The new Alfa Romeo Giulia to arrive in showrooms and the next Stelvio, now only a few months away, are reminders that when Alpha pulls out his drawing pad, he knows how to draw.
Fortunately, you don’t need to spend north of £ 30,000 to sprinkle a little of the car manufacturer of the magic in his driveway. In its place, a Brera coupe, without doubt, one of the best looking Alfas in the past few years, can be yours for only 10% of that: £3000.
That is the price the dealer is asking for your 2007/07, 2.4-liter five-cylinder diesel Brera, with 130,000 miles on the clock and full service history. It is far from being the most frugal oil-burner you can buy (around 40mpg) but it is a warm performer (0 to 62 mph in 8.1 seconds) that lives by units of time.
It is a tried and trusted Fiat package that uses a simple timing belt in place of the expensive and unpredictable strings that make the service in the pinacoteca of Brera, the GM gasoline engines. One thing, however: if you had a new timing belt, check the water pump was replaced at the same time (see “Buyer beware”, below).
The pinacoteca of Brera came late, in 2005, to the screams of delight in its exterior and interior styling, but the disappointment over their pace and handling – one of the criticisms that could be addressed with the arrival, in 1998, of the lightweight, limited-run 2.2 and 3.2 S Prodrive models, but never silenced.
The launch of the engines were a choice of 182bhp 2.2 and chilling 256bhp 3.2 V6 petrols (GM blocks with Alfa heads) or 2.4 diesel with 200bhp and 295lb ft of torque. The standard gearbox was a six-speed manual, though the 2.2 can be specified with the option of Q-tronic automatic. The V6 was a fourwheel-drive with a Torsen diff, the rest of Breras front-wheel drive. A front-drive 3.2 V6 came in 2010.
A 167bhp 2.0-litre four-pot diesel landed in that same year, promising to 52mpg from 0 to 62 mph in 8.5 seconds. It is worth a visit, if only for its £145 road tax load, in comparison with the 2.4 € 230. But what’s really interesting engine, and the best of the story to find a home in the pinacoteca of Brera is a beautiful hat, is the 197bhp 1750 TBi. This direct-injection, turbocharged petrol unit, capable of 0 to 62 mph in 7.5 seconds and a hand 34mpg, replaced the V6 in 2010.
Throughout, the standard equipment includes stability control, power mirrors and windows, cruise control and 17in alloy wheels. V6s and 2.4 diesel had leather upholstery. SV spec brought the desirable panoramic glass roof, plus leather and stainless steel inserts to an interior that, to this day, can still provoke sighs of pleasure. The sought after S Prodrive models won 19in alloys, lighter and more rigid suspension and a exhaust. The limited-run Italia Independent 2010 also had 19in alloys, in addition to navigation by satellite.
Mechanics familiar with the Brera described as German in feeling, by which they mean solid and well made, but boring. We’re going to forgive, if what you really want to say is that the Brera picture gallery of quality of the appearance is more than skin deep.
An expert’s view…
PAUL NANASBAUM, FAST
“I call to the pinacoteca of Brera coupe the most beautiful car in the world under £ 30,000. You can pick up tired for £2000, but nice, low mileage models are much more expensive and the celebration of its value. The more expensive Brera, you can afford that will be the best value, since they will not have to fork out for costly repairs. My favorite? A 3.2 S Prodrive.”
3.2 gas needs of three new timing chains at 100k miles (around £3000) and 2.2 two of them at 50k (£750). Diesel engines need a cambelt at 60k and change the water pump at the same time, because you can take advantage of, causing the belt to fail. Oil and oil filter changes are ideally every 12 miles.
M32 gearbox Vauxhall can give you worth. Bearings fail at the end of the case.
Rear driveshaft bearings can fail at around 60k miles (about £2000).
Front subframe corroded where the floor has water against it.
Top front of disks fail at around 70k km Listen to hit. The springs can break. Rear lower hub bush wears out, causing premature tire wear.
High mileage cars can suffer from shelf and rod coupling wear.
Heavy 2.4 liter and diesel cars can get through the tires.
Galvanized and not known to the corrosion of the areas. And dents clearly show.
Extra keys on the ignition key ring can cause localized panel damage. As the safety belts of the reel, as this may damage the panels of the doors. Electric windows may need to be restarted: wind the window down, press and hold the power switch for 10 seconds, then the wind, and hold for 10 seconds. Job done.
Also worth knowing…
Alpha offers original and refurbished parts for older cars. The Classic Line plan of Alphas more than five years of age and offers consumables, including filters, belts and brake pads and discs. The refurbished Parts schema for supply of remanufactured parts.
How much to spend?
High mileage 2006-2007 2.4 JTD and 2.2 JTS cars.
In mid-mileage 2008-2009 cars, in addition to the best of the first cars in the showrooms.
High specification 2008-2009 JTD and JTS cars, a couple of, 2010 and 2007 3.2 V6s.
In the mid miles 2009-2011 2.2, 2.4 and 3.2.
Occasional 2008 2.2 S Prodrive, with 3.2 versions of around £1000 more. Loads of mid-mileage, high specification 2009-2010 2.2 s and 3.2 s.
£14,000 AND ABOVE
The best 2008-2009 V6 Prodrive cars with low mileage.
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