RE: Shed of the Week: Alfa GTV

RE: Shed of the Week: Alfa GTV

Author
Discussion

viggyp

1,402 posts

69 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
RicksAlfas said:
suffolk009 said:
Am I right in thinking this is an early Chris Bangle design? .
No. It was a Pininfarina design, finalised by Alfa in house.
Did Bangle do the Fiat Coupe?
Yes, Bangle designed the Fiat Coupe which was built by Pininfarina.

PoopahScoopah

244 posts

59 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
Turbobanana said:
Good shed.

I love the way Alfas always divide PHers. Generally speaking, you are either:

1. A dyed-in-the-wool (insert German brand here) fan who will pour scorn on any Alfa for its unreliability and propensity to rust, while smugly enjoying superior build quality but quietly alarmed at how many people seem to have an identical car to yours, thus reducing their exclusivity.

Or...

2. An Alfa fan who values their own individuality and shudders at the thought of all the dull, efficient German cars out there, but secretly longs for their reliability and residual values but won't admit as much.

Anyone not fitting into 1 or 2 above, is a fan of French cars. Or Saabs.

Interesting for me that Shed makes no mention of the GTV's most striking feature: its pert rump. Particularly as that would have given Shed an opportunity to compare it to that of Mrs Shed.
Brilliant, just brilliant laugh I started reading that thinking, hmmmm, bit of crap there, I don;t fit in to either category. Then carried on reading, and guess what, I'm a big big french car fan (had 4 205 GTIs) and a big big Saab fan (got a 9-5 Aero). Also got a Volvo. So you are actually spot on.

What always makes me laugh is that when people poor scorn on Alfas for their perceived lack of quality, their unreliability, their rust etc, although they may have direct experience of that (or their mate of a mate of a 3rd cousin removed had one bad experience 20 years ago) they use that as their defacto position on the brand whilst happily and conveniently overlooking any other bad experience they may have had with any other brand. If you have a bad Alfa, it's because "all Alfas are crap and that's to be expected", and that's just the way of the world. I mean it can't possibly be that many Alfa owners have perfectly happy and trouble free experiences, can it? If these same people have bad experience with another brand - let's say for example a VW - then they were just unlucky and it's downplayed.
EDIT: I've had one very happy experience with a 1999 166 for about 3 years not that long ago. Does my experience mean that all Alfas are well built and reliable? No of course not. Yet so many people had one bad Alfa, never repeated the experience and now forever complain they are crap.

I've not read the Shed article yet, but my immediate reaction was "Yes, yes and thrice yes!". The last 2 or 3 weeks have thrown up great sheds, and this one might not be better per se, but it's a interesting choice after months (last few weeks excepted) of boring dross.



Edited by PoopahScoopah on Friday 13th October 10:19

MadDog1962

748 posts

96 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
I've always liked these. This one looks nice enough for the 1500 quid being asked.
It would be a great weekend runabout. Ive never driven one, but read in several places that the twin spark 2 litre handled better than the (reportedly nose heavy) 3 litre.

Ares

7,062 posts

54 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
I ran a 3.0 V6 for 9 months as a company car in 1999s, fabulous thing. It replaced a 156 V6, which in turn replaced a 145 Cloverleaf. All three were great cars, and in a company carpark filled with BMWs, they all stood out and entertained.

They were also the only cars (aside from my 640d) that I've never had any issues with. Hoping to now make that 4/4 with the QV.

The GTV, IMO, isn't quite as good a drive as the 156 V6, not as balanced, and more obviously FWD, but a great car and fantastic soundtrack. Always preferred it over the corresponding Fiat Coupe 220 Turbo, very much a mini Ferrari.

Ares

7,062 posts

54 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
Mr2Mike said:
Always liked the GTV, just a shame Alfa didn't use the Fiat Coupe engines along with the rest of the floorpan etc.
The Alfa engines had so much more character. The Fiat's 5-cyl was quirky and gutsy, but the V6 in the GTV was a beaut.

What is a shame is that the UK never got the 2.0 V6 Turbo.
Advertisement

kellyt

119 posts

53 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
Had one Alfa, a brand new GT 3.2 V6. I have to say, it was just disappointing. Not hugely disappointing, just a bit disappointing. It never really felt like V6 power. My 2.4t Volvo feels as fast, the T5 feels (feels probably isn't actually) quicker, in many ways how it feels is just as important as what it is on paper. The odd thing is that if it was up for sale, I would want to buy it back KH 07 KEL - if you're out there?!

The car in question looks like a nice car, certainly a nice shed, I approve. Suspect, like my Alfa, it might be just a bit disappointing somehow, but in the final analysis, they're disappointing with such a lot of style, they still tug at you once they're gone.

davebem

570 posts

111 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
I love it, A 2.0 T.S. or a Busso V6, engine choices dont get much better than that.

I remember last year going to Chatsworth house during the ALfa owners club day, walking through rows and rows of beautiful exciting cars from the makers interesting but turbulent past. If the same was setup for a certain german brand we all love to hate on here it would just be like walking around the local carpark at waitrose.

Alfas of this period are not really 'drive and forget' kind of cars, I dont tend to recommend them to my friends unless they like to get their hands a little dirty, you need to lift the bonnet up every now and again to see whats going on, grease the odd gear selector bush, tighten that bolt, top up with oil, and dob a bit of waxoil on the floorpan. They are good to drive, you have that sense of occasion, if that all isnt being a genuine Petrolhead then I dont know what is.

For the record, I have 2 Alfas, my newest one (a 159) has been completly reliable but its also the dullest.

Arese1973

32 posts

20 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
rxe said:
My daily driver is a 156 V6 of a similar vintage. The only time it has let me down in 15 years and about 110k miles was when the lower rad hose failed 2 years ago. Never failed to start, other than that rad hose, never failed to get me home.
My daily driver is also a 156 V6. More reliable than the two forester turbos I've had. I wouldn't hesitate to buy any Alfa that has a Busso V6. My 156 has 140k and doesn't use or leak a drop of oil.

J4CKO

25,274 posts

134 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
I like these, looks good in grey as well. I dont really think they are that much more of a headache than anything else at that age, its just we have been conditioned to expect it, but a similar vintage E39 BMW will I reckon be more problematic, but there isnt the comedy value in shouting about that.

I drove a mates very tidy 16 valve Fiat Coupe the other week, like a new car more or less but they do feel old and a bit slow now, not sure how similar the Alfa is, hink they had a smidge more power but its funny how 130/140 bhp feels quite slow these days, mainly as being without any kind of forced induction the torque is pretty low and the power hides, out of the way, up at 6000 odd rpm and it didnt feel that the rest really came together cohesively to make it worth extracting that power. Probably just needs a readjustment in driving style and lower expectations, it was 23 years old to be fair.

Still, you could have this or a Peugeot 206 diesel....


j4r4lly

37 posts

69 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
I've had several Alfa's, 1987 Spyder which was one of the only cars I've owned and then sold for a decent profit. A 156 24V V6 which handled like a wallowing barge on anything less than the perfect road surface but sounded so good it didn't matter. Then had a 147 2.0 TS which was faultless in the 2 years we had it and a lot of fun to drive with a lovely sounding engine. Also had a 155 3.0 V6 which had 1970's build quality and trim, the worst driving position I've ever encountered (even worse than a Metro that I had for a while) but a stonking, lusty engine that made every drive a blast. Deeply floored cars but somehow equally appealing.

Oh yes, and in my experience the Alfa main dealers are woeful and almost totally useless. Lot's of really helpful and enthusiastic independent Alfa specialists out there who actually seem to care!

Edited by j4r4lly on Friday 13th October 10:37

Ares

7,062 posts

54 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
j4r4lly said:
A 156 24V V6 which handled like a wallowing barge on anything less than the perfect road surface....
Really? Which suspension pack? Mine had the Sport 3, and at the time both Willie Green and Kurt Luby, when they drove it on an RMA track day, said it was possibly the best handling FWD car they'd driven?

stuckmojo

1,934 posts

122 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
Pereldh said:
I like the GTV and being built on the same "Tipo" floorpan as the Fiat Coupe etc it's bound to be reliable enough.

Funny how reliable most Fiats are compared to Alfa's, even after they married in 1987.
You'd think the distance between Turin & Milan isn't that far?
Had many Fiats (incl top whack 340bhp Coupe 20V Turbo) which never gave me much headache. Last summer I bought my first Alfa, ok not new, 75 3.0 V6 1990. Sure enough - it's by far the crappiest car I've ever had and - it's broken down.
What also seems typical is I'm now eager to rebuild it with a 24V 164 engine. I'm "hooked". smile

Now that's lovely. I wish I still had my old banger

j4r4lly

37 posts

69 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
Ares said:
j4r4lly said:
A 156 24V V6 which handled like a wallowing barge on anything less than the perfect road surface....
Really? Which suspension pack? Mine had the Sport 3, and at the time both Willie Green and Kurt Luby, when they drove it on an RMA track day, said it was possibly the best handling FWD car they'd driven?
It was a standard car which spent more time with the front undertray bottoming out than a limbo dancer does under the bar. It also felt brittle and nervous which is a direct contrast with the wallowing. On smooth tarmac it was fabulous and could be really worked hard. British B roads it didn't like at all.

Blackpuddin

8,275 posts

139 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
Ares said:
j4r4lly said:
A 156 24V V6 which handled like a wallowing barge on anything less than the perfect road surface....
Really? Which suspension pack? Mine had the Sport 3, and at the time both Willie Green and Kurt Luby, when they drove it on an RMA track day, said it was possibly the best handling FWD car they'd driven?
Sounds like the previous owner of j4r4llly's car enjoyed the life out of it. laugh

Ares

7,062 posts

54 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
j4r4lly said:
Ares said:
j4r4lly said:
A 156 24V V6 which handled like a wallowing barge on anything less than the perfect road surface....
Really? Which suspension pack? Mine had the Sport 3, and at the time both Willie Green and Kurt Luby, when they drove it on an RMA track day, said it was possibly the best handling FWD car they'd driven?
It was a standard car which spent more time with the front undertray bottoming out than a limbo dancer does under the bar. It also felt brittle and nervous which is a direct contrast with the wallowing. On smooth tarmac it was fabulous and could be really worked hard. British B roads it didn't like at all.
Wow. Wouldn't have thought the sports suspension set up would make that much difference!

JoeBolt

201 posts

96 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
There is a 3rd engine choice for the GTV in addition to the TS and V6. That is the JTS. The cars can be identified by a bigger intake grill (as well as JTS lettering on the boot lid).

Was tempted by one a while back. Does anyone have experience of the JTS?

PoopahScoopah

244 posts

59 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
kellyt said:
Had one Alfa, a brand new GT 3.2 V6. I have to say, it was just disappointing. Not hugely disappointing, just a bit disappointing. It never really felt like V6 power. My 2.4t Volvo feels as fast, the T5 feels (feels probably isn't actually) quicker, in many ways how it feels is just as important as what it is on paper. The odd thing is that if it was up for sale, I would want to buy it back KH 07 KEL - if you're out there?!
The Busso V6 needs to be revved. Comparing it to the tubod 5 pot in a Volvo is apples to oranges. The 2.4t uses a light pressure turbo so boots quickly and that instant grunt will make it feel faster. The T5 (I have a 2.3 T5) is laggier but with very strong mid range, again making it feel much faster once on boost. The V6 Alfa can feel gutless until it comes on song in the upper 1/3. Even then they aren't exactly quick in the larger cars, just "brisk". The Gt is 240bhp and nearly as heavy as the 166 with 220bhp. I can relate to what you are saying as the lack of out right pace in my 166 was one of the things I didn't like about it, you don't get the performance you feel you should be getting for the amount of petrol they slurp. But it was the character of the engine and the noise that made up for it. Absolutely love the BUsso V6 and would happily have another any day of the week just for the engine alone. Hate to sound like a fanboi, but once bitten it can get under the skin for some of us.

Edited by PoopahScoopah on Friday 13th October 10:49


Edited by PoopahScoopah on Friday 13th October 10:50

RicksAlfas

9,016 posts

178 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
Ares said:
Wow. Wouldn't have thought the sports suspension set up would make that much difference!
It really did on the heavier engined 156s. A strut brace also made a big difference.

RicksAlfas

9,016 posts

178 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
JoeBolt said:
There is a 3rd engine choice for the GTV in addition to the TS and V6. That is the JTS. The cars can be identified by a bigger intake grill (as well as JTS lettering on the boot lid).

Was tempted by one a while back. Does anyone have experience of the JTS?
Don't forget the 4th engine choice!
V6 Turbo (not available in the UK).

The JTS is a development of the TS with a new cylinder head. Like many direct injection engines it can coke up quote badly and soon be down on power. It also has quite a bit of extra emissions stuff on it. On paper it's more powerful and modern. In reality you're probably better with a well maintained Twin Spark. Plus, I'm not sure the big nose did the GTV any favours...

Lotusgone

99 posts

61 months

Friday 13th October 2017
quotequote all
Ares said:
The Alfa engines had so much more character. The Fiat's 5-cyl was quirky and gutsy, but the V6 in the GTV was a beaut.

What is a shame is that the UK never got the 2.0 V6 Turbo.
Beat me to it. Why have a guppy-looking Fiat when you can have a much better-looking V6 Alfa?

Just got back from a trip out in mine, so possibly still drugged on euphoria. Now need to check out that hot smell.