Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Two Cool Cars In San Antonio - 1988 Merkur XR4ti / 1987 Alfa Romeo Milano

Both of these cars are owned by JaCG reader, Matthew. Over the 2+ years that I've been writing Just A Car Geek, Matt and I have exchanged a few e-mails. We have similar tastes in cars. Matt is selling these because he just purchased a Maserati Biturbo...

Both cars are located in San Antonio, Texas.

1987 Alfa Romeo Milano Gold - If you've been reading JaCG for awhile you know all about my love of the Alfa Romeo Milano and how much I miss mine. I won't go into it again, but if you're new to JaCG and want to read all about it, just type "Milano" in the search box and a zillion or so posts will show up.

This 1987 Gold Edition Milano is a well used, but well taken car of car. It has a new clutch and, most importantly, the timing belt, water pump (and I assume the detensioner) were done about 8000 miles ago. At the same time Matt replaced the motor mounts.

The body is good, but not perfect. The car was sideswiped by a drunk last year and there is some damage to the left rear quarter panel, mainly in the wheel well area. That's also an area that rusts on the Milano. If a car is rusty, an accident will highlight the rust. Looking at the pictures, there appears to be no rust. That would lead me to believe that the rest of the car is clean, too.

There are few sedans from the 1980s that are as fun to drive as a Milano. The 2.5 liter V6 is a gem. It's smooth, powerful, free revving and makes all the right noises. The 50 / 50 weight distribution means that it handles very, very well.

There are two ways you could go with this car. You could repair the body and have it painted. The car would attract attention everywhere you drove it. Or, you could leave it as is and use it as your daily driver / commuter car. It would make your commute the most fun part of your day. If you leave it in a parking lot and someone opens a door into the side of it, it's not such a big deal. It's not perfect anyway. Me? I'd do the latter. Too bad this car is in Texas and I'm in Massachusetts.

Click here to see the Craigslist ad.

1988 Merkur XR4ti - The Merkur XR4ti was a study in how NOT to market a car. Ford did just about everything wrong. The name was tough for Americans to pronounce. The Lincoln / Mercury dealers that sold the cars didn't seem to like them very much.

The Merkur XR4ti was not a bad car. Early ones had some minor problems, but most of those have been addressed by the owners.

These cars were quick in their day, with 60 MPH coming in 8 seconds. Like most older turbo cars, it has some turbo lag, but that just adds to the excitement of driving it.

Like the Milano above, this car is a driver that has been well taken care of. The body has a few few door dings and the molding on the drivers door is damaged, but it looks to be rust free. The nose appears to have a Cosworth replica grill panel. (Matthew, correct me if I'm wrong.)

Like the Milano, this would be a very unique daily driver or commuter car.

Click here to see the Craigslist ad.

It should be noted that this is NOT a paid ad, a JaCG "exclusive", or anything like that. Matt sent me an e-mail telling me he bought a Biturbo and later mentioned he was selling two of his other cars. I thought they were interesting enough to post.


m4ff3w said...

The grill is a previous owner hackjob - inspired by the Cosworth grill. It is most certainly not what I would have done, but I suppose it does assist with cooling.

Thanks for posting them. I'm loving the Biturbo and now need to get something with better fuel economy than my wife's '89 MBenz 190E 2.6 to offset the the thirst of the Biturbo.

Blair Russell said...

That's an awesome pair of cars to have. I wish I could have driven 80's cars like that rather than stuff like a Towncar and an Oldsmobile station wagon when I was a teenager.

Maxichamp said...

m4ff3w is Da Man! And a masochist.

m4ff3w said...

Both have sold. I will miss them both, but the Alfa much more so.