1999 Alfa Romeo 146 1.6 Twin Spark 1.6 gas from Italy


An Alfa is a car for a true enthusiast who can look beyond the quirks


I bought it used in September 2001 with 9,000 kilometers on the odometer. On delivery it was apparent that the front brake rotors were scored or warped as both sides made a loud grinding noise on brake application. This problem was fixed by a local Alfa shop who's owner is also a big Alfisti. He explained 2nd gear synchronizer is useless on these cars and he was right. To this day, second gear required double clutching prior to engagement. Mostly on downshift, but occasionally on a higher rpm up shift. There was a strange rattle in one of the rear doors, but I learned to live with it.

General Comments:

I've driven BMWs, Mercedes and Porsches all my life. And there is no doubt that they are superior cars. But Alfas have a subjective quality that cannot be quantified. It is the scream of the engine at 7,000 rpm (yes, the 1.6 liter has a 7,000 rpm redline). Or the quirky layout of the interior. My point is, despite the clear technical superiority of the German makes, Alfas have a soul. My girlfriend had a 156 2.4 litre turbodiesel that also has this characteristic.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th October, 2003

1999 Alfa Romeo 146 ti 1.9 from UK and Ireland


An excellent car if you're willing to lavish the dough on it


Front passenger door fell off while it was still under warranty.

Keys need to be recoded on a regular basis.

General Comments:

This car is fast - but only if you are prepared to have it tuned to near racing car conditions on a regular basis.

It does not like to be driven slow. It feels like a dog yanking on a leash at 30 miles an hour.

Brilliant on long journeys. Seats seemed a little hard when first purchased, but the support comes into its own on long journeys.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 22nd October, 2003

1999 Alfa Romeo 146 1.4 Sport from Portugal


It's the best



General Comments:

Direction it`s very good and the brakes too. It handles like glue on the road.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th October, 2003

1999 Alfa Romeo 146 t.s. 1.6 from Greece


A passionate Italian girl..


Things are going impressively well up to now.

General Comments:

It is a very exciting car, with a wonderful engine in terms of sound and power.

The handling could have been better, perhaps it is because of the rear shock absorbers that look tired.

Electronics and the electric stuff work fine, I do not have even a burnt lamp.

Surely more reliable than I expected.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 19th June, 2003

2nd Mar 2004, 05:16

I am pleased that your alfa has been reliable, and can assure you that it will remain so. My 1.8 TS has clocked around 60,000 miles with no major problems at all. My tip to any alfa owner would be -- When your warranty has expired, do not return to your dealership, and for regular service do it yourself or find a good mechanic. Alfas are not difficult to work on, and all spares are so easily obtainable its well worth a go.

1999 Alfa Romeo 146 Sport 1.4 Twin Spark from UK and Ireland


Great looks and drive - crap reliability


First problem was with the drivers seat, the height adjustment was faulty, it took 4 visits to a main dealer to rectify the problem.

Next was the air system, it would only blow hot, this took about 3 visits to the main dealer in Limerick to get fixed.

Rear window washer didn't work after about 5,000 miles.

15,000 mile car started missing, needed new connections and spark plugs (spark plug weren't covered under warranty (EURO 240.00)

35,000 lambda sensor in Cat needed replacing. Covered under warranty.

50,000 miles Throttle Body needed replacing, took 3 visits as the first replacement was faulty, my second visit the wrong throttle body was in the box... 3rd time lucky (Alfa mechanic told me that it's a fault with Alfa throttle bodies, they all go around 50,000 miles.

60,000 Engine seized, shredded timing belt, off the road for 1 month (warranty only covered 1 weeks car hire) new spark plugs needed (another Euro 240.00 as they are still not covered under warranty)

General Comments:

Although this is not the most reliable, the driving experience is great. You really need the 2.0 Ti. The car is too heavy for the 103 bhp 1.4 engine.

The car is due for a change shortly, as a company car driver, I'd take another one, as a private buyer, I'd stay well away.

Depreciation is really bad, its hardly worth a pint of larger with 70000 and 3 years on it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 27th August, 2002

11th Apr 2003, 15:17

Was the car serviced at all?, if the owner does not realize that the spark plugs should be changed as a service item, then was the oil ever changed. A possible answer to the spark plug and engine seize faults. However, if the model was fully serviced, thank you for the review.

19th Apr 2004, 11:16

At what mileage do they reccomend you change the timing belt at? Does it need to be changed at all or this a new phenomenon with mechanics.

4th Jul 2008, 16:53

Alfa recommends the timing belt should be replaced every 60,000 miles. However, the general consensus amongst owners and enthusiasts of these cars is that 40,000 miles is more like it to be on the safe side.

22nd Apr 2010, 02:04

Sounds like a total nightmare to me - Irish dealer's servicing and Italian car.. Ugh!