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Discussion Starter #1
I was enjoying driving my Giulia...only 1300 miles after Alfa had to replace the entire engine, another shut down while on the freeway...flashing lights saying this and that was not working...see the dealer right away....etc. etc. I instant dove across five lanes and down an off ramp. It took another block to find a place to pull over, and then the engine died completely...accompanied by an overwhelming smell of raw gasoline. Of course when the engine dies, the electronic transmission automatically goes into park and the parking brake sets. I call Alfa 24/7 roadside service...and it only gets funnier. Left on hold for over five minutes. Finally, while I was trying to call them again, they picked up. Because I reported the smell of gasoline, FCA protocol mandated that the Alfa operator call the fire department. I could not convince her that was unnecessary. In the mean time she still hadn't called for a flatbed. The fire department arrived with red lights and siren and looked at me like I was an idiot for calling them. They didn't care what FCA thought, they said there was no danger and that this was a waste of their time. Only after hearing the firefighter say that did the operator say we would call a tow truck. But first she had to call and get me a lyft ride because the tow guys wouldn't let me ride in the truck to the dealership. I asked if she just wanted me to leave the car there, unattended. She said yes, the tow people know how to handle everything. So the lyft guy took my wife and I home. I called the dealer and alerted them that the car was coming and to call me when it arrived.

An hour later the tow truck guy called and asked if the silver car with the hood up was mine. I explained he may have trouble getting it on the truck because of everything locking up. But he seemed sure he could handle it. Three hours later I hadn't heard from the dealer so I called them. And gee the truck with my car was just pulling up. The dealer said they'd call me when they had a chance to look at things. Another 90 minutes later the dealer service rep called to ask what exactly happened. I repeated the story and ask if they had trouble getting the car off the flat bed. He said yes, they had to put skates or sleds under the rear wheel to move the car...they couldn't get it out of park or release the parking brake. I asked how the tow truck guy got it on the truck, and there was an awful silence...as in "he probably dragged it on to the flat bed."

All this, a long way of saying I have no more faith that I can get into this car and get to where I want to go. I was going to drive it another nine months until the lease is up. (I am still in legal discussions with Alfa and my lawyer over the last incident.) However now the only thing that makes sense is to pay $2500 to get out of the lease early, or sucker some other dealer into doing it for me, and getting another car. But I would always wonder about the poor guy who got stuck with buying the car. I have to show more ethics than FCA.

My advice is that if you are thinking of buying a new Giulia, don't. If you really want one, do a two year lease, have some fun, and then hand it back to the dealer and walk away. Whatever others say about long term Alfa ownership, the Giulia is not the car to try it with.

And just so you don't think I am just one person...this poor guy is bleeding regret.

 

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So if you were driving a long at say 50 mph and the engine died, would the car put the transmission into Park and cause a huge accident?

And yes I would run away from that car. Sorry for your experience
Pete
 

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Sounds like you got a demon possessed one. That's really unfortunate. Sounds like the BMW my father-in-law had leased. Or the Audi A4 I my wife owned from new where the transmission went belly up at 15k. Or my neighbor's Passat the dumped an engine 2 months out of warranty at 40K miles. It happens...and really sucks when it happens to you.

Nearly 3 years in, not a single problem on my Giulia. Not sure if I am the exception or the norm.
 

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My impression is that, once again, Alfa dealership quality leaves a ton to be desired, as with most through the decades. I spect they screwed up the engine replacement. The poor car is suffering as much as you are.
 

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My impression is that, once again, Alfa dealership quality leaves a ton to be desired, as with most through the decades. I suspect they screwed up the engine replacement. The poor car is suffering as much as you are.
Yep. Anything manufactured will occasionally have issues. What people remember is not the issues themselves, but the outcome. Well done Alfa Romeo, you continue to perpetuate the myth that Alfa Romeo vehicles are unreliable. The myth should actually be that Alfa Romeo service departments are of poor quality.

Pete
 

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Yep. Anything manufactured will occasionally have issues. What people remember is not the issues themselves, but the outcome. Well done Alfa Romeo, you continue to perpetuate the myth that Alfa Romeo vehicles are unreliable. The myth should actually be that Alfa Romeo service departments are of poor quality.
That, unfortunately, is probably the moral of the story here.
 

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My impression, having had Alfas since 66. Having had a super talented independent mechanic like Carlo Durante (rest his soul) since that time enabled me to have cars which I could pretty much drive for decades, for many thousands of miles. Were there some failures, yes, of course, but most of them were not the Alfa built content but the components built by other companies. I simply do not think I could have done that using only the regular dealers.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
So if you were driving a long at say 50 mph and the engine died, would the car put the transmission into Park and cause a huge accident?

And yes I would run away from that car. Sorry for your experience
Pete
I was doing about 75 mph. Just glanced at the dash and saw the warning that the Stop/Start function wouldn't work. That didn't bother me because that happens if the hood becomes even slightly ajar. Before I could react, other lights and messages started going off. Being in the left lane and with no emergency lane on that side. I did a nice knife slice through traffic and just made it to the off ramp. Still didn't feel any degradation in driving power. But within one block of getting off the freeway (next offramp was over a mile away, so I was lucky) the engine shut down all power and I jerked and stumbled into the first place I could pull over...accompanied by the very strong odor of gasoline. Lights now said everything from "Engine needs service" "Electronic Throttle something or other" "check engine light" "battery not charging"...all in avatars and written messages, repeating themselves.

I've already had to hire an attorney due to FCA breach of contract in my last tussle with them over the engine replacement. This may require more intense negotiation with FCA...maybe even setting the car on fire in front of the dealership and letting a video of it go viral.
 

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So it appears the computer won't put the car into Park if the car is moving. Good, as long as the sensor that is telling the computer the car is still moving is sending the right information ...

Personally, other than fuel injection and spark control, the use of computer technology in automobiles has to be one of the most blatant examples of where NOT to use computer technology. All they have done is over complicate what used to be incredibly simple and reliable manual systems, i.e. the electronic hand brake for example ... used to be a very simple cable and a lever or 2
Pete
 

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Discussion Starter #12
So it appears the computer won't put the car into Park if the car is moving. Good, as long as the sensor that is telling the computer the car is still moving is sending the right information ...

Personally, other than fuel injection and spark control, the use of computer technology in automobiles has to be one of the most blatant examples of where NOT to use computer technology. All they have done is over complicate what used to be incredibly simple and reliable manual systems, i.e. the electronic hand brake for example ... used to be a very simple cable and a lever or 2
Pete
Nothing has been a greater disappointment than this car. For something the drives so beautifully, to be so poorly engineered in terms of the electronics...and then to have such feeble service support. The service people at the dealership are really trying to make me happy but they are in over their heads. And I have to lay this all at the feet of FCA...but we all smelled the disaster coming, even though we hoped for the best. All you have to do is look at the conditions in Italy to understand that they are a failed state, and everything they produce (except pasta) turns to crap.
 

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For a service department to resolve bugs shipped in software, is simply impossible. The more software they add to modern vehicles the more bugs will be shipped. It is impossible to create real software that has absolutely no bugs. Sure you can create single page 'Hello World' programs, but once you get into software that does anything significant the only way to completely control bugs is to accept they are going to happen and catch them, hence I assume the error messages on your screen, and also why turning off and on again resolves many issues (temporarily) ... but the bug is still in there, waiting for the right circumstances to show itself again. Might never happen again, but it's still sitting there waiting.

Maybe, if they are going to have this much software in modern cars, they need to add switches that a service department can access to turn off sub-routines that are causing customer X problems. For example turning off the sub-routine that controls the touch screen is better than the customer staring at an error on their digital dash while the service department pull their hair out to work out what is actually wrong. Then periodically the service department could contact the company and report that they have had to turn off N cases of sub-routine Z, and N1 of cases of sub-routine Z1. This information could be used to prioritise the IT team on developing patches, BUT importantly keep the vehicle on the road in most cases ... being a car
Pete
 

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All these new electronic systems are answers to questions few people asked. The questions were formulated by bureaucrats looking for something to do, IMO, driven by zealous safety nuts, and electronics aficionados.

My LS was sure fun to drive today.
 

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All these new electronic systems are answers to questions few people asked. The questions were formulated by bureaucrats looking for something to do, IMO, driven by zealous safety nuts, and electronics aficionados.

My LS was sure fun to drive today.
Agree Del. It's a case of "we can do this", without asking the important "should we do this" ... but I guess the same thinking was used when the first mid-engined car was designed ... and then carbon fibre chassis'ed car, etc.

I assume car manufacturers have run to touch screens for the in car controls, not because they are safer, but because its cheaper than creating a lot of buttons and of course can be changed simply via code. There is no argument though that a button actually works far better.
Pete
 

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John,

I can't pretend to fully comprehend your level of frustration but,

"All you have to do is look at the conditions in Italy to understand that they are a failed state, and everything they produce (except pasta) turns to crap."

Has to be called out, it sits on the border between offensive and ignorant from my point of view (being of Italian heritage).

Italy manufactures some of the best machinery, to the highest engineering standards in any number of industries. Italy sure has its own set of issues
but they do produce some absolute top quality machines - just not from the FCA concern.

Cheers,

Paul.
 

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True.

Example: The specific small cruise ships (www.fincantieri.com/en/products-and-services/cruise-ships/le-soleal/) (LE CHAMPLAIN) we really love and travel on when we get the chance are built by Fincantieri, an Italian company, with their various shipyards in Europe. Have traveled on both of the above. They are superb in design and quality. In fact, that company builds many of the cruise ships in the trade. Absolutely world class products.

t
 

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Discussion Starter #18
John,

I can't pretend to fully comprehend your level of frustration but,

"All you have to do is look at the conditions in Italy to understand that they are a failed state, and everything they produce (except pasta) turns to crap."

Has to be called out, it sits on the border between offensive and ignorant from my point of view (being of Italian heritage).

Italy manufactures some of the best machinery, to the highest engineering standards in any number of industries. Italy sure has its own set of issues
but they do produce some absolute top quality machines - just not from the FCA concern.

Cheers,

Paul.
For the sake of polite argument lets just say they have a blind spot when it comes to cars. Fiat has run a whole list of car companies into the ground, all under the guise of saving them. And Ferrari is totally disfunctional as an F1 racing team. The Italians I know have left Italy...given up...and moved to other countries. But for political reasons that have nothing to do with cars.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I will say that I do not think I would be any happier in any new car from any maker. But I had very high hopes for this Alfa...and the honest fact is that now I could not get in this car and ever have confidence that I would get where I was going.
 

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I do find Italians record in auto racing hilarious. They passionately love it, and I absolutely applaud them for that, but they are not very good at it*. It's like Indians and cricket; they love it, but countries that are only slightly interested in the game have a better record Internationally.

Btw I love Italians cars for this, well Alfa Romeos. You can feel that passion and you feel like a racing driver with each trip. The fact that Toyota Coronas might actually be faster doesn't concern me :)

* Alfa Romeo have been pretty good at touring car racing, which I've often wondered if this is because the cars were designed more for racing than to make good selling products ... ?. The GTV6 is the perfect example
Pete
 
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