The Alfa Romeo is a thing of beauty – particularly if you get your hands on a red Spider

Carol Crosswaite wants an Alfa Romeo convertible. It is her dream car, but wonders whether there are any alternatives. The budget is around £8,000

A Car for the Head

The thing about Alfa Romeos is that they are stunningly styled and sporty to drive, but the ownership experience can be less than brilliant. So if Carol wants a no-nonsense cabriolet, which is sporty, reliable and with a folding metal roof, then the easy answer is to buy a BMW 3 Series. With £8,000 to £9,000 to spend it is easy enough to find a model from 2007. On my search I found a BMW 335i Convertible reduced by £1,000, but I thought that a 325i would be a more practical buy and slightly cheaper to run. Around £8,000 will secure a 50,000-mile example.

BMW Convertible owners will have less hassle than their Alfa counterparts

A Car for the Heart

Then again, Alfas are so very pretty, aren’t they, so let’s answer Carol’s heartfelt car buying prayer and buy the very best Alfa Romeo convertible on sale today. What she needs is an Alfa Romeo Spider, which is a very striking vehicle. I would suggest that in this politically uncertain climate, go for a petrol- rather than diesel-powered model. That would also suit Carol because she does not cover huge mileages, and so wouldn’t have that much bigger a fuel bill, diesels normally returning better fuel economy than petrol-engined equivalents. I found a 2008 example in red, arguably the best colour, with a full service history and recent expensive service and cambelt change, all for £8,495, supplied by a dealer with a warranty.

Search for used cars