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Alfa Romeo 156 2.0 Twin Spark

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    5 Reviews
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      26.06.2010 22:18

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      Great good looking car, if you can afford the petrol nowadays !

      THe wife wanted something that looked cool. In my mind this is one of the best good looking cars around. Ours is Beige, a '56 plate that we had from new. IT looks Gold, and the integrated rear door handles add to the slim lines. Wehave the 3 headlight model that looks good from the front. The Engine for Petrol heads is superb, my wife rarely using the full potential. This comes alive after 3000 revs, with a wonderful roar from the exhaust. Its stated 0-60 is 8.6 , one of the quickest family cars I have owned. Sadly, this is not surpisingly offset by high insurance costs and only 30 mpg. Ouch. So after 5 years it is time to get rid of the old lady soon. It has proven amazingly reliable, against all of my original cynicism with the CD player having packed up in the first few weeks and replaced under warranty. I love the black leather interior, the smart red on black instrumentation. The seats I dont like, built more for sports than comfort and if you have a bad back like me the hard suspension means it goes around corners on rails but you feel every bump.

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      11.01.2009 13:35

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      Had a 1.6 t spark for 3 years and had no problems at all engine wise. It was starting to see bits of wear and tear within other components but i can honestly say it was a wonderful car in all aspects of its handling, performance ( only a 1.6 ) and reliabiltiy. After having it wrote off by a transit van i am now buying a 2.5 veloce and looking forward to it . I can't see myself ever driving anything but an alfa

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      08.01.2009 12:50
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      You either hate it or you love it! Italian horses waiting to be unleashed

      The 2.0 TS is of excellent quality and beautiful looking. It was my second alfa that owned. I only bought it in the first place to it having its distinct look with the number plate to the side, aggressive headlights and the amazing lines going across the side of the car.
      The 2.0 TS has a 154BHP engine so is quick off the mark compared to the 1.8 and 1.6. The centre console is facing towards you so it is all private, very nice. The main thing I like is how alfa have redisigned the 156 with sporty look of a coupe, it is a 4 door car that looks like a 2door with the rear handles hidden away, perfect for unwanted guests. : )
      All the rumours that have been going round saying alfas are unreliable vehicles are not true, it is as any other car is, as long as it is looked after the car is fine.
      A few problems with alfa that people should be aware of, is that the oil needs to be checked regularly as the twin spark is very thirsty for oil, also the front bumper mounts tend to rust and break away as time goes along, there is also a rattling noise that comes from the dash that can be fixed by tightening the bolts.
      Other than that the alfa is a perfect car, as all cars have there little niggles. I am now moving on to my third alfa which is a 156 GTA. So do reject something without trying it : )

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        16.06.2008 14:33
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        For less than half the price of the equivalent BMW, they're really worth a good look.

        The words Alfa Romeo spark 2 thoughts in most people's minds. 1: Good looking Italian number with great performance, and 2: Unreliablility.

        The 156 was Alfa's attempt to quash the latter. Released in 1998, the 156 stayed in the model range as good as unchanged until it was replaced by the 159 in 2005. There is a faster 2.5 V6 version, but for the purists, this is the one to have due to the lighter engine giving the car better handling. The car is pretty quick, 155bhp gives you 0-60 in under 8 seconds, and it's very good fun in the twisty bits.

        The Suspension is set up perfectly, giving a comfortable ride and sporty handling in one. The only drawback is that it does tend to bottom out when pushed really hard. There is an optional sports pack, which might be a good idea.

        Inside the car is pure Alfa Romeo. It has a beautiful dashboard with all the white dials facing the driver, it feels like a real driver's car. Climate control is great and simple to use, and some did come with a Bose speaker system which is great.

        Leather is the way forward on these, nice big comfy chairs that hug you in the bends. You can get it in black, grey, white, blue, red or my personal favorite, tan. Don't be put off by the red though, in a black car this looks stunning. There's ample leg room in the back, and the front is spacious yet confined, so you feel like you're in something a bit sporty. It is in here that you find little telltail signs of alfa-ness, like the glove compartment that occasionally won't open all the way, and the odd rattle from the dash on a hot day, but these really are little niggles, and are easily sorted or forgotten about.

        The Alfa has loads of warning lights to tell you which door is open, which bulb has gone and which brake pads are wearing. This is a nice touch, and while mine's never had a problem, Alfa's electrics aren't renound for being that reliable, so perhaps they've over-reached with this.

        The boot is ample, with a ski hatch if required. You can open it from the remote control, doing away with any unsightly handles that'd ruin the styling. Unfortunately the back seats don't fold down, which is a bit of a pain.

        This is a 4 door car, though the rear handles are tucked away up by the window, which looks great but you have to explain it every time someone new gets in the back!

        The worst part of this car is parking it. The turn circle is truly the worst I've ever seen, and you really can't see where the car ends from any angle. It's a real matter of getting used to it.

        Mine hasn't given me too much bother and I can rely on it, so to me I feel that Alfa's have caught up with the rest of the world with reliability. I think it's more a matter of looking after it well, keeping the services up to date, checking the levels etc. It's like having a beautiful Italian girlfriend, Looks great, is good fun and reliable, but a little bit high maintenance!

        The fact that these can be picked up for as little as £2000 for a good one these days, is quite frankly appauling. You'd think it's worth at least double, if not triple that. But then that's our little secret. What a bargain!

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          28.03.2001 18:37
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          Probably the best car I have ever owned.The engine is superb,the interior is very comfortable , and i'm over 6'2" and large framed.The accelaration is phenomenal ,and the styling very Italian.People say that Alfa Romeos are unreliable,but in the 21 st century,nothing is unreliable anymore.This car does away with the old reputation of Alfa(remember the Alfasud?),and drags it into the 21 st century with a bang.I would reccomend this car to anyone ,young or old.So please try before you buy ,you won't regret it.

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