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I am about to buy a 1992 348 TS ...

Discussion in 'Technical Q&A' started by jfnoel, Jul 14, 2005.

  1. jfnoel

    jfnoel Rookie

    Jul 14, 2005
    11
    Montreal
    Hi everyone,

    This is going to be my first Ferrari, is this a good car? Should I expect any troubles?

    Any input is welcome,

    Thanks
     
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  3. Spasso

    Spasso F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Feb 16, 2003
    14,612
    Land of Slugs & Moss
    Full Name:
    Han Solo
    There are two camps on this subject, they are polar opposites.
    At the left end of the blue tool bar it says "search." Try that, type in "buying 348", get comfortable and prepare to do some reading. Very enlightening.

    DJ
     
  4. No Doubt

    No Doubt Six Time F1 World Champ
    Consultant

    May 21, 2005
    66,307
    Vegas+Alabama
    Full Name:
    Mr. Sideways
    348's are great cars. They have predictable problems, of course, common to all owners (no car is trouble-free) with many solutions available on-line.

    In general, you want to know how many months and how many miles it has been since your 348 timing belt was last changed by the prior owner(s), at a minimum.

    Also, if the car has had reasonable maintenance and has been driven a reasonable amount (very low mileage, however, is a bad sign), then you should be in good shape.

    First time 348 buyers typically aren't prepared for the precise and excellent handling feel given by the car...in particular to the lack of power steering at parking lot speeds. Likewise, the dry sump oil system on the 348's tends to freak the new owner out...as most don't initially know to only check the oil when the engine is hot. Check a 348's oil when cold and you'll think that your baby has no oil! That tends to make for a Ferrari Panic Moment.

    When buying, try *everything* out on your car. Open the doors, take the top off, open the bonnets, turn on the lights, set the parking brake, try out the anti-lock brakes, turn on the air conditioning and heating, shift through all of the gears, hit the emergency flashers, turn on low and high beams, etc.

    There is a general rule of thumb that every Italian car must always have one non-working component. It's a joke, but only barely.

    A good pre purchase inspection will let you listen for air leaks as your compression is checked, too. If you can take off the oil drain plugs and the tranny drain plugs briefly to examine for traces of metal, even better.

    Presuming that you start out with a decent 348 and don't seriously abuse it (underuse is bad, too), then these cars are extremely reliable and very rewarding to drive.
     
  5. LSU348

    LSU348 Formula 3

    Dec 19, 2003
    1,032
    Sugar Land
    Full Name:
    Mike
    I am also in such a search although today it was temporarily derailed:

    Ask if the 355 roof seal has been installed (assuming it is a TS) - otherwise it will likely leak - possibly bad.

    Make sure the clutch upgrades have been done.

    Make sure it has the new alternator

    Make sure the plastic is not gummy and your A/C works perfectly (the controller is supposedly unobtainable now).

     
  6. PassionIsFerrari

    PassionIsFerrari Formula 3

    Aug 15, 2004
    2,454
    A lot of roof seals leak, not a huge deal....

    the delco alternators are fine too...a lot of them fail because of leaking cam seals (thats what you need to be looking for). Delco alternators are cheap to rebuilt to..

    If the plastic is gummy, see the thread about using Darron's GooGone Method using oven cleaner to clean it all up...

    If the AC doesnt not work, it could a couple of simple things, hidden fuse, rusty connections....dont place to much emphasis on this...

    These are small items with easy fixes....you need to worry about the motor, gearbox, and clutch and flywheel conditions...
    348's are strong cars and don't let anyone tell you otherwise, if you are willing to put up with some mickey mouse stuff and do some fixes yourself

    Great car, I say go for it and if you do, let me be the first to welcome you to the club...
     
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  8. BULL RUN

    BULL RUN Formula 3

    Dec 18, 2004
    1,665
    I'm a proponent of low mileage garage queens. Just have the full engine out service done before delivery. What's better than a brand new 13 year old car? Bought mine with 5,600 miles. The problem will be the seller thinking he should get a premium, while your position is; I'll have to sink $4-6K in this car before it's ready to drive seriously. It's a negotiable issue. High mileage 13 year old Ferraris are NOT a pretty sight and you'll spend a bunch fixing little things mechanical and cosmetic that high mileage will reflect, so pick your poison.
     
  9. Bullfighter

    Bullfighter Two Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Jan 26, 2005
    20,696
    Fullerton, California
    Full Name:
    Jon
    Do the search Spasso recommended. You'll also find posts about stress cracks in the rear buttress-to-deck joint.

    I'm looking for my first Ferrari and several dealers and mechanics have told me to go for a 355 or 328 instead. 348's are beautiful, but in terms of build quality and reliability they don't usually come out on the top of the first-time buyer-recommended list.

    (No offense to fchatters here who stay on top of everything and probably do have perfect cars...)
     
  10. MDshore348

    MDshore348 Formula 3

    Dec 24, 2004
    2,427
    Maryland
    Full Name:
    Darron
    totallly your opinion, as i have mine. i wouldnt think of a 355 - for the fact of the expensive valve guide issue, manifold issue , and 20k higher selling price as of today... 328s have their own skeletons ... - and thats my opinion... just find the best example in the model that suits you . two mechanics at the dealership where i had my ppi done went out of their way to tell me they would much rather have a late model 348like mine over a early 355... opinions are like as$holes ,everyone got em. just find a good proctologist, er...a .. i mean a mechanic.
     
  11. maquino

    maquino Karting

    Jun 22, 2005
    219
    Take the targa top off and put it in its "stored" position behind the seats. Now get in and see if there's still enough room for you.

    348ts models with the targa stored have less room than the 328GTS with its targa stored. Some Ferrari dealers with 348ts cars tended to have the top either on or elsewhere (in the office, etc.) because of this. :)

    The original 348ts and 348tb seats were a bit on the pinchy side. By the time the 348 Spyder came along, there were more comfortable seats. Rump-compare. :)
     
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  13. rivee

    rivee F1 Rookie

    Jan 20, 2002
    3,725
    Nowhere important, USA
    Full Name:
    John
    Your dealers & mechanics don't know **** from shinola.

    My 348's been the most dependable automobile I've ever owned, or at least in quite some time. I drive it almost daily with little or no problems.

    ANY automobile model you buy that's in it's infancy (first year of production) will have problems, weather it's a Ferrari or a Yugo. What you are looking for in ANY car, is it's previous owners care and maintenance of that vehicle. If it's been taken care of like it should have, then it will most likely be a good one.
     

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