9th Jan 2002, 08:46

Nice review, I enjoyed it. I had loads of problems with my 2000 156, sold it in the end, it was a pain in the ass.

14th Jan 2002, 06:11

Good review, hits the nail on the head first time. Owning a 156 really is love-hate.

My own lasted 4500 miles before the engine failed, and it took 4 weeks to source a replacement - yes, you've guessed - from Italy. From that point on it was all downhill - failed EMC (x2), wonky electrics, new sunroof, new doorlocks, new handbrake, paint defects, new starter motor, (gorgeous) full Zender bodykit fell off in bits.

Alfa UK should be taken out and shot - they're (just) capable of dealing with Fiat, certainly not the technically complex 156. And Fiat SA just don't want to know.

Owning a 156 is like having an Italian mistress - beautiful, but expensive.

RIP Alfa Romeo

6th Jul 2002, 12:37

Quality must vary incredibly from car to car. I'm genuinely shocked to see reviews and comments like these.

My 1999 (v) 2.0 156 has been almost perfect. Like many others mine suffered with the rear brake whistling - fixed during service at no cost.

My dealer (Platts) are excellent too. Twice my car has been damaged and the dealers fitted new parts and resprayed paintwork brilliantly. Top marks.

I guess I haven't tested them with technical problems, but in 32K miles I haven't had any!

22nd Apr 2003, 04:47

I am the proud/nervous owner of a 4 year old 2.0TS 156.

The original comment which caught my eye, while sitting here searching the net for a solution to the intermittent electrical problems that I am having; Failed fuel sender, this is the reason that my Alfa is booked in to the dealership in one weeks time. Meanwhile, during this weekend the fuel gauge is once again reading, but the intermittent 'Central locking and front windows not working' fault has re-occurred.

These are such silly niggles on what is otherwise a lovely car. You feel proud driving it and getting out, then, you can't shut the windows and you have to go round manually locking the doors - not so cool!

26th Aug 2004, 04:23

I think Alfa 156 is a good choise for people,who are tired driving German or Japanese cars. these cars have a great character, they can accept you as a driver and give you good fun. i am going to get one soon in the future.

15th Aug 2005, 15:18

I had an old 156 with little problems - then bought a new one cos I reckoned the old one would give bother. What a mistake.

List of problems

- dealer fitted CD changer and disabled info display

- dealer fitted CD changer without bracket

- wipers stopped working

- inside trim on door loosened

- new one is dampness in passenger foot well - 'ah yes that would be the air con leaking' said the dealer!

So I am back to the garage again next week to get all the outstanding faults hopefully repaired!

Other than that its been great - but you have to love em those Alfas.

Saying that I am giving a lift to someone whos 6 month old Audi A3 Air Con has packed up and my boss' Audi A4 Cabrio has had 5 boot solenoids, alarm going off and now the engine is playing up! So the Germans ain't all they are cracked up to be!

25th May 2007, 04:49

Well, despite a dreadful experience with an AlfaSud 25 years ago and having become bored with the reliability of my diesel Citroens 500k miles covered in ten used Xantias and one C5, one snapped clutch cable only problem) I have bought a 1999 156 TS.

The car has been very well looked after, drives perfectly (65k miles, main dealer service all it's life and one owner before me) and has a gorgeous leather and wood interior, yet cost only £1700.

I can get 40mpg, or 29 if I try hard, and after one month all is well. Cue breakdown!

3rd Sep 2009, 16:48

Well I have took the plunge and brought myself another Alfa 156. I hear people saying, are you mad? Well no, not really, as this is my third one -

Number one Alfa 156, brilliant, no problems at all, no reliability issues, just the normal servicing, that's on a 5 year car with Full Service history and 60k on the clock. I only sold it to buy a C5 because I needed a bigger car.

The 2nd Alfa was an older Sportwagon, a Y reg, and again apart from it being a cheap runner, it caused me no problems until my learner driver wife drove it into a multistorey car park pillar a day before her test.

Alfa I here you say, well they have got what the Italians call Brio, and of course that Cuore Sportivo or Sporting Heart, and if I had the cash I would be right out now getting the wife a Mito and myself a 157 Sportwagon.

A lot of cars have issues, that's a fact. Let's hope the dealers get better, although I read that's a priority of new management in Alfa UK - Read Auto Italia, it's an Italo Car lovers dream.