PING: Pete M

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category 37&item$7883680 9&rd=1
A bit of a favour if you've got the time - don't suppose you'd mind having a
look at this for me would ya?
There'd be a drink/burger in it for you at the next meet, if and when one ever happens (I'm thinking track day in the summer people?) - just quite like to get a decent opinion of it really - overall body condition etc etc.
I've mailed you as well Pete, but anyone else in the Liverpool area (Carl - MeatballTurbo, how far are you from Liverpool? Anyone else?) willing to help out let me know.
Cheers muchly,
Peter
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In decided to enlighten our sheltered souls with a rant as follows

http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category 37&item$7883680
No probs Peter, drop me an e-mither with the geezers address, and I'll gladly have a peep.. I know the 540's quite well, having had one...
If it's taxed and tested, I might even deliver it for you, provided you can get me back home again!
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> No probs Peter, drop me an e-mither with the geezers address, and I'll

can
Sounds good. YGM.
Peter
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says...

On a similar subject, don't want you to spend time going to see it, but what do you think of this from the description?
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category 34&item2479190760&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW
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snipped-for-privacy@bouncing-czechs.com says...

Oops, that was mean't to be for Pete M too, sorry Peter.
Oh and Steve H can chime in too if he fancies it.
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Well, it's the same as mine, only with the optional aircon and 'leccy seats.
Mileage is nothing to worry about, and it's cheap. Very, stupidly cheap.
Can't go wrong, really.
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In

Without wishing to offend Steve H, I'd not go near a narrow body 155 with a bargepole, but that does look like a veritable bargain.
I estimate it'd fetch about 800 in the 'Trader with a good valet, provided it's got full history and the Aircon works as it should. Worth what it's up to, anyway.
Be a nice car to smoke about in, but not a patch on the later 16v Widebody one..
hence the widebody ones being worth semi-decent money (more than the equivalent Mondeo)
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Aye - nowhere near as good as the widebody version, but I couldn't find an 8v widebody. Only a few hundred made, ISTR, but if I do find a nice one, especially with the Sportpack, then I'd snap it up straight away.

At least that. That's assuming all the toys work - but most 155s I've seen with aircon and electric seats have had hacked about wiring. Sometimes it's better not to have them at all.

Unfortunately, they hold their value far too well for my liking ;-)
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In wrote:

I think you're a bit *too* worried about the reliability of the 16v ones. I've been in close contact with lots of 145/6's with the 16v in, and they seem pretty good to me. Admittedly the 145 2.0 I just got shut of had just had the cylinder head rebuilt, but that could happen to anything. I think people worry more because if an Alfa has it's motor rebuilt, the owner etc seems to be "Bloody Alfa, just had to have the engine rebuilt.." whereas if it were the equivalent Audi or BMW they'd say it was a freak, and they were just unlucky. Seems to be a lot more unlucky Audi / BMW owners than Alfa ones if you ask me.. Hence the Alfa tending to cost a bit more, less of 'em go bang!
<sits back and waits for affronted fans of Teutonic autos..>
I'll keep my eyes peeled for a widebody 155 now I think of it.

Nah, I'd not pay more than 800 for a narrow one. Might go to 1500 for a 2.0 16v Widebody in red with the Speedlines and AC though..

Get Timo to buy one, it'll destroy Alfa Romeo, but there'd be some cheap 156 GTAs about after that..
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It's not the reliability of the 16v engine that worries me - it's the cost of a cambelt change now approaching the value of the car that's the issue.
If I were to do all my miles in a 16v car, I'd need a belt change every 18 months to be on the safe side, but I'd begrudge the 400 bill to do it, even with 18 months to save for it!
Besides, the 8v engine is infinitely better - being around 100kgs lighter than the iron-block 16v, and having a much nicer exhaust note. Oh, and it's _much_ more flexible in day to day driving.

I suppose the answer is to find a nice 155 Widebody with a blown 16v lump and get an 8v transplanted into it ;-)
Have to say, though, that if I were spending Widebody money, I'd bite the bullet and get a V6.
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Actually, one of the few vehicles Timo hasn't managed to kill was a 75 V6.
Speaks volumes for Alfa reliability ;-)
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In wrote:

I know, I was very tempted to buy it off him.. but I couldn't get dahn sahff in time.. shame, I've always wanted a 75 V6..

So do I.. unfortunately the 156 Selespeed is enough to put anyone off...
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snipped-for-privacy@blue-nopressedmeat-yonder.co.uk spouted forth into uk.rec.cars.modifications...

Funnily enough the same dealer GTA italian, in preston has the same car (at least the same photo) for sale at arround the 6/700 mark.
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snipped-for-privacy@blue-nopressedmeat-yonder.co.uk says...

Probably a better chance at finding a good one than me.
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One major thing to check is if the engine's been replaced. These V-8s came with the Nikasil block the coating on which was effected by high sulphur petrol which was mainly available in the North(ish) It should have been replaced under BMW warranty.
A cheap 540 ain't for the faint hearted.
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In wrote:

But it hadn't been, and ran like a piece of shite. Didn't smoke, amazingly, but was pretty obviously down on compression on a cylinder or two. Was a bit of a Tw@ to get the oil filler off, and there were traces of emulsification floating about.
Also had the famous "test skipped" on the emissions sheet wherever you have to rev it.
With that, the manky leather, the fact the load compartment looked like it'd been owned by a succession if sloppy painters, the "fresh" key marks right down the drivers side, the scuffs on the bumper corners and the fact the drivers mirror was on the passengers seat, I suspect it was well avoided..
Oh, and the aircon blew hot as well.
Bloke who's selling it seems like a good chap though, honest about it when quizzed, and it did have a full BMW service history to 95000.

This would be a nice car, if you fancied throwing a few grand at a cheap 540i. Made me almost want another..
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amazingly,
bit
emulsification
have
it'd
Yeah, the "only 5 previous owners" made me wonder a bit, but then I thought "well maybe it kept on changing hands because people couldn't afford to run it".
Talking of manky leather, recently on ebay there was an A6 2.5TDI-140 SE Avant, fully specced up exactly as per my ideal one - cruise, full cream leather, even had the 7 seat option (but when I went to have a look I'm guessing it was sitting in the bloke's garage or something). But compared with mine, it was very tatty. I mean, not absolutely terrible, but the leather was worn and dirty, body had many more scratches than mine, interior was filthy (though a good valet would have sorted that. It only went to reinforce my view that I definitely made the right decision getting the one I did.

He did cover his bases quite well by really not saying much at all about it in the auction description, except for saying the leather was in very good condition.

It's kinda made me hungry for a big engined car, V8 or V12. I think I'll stick with the A6 for the time being though.
Peter
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That would make sense from what I've read and heard - you don't get high oil consumption, but poor compression. They do some form of leakdown test to prove it.
Makes me wonder about the FMDSH. BMW are said to honour Nikasil problems well after the warranty has run out - if it has a FMDSH.
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In the description he said it had a full BMW history - but no mileage was given. There's not much point in that if the last oil change was 50,000 miles ago...
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In wrote:

142000 on the clock, and it looked like it'd not seen a dealer for a long time. Last MOT ran out in Feb 03 I think, and that was 200 miles away from where it'd ended up. Seller admitted to me he'd bought it in the trade for 800.
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