Alfa Romeo 156 2.0TS Veloce

Alfa Romeo 156 2.0TS Veloce

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Discussion

JFReturns

Original Poster:

3,219 posts

120 months

Wednesday 16th September 2015
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Hi PH'ers,

I thought there may be some interest in my humble Alfa, which I recently inherited. Meant to be a cheap stop gap and money saving exercise so I can pay for our wedding, but after a few days I've fallen for the old girl!

I love the slick gearshift and the engine is an absolute gem, sounding gorgeous. The interior design and (I think) Recaro seats are great and the exterior has awesome aesthetic flair - no ugly door strips here!

She has been serviced every year on the dot at the supplying dealer with 15 stamps and receipts for three cambelt changes. Currently on 74,000 miles.

I think I'm going to restore her to rude health - not that there is much that needs doing at all! More pictures to come, any comments and tips very welcome.

Robert



Edited by JFReturns on Wednesday 16th September 20:57


Edited by JFReturns on Saturday 13th February 18:53

donaircooleone

333 posts

126 months

Thursday 17th September 2015
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Check the underside for corrosion and peeling underseal and get it tidied up before it gets bad, other than that they are generally sound cars.

Doing similar to a 2.4 JTD 10V Veloce, just need a proper machine polish and some smart repairs on the roof (tricky as its in Fuoco Nero).

rxe

2,854 posts

52 months

Thursday 17th September 2015
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As above, check for corrosion - floor pan to sill join is a classic place. They do consume oil - lots of engines have lost big ends as a result of running low. Check regularly. Suspension bushes are made of chocolate, but not hard or expensive to replace - symptoms are vague handling and knocks from the drivers/passenger footwells. It should be sharp on the road when driving, if not something is knackered.

Other than that, nice car, nice colour - they're fun and worth saving.

JFReturns

Original Poster:

3,219 posts

120 months

Friday 18th September 2015
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Thanks both - I've had a quick look underneath and it looks really clean. Got it booked into my local specialist Autobritalia for a really good once over to see what needs doing to bring it up to scratch, and hopefully to get a stainless steel exhaust to replace the nasty Kwikfit one.

Managed to get the full service history sent over from the main dealer which was great of them, so I've got a record of EVERYTHING done since 2001 when they delivered it. Cambelt done April 2013 so I'll get that done early spring.

For any car dealers claiming perfect servicing, this is what a FULL service history looks like biggrin







waynedear

1,210 posts

116 months

Sunday 20th September 2015
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Sounds like a cracker, looks good as well

crostonian

2,427 posts

121 months

Sunday 20th September 2015
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That's just what I'm looking for! Fantasy Blue is a good colour, the Recaros have electric back rest adjustment and to be honest not a lot of side support for what's meant to be a sports seat however you do sit lower than the other seats, which for me is a bonus as I have a long body and short legs!

JFReturns

Original Poster:

3,219 posts

120 months

Sunday 20th September 2015
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waynedear said:
Sounds like a cracker, looks good as well
Thanks smile

crostonian said:
That's just what I'm looking for! Fantasy Blue is a good colour, the Recaros have electric back rest adjustment and to be honest not a lot of side support for what's meant to be a sports seat however you do sit lower than the other seats, which for me is a bonus as I have a long body and short legs!
Aye the seats are firm but really comfortable, and its nice not having to heave a wheel thingy to adjust the back rests.

To be honest, I'm not yet sure how long I will keep this for - probably until early summer - but I'll let you know if it goes up for sale wink

JFReturns

Original Poster:

3,219 posts

120 months

Sunday 11th October 2015
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Bit of an update! The 156 has spent some time at AutoBritalia - Paul has previously worked on my old TVR and is very thorough. Anyway, I ended up spending a fair bit....

- Cambelt and balance belt
- Cambelt and balance belt tensioners
- Cam variator and water pump
- Thermostat
- Near side rear trailing arm bush to hub
- New stainless steel exhaust
- Repair to air filter box

She now drives absolutely wonderfully! Tight as a drum and it feels like performance has increased with the engine more willing to zip round the rev range. However, the engine management light has since come on so it will be back to AutoBritalia to get that sorted. Probably lambda sensor or MAF.

I've also started on the aesthetics by giving her a quick clay, polish and wax. Also replaced the faded badge which has freshened the grill up nicely.

Here are a few more pictures:

Grill before


Grill after




Stainless steel exhaust and smiley!




Thanks for reading smile

Robert

xyyman

925 posts

174 months

Monday 12th October 2015
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Mmmmm.............that looks the donkeys! smile

alfamail2007

8 posts

53 months

Saturday 17th October 2015
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Very nice! - That's a great looking 156...

JFReturns

Original Poster:

3,219 posts

120 months

Sunday 18th October 2015
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Thanks chaps! I'm really enjoying her so far.

Engine management light has been sorted, it was a faulty mass airflow meter thingy. Performance has improved, or it feels it anyway, and I reckon economy should get better too. Currently averaging 27mpg on country road commute which I was expecting.

One thing though - the suspension has been checked over and various bits have been replaced but it still feels a bit loose and rattly. It doesn't knock. Any ideas what this could be? Bushes maybe?

Oilchange

5,891 posts

209 months

Sunday 18th October 2015
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It's possibly a tad chavvy but tightening up the front end with a strut brace does make it feel less wobbly in the corners. It did on my v6 though the flex is more pronounced with the heavier engine. Also I replaced the anti roll bar, bushes and drop links with new parts and a Gta bar with poly bushes. All in it transformed the handling. Perhaps a bit extreme but new standard parts do stop clunking noises and tyre wear on the inside edge becomes more managable

pbarlow0032

415 posts

162 months

Monday 19th October 2015
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Lovely 156!! Random question: what did you use to get the chrome on the grill looking shiney? I assume it's plastic chrome, I'm trying to freshen up the plastic chrome on my A4 and can't work out what to use?
Thanks

DamienB

1,157 posts

168 months

Tuesday 20th October 2015
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Every 156 I've ever driven (9 so far, 2 owned, remainder courtesy cars or test drives) has felt a little loose/rattly/clonky in the suspension area but it doesn't appear to affect their magical ability to hang on in the corners.

Tow bar?!

JFReturns

Original Poster:

3,219 posts

120 months

Wednesday 21st October 2015
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Oilchange said:
It's possibly a tad chavvy but tightening up the front end with a strut brace does make it feel less wobbly in the corners. It did on my v6 though the flex is more pronounced with the heavier engine. Also I replaced the anti roll bar, bushes and drop links with new parts and a Gta bar with poly bushes. All in it transformed the handling. Perhaps a bit extreme but new standard parts do stop clunking noises and tyre wear on the inside edge becomes more managable
Thanks for the advice. I'm not sure about the strut brace for now as I'm happy with the handling, its more the rattles. I think the anti roll bar is the most likely candidate for replacing next.

pbarlow0032 said:
Lovely 156!! Random question: what did you use to get the chrome on the grill looking shiney? I assume it's plastic chrome, I'm trying to freshen up the plastic chrome on my A4 and can't work out what to use?
Thanks
Thanks for the compliment smile The grill was just cleaned in soapy water to be honest. However, I've had good results on plastic chrome with normal 'filler heavy' polish like Autogylm Super Resin Polish.

DamienB said:
Every 156 I've ever driven (9 so far, 2 owned, remainder courtesy cars or test drives) has felt a little loose/rattly/clonky in the suspension area but it doesn't appear to affect their magical ability to hang on in the corners.

Tow bar?!
Interesting - kinda hope that isn't the case as I do find it a bit annoying. It's booked back in with AutoBritalia for some attention to really check all suspension components.

My parents fitted the towbar. Mainly for a small tip trailer but also a weeny caravan. I agree it doesn't look great but its going to be put into service towing a caravan soon, albeit a really tiny one (Eriba Puck if anyones interested, designed to be pulled by the original Beetle).

Parabola

1,759 posts

146 months

Saturday 31st October 2015
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JFReturns said:
Grill after
Does the new front badge sit nice & flush in the silver plastic surround?

I bought a new badge for my 156, but it sits a little out a little proud, really annoys me!

JFReturns

Original Poster:

3,219 posts

120 months

Saturday 31st October 2015
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Parabola said:
Does the new front badge sit nice & flush in the silver plastic surround?

I bought a new badge for my 156, but it sits a little out a little proud, really annoys me!
Yup, it fits perfectly. It was a genuine OEM part and I spent some time removing all the old glue before fitting.

In other news, the suspension rattle has been traced to an anti-rollbar bush. Unfortunately the sub frame needs dropping and the whole unit replaced so its a near £400 job! Bugger. Think I'll leave it for now frown

Edited by JFReturns on Saturday 31st October 06:29

Oilchange

5,891 posts

209 months

Saturday 31st October 2015
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Thought it might be hence my post, not often I'm right though. I went through the pain but upgraded to a GTa part with poly bushes so shouldn't go there again...

robsa

1,542 posts

133 months

Saturday 31st October 2015
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It had already had the cam belt changed 3 times at 75k and you had it done again?! Wow. Someone loved that car!

JFReturns

Original Poster:

3,219 posts

120 months

Saturday 13th February 2016
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robsa said:
It had already had the cam belt changed 3 times at 75k and you had it done again?! Wow. Someone loved that car!
Yup. My old man serviced her on the year, every year, regardless of mileage. Looking at the history, some years she only did two thousand miles!

Edited by JFReturns on Saturday 13th February 18:57