Mathias' Sprint 1.5 QV
Mathias owns this 1985 Sprint 1.5 QV. He bought it as replacement for his 1984 Alfetta 2.0 which went up in flames some years ago. The Alfetta had infected Mathias with the Virus Alfa. So he again wanted to have an (affordable) Alfa Romeo. One of his aquaintances who is the owner of an Alfasud Ti 1.5 QV and an Alfa 33 gave him the hint to look for a Boxer-engined Alfa. So, Mathias next car should be an Alfasud or Sprint. All the Alfasud spare parts his aquaintance had on stock would be very helpful in the case of repairs. So Mathias
started to read the adds in the local newspapers. After a longer period of time he found a black Sprint which was offered in one of the newspapers. Mathias agreed to meet with the owner and finally he bought the car for 1000 DM (which would be 511 EUR). The Sprint seemed to be in a good condition. It had been freshly repainted a short time before. The preowner offered to make new TÜV (MOT) but Mathias insisted. What a luck - as Mathias learnt some days later.
On the short test drive before Mathias had bought the Sprint it had proved to be in good condition. But on the way home some problems occured: The brakes were getting weaker and weaker every time Mathias used them, the steering wheel started to rattle at speeds over 140 kph and the engine overheated after 60 km. It was obvious, the car could not be used as every day transport with so many problems. So Mathias put it into grandma's barn and planned to repair the brakes and to have a look at the engine in order to make Sprint stand the TÜV test. But Mathias could not realise his plan as quickly as he wanted to. The more he looked around and under the car, the more (partly very dangerous) defects he found: The front wishbone-bearings were rusted, all bushes were damaged, the sills were rusted on both sides, the rear wheel arches, too. The windscreen's frame was also rusty. All brake lines were rusted (the brake liquid could already leak through the rotted metal), the fuel lines were leaking and the rear muffler was ready for the scrapyard. The rest of the exhaust system also needed some welding works. The tailgate already showed some new rust under the new paint and the electrics of the Sprint caused some trouble, too. In addition, all four brake discs were scrap-metal and all four brake calipers were leaking. And then, some idiot had fixed the light alloy wheels with the bolts of the steel rims!
To throw a 1000 DM on the scrapyard was not Mathias intention and so he decided to disassemble his Sprint. Everything except the rearaxle had been removed. Duruing the two years in which Mathias restored the Sprint he had to have another car which would drive him to work. He chosed a Peugeot 205....
While he was restoring the Sprint, Mathias got the offer
to buy another Sprint. Its condition was even worse, but Mathias bought it for 200 DM.
It showed to be worth its price
the car had a nearly new brake system. The interior and the seats of the 200
DM-Sprint were in better condition than the one of his
Meanwhile Mathias uses the car only occasionally in the summertime. The rest of the time it stands in grandma's barn - together with the other donator Sprint. Mathias does not use his Sprint in the winter.
Although Mathias had removed the engine out of the car before it went to the painter, he had decided that the engine compartment should not be sprayed in green. Meanwhile he regrets that. As soon as the car will need a new clutch, he plans to spray the engine compartment. Then he still has to rework the interior. The green Sprint has already passed the 150.000 km mark. Mathias has only made 8000 km with it.
Last Update: May, 27th 2004 Created: March, 6th 2004
© Layout and text by Tim Rauen. Photos by Mathias Wirth.