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RE: Alfa Romeo 145 Cloverleaf: You Know You Want To

RE: Alfa Romeo 145 Cloverleaf: You Know You Want To

Thursday 18th May

Alfa Romeo 145 Cloverleaf: You Know You Want To

The forgotten Alfa hot hatch has made it this far, so how about continuing its story?



While we are currently enjoying a great era of hot hatches, it's hard not to pine a little for the superbly odd days the genre enjoyed around the turn of the century. There was so much diversity and in the sector, diversity that simply isn't viable in 2017. You could have had a fast(ish) Golf with four, five or six cylinders, a Honda Civic that looked like a Rover 400 but revved to 8,500rpm, a fantastic Peugeot Rallye that was lighter, more fun and cheaper than standard plus, er, the Nissan Almera GTI. Apparently it was quite good.

This we like to see
This we like to see
As well as those - and a whole host more, in fact - there was the Alfa 145 Cloverleaf. A bit gawky to look at perhaps, but blessed with that lovely twin-spark engine, a snappy five-speed manual and an eager little chassis too. When PH drove a pristine one six years ago the verdict was very positive, a view backed up by Autocar when they purchased a far less pristine one. Well, everything was going OK until the fuel started spilling out.

Point being that the flagship 145 will still be good fun, and not simply through the fondness of nostalgia. That famed 2.0-litre engine should feel even better in an age of downsized turbos, as will a kerbweight comfortably under 1,200kg. Perhaps there will be better handling hot hatches - we'll get to those in a sec - though there remains plenty to like about the 145. Probably more than there is to like about a Mito Cloverleaf.

Given the 145 was never the most popular car, that the Cloverleaf was the most expensive version and that we are now more than 20 years from its introduction, you will largely have to take what's available when buying one. Fortunately the one that's residing in the PH classifieds looks like an absolute beaut: a black Cloverleaf with tan leather, it has covered just 65,000 miles since 2000 and comes with every MoT certificate.

Ah yes, you're thinking, but what about all the maintenance that an Alfa from that era will require. Taken care of too, with a full service history, regular rust prevention treatment and a cambelt service in February. The detail and the quality of the ad, a '145' private numberplate plus a couple of subtle modifications are encouraging signs as well.

This we like to see even more!
This we like to see even more!
That all this well-presented quirky Alfa cool is available for £2,695 looks like something of a bargain. Well, mostly. You can't ignore the fact that this is more than they used to be - the 38,000-mile car used back in 2011 cost £1,200 - but then try and find an interesting old car that hasn't increased a fair bit in value over the past half a dozen years.

Moreover, a budget of around about £3K opens up some very interesting hot hatch options. Of course there's the predictable stuff, various Clios, Cupras and Civics available for the money, but one or two less obvious options too. An MG ZS 180 is in budget, and is far better than you probably think. And while there aren't any currently on PH in budget, a BMW 325ti Compact offers a similar combination to the Alfa of sweet engine, decent handling and, er, distinctive looks.

The 145 - and whoever buys it, for that matter - deserves credit though, for thinking a little differently. There's probably even less of them than the BMW and MG, with the added Alfa kudos too. And who doesn't fancy the idea of an old Alfa at some point in their car buying lives?


ALFA ROMEO 145 CLOVERLEAF
Price
: £2,695
Why you should: You can say you have cheap classic Alfa Romeo
Why you shouldn't: Others will say you have weird 17 year-old hatch

See the original advert here

 

 

 

 

 

 

[Source: Autocar]

 

Author
Discussion

Daaaveee

Original Poster:

549 posts

141 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
Ahh brings back memories seeing one of these again. Strong money, but understandable given how few are left, I paid the same for one 12 years ago!

I loved this car, as an 18 year old it was much more interesting than what my mates were driving, and pretty nippy too. I'm sure its gone to the scrapheap in the sky, a real shame as now I have the space in the garage it would be a great little run around that you don't see everyday.






only1ian

478 posts

112 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
Had a 1997 silver 145 cloverleaf after running a Alfa GTV TS with the same engine. The 145 was a far better chassis and lower weight made the most of the engine. However that engine needs some love... right oil, 36000 mile belt changes all the usual alfa issues water pumps, electrical gremlins etc. The later cars where very well equipped lots of air bags and leather.

Im not sure id trust one as a daily driver after 20 years but as an occasional toy it was a lot of fun, not sure its looks will ever be considered beautiful so i doubt it will appreciate much further!

Agent XXX

436 posts

24 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
I paid £300 for this one in 2011

It had been sitting for 6 months. New battery and a rear bulb and it sailed through its MOT

Full black MOMO leather interior. Machine polish and it came up like this! (Definitely prefer the phase 1 to the later phase 2 with the full body coloured coding and odd looking front grille.




How it looked when I got it home



Edited by Agent XXX on Thursday 18th May 10:53

Mike1990

319 posts

49 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
Can't remember the last time i saw one of these on the Roads, certainly a rare breed, recall seeing more 146's. Although i did see an old first gen Alfa Romeo 33 being driven enthusiastically on my local B-Road, sounded ace, Carbs i believe.

Got me thinking will Alfa make more Hot Hatches, i know they have the Mito and Giulietta in Cloverleaf guise but what about a hard GTA version ?

grumpy52

2,539 posts

84 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
Do they do a 145 without a sunroof .
I had a 1.8 for a while but got fed up with having to drive with my bonce banging on the sunroof surround .

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irish boy

2,031 posts

154 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
Excellent.

I had a 1.6 version with a kit when I was 19....I so wanted it to be a cloverleaf. Still went/sounded well.

Agent XXX

436 posts

24 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
grumpy52 said:
Do they do a 145 without a sunroof .
I had a 1.8 for a while but got fed up with having to drive with my bonce banging on the sunroof surround .
Mine above didn't.

rallycross

8,200 posts

155 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
An oddball choice with a bizarre price tag I would not want to pay more than a few hundred £££ for a 145.

Trophy-GTA

38 posts

16 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
I would love to buy this to go along with my other cheap classic Alfa. I would daily drive both of them.

culpz

1,462 posts

30 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
It's definitely something different to the usual choice of hatches out there with a bit more go. I think you'd really need to be into your Alfa's to get one over a Clio 172/182 though, which i'm not tbh. Especially at this price bracket, anyway.

I don't understand people who think they can charge prices like this for such a car. As other have said, they can be had for much cheaper. Yes, they could be deemed as something of a rare car but people aren't exactly hoarding them, are they?

If that's the case, something like an Ignis Sport should be worth a fortune right now. Maybe one day they will, but right now, they can be had for peanuts and i'd much rather one of those than this Alfa. I'd still have a Clio over both but, then again, i do love fast Renault's

deltaevo16

578 posts

89 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
One of the many Alfa's I have had the pleasure of owning, also one of the better ones to be fair. Bought my first one for £400 quid ragged the hell out of it for 9 months, it finally gave up the ghost on the M18. Got 200 quid back from the scappers for it.

My second one was mint and cost me just under a grand, kept it for well over a year with very little cost ot ownership, Sold it to buy a BMW 328i estate. Nice to see this one, a much underated little car. Saw a stunning 147GTA the other day, that was tugging at the heartstrings.

RicksAlfas

7,799 posts

162 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
Great to see. I had an early red one with cloth and a facelift black and tan one like this.
The early engine was 150bhp but always felt more sprightly than the 155bhp later one.

only1ian

478 posts

112 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
grumpy52 said:
Do they do a 145 without a sunroof .
I had a 1.8 for a while but got fed up with having to drive with my bonce banging on the sunroof surround .
Yes they did them without the sunroof. Later ones didn't sell well and looked out of date in 1999/2000 and tended to come with every option ticked.

Zombie

1,059 posts

113 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
I've had 2 145's and 2 146ti's. Loved them all, great fun to drive - lift off oversteer available on demand with a steering rack with a 2.1 ratio to catch it.



Edited by Zombie on Thursday 18th May 14:00

crashley

1,366 posts

98 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
My best mate had one of these whilst i had a Fiat Bravo HGT when we were around 18.... great little cars - both used to catch out traditionally fast hot-hatches of the early 2000s. He kept his and turned it into a track car - it occasionally comes out and goes pretty well, and I kept my little Fiat 16 or so years until it eventually died last year.

Twoshoe

345 posts

102 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
Daaaveee said:
Ahh brings back memories seeing one of these again. Strong money, but understandable given how few are left, I paid the same for one 12 years ago!

I loved this car, as an 18 year old it was much more interesting than what my mates were driving, and pretty nippy too. I'm sure its gone to the scrapheap in the sky, a real shame as now I have the space in the garage it would be a great little run around that you don't see everyday.





It last passed an MOT in 2012

Syristix

1 posts

1 month

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
Wow I remember a mates older brother had one of these - we all took the p1ss till he took us for a drive in one. To cement the fact that he had good italian taste his next car turned out to be an Integrale....

Have had a 156 2.4 jtd veloce then got the bug and bought a 156 GTA - Lovely car M3 perf at MG3 pricing wink

However anyone brave enough should look at this for sale on PH

https://themarket.co.uk/listings/alfa-romeo/164/b8...

This is an ever growing rare alfa for sale - a shape I always loved (facelift 166 even better) but this puppy will surely appreciate

DPSFleet

140 posts

79 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
Love those seats.

RossP

2,106 posts

201 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
The first company car I chose myself back in 1995. Great fun and loved it but build quality was terrible! Skirts forever popping off and afterv3 years of genuinely being cared for was using a litre of oil every other fuel fill up.

Mave

5,193 posts

133 months

Thursday 18th May
quotequote all
I had a black phase 1 cloverleaf from about 1998 to 2006. Absolutely cracking car; engine and handling that encouraged red lining and chucking it about on every trip :-)