1989 Alfa Romeo 33 Reviews

1989 Alfa Romeo 33 Alfa 1.7 QV 1.7 petrol from Australia and New Zealand

Model year1989
Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2006
Engine and transmission 1.7 petrol Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 6 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Dealer Service marks 4 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
5.8 / 10
Distance when acquired160000 miles
Most recent distance180000 miles
Previous carAlfa Romeo 33

Summary:

Affordable fun and Italian style!

Faults:

The car was purchased cheap as a do-up job. It was running on 3 cylinders, courtesy of over-revving b previous owner, and wouldn't change gear as the clutch pivot pin had sheared off!

Both cheap to fix.

The gearbox didn't like fast downc hanges into 2nd gear, so the box came out and a new synchromesh was put in by a friendly mechanic.

The rear brake bias valve was also defective, resulting in uneven braking. Another trip to the Italian Auto Spares shop!

General Comments:

Although neglected when I bought it, the 33 is now the most fun I have had on 4 wheels.

I started racing it in the local Alfa Owners club series, firstly in standard form, and then in a semi-standard class with limited modifications to the springs & shocks, on DOT rated race tyres.

The car is great fun on & off the track. So much so that I have bought another to drive to work. The 33 was always under-rated, but with good tyres, and better springs, it is so much fun to drive.

Yes the seating position is a little "different". Yes they can rust if you aren't careful with them, but they are a heap of fun, and the best opportunity to have a little bit of Italian motoring heritage in your garage!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 23rd April, 2006

1989 Alfa Romeo 33 1.7 IE 1.7 petrol from Australia and New Zealand

Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2000
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 1.7 petrol Manual
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 7 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.8 / 10
Distance when acquired114000 kilometres
Most recent distance142000 kilometres
Previous carHolden Camira

Summary:

Great performance for a reasonable price

Faults:

Clutch slave cylinder went at 120,000kms - the clutch was never the same after that.

Starter motor went at 140,000.

Minor problems:

Speedometer needle was always moving around making it hard to know how fast you were going. Indicator arm wouldn't return back to position after rounding corner - even after replacement.

General Comments:

For all the things I'd heard about Alfa Romeo this car performed fantastically and didn't burn a hole in my wallet.

It has a great direct feel when driving and I usually drove everywhere with the windows down to hear the engine's great sound.

The performance was lifted quite cheaply with a bigger exhaust and sports air filter. It drove sedately on normal rpm range (2000-3000rpm) but you could also push it to 4500-5000rpm on each gear for more sporty driving.

The steering/handling on this car was very precise and you could really throw it into corners.

I had the car serviced regularly by an Alfa enthusiast rather than an Alfa dealer and this made a big difference in terms of cost (and the 33 responds well to regular service). I would recommend future 33 owners do the same.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th June, 2003

1989 Alfa Romeo 33 ie 1.7 from Australia and New Zealand

Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2002
Engine and transmission 1.7 Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Dealer Service marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.0 / 10
Distance when acquired190500 kilometres
Most recent distance220000 kilometres

Summary:

An exciting car

Faults:

Worn alternator pulley and bearings needing replacement.

Other than that the car hasn't skipped a beat since I bought the car.

General Comments:

Possibily the most fun you can have in a car for the price.

Responsive and willing engine which is very usable through it's entire rev range.

Interior ergonomics make driving "interesting", and every drive special.

IE in red a very good looking car.

Handles superbly.

I would buy another.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th July, 2002

1989 Alfa Romeo 33 EI 1.7 from Australia and New Zealand

Year of manufacture1989
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission 1.7 Manual
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Dealer Service marks 5 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.6 / 10
Distance when acquired166000 kilometres
Most recent distance166100 kilometres
Previous carAlfa gti

Summary:

Heaven on earth till you've got to stop, the brakes are crap

Faults:

Vibration in the boot, paint job needed, clutch and transmission.

That's it, I only had it a month!

General Comments:

Very sporty car, fun to drive.

Brakes are very poor for the type of car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 17th January, 2001

1989 Alfa Romeo 33 IE 1.7 unleaded from Australia and New Zealand

Year of manufacture1989
Engine and transmission 1.7 unleaded
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 5 / 10
Dealer Service marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.2 / 10

Faults:

Passenger side electric window motor.

Front discs needed re-grind, pretty good for 12 months use and 20,000km.

General Comments:

Such a great little car. Fun to drive, though ride can be a little harsh on Sydney's crappy roads. I have it serviced every 5000km by Brian Foley Alfa in Mascot, they are excellent. A service usually costs about $200 (US$130). It has only done 95,000km and has been serviced since new. This is my second 33 which speaks volumes for the marque. Though, I would only buy a low milegage car in good condition, my previous one was a bit of a lemon.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th January, 2000

1989 Alfa Romeo 33 S Sportwagon 1.3 boxer from Netherlands

Year of manufacture1989
Engine and transmission 1.3 boxer
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 7 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Dealer Service marks 4 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.2 / 10

Faults:

Bad head gasket replaced, carburettors needed to be adjusted several times, and of course the usual: new clutch, front disks, waterpump, cambelts.

Front seats could be better.

General Comments:

It has done 168.000kms, and uses a little oil. Otherwise it is a good car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th November, 1999

19th Feb 2001, 22:52

The Alfa 33 had optional racing front seats which are worth the extra in terms of comfort.

Average review marks: 7.1 / 10, based on 6 reviews