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328 Maintenance Cost for Low Mileage Buy

Discussion in '308/328' started by surfermark, May 12, 2005.

  1. surfermark

    surfermark Formula Junior

    May 19, 2004
    317
    Mill Valley, CA
    Full Name:
    Mark
    I am new to the Ferrari world and looking to buy a 1989 328. The one I am looking at has about 10K miles on it (beautiful shape inside and out). I have verified as best I can the miles as actual through DMV and service records etc. A belt service was done 5 years ago along with water pump and seals. A new belt service was just done as well. The 328 has been driven only about 1K miles in the last 5 years. I have ready many threads here about Garage Queens. Given what I know above about the 328 what else could be expected maintenance wise if I buy this 328? When would I likely need a major/minor service done? The 328 drives like a dream but I do wish to know what I might need to do service wise in say the next 24 months if I bought the 328 since it has been driven so few miles in 5 years……It seems you have to exercise Ferrari’s to keep them in good working order so trying to find out what I may be in for service wise? Major? Minor?
     
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  3. Bullfighter

    Bullfighter Two Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Jan 26, 2005
    20,696
    Fullerton, California
    Full Name:
    Jon
    (Disclaimer: I'm not an expert, by any means - just shopping for my first Ferrari and have got to know the 308 and 328 pretty well.)

    First, 5 years is about time to have a belt service again. Some people say you can push it, especially with only 1K miles, but time also ages the belt and bearings. Kind of like tires aren't happy sitting in one place for a long time, belts lose their shape, bearings need to turn to stay good, etc. If I were you I would plan on either a 15K or (probably) 30K service to be safe. Maybe $3500-$4000.

    Seals and hydraulics also don't age well with non-use. After you start driving it, some of this stuff might start leaking. Brake calipers, clutch cylinder, and so on. I wouldn't be surprised if some of these needed rebuilding or replacing.

    Everyone on here's going to tell you to get a PPI (pre-purchase inspection) by a qualified independent Ferrari mechanic or dealer. It's good advice, and they can tell you any impending problems. A PPI can alert you to other obvious things that might need attention -- brake wear, clutch wear, radiator integrity...

    You didn't mention price, but I'd guess you're paying a premium for the low mileage. So, spend the $300 or so and get it looked over.

    My .02.

    Jon
     
  4. matteo

    matteo F1 World Champ

    Aug 1, 2002
    13,748
    On a plane somewhere
    Full Name:
    Heir Butt
    It already needs a major service.
     
  5. GrigioGuy

    GrigioGuy Splenda Daddy
    Global Moderator Owner

    Nov 26, 2001
    24,983
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    Dindu Nuffin
    Just to clarify, a major service was done 5 years ago, the car traveled 1000 miles, and the timing belts have just been replaced again?

    If so, I would just verify what the first major included, whether the second belt change included checking the tensioners & other sundries, have a PPI to find something with which to haggle, and then just drive it.

    It's hard to tell what a car MAY need. My car's been pretty reliable over the past few years, I know of other 328s in the area that have had literally 10s of thousands dumped into them in the same timeframe. All you can really do is get a second/third professional opinion and then cross your fingers :D
     
  6. surfermark

    surfermark Formula Junior

    May 19, 2004
    317
    Mill Valley, CA
    Full Name:
    Mark
    The 328 is being sold through a local dealer and since the last Major was done 5 years ago they said they would go ahead and change the belts again since it has only been driven 1000K in the last 5 years. So this is part of the sellers deal.....I will have a PPI done for sure.
     
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  8. Bullfighter

    Bullfighter Two Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Jan 26, 2005
    20,696
    Fullerton, California
    Full Name:
    Jon
    Just to reinforce Tillman!'s comment ... sometimes "change the belts" isn't a real service, as called for by Ferrari. A major service includes valve adjustment, replacing tensioner bearings and other items beyond a new belt - like cam cover seals. One dealer told me he had done a belt service on a 328, but said they didn't open the engine to do the valves because the seals weren't leaking. Had I bought the car I probably would have had that done to keep the services up to date. Just be sure to ask if they're doing a major service or just replacing/adjusting the belts.

    Another dealer, in the NY area, wouldn't share the details of what was done on a recent "belt service" on a 328 and wasn't too keen on my asking for a specific list of what was done. I didn't feel real comfortable with this and walked away.

    Jon
     
  9. FasterIsBetter

    FasterIsBetter F1 Veteran

    Jul 22, 2004
    5,844
    NoNJ/Jupiter FL
    Full Name:
    Steve W.
    Last year, I bought a 1984 Mondial with only 19K on it. It had it belts changed and major service done a year before I bought it. But cars that sit around for a long time show problems when you start to drive them. Typically, things that look leak free now start to leak. Ask when the last time the brakes and clutch (if its hydraulic) were bled. Expect squeaks and rattles and possibly electrical problems to pop up. Cars that have sat for years dry out and connections corrode and things happen. Check ALL the electricals very carefully and turn things on and off to be sure they actually work properly. And check the DOT information on the tires -- if it is sitting on original tires, they MUST be replaced, even if they look good. You don't want a tire delaminating on you at 85 mph and old tires cannot be trusted no matter how good they may look.

    One thing you should be asking of the dealer, if they are reputable, is what kind of warranty they will give you, especially on the work they have done. If you are getting none at all, be sure someone who knows these cars well goes through it and the service records carefully or you could find yourself spending a lot to fix things over the next months and years.

    Remember, exotic cars can be very seductive. Buy with your head, not your heart. Look past the shiny paint and clean interior and be sure that what is underneath the hood is in good shape. That way, when you do buy it, you'll end up loving it, not regretting the decision.
     
  10. Gatorrari

    Gatorrari F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Feb 27, 2004
    13,970
    Georgia
    Full Name:
    Jim Pernikoff
    How about this for low mileage? AutoTrader currently has two 1989 328 GTSs for $85,000 each! A lot of money? Consider that one has only 579 miles on it (!) and the other has only 180!!

    Regardless of the price, I think the best thing to do with these cars is to walk the other way. A car that has only been driven 180 miles in 16 years has got to be problematic.
     

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