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mfennell
mfennell Reader
9/12/21 1:56 p.m.
BoxheadTim said:

I'm not even convinced it's the battery anymore, because the last time it took a couple of hours on a three amp charger to restore it to working order.

Could the short charge cycle indicate reduced battery capacity?

Coincidentally, I just ran the battery in my wife's '91 318is down to ... 1.7V!  I'm not sure how old it is.  15 years?  More?  The car has sat a lot, especially over the past 2 years (maybe 200miles in 2 years since my wife got her Cooper S) but I've never let it die like that.  Maybe 10.5V once.   It's on the charger now.

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim MegaDork
9/12/21 8:53 p.m.
infinitenexus said:

I recently test drove the Alfa SUV and I must say, I was absolutely blown away.  Every aspect of the vehicle was just about perfect.  Reading about the reliability though brings me back to reality.  If I made about twice as much as I currently I'd probably lease one for the wife (every time she sees one you'll hear a loud "ALFAAAAAAA!")

Even with the reliability, they're just so damn gorgeous.

I still like driving it a lot, but I have to see if the dealer can get to the bottom of these intermittent issues. Because if they can't, I have a bit of a problem given that there is a bit of travel coming up in the next few months. If I can't leave this car at the airport for 3-4 days without trying to charge it there (eh?), I have a nice garage ornament...

The fact that it started playing up three days before my wife and I want to go on a mini road trip is just the icing on the cake.

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim MegaDork
9/12/21 8:56 p.m.
mfennell said:
BoxheadTim said:

I'm not even convinced it's the battery anymore, because the last time it took a couple of hours on a three amp charger to restore it to working order.

Could the short charge cycle indicate reduced battery capacity?

It is possible. OTOH the car has a pretty sophisticated battery monitoring and managment system so the auto start/stop won't kick in until the battery hits a certain charge threshold. I've hit that threshold on pretty much every 20 mile drive recently, so the battery can't be that dead.

I'll see if they can test the battery as well tomorrow, even if it's just to get it on the record with the dealer that I'm having these kind of issues.

84FSP
84FSP UltraDork
9/13/21 12:26 p.m.

Bmw's have a battery relearning procesure that needs to be followed orninteresting things like overcharging can occur.  Wonder if it could need that battery management system flashed?

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim MegaDork
9/14/21 8:31 a.m.

In reply to 84FSP :

Interesting question. I don't know, although one would hope that part of the regular service would be to update the firmware on the various modules (one can dream, right?)

Unfortunately, the mechanic at the dealer yesterday didn't find any fault with either the battery or the proximity key system. They couldn't reproduce the issue - which I expected, because it never showed up the same day after I drove the car - and unfortunately their disagnostic software also didn't find anything odd. I also asked the service writer to check with the mechanic if there is anything I should check if this problem happens again, but they seemed to forget to ask.

I also asked them to check the alignment as the car occasionally feels a bit iffy in sharp corners - understeers at tad and makes a noise as if the tire is skipping/slipping a bit. Everything appears to be in spec, and I did notice that there is a direct correlation between the tire pressures being spot on and the above behaviour, so there is a good chance that this is more of an issue with the tire pressure.

It's interesting to me that I notice how the handling on the backroads changes if the tire pressure is off by 2-3 psi.

The dealer experience wasn't as good as I had experienced it in the past - I had awesome service experiences with this dealer before, but it looks like some of the people I interacted with in the past weren't there. Unfortunately I also had to write an email asking the service writer why there's an part on the list that is supposed to be changed every two years, was replaced last year and apparently was replaced again yesterday. Not that I mind if it needed to be changed, but at least tell me about it.

Place bets if the unlock/playing dead battery issue is going to make an appearance today when I really need the car, or not.

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
9/14/21 8:40 a.m.

You leased this, right?  Turn it back in.  Alfa doing Alfa electrical things, not much of a surprise unfortunately...

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim MegaDork
9/14/21 9:27 a.m.

In reply to docwyte :

It is a lease, so there is a defined end date. If it continues to do Alfa electrical things I may have to turn it in early, but that still means I have to pay of the remaining term of the lease. It is definitely going back in May next year, though.

Pete Gossett (Forum Supporter)
Pete Gossett (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
9/14/21 10:43 a.m.

In reply to BoxheadTim :

I'm still thinking you need a TRD Camry in your life just to provide a tiny bit of automotive serenity. 

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim MegaDork
9/14/21 10:48 a.m.

In reply to Pete Gossett (Forum Supporter) :

Usually my attempts at buying automotive serenity that isn't Swedish end up with a mechanic scratching their head going "funny, I've never seen that go wrong". 

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
9/14/21 2:51 p.m.

In reply to BoxheadTim :

May next year might work out to when my wife's SQ5 shows up, so the R will most likely be for sale...

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim MegaDork
9/24/21 8:33 a.m.

Right, so the Giulia road tripped fine last week and hasn't shown any signs of non-cooperation. Still have to resolve the parts issue, though.

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim MegaDork
9/27/21 8:40 p.m.

So it turned out that some genius put "change the cabin air filter" on the bill when they changed the engine air filter.

That still leaves the question how changing the engine air filter costs almost $90 plus the filter, but I'm right now putting that down to weird Italian cars.

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
9/28/21 8:37 a.m.

The R is definitely going up on the chopping block.  I may have found an uber wagon that I've always wanted to own.  Hopefully have that in February ish...

tremm
tremm Reader
9/29/21 12:48 a.m.

Hey, at least you'll be able to have a chuckle when people in 25 years are whinging about how they don't get cool cars like this anymore

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim MegaDork
10/7/21 7:30 a.m.

In reply to tremm :

There's that. There's probably going to be some sort of hidden away, only to be found by word-of-mouth type shops that'll keep them alive, much like there is now for older Alfas.

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
10/7/21 7:57 a.m.

Uber wagon should be available in April now, I'm waiting for the sellers new car to arrive.   Hopefully I get a 1 month heads up so I can list the R

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim MegaDork
6/5/22 11:30 a.m.

Well, that was the end of that chapter. Returned it a few weeks ago.

So what's the verdict?

Overall, I liked it a lot, but not enough to buy it at the end of the lease. I may have changed my mind if the dealer was closer to where I live, or if there was a specialist nearby. The other part is that I don't drive enough anymore to require a car with a warranty, at least for now. 

Would I get another one? Not the cooking model, no. Maybe a QV, but those have Ferrari running costs there's pretty much nowhere to exercise them properly (other than possibly the track, and they have issues on track) without the risk of some enforced R&R in Hotel Grey Bars.

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
6/5/22 12:14 p.m.

Given your luck are you sure you wanna say you don't need a car with a warranty?  Even having multiple cars it's nice to have one or two newish, low mileage cars under warranty...

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