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Alfa Romeo 145/146 - an easy acquaintance with a stylish "Italian"

Alfa Romeo 145/146 - an easy acquaintance with a stylish "Italian"
Among the cars of the Italian brand Alfa Romeo, there are favorites and outsiders. The latter include models with indices 145/146. They are still found on the Russian used market, but literally in single copies.


But the car, despite its modest appearance and low cost, is quite capable of making you feel the spirit of Alfa Romeo. The model was produced in one body type - a hatchback, but with three or five doors. In the first version, the car received an index of 145, in the second - 146.

History


The car debuted in 1994. To attract potential buyers, it is presented in a stylish body like a three-door hatchback. Accordingly, at first there was Alfa Romeo 145.

Alfa Romeo 145/146 – необременительное знакомство со стильной «итальянкой»This is the Alfa Romeo 33, replaced by the new 145/146 series. Photo: Youtube.com

A year later, the second modification appeared with an index of 146. This is already a five-door hatchback.

Alfa Romeo 145 still attracts attention, but his “big brother”, which, admittedly, is much more versatile, looks frankly budget and amateur.

The stylish body of the three-door car is original, starting from the middle pillar. But technically the models are identical. By the way, they were created on the same basis as the Fiat Bravo / Brava family, but these cars are considered luxury versions.

Yes, the exquisite Alfa Romeo brand is owned by Fiat, aka Stellantis.

The three-door hatchback is designed for two. In the back row, you can move for short distances, but in tight quarters. For those who plan to carry passengers on a regular basis, it is better to take the Alfa Romeo 146.

Not to say that the car is unconditionally beautiful - rather an amateur. Photo: Youtube.com

Initially, all cars of the family were equipped with boxer gasoline engines. Yes, Alfa Romeo is the equivalent of the Japanese Subaru. They also have such engines, although the Italians abandoned them just in the process of producing the Alfa Romeo 145/146.

In 1996, a two-liter Twin Spark with a power of 150 hp was added to the range of engines. With. Then the rest of the family motors joined him. As for the oppositions, they were discontinued.

2001 was the last year for Alfa Romeo 145/146. In their place came a model with an index of 147. It was also produced in two body types - a three or five-door hatchback. But they did not separate the new car by name.

Appearance


Alfa Romeo 145 looks definitely better than the five-door version. The model stands out in the traffic stream. The five-door hatchback is simpler, although it also does not look like standard cars of the same years. It's still Alfa Romeo - the Italians have always tried to make their cars special.

But the three-door hatchback definitely stands out in the stream. Photo: Youtube.com

As for the choice in appearance, then you need to focus on your preferences. The main problem is the condition of the body. Cars of the late 90s most often have corrosion issues. Alfa Romeo 145/146 did not escape this either.

First of all, you need to look at:

✅ Wings
✅ Bottoms of doors
✅ Thresholds
✅ Trunk and hood edges
✅ Bottom

If you don’t like the car outwardly, we turn around and leave. Looking for bodywork for rare and old Alfa Romeos is not an easy task. In general, cars were once well processed at the factory. They have fewer corrosion problems than Japanese models - that's for sure.

Yes, this model was also raced. Photo: Youtube.com

If the task is to buy a three-door hatchback, we carefully examine the rear glass. Finding them will be very difficult.

You can, of course, take a car with rotten body panels, and then digest and repaint it yourself. But this requires a garage, appropriate skills and desire. The main thing is the whole power elements. Otherwise, there is no point in messing around.

Giving an old and cheap car to the service station for a complete restoration of the body is a so-so idea. It will cost much more than the cost of the car.

Salon


Inside Alfa Romeo 145/146 are quite simple compared to the "older" models. But the Italian charm is definitely there. You need to look in the cabin for its general condition. If it is clean and tidy, you can proceed to the inspection of the technical part.

The salon is simple, but it has Italian charm. Photo: Youtube.com

It will be difficult to replace broken plastic inside - there are few parts for Alfa Romeo 145/146 on the used market. The build quality of budget Italian cars does not shine at all.

You must immediately be aware that the versatility of Alfa Romeo 145/146 does not differ. With a three-door modification, this is already clear, but even the “five-door” has a trunk volume of only 380 liters.

The front seats in cars, regardless of body type, have lateral support. But the bottom "cushion" is somehow too short.

Engines


All Alfa Romeo 145/146 engines can be divided into two large groups. These are boxers and Twin Spark. They are not typical for the global automotive industry of those years. Accordingly, Russian service stations do not like such motors.

With a 1,9 JTD diesel engine, these models are rare. Photo: Youtube.com

On the other hand, this is an occasion to deal with the engines yourself. But not everyone is ready to get their hands dirty and do repairs.
All boxer motors are of the same type. 1,4 and 1,6 liters for 90 and 103 liters. With. respectively, almost the same. There are two valves per cylinder. The "top" 1,7-liter engine develops 129 "horses". It is more complicated - there are already 4 valves per cylinder.

All boxer motors are "ancient" structurally. They migrated from previous Alfa Romeo models. If the engines are in good condition, then there will be no problems with them - the engines are devoid of "childhood diseases".

The only caveat on the opposites is the timing belts. There are two of them, one on each side. Replacement is quite complicated - you have to remove the radiator. At the same time, it can be washed.

The most problematic engine is the 2,0 Twin Spark. Photo: Youtube.com

More modern Twin Spark engines are much more structurally complex. Versions with volumes 1,4; 1,6 and 1,8 liters are more reliable than the "top" 2,0. The last motor is generally unsuccessful. It can be unequivocally argued that the best engine for the Alfa Romeo 145/146 is the Twin Spark with a volume of 1,8 liters.

When inspecting motors, you need to pay attention to the evenness of their work. Twin Spark should not be "diesel". If a specific sound is observed, this hints at the failure of the distribution phase shift variator.


By the way, all Twin Spark engines have a pair of candles on each cylinder. They are not simple, but with platinum electrodes. Plus an extra candle is small.

Other technical features


Gearboxes for all Alfa Romeo 145/146 are mechanical. There are no problems with them, except in the process of natural wear and tear.

The front end of an Alfa Romeo is unmistakable. Photo: Youtube.com

The suspension of the car is independent. So the handling is top notch. But you have to pay for this with rigidity and frequent visits to the service station, especially if the model is operated in rural areas. Yes, Alfa Romeo lovers meet there too.

An interesting feature of the suspension is that it does not rattle to the last, but the behavior of the car on the track becomes “loose”. Spare parts, by the way, are inexpensive, if you do not take the original. But you shouldn’t buy Chinese parts either - they don’t go to Alfa Romeo.

Contact or not?


When purchasing an Italian car, you need to understand that this acquisition cannot be called rational. Take at least fuel consumption - Alfa Romeo 145/146 with a 1,6-1,8 engine will have more than 10 liters in the city. Too much for a golf class car.

Alfa Romeo 146 can still be accommodated in the back row. Photo: Youtube.com

But you can try Alfa Romeo on a budget. The most important thing is not to run into a frankly tortured car, and, unfortunately, most of them are.

But unlike the "older" models, like 156 and 166, Alfa Romeo 145/146 are not in demand. It will be difficult to sell such a car, so you will definitely have it for a long time.

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Photos used: https://youtube.com

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