:43 PM
Originally posted by Gernster
Greetings all, after years of alegance to ford escorts ( mk3's) ive decided to get some money spent & buy a decent car to commute in, but me being me im not buying anything plain, so i fancy an alfa 156! ive test driven the cars & done a bit of research, and im on the look out for a 2000 W plate 2.0 TS Veloce, with leather & the big touring car style spoiler.

However, a mechanic friend of mine keeps disuading me about these cars as he says the 1.8 & 2.0 engines have a habit of dropping the bottom end, he says that the oil spray system which keeps the piston skirts cool fails as soon as the oil level drops below max, the pistons jam in the bores & chaos ensues.
How true is this??
He says the v6 is better but its will be a bit dear to insure & put juice in as i do 300 miles a week.

i dont want to but one only to have the engine let me down, im looking at spending 8-9k on one so i dont want the extra expense of an engine!!!

Well the fault you have described is actually a rather rare occurance- and it does pay to keep the oil well topped up because the 1.8 and 2.0 work a lot smoother with it topped up- However it always pays when buying a 156 to check the oil levels, look for oil leaks and even have your friend check out the bottom end for any sign of a possible defect. The 2.5 is a great engine- but very heavy on the juice- and if petrol is a concern for you- I wouldn't consider it.

Gernster
05-11-2003, 04:48 AM
thanks for the replys, so would you say the engine is generally reliable if looked after then?, im a bit of a diy mechanic, so i dont have a problem getting my head under the bonnet on weekends.

Jimster
05-12-2003, 12:26 AM
That is exactly what I was saying ;)

Gernster
05-12-2003, 07:44 AM
cheers, well ive got a mate in the trade who is on the look out for me, but the right spec car hasnt come up yet, there all either 1.8s or lussos/tuismos.........:rolleyes:

Stefanel1
05-12-2003, 08:44 AM
For many cars you've to look after. I had no problems with my Delta (1995) which is not known as a very reliable car, but i was looking for the motor oil, the "water", etc.
The 156 is far more reliable than the previous Lancia/Alfa even if it's maybe a little bit more fragile than the German, French or japanese cars for example. But with a real sex appeal ;)

AlfaRomeo156
05-15-2003, 03:58 PM
I always top up my oil regulary, always keep it close to max, and I find it runs smoother with fresh oil. It says on the inside of the windscreen -

The Alfa Romeo are high performance engines derived from a strong racing heritage, therefore it is important to check your oil more regulary than a converntional engine.

or along those lines.

Stefanel1
05-15-2003, 04:26 PM
To check the oil level is very important indeed on Italian engines.

Gernster
05-16-2003, 07:26 AM
can you guys answer me a question?

what year did they start putting in the brushed alloy interior trim & climate control as std ( ie not just air con)?

Stefanel1
05-16-2003, 10:40 AM
The first A/C was (for the cars which had it) semi automatic.
The new one (electronically controlled) appeared with the restyling of the 156 in March 2002.

Gernster
05-16-2003, 10:48 AM
so was it just an option before march 2002?

what about the brushed chrome?

Stefanel1
05-16-2003, 11:00 AM
Before March 2002 it was this panel with the A/C in option (esthetically, just a button more) :

Stefanel1
05-16-2003, 11:03 AM
And after March 2002, it is this one with the automatic A/C on every version of the 156 (at least in France).

Stefanel1
05-16-2003, 11:06 AM
a better picture here of the new version ;)

Jimster
05-16-2003, 08:24 PM
The 156 had a Honda Civic/Volvo V70-like dial controlled Climate Controlled A/C- even the 2.5 did- however the revision bought along the option of electronically controlled C/C. The electraic one is a liability though- and I wouldn't reccomend it :)

Gernster
05-17-2003, 11:46 AM
realy jim, whats up with it??

Jimster
05-17-2003, 09:44 PM
Usually it is the air conditioning not being cold/warm enough- due to the A/C being programmed incorrectly- I'm not too sure about the long term effect reliability of the facelift models at the mo as it is too soon to tell:)

Stefanel1
05-18-2003, 07:32 AM
Jim : take some pics of your car !!!!!! ;)

Jimster
05-19-2003, 12:06 AM
I do have one at the mo- and it is on AF- I'll hunt i down for you- but other pics will hae to wait for the moment- I can't afford a camera at the moment and I don't really have the time:(

Stefanel1
05-19-2003, 07:24 AM
ok ;)

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