Alfa GTV twin spark, any good.

Saigon

Junior Member
Messages
120
#1
The youngest lad has asked me for some advice about buying a 2.0 Alfa GTV and I have told him that I don’t know enough about them to be of any help, but also told him that I think I could get some advice from those who do, you guys! He has just passed his test and this would be his first car, actually his insurance would be in the same region as the price of the cars he is looking at, but somehow I think I will be covering that. But his mind is set on one as he has always admired them. And if that could have been my first car I would have been over the moon. Are they any good, bearing in mind most will now have a high mileage, what is it like getting parts for them, what are the main things he should be looking out for with regard to potential failures and may already have been dealt with by previous owners, some times a high mileage car can be a bargain as it has already experienced the inherent problems. Anyone know of any reliable bargains out there, all input greatly appreciated, thanks.
 
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dgmx5

Junior Member
Messages
194
#2
There was a recent comparison between the Twin Spark and the 3.0 V6 in Modern Classic Cars' feature of Alfas. @Nayf preferred the Busso, his colleague the Twin Spark. Would be a great first car. Mine was a Fiat Punto 55. You really had to plan your overtakes in that, but I used to make more of them down country lanes than in faster cars since because it was so small.
 

conaero

Forum Owner
Messages
27,985
#3
Brilliant car and the TS really suits the chassis and has a lovely power band at 4k rpm.

Rear seats unusable and do suffer from some suspect trim but very well screwed together. Look for collapsed drivers seat lower bolster and a hole in the drivers door card from the seatbelt buckle. Wind noise from the frameless window is normal, if you can find one with the auto drop function, they can be adjusted better. Avoid the JTS engine.

Things to look out for:
- Cambelt, cambelt, cambelt! Make sure its up to date and the water pump and tensioner we're changed too.
- Bottom end. These engines burn oil, this is normal but if not monitored, end shells can go if its been run low. Rev the car and listen for a rattle as it drops to idle
- Camshaft variator. Listen for a diesel type note from the engine
- Front suspension bushes and wishbones
- Rear suspension bushes
- Rear suspension lower arm pan, rot through and the spring breaks through. No new ones left so make sure they are solid. Surface rust ok
- Windscreen wipers stutter, same unit as the 3200.
- Sides of car prone to door dings and the nose suffers from heavy road rash.
- Rust...they dont. The only area I have seen them go is around the lower section of the rear screen. They also can go around the rear drain holes in the floor pan but that really is about all.

Dont be put off by the above, find a good one and they are a joy to own and very reliable.
 
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GeoffCapes

Centenary Club
Messages
8,312
#4
I imagine the 3.0 V6 will be murder on insurance.

Things to look for on a TS. Wishbones, drop links, rear sub frame corrosion, cam belt (have to be changed every 35k to be on the safe side).
Variators (much cheaper than Maserati), damaged door cards, they're just the standard Alfa TS potential issues.

Lovely cars though.

The TS will handle better than the V6 as the V6 is very nose heavy. But the V6 is a Busso V6 :cool:
 

Saigon

Junior Member
Messages
120
#5
Many thanks for the advice Mr Capes, there are many genuine mistakes on this site I could comment on, but to be honest life is too short. I could have commented quite a while back when you were complaining about people smoking outside the hospital while your new born was on his way, and had such excellent support. You wouldn’t complain about smokers if one was saving his life. By the way, I’m a non smoker. Was the Alfa comment really necessary.
 

Saigon

Junior Member
Messages
120
#6
Mr Capes, It appears your comments on my spelling of Alpha / Alfa has been withdrawn, non the less, it was a mistake and surely not a big deal. What I said about being greatful for medical support, smokers or non smokers still stands, I think you have to agree we have the best health service available, even if they smoke.
 

zagatoes30

Centenary Club
Messages
11,051
#7
I'm with Matt the GTV TS is a lovely motor much better balanced than the V6 version and less likely to get you into trouble. The twin spark engine is a gem as long as it get regular maintenance especially cambelt & water pump, it revs it little socks off and loves hanging in there right up to and above the redline, you can change the ECU chip to extend the rev limiter by 400rpm or so without any issues.

Body condition is the big concern, primarily underneath but surprisingly phase 1 cars tend to be less susceptible despite being older. Rear suspension especially subframe mountings most get modified to V6 spec. Don't bother with the JTS

If I had one when I was young I would have thought I had died and gone to heaven
 

conaero

Forum Owner
Messages
27,985
#8
Just to be clear, if I was buying one now, it would be a 3.2 Busso, without hesitation but for the purpose of a first car I wholly recommend the TS.

Saigon, we are only offing help here, please take it in the manner it was expressed.
 

GeoffCapes

Centenary Club
Messages
8,312
#9
Many thanks for the advice Mr Capes, there are many genuine mistakes on this site I could comment on, but to be honest life is too short. I could have commented quite a while back when you were complaining about people smoking outside the hospital while your new born was on his way, and had such excellent support. You wouldn’t complain about smokers if one was saving his life. By the way, I’m a non smoker. Was the Alfa comment really necessary.
What has smoking got to do with your spelling of Alfa?

For the record, the excellent nurses and doctors in ICU where Joseph was looked after, not one of them smoke. The reason behind this is that they have to touch and are in contact with very small babies every single day. The absorption of nicotine through paper thin skin is a very real thing and has to be avoided at all cost.
Therefore if you look after tiny babies you must be a non smoker. This is what one of the nurses told me anyway.
 
Messages
603
#11
Many thanks for the advice Mr Capes, there are many genuine mistakes on this site I could comment on, but to be honest life is too short. I could have commented quite a while back when you were complaining about people smoking outside the hospital while your new born was on his way, and had such excellent support. You wouldn’t complain about smokers if one was saving his life. By the way, I’m a non smoker. Was the Alfa comment really necessary.
you having a giraffe

:lol2:
 

zagatoes30

Centenary Club
Messages
11,051
#12
Just to be clear, if I was buying one now, it would be a 3.2 Busso, without hesitation but for the purpose of a first car I wholly recommend the TS.
So would I but the TS is a beautifully balanced coupe and IMO has gone through the ageing process well and now is looking a super stylish coupe.
 

conaero

Forum Owner
Messages
27,985
#13
So would I but the TS is a beautifully balanced coupe and IMO has gone through the ageing process well and now is looking a super stylish coupe.
Ok, I will add to that money too. If I had 1-2k to spend, then yes, I would be happy in a TS and am considering a spider for some cheap summer fun. What is putting me off is I know I will start taking it to bits to get it to my standard and hence (after the Brera fisco) I am holding off.
 

GeoffCapes

Centenary Club
Messages
8,312
#14
Ok, I will add to that money too. If I had 1-2k to spend, then yes, I would be happy in a TS and am considering a spider for some cheap summer fun. What is putting me off is I know I will start taking it to bits to get it to my standard and hence (after the Brera fisco) I am holding off.
That's a plan of mine when we have a double garage. To teach myself mechanics on something that won't cost the earth!
 

DaveT

Centenary Club
Messages
1,936
#15
Definitely TS over JTS or V6 (although V6 sounds divine)

Insurance may be a challenge though. My lad tried to insure a TS GTV a few years back and it was prohibitively expensive for him.
 
Messages
187
#16
My first car was a dark blue 2001 GTV 2.0 T-Spark Lusso (well, first car owned in my name after parents' hand-me-downs and motorbikes...). In fact I happened to see it up for sale on AutoTrader not that long ago. I was sad to see it go when I sold it to make way for a 4200.

I can second all mentions of wishbones, bushes and cambelts (mine had to have a rebuild, luckily by a modest but gifted local chap). Bodywork creases easily and is hard to make completely good, and the interior plastics and gear stick boot can be problematic. Also be vigilant with the boot release mechanism (solenoid release can slow, resulting in much slamming and banging in an effort to close). As mentioned, rear seats are of limited use but good for coats etc.

I was never a fan of the spyder body shape, but each to his own.

Oh, and don't get caught out by self-closing garage doors with the aerial up...
 

outrun

Centenary Club
Messages
3,643
#17
My mate has one of these for sale right now. I think it's £950. PM me if you want to know more, it's a tidy wee car.