2000 Alfa Romeo 156 TS Veloce 1.8 from UK and Ireland


Fantastic (if you get a good one!)


Sticking/squealing back brakes.

Fuse box cover falls off (like everyone else's!)

Air con switch unreliable.

Fuel gauge unreliable.

General Comments:

First the good stuff... I love the way it looks and love the way it drives - still attracts attention.

Beautifully styled interior.

Surprisingly comfortable on long journeys although super-sharp handling can be wearisome on motorways.

Engine sounds fantastic, gearbox is excellent and corners like it's on rails.

I look forward to driving it every day.


Uses a lot of fuel for a 1747cc engine.

Watch out for excessive tyre wear on the inner side of the fronts.

Feeble ventilation and air-con and have you ever seen a car with a more useless sun visor?

Seems relatively poorly equipped compared with cars of similar price.

Servicing is expensive and dealer service is ropey.

Paintwork seems soft and easily marked.

Depreciation is a killer!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th January, 2002

31st Jan 2002, 11:59

"Depreciation is a killer" - another Alfa trait! And the only way that it would be possible for me to buy one, as I can't afford a new one. A post 2000 156, with full service history (and no problems!), is my aim for 2004. Apologies to all those who bought new, and who bought 'lemons'!

2000 Alfa Romeo 156 TS Lusso 1.8 16v from UK and Ireland


Fast, elegant, if only it were more reliable


Brakes squealing (dealer said its a known fault)

Cover under car scrapes on dips in road.

Airbag ECU replaced (known fault)

Wheel balancing out (wheel rumbles)

ABS warning light comes on when ABS is used a lot (eg. during snow)

Wipers aren't as quiet as I'd like.

Fuel gauge is inaccurate below one quarter.

General Comments:

Not as reliable as I'd hoped for, and my local dealer is awful, but its a lovely car to drive.

Beautiful car, still gets admiring looks.

Leather interior is wonderful and its the most comfortable car I've driven. I regularly do long motorway journeys and its a pleasure.

Fast, especially at high RPM, with variable valve timing the car screams on up to 7000rpm, but torque at low RPM is a little poor (I imagine the 2.5V6 has much more grunt here)

Steering is direct, but lacks feel and car has poor turning circle.

Car handles well, back end kicks out a bit if you really push it and can be corrected with a twitch of opposite lock. Good brakes have saved my neck on occasion!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th January, 2002

2000 Alfa Romeo 156 TS Selespeed 2.0 from UK and Ireland


Aggressive engine, beautiful lines


Would not start due to the computer not being setup properly at the dealer (transmission error on the dash).

More dealer error than car error!!!

General Comments:

"Loving it, loving it, loving it".

I believe certain mods are nessary to truly appreciate this car.

Firstly, get rid of the suspension and give it something it deserves, progressive spring set and adjustable sports dampers. Trust me, you won't! regret it.

Secondly, duct the engine for better breathing and even more great sounds.

Thirdly, get your chip reprogrammed to smooth and improve responsiveness at low revs. It actually helps fuel economy as well.

I've done all this and am almost in tears of joy each time I turn on the engine.

It does not bottom out anymore, at least not below 70mph on bends! ;-)

The Selespeed controls make for a real sporting experience. Check out the sounds it makes while engine brakeing... "OH MY god"!!!

I cannot praise the car highly enough, my friends are jealous as I have a car with real personality.

I don't care about depreciation, I love it!!! The women love it and my BMW fanatic friend loves it... that says a lot to me.

Thank you Alfa!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th January, 2002

2000 Alfa Romeo 156 1.8 Twin Spark from UK and Ireland


Fatally flawed beauty


Engine failed at 4,500 miles.

Starter motor replaced at 16,000 miles.

Engine Management chip reprogrammed twice.

Faulty rear door locks replaced.

Faulty handbrake mechanism replaced.

Steering geometry problems.

Faulty sunroof replaced.

Water ingress in boot.

Sections of bodykit detached, plus some poorly painted areas on the kit.

Various electrical nonsense.

General Comments:

If a car could sell by looks alone, the Alfa 156 would top every sales chart there is. This is particularly true of the lowered, Zender-bodykitted beauty I fell in love with.

Unfortunately, she broke my heart, and had the car not been under warranty, it would probably have been my wallet as well.

Alfa Romeo have set their sights on BMW, Mercedes and Lexus in the compact executive class, but sadly they're way off the mark. It's true to say that the Alfa delivers one of the most exhilirating driving experiences around today. But the build quality, reliability, and - above all, dealer network, let the seductive promises made by that gorgeous bodywork down - badly.

Quite apart from all the frankly unacceptable mechanical and electrical failures that I and many other 156 owners have experienced, the lackadaisical approach of Alfa UK dealers if breathtaking in scope.

Oh, they're very professional and courteous while they're trying to get you to spend your hard-earned cash in their sweetie shop. But once you and your money have been separated, Dr Jekyll disappears, and Mr Hyde will see to your after-sales support, Sir.

I used to own a SAAB - they could show Alfa a thing or two about customer service. Come to think of it, the girl behind the till at Sainsbury's has more of a clue. Arrogant, dismissive, rude, incompetent. Just four of the many negative words I could use to describe the service team at my local Alfa dealership. I blame the parent. Fiat SA were uncommunicative, unsympathetic and uninterested. To use the Latin, "caveat emptor" seems to be the order of the day.

And in the end, I will never buy another Alfa or Fiat product again. Nor will I ever recommend one to anyone of sound mind.

So what price Customer Service now?

Beware, the beauty is a beast.

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

Review Date: 14th January, 2002

11th Sep 2004, 05:23

Beauty??? Are you looking at it through scratched swimming goggles during a blizzard? It's as good looking as a whelk sucking a lemon!