Alfa Romeo Spider Engine
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Alfa Romeo Spider Engine
Alfa Romeo Spider from 1966 to 1993 is now viewed as the classic Italian drop top – but what should you look out for when buying? The lifespan of the Spider was long and complex, with four different engines offered and an equal number of incarnations – all of which shared the same superstructure.
One of the rules which is often broken by owners is to let the engine warm up thoroughly before exercising it – being an all-alloy unit this is especially important. Oil pressure should not fall below half way on the clock (4kg/sq cm) once above tick over, and make sure you check the air cleaner: if the engine is on its way out, this will have traces of oil from the breather pipe. Other weak spots are the O-rings below the camshaft bearings. If these have failed there will be a trio of oil trails down the side of the engine block (from the head) or traces of oil in the cooling system’s header bottle.
Because of its cast alloy construction, the engine block is easily damaged by frost. Modern sealing compounds can hide this quite effectively, so check the thermostat housing for evidence of them. Also, engine mountings have a habit of failing (especially on the exhaust side), so you should make sure you rock the motor via its cam covers to check these.
Spiders interesting engine design
The GTV Spider’s 1970cc four cylinder engine develops 114kW (155hp) at 6200 rpm and 186Nm at 4000. An interesting engine design, the DOHC, 4-valves-per-cylinder engine features twin balance shafts, two plugs per cylinder and variable camshaft timing. The head is alloy and the block cast iron. The spark plugs are not fired simultaneously as might be imagined. Instead, the second plug (offset within the chamber) fires 360 crankshaft degrees after the main, centrally-mounted plug. This spark at the end of the exhaust phase reduces the emissions output. The inlet camshaft phasing is controlled by the ECU, being altered by up to 25 degrees to give full overlap from as low as 1800 rpm. Ninety percent of peak torque is available from 2500 – 6200 rpm.
The Bosch Motronic M2.10.3 management system controls the sequential injection, ignition coils, knock control, EGR, camshaft timing and idle speed. Other tech highlights of the engine include hydraulic tappets, a water/oil heat exchanger, cast alloy sump and eight-weight steel crankshaft. Backing the mill is the 5 speed trans with a 3.562 non-LSD final drive. The gearing is short, with fifth a 0.946 ratio.
The engine is an absolute honey. Superbly responsive, the flat torque curve means that there is always performance on tap. With 114kW and 1370kg to haul around, the Spider is no road burner (Alfa claim 0-100 km/h in 8.4 sec. with 2 adults + 20 kg), but performance in any situation is always competent. In fact it’s often better than competent, the low gearing and creamy-smooth engine making the power just so useable, whether you’re exiting a corner in second gear at the 7000 rpm redline or just cruising in fourth with the top down. This is one engine that shows that Alfa still knows how to make a fours cylinder engine that are amongst the best in the world!
Alfa Romeo Spider V6 retrofit!
The “Super Spider” Idea: Since the GTV 6 was introduced in 1980, many Spider owners and enthusiasts have pondered the fantasy of stuffing a V6 under the hood of the classic Spider Veloce. The fantasy was always tempered with the reality that the Alfa Romeo Spider’s aggressively sloping hood and tight engine compartment design presents many challenges to successfully achieving such a fit.
Spider V6 Retrofit. The Spider’s challenges are a direct result of the classic body style that has made the Spider such a stylistic icon – the challenges include:
* Fitting the V6 under the aggressively sloping hood (Which has no excess clearance)
* Fitting the engine into the tight area between the firewall and the radiator
* Accommodating the V6’s dual exhaust headers
* Conforming to stringent emission standards (Especially California)
* Acquiring the proper emissions documents and tags
If you’re up for the challenge to temper with a V6 engine for your Spider or simply just need to change the engine like for like, quick search all our Alfa Romeo Spider Engines, we simply need you to complete our online form then one of our helpful staff will be in touch to confirm prices. Rest assured we will locate the exact engine you are searching at the cheapest price on the web.