Market Review: Second Hand Italian Cars in Australia
If you are anything like us you probably spend too much of your free time dreaming of your next Italian Car purchase. We find ourselves regularly asking questions such as, is it time for that classic Italian we’ve always promised ourselves? Would a cute little Fiat fit in the garage? Have Alfa Romeo Breras depreciated enough to be in our budget?
Well we thought it would be a good idea to cast our eye over the second hand market in Australia and see what is out there and what the market looks like.
To help us we have enlisted a few tools including the excellent new Car Price Checker App from Gumtree. This handy app allows you to search for makes and models, providing you with a review of the car, specifications plus prices and ads.
We’ve decided to limit our market review research to 3 Italian cars: Alfa Romeo Brera, Alfa Romeo 156 and Fiat Punto.
Alfa Romeo Brera
The Alfa Romeo Brera was launched back in 2005 as a high end, high performance coupe. It is based on the same platform as the Alfa Romeo 159 but features a unique and stunning body that still turns heads. A choice of 1.8 litre and 2.2 litre 4 cylinder or 3.2 litre V6 engines was available with the gorgeous sounding and looking Giuseppe Busso designed V6 being the clear pick.
When new the Brera was a very expensive car. A 2011 1750 Tbi would have cost $64,990 while a top of the line V6 would have set you back $80,000. Now though, thanks to prodigeous depreciation a Brera is very affordable. Here as sample of cars on the market that Gumtree’s Car Price Checker App provided:
2008 2.2 JTS Manual 71,000 kms – $18,000
2007 2.2 JTS Manual 96,000 kms – $15,990
2007 2.2 JTS Manual 65,000 kms – $18,000
In summary the Brera represents the performance bargain of the century. We think that there is some more depreciation to come before the market hits the bottom and the inevitable rebound into classic car territory begins. We are very tempted!
Alfa Romeo 156
The Alfa Romeo 156 was launched back in 1997 and lasted all the way up to 2007 with a couple of face lifts along the way to keep it up to date. It was a tremendously important car for Alfa, proving that they could make a serious contender in the small executive sedan market so dominated by the Germans. As you would expect from a model that lasted for 10 years there are a lot of variations and spec levels to choose from. Cars with manual transmissions are preferred and the V6 engine is a real gem, we also like the TI trim level. There were 2 body styles to chose from; a coupe-like 4 door sedan and a wagon.
When new the 156 slotted into BMW 3 series territory price wise. A 2000 Twin Spark manual would have cost $44,900 while a 2003 GTA was a whopping $90,000. On the market now there are some real bargains to be had. As always our advice would be to look for the lowest kilometres and to go for a manual. Having said that the later automatics (or Selespeed to be be precise) were much more reliable than earlier cars. Here as sample of cars on the market that Gumtree’s Car Price Checker App provided:
2006 Alfa Romeo 156 JTS TI Manual Sedan 15,7310 kms – $6,000
2005 Alfa Romeo 156 JTS TI Automatic Sedan 115,000 kms – $8,990
2005 Alfa Romeo 156 1JTS 10,325 kms Wagon – $18,000
In summary we would say that the Alfa Romeo represents tremendous value if you can find a clean, low kilometre car with a full service record. The market is probably as low as it will ever go. Give it a few years and the 156s that are still on the road will be classics and the values will rise.
It is fair to say that the little Fiat Punto has never really found its place in Australia. It’s too plain to be taken to our hearts like the Fiat 500 and too rare and unusual to be considered a alternative to a Toyota. There is also the disjointed import strategy that the car has suffered. The Punto was introduced in 2006 and then removed from the Aussie market in 2009 only to make another appearance in updated form in 2013. All this means that there are some bargains to had as the depreciation stick has hit the Punto pretty hard.
When new back in 2006 the Punto cost around $20,000 whereas now a brand new Punto Pop is a mere $15,900. Here as sample of cars on the market that Gumtree’s Car Price Checker App provided:
2007 Fiat Punto Manual 12,3351 kms – $4,990
2013 Fiat Punto Manual 12,000 kms – $10,000
2007 Fiat Punto Automatic 110,000 kms – $5,500
In summary the Fiat Punto is a great, undiscovered gem on the Australian secondhand car market. Our choice would be an updated 2013 (or later) model with the basic Pop trip and a manual gearbox. Simple, honest and fun motoring at a bargain price.