Alfa Romeo 147 2.0 Twin Spark 2004 Who has one!

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sweetfanny, Sep 22, 9:45am
What are they like! never had a European car before, and rather like the look of these. Anyone tell me about them!

mugenb20b, Sep 22, 10:20am

mugenb20b, Sep 22, 10:21am

mugenb20b, Sep 22, 10:22am

thejazzpianoma, Sep 22, 10:29am
Don't listen to mugenb20b he just goes around saying anything he can to discredit European cars, he has zero experience with most of what he comments on so don't take him seriously even for a moment. He is just trolling.

I have not had a lot of experience with the 147 but have plenty with the 156 with the same engine etc. They are an excellent vehicle, surprisingly reliable and parts are easy to get and cheap.

The only thing with the twin spark engines they use is that you do need to do the timing belt quite often. Its 3 years/60'000km from memory whichever comes first.

If you do a little research and pick your mechanic carefully the timing belt change does not have to be a overly expensive exercise, and in the scheme of the running costs are not really an issue. Aside from that maintenance is minimal and inexpensive.

The only other thing to be wary of is the "automatic" which is called "selespeed" is actually a manual gearbox with a robot that does the clutch and gearchange for you. It will still operate much like a regular auto but changes can seem slow (although are not that slow) and they can be a little problematic,although their reputation is worse than the reality.

So, my advice is if you are happy with a manual one and can find one for a good price go with the manual. its also going to be easier to sell and get a better price when you are finished.

Anything else you want to know just ask. They are an absolute hoot to drive, surprisingly economical, reliable and practical. Plus they are a lot of car for not much money.

Great choice, enjoy shopping for one!

thejazzpianoma, Sep 22, 10:30am
Also, if you do happen to get one. Come back for advice on where to get genuine parts cheap and the tricks to getting the timing belt done for a good price.

mugenb20b, Sep 22, 10:41am
Jazz, I have had an experience with 147s, I towed one in two weeks ago, with a broken cambelt, still sitting here in the back yard, well and truly dead.

sweetfanny, Sep 22, 10:43am
How do they go for horse power etc, I like a car with a bit of grunt. Yes I have heard of the Selespeed box. I did take a car for a drive a while back with one, was weird to get used to. Think that was in a Fiat Arbath rally thing. lol

thejazzpianoma, Sep 22, 10:45am
They go very well, the 2.0 pushes the bigger 156 along at least as well as a Golf GTI of its day and goes even better in the 147. There are faster cars on the road (like the crazy GTA version) but they are certainly very spirited with plenty of go for passing.

thejazzpianoma, Sep 22, 10:47am
Oh and the box in the Stilo Abarth would have been very much the same. Good on the open road and much better when you are used to them but they were first of the blocks with this technology and its a poor second to VW's DSG.

richard198, Sep 22, 10:50am
The 147's have a reputation for unreliability and expense for repairs.
However, a friend of mine bought one new.and no problems so far.
Two years old now.

Obviously hers was a little newer than what you are contemplating!

Also not safe in head on collisions. but then, hey!
Looks the part but actually doesn't handle that well either.

lugee, Sep 22, 10:56am
A whole two years! I've had my '88 CRX for 12 years and its only cost me a couple tyres and a CV joint. Know someone who had a Alfa 156 V6, the dealership somehow broke the camshaft doing a timing belt job, and they had to wait a month for one to arrive from Italy. Cost them $2,800 in the end, and shortly after it was written off in the earthquake anyway haha.

hyphen, Sep 22, 10:59am
I had one on Gran Turismo 2, really hotted it up too!

thejazzpianoma, Sep 22, 11:03am
Not to nit pick but they are 3 star NCAP which while not fantastic by todays standards was pretty normal for the time when they came out. Your friend has bought the last of a very long run so as a new car it does compare poorly. If you were looking at buying a secondhand circa 2000 model vehicle though they compare O.K

They are one of those cars thats really easy to take to a "prestige" outfit that also works on Ferrari's etc in which case you will pay through the nose for repairs. However any competant general mechanic or even bettera non-dealer/prestige specialist can do the vast majority of servicing/repairs for very reasonable cost.

I hear the story's about Alfa's reputation as well but can tell you my first hand experience has been excellent (as your friend has). I rate that engine as being one of the best of its era and exceptionally reliable so long as you change the timing belt when you should.

They are also an engine that copes well with high milage, even if worked hard.

thejazzpianoma, Sep 22, 11:04am
Different car, different engine, clearly an idiot dealer without a clue.

richard198, Sep 22, 11:07am
As I said, my friend is happy with far.

richard198, Sep 22, 11:08am
Indeed; the relevance of that post was lost on me as well!

thejazzpianoma, Sep 22, 11:08am
Yes, lol I actually edited my post (as you wrote this) as I didn't mean it to sound contradictory to you!

thejazzpianoma, Sep 22, 11:09am
I once had a car with four wheels too and it caused no end of trouble.

lugee, Sep 22, 11:16am
I wasn't implying anything at all, just stating a story that came to mind when I read this thread about Alfa's. Bit defensive over your Euro's there Jazz!

Also, its hardly irrelivant. This thread is about Alfa's, and you said you have experience with the 156. And the dealer in question was THE offical Alfa dealer, which struck me as pretty poor.

richard198, Sep 22, 11:26am
Sounds like about five different Fords I've owned!
Slow learner, I know!

sweetfanny, Sep 22, 11:33am
Hmmmm, Well I also like the VW Golf GTI's, thoughts!

thejazzpianoma, Sep 22, 11:39am
Also an excellent choice. The MK5 GTI is well ahead of the MK4 but the Mk4 is still a nice car. What is your budget if you don't mind me asking!

thejazzpianoma, Sep 22, 11:42am
Read the comments above about dealers, they are very often the worst offenders. The Alfa importers are also completely hopeless in NZ. I am amazed they are allowed to continue given they also import Great Wall who actually ripped off Alfa/Fiat by directly cloning one of there vehicles.

Also, the 156 I am referring too has the same running gear as the 147 in question, so quite a different situation to the one you referenced.

thejazzpianoma, Sep 22, 11:50am
Fords products are so varied and inconsistent quality wise though I am not surprised. Even within the same model line up sometimes you find extremes.
Just look at the early 2000's Mondeo's. The 2.0 was a pretty reasonable car in manual but they used such a dog awful auto it wrecked the whole car.
I find reliability maintenance a similar mixed bag as you move from the likes of the Transit/Taurus/Probe/Focus/Mon-
deo/Falcon of the era there are varying degrees of masochism involved.

Anyhow, you have my sympathy on that one!