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Hello there,

I'm new to this forum and I'm looking for some advice.

I'm planning to buy a used IS 220D sometime this autumn and currently doing some market research in regards to the version.

My target is a 2006 - 2007 220d but I cannot decide what version I should buy.

My current car is an Alfa 156 selespeed and I have decided to buy something a bit more reliable and hopefully economical.

I have seen that there are 3 versions, the SE-L, the SE-I and the F-Sport. By checking the power figures I see that all of them produce 177 bhp and by doing some further search I have read that the main difference of the Sport version is the stiffer suspension and the slightly different gear ratios.

Owing an Alfa for 5,5 years I do prefer performance than luxury and gadgets. Is the Sport version a good choise or should I go for one of the SE versions?

Thanks in advance for any feedback

G.T.

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Hello and welcome to LOC.

If you are looking for 200-2007 IS220, the available versions are actually the basic IS220, SE, SE-L and Sport. The versions you mentioned are for late 2009 and 2010.

Re which version question, the SE-L is full of toys but if you are looking towards a more sportier ride I think the Sport version could just be right for you.

What I would suggest is test drive one and see if that is what you want.

Reliable, yes. Econmical :crybaby: depends on what you mean by it.

Good luck with your choice.

Ahmed

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Hello and welcome to LOC.

If you are looking for 200-2007 IS220, the available versions are actually the basic IS220, SE, SE-L and Sport. The versions you mentioned are for late 2009 and 2010.

Re which version question, the SE-L is full of toys but if you are looking towards a more sportier ride I think the Sport version could just be right for you.

What I would suggest is test drive one and see if that is what you want.

Reliable, yes. Econmical :crybaby: depends on what you mean by it.

Good luck with your choice.

Ahmed

Hello Ahmed,

Thanks very much for your feedback.

I'm going to start viewing a few cars from mid August, is there any way of understanding which model is which just by looking at the car.

How can I check the specification? I think the Sport model has the 255 wide rear tyres, correct?

I have found a spec. document (see attachment) but I'm not sure what years it covers. Would you have a brochure for the 2006 - 2007 versions?

Rgds

G.T.

IS220dspecsheet_tcm593-850045.pdf

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If it helps, the SE (up to early 2009) has 17" 10 spoke alloys. It also has a full leather interior. The basic has 16" alloys.

I had a look at the brochure and some of the gadgets on the SE there are not on mine so this looks more recent.

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I had the same dilemma and went for the sport for the following reasons:

Gear ratio - makes a big difference!

18" alloys

Stiffer suspension

You get nearly all of the SE-L toys, memory seats, HID adaptive headlights, auto wipers / lights, heated seats, I think the SE-L only has the rear blind and leather instead of suede (leather seats are cooled).

VDIM an enhanced vehicle dynamic system that is the same (i think) as the one on the IS-F. The SE-L has the VSC (vehicle stability control).

If poss, try and get the multimedia, DVD player, reversing camera, sat nav, Bluetooth, and upgraded Mark Levinson Audio. Well worth it!

And if your wondering what the VDIM actually does, here is an extract from buyacar.co.uk 220D sport review:

This system is a vast improvement over the old VSC stability control system, allowing a little more wheelspin but intervening earlier and less obtrusively when it detects the car getting a little out of shape. What's even more interesting is that whereas traditional stability control systems just nip at the brakes to keep things in check, VDIM manages brakes, throttle and even steering, adding a couple of degrees of counter steer crucially early in the event of a slide. Power out of a wet mountain hairpin with the engine right in the meat of the torque and you'll feel a mild muting of throttle response and a spot a flashing light on the fascia. No drama, no temptation to counter steer yourself (something that can royally confuse some stability control systems) and a rapid reapplication of full power once the car detects it's pointing in the right direction. Top marks.

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Oh and the sport comes with Metallic Trim and sports pedals. I didnt like the wood finish in some of the other 220's I saw.

Hi bigmick,

that's very usefull information.

So the main things I have to look for in order to distinct a Sport model than a SE-L or standard would be the metalic pedals and the 18" alloys. I don't like either the wood trim....

I have already a list of things I'm planning to change after purchasing the car as below and I need also some advice with that.

Lowering springs (40mm)

Install a tuning box

Possibly remove the cat

Install a sport back box (if there is an aftermarket one)

and finally install hid kits in both lower beam and fog lights.

For now I have found some H&R lowering springs but what I would like to ask is some recomendation on the tuning box to use. I was already in touch with a couple of remapping companies here in Ireland and was informed that this car cannot be remmaped... :( and the only option is a tuning box.

I have done a bit of a search and found this site www.tuningbox.com which brings the Bhp up to 215 from the standard 177. Do you know them? What tuning boxes do you usually use? Is it true that remapping isn't possible?

Cheers

G.T.

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Owing an Alfa for 5,5 years I do prefer performance than luxury and gadgets. Is the Sport version a good choise or should I go for one of the SE versions?

Thanks in advance for any feedback

G.T.

IS is anything but not a sport car.

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Owing an Alfa for 5,5 years I do prefer performance than luxury and gadgets. Is the Sport version a good choise or should I go for one of the SE versions?

Thanks in advance for any feedback

G.T.

IS is anything but not a sport car.

Hi Matus,

So even the Sport version won't be closed to something sportive?

If the gear changes are faster and the suspension is stiffer than the standard then that's something to start with...

I have been searching around the last couple of days and the question I have is if the IS220D model is identical to the IS250 suspension and brakes wise? Can you use aftermarket suspension parts of the IS250 to a 220d?

Rgds

G.T.

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Owing an Alfa for 5,5 years I do prefer performance than luxury and gadgets. Is the Sport version a good choise or should I go for one of the SE versions?

Thanks in advance for any feedback

G.T.

IS is anything but not a sport car.

Hi Matus,

So even the Sport version won't be closed to something sportive?

I don't know your expectations but in my eyes a sport car can not have 1700kg weight, diesel engine, electric power steering and stability controll which can not be turned off.

Have a try, as Parthiban said and you will see...

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Owing an Alfa for 5,5 years I do prefer performance than luxury and gadgets. Is the Sport version a good choise or should I go for one of the SE versions?

Thanks in advance for any feedback

G.T.

IS is anything but not a sport car.

Hi Matus,

So even the Sport version won't be closed to something sportive?

I don't know your expectations but in my eyes a sport car can not have 1700kg weight, diesel engine, electric power steering and stability controll which can not be turned off.

Have a try, as Parthiban said and you will see...

I think you are misunderstanding my point, I'm not looking for a soarer or a soupra performance out of an IS. I'm looking for something closer to my liking.

Something a bit more sportive than standard IS and all I'm asking is if the sport version has a noticeable difference between the SE-L and the other versions.

Rgds

G.T.

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I think you are misunderstanding my point, I'm not looking for a soarer or a soupra performance out of an IS. I'm looking for something closer to my liking.

Something a bit more sportive than standard IS and all I'm asking is if the sport version has a noticeable difference between the SE-L and the other versions.

Not sure whether there's a drastic difference between the sport and normal models, but as far as the diesel is concerned the sport is supposed to have much more usable gearing. The IS overall is a good car, it has a pretty decent chassis, rear wheel drive and a fair balance. It's no 3 series, but it's not that far off.

Coming from a modern FWD alfa I think you'll find the handling a real treat, although the steering can feel a little numb and disconnected. As I said the best way really is just to have a go in one to see what you think.

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Well I think opposite - coming from alfa 156 - one of the best driving and handling cars in it's class (also when comparing with nowadays cars), he will feel, even in IS sport, like driving a brick.

But I will be waiting for your test drive and let us pls know.

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Not sure whether there's a drastic difference between the sport and normal models, but as far as the diesel is concerned the sport is supposed to have much more usable gearing. The IS overall is a good car, it has a pretty decent chassis, rear wheel drive and a fair balance. It's no 3 series, but it's not that far off.

Coming from a modern FWD alfa I think you'll find the handling a real treat, although the steering can feel a little numb and disconnected. As I said the best way really is just to have a go in one to see what you think.

I come from a 3 series coupe, 2007 after having it from new for two years. It was only a 2 litre but I can say I am happy with the move. I went for the sport (with multimedia) as it was the spec I wanted at the right time, right price... I would have taken the 250 if I could have found the car at the time with similar price etc.

I am so far very happy - the issues have been sorted out by Lexus impeccably. I did take the extended warranty as suggested on this site and I am very happy I did as the ballasts would have cost 1200!

I have drove the SE and had to go for the sport as it made a big difference . It took me a while to get used to how to drive it, a gear higher every time (i.e. 3rd instead of second) and keeping the RPM between 1500 and 2500 but driven properly and with the VDIM stability (which is less intrusive) you can get the car to feel sporty for a diesel - you will not get the MPG but you are in a v. heavy Lexus.

I have been in the Mercs and Audis diesels and still feel the overall package with Lexus is to my liking. Alhough only comparing to <2.5 TDi as I did like the 335 BMW diesel!

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Thanks very much each one of you for the feedback and comments.

As you say the only way to find out what;s the best option for me would be to drive the standard and sport one.

In regards to my alfa year 2000), its going to be difficult to compare it to as i don;t think there are many standard parts of the suspension left in.

Dropped 10cm on fully adjustable coilovers with 4 strut braces, 2 front and 2 rear, adjustable camber rods, uprated antiroll bars front and rear and powerflex bushes all around and that's only about the suspension.

But I had enough of it, just picked it up from the garage after 2 weeks with a 600 euro bill...

Anyway.

Rgds

George

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