308 Which is most reliable? 3.0, 3.2, 3.4, 3.5 - Ferrari Life
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post #1 of 36 Old 11-07-2013, 10:10 AM Thread Starter
 
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Which is most reliable? 3.0, 3.2, 3.4, 3.5

Hello everyone, my name is Jason and I have been asking myself the question over the past month or so which of the classic F car V8 engines are most reliable. Around 14 yrs ago I had the privilege to own an 80 308 gtsi for roughly 3 yrs. I then sold it for a down payment on a house. Well now I am looking for my second F car and I've found that the 08. 28, 48, 55, and the always beautiful mondial t are all reasonably in my price range. Each one of these car's I love and would gladly own but I notice I seem to be leaning towards the Mondial with either the 3.2 or 3.4. So I'm just wondering which is the most manageable between all 4 engine types, like (348 gear box issues, 355 head and cat issues, etc) Also does anyone know if the 3.4 in the late Mondial t has the same issue's that where found in the 348? Any input would be appreciated and I just can't wait to hear that click into gear again with that beatiful H pattern shifter lol Thank you to all that read this post.
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post #2 of 36 Old 11-07-2013, 10:36 AM
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Welcome to Ferrari Life. The Mondial T, 348, and F355 all require engine out service to change the cambelts every 5 years or so. The 308, 328 and all early Mondials do not require engine out service. The 328 had a bunch of improvements over the 308 and has proven very reliable when well maintained. That should carry over the the Mondial 3.2, as well. Both have improved performance over earlier models. The four valve models, QV and later, also do not have the welded, sodium filled exhaust valves found on the two valve models. These sodium filled valves have been known to drop the valve head, with consequent unhappiness for all involved.

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post #3 of 36 Old 11-07-2013, 01:03 PM
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H pattern shifter

Hi Jason,

Having owned a 1984 Mondial Coupe QV back in 1987 and now driving a 1995 348 Spider I can make the following observations regarding the feel of the shift gate:

In regards to the sound of the gear lever moving through the gated metal shift plate on your 308 I can tell you that it will feel very much the same as a Mondial QV or 3.2. As far as the 348 and perhaps the Mondial T the clack, clack of the lever moving around the box is somewhat absent. While the shift is smooth and positive the sound is subdued.

My understanding is that the 348 uses rubber componants as part of the mechanism and inso doing has a different feel and sound. Doesn't make it bad, just not your typical Pre Fiat era experience.

My 2 cents.

Best of luck with your next Fcar move.
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post #4 of 36 Old 11-07-2013, 01:14 PM
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Reliable and Italian in the same sentence..... That's funny. The 3.2 will be the least troublesome. 328s really are great cars. Not sure where you are but a knowledgable mechanic will keep the experience a happy one for you.

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post #5 of 36 Old 11-07-2013, 02:49 PM Thread Starter
 
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Thank you for that imformation. I knew the QV was preferred but I wasn't sure why and obviously my 80 308 had had the welded two valves.
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post #6 of 36 Old 11-07-2013, 02:53 PM Thread Starter
 
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I am located in baltimore and I imagine I would have any services completed at Ferrari of Washington in VA
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post #7 of 36 Old 11-07-2013, 10:42 PM
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Competezione in Gaithersburg have an impeccable reputation as an alternative.

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post #8 of 36 Old 11-12-2013, 12:06 PM
 
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I am in the same situation of purchasing an F car. I currently am looking at 2 308GTSi, a QV, 348TS and a 348 Spider. Seems most 328s are a bit over priced IMO. I have been researching these for years, only to be soured by my 97 Esprit V8 TT experience. Now having recovered from that, back in the market. From talking to owners, sellers and mechanics...all 3 can be very reliable as they are tight little engines. Not sure what the likelihood of the sodium valve issue is, or they would have been sorted out by now. The upside of the pre-F355 cars, is that the amount of electronics involved is minimal. Though I hear the F355 can be quite reliable, my understanding is that the odds of a failure are higher due to simply the number of things that "Can" go wrong.) I know of several 308s and 348s that are driven a ton with minimal effort. My intention will be to use mine as a nearly daily driver. The question comes down to value....the GTSi are in the mid to high 20Ks, the QV mid 30Ks and the TS 30K and Spider $40K.
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post #9 of 36 Old 11-12-2013, 02:35 PM
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Additionally Competizione may be able to help you locate a good car since you are local. We have a strong group of enthusiasts in MD so I'm sure you'll really enjoy the camaraderie. Buy the best car you can afford.

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post #10 of 36 Old 11-12-2013, 03:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cabbott22 View Post
I am in the same situation of purchasing an F car. I currently am looking at 2 308GTSi, a QV, 348TS and a 348 Spider. Seems most 328s are a bit over priced IMO. I have been researching these for years, only to be soured by my 97 Esprit V8 TT experience. Now having recovered from that, back in the market. From talking to owners, sellers and mechanics...all 3 can be very reliable as they are tight little engines. Not sure what the likelihood of the sodium valve issue is, or they would have been sorted out by now. The upside of the pre-F355 cars, is that the amount of electronics involved is minimal. Though I hear the F355 can be quite reliable, my understanding is that the odds of a failure are higher due to simply the number of things that "Can" go wrong.) I know of several 308s and 348s that are driven a ton with minimal effort. My intention will be to use mine as a nearly daily driver. The question comes down to value....the GTSi are in the mid to high 20Ks, the QV mid 30Ks and the TS 30K and Spider $40K.


328 prices are what they are because of the cars reputation. It is not over priced at all. I have been in the Ferrari business since some years prior to the 328 and it still has the reputation within the Ferrari business of being one of the very best cars they ever built.
You are making a serious mistake in just considering purchase cost when you should be considering ownership costs. The 328 offers many improvements over any 3L car in reliability and performance and much lower operational costs with much better reliability than any of the 3.4L or 3.5L cars.

The car will cost a little more to buy, less to operate and will be worth more, possibly much more at time of sale.
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post #11 of 36 Old 11-12-2013, 09:15 PM
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328 prices are what they are because of the cars reputation. It is not over priced at all. I have been in the Ferrari business since some years prior to the 328 and it still has the reputation within the Ferrari business of being one of the very best cars they ever built.
You are making a serious mistake in just considering purchase cost when you should be considering ownership costs. The 328 offers many improvements over any 3L car in reliability and performance and much lower operational costs with much better reliability than any of the 3.4L or 3.5L cars.

The car will cost a little more to buy, less to operate and will be worth more, possibly much more at time of sale.
Thank you for that very clear message.
BTW, here in Switzerland, it became obligatory for new cars in 1987 to have catalysators. The 328 is therefore a transitional model, early ('86) cars have none and the later have catalysators. Would you rate the difference in engine behavior (power, overheating or other issues) worthwhile to consider rather a non-cat version as better over the cat version ? And if yes is that a general assumption for every kind of engine, generally ? Thanks !

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Last edited by 212Export; 11-12-2013 at 10:11 PM.
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post #12 of 36 Old 11-12-2013, 10:52 PM
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Catalysts having nothing positive to offer the engine, particularly OEM offerings which were only used to get the cars through more strict emissions. They do help reduce all of the unpleasantries associated with a straight exhaust though. If you are allowed to run an improved product like the Hyperflow catalysts, which keep obnoxious exhaust fumes to a minimum, affect the engine's efficiency very little to none and meet your Country's emissions regulations, everyone is happy.


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post #13 of 36 Old 11-13-2013, 08:01 AM
 
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328 prices are what they are because of the cars reputation. It is not over priced at all. I have been in the Ferrari business since some years prior to the 328 and it still has the reputation within the Ferrari business of being one of the very best cars they ever built.
You are making a serious mistake in just considering purchase cost when you should be considering ownership costs. The 328 offers many improvements over any 3L car in reliability and performance and much lower operational costs with much better reliability than any of the 3.4L or 3.5L cars.

The car will cost a little more to buy, less to operate and will be worth more, possibly much more at time of sale.
I don't disagree with your statements. Research and experience has shown the 328s are perhaps the most reliable. Price isn't the only factor...but overall value. Remember, in my opinion only (whether the consensus is right or wrong) the 328 prices, from what I have found, are perhaps disproportionately higher. At a minimum I am seeing 10K to 20K over the highest 308QVs. Some of the 328s are in 360 range, which for that price, I think I would prefer a 360. So given my lack on infinite funds (unless a couple of my stocks go crazy!), and the desire to have a Ferrari, I think a 308 is a good starting point. :-) Many Ferrari mechanics I know have sworn by the little 3L as very solid if maintained. Maybe eventually I can bump to a 328 later :-)
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post #14 of 36 Old 11-13-2013, 08:44 AM
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I don't disagree with your statements. Research and experience has shown the 328s are perhaps the most reliable. Price isn't the only factor...but overall value. Remember, in my opinion only (whether the consensus is right or wrong) the 328 prices, from what I have found, are perhaps disproportionately higher. At a minimum I am seeing 10K to 20K over the highest 308QVs. Some of the 328s are in 360 range, which for that price, I think I would prefer a 360. So given my lack on infinite funds (unless a couple of my stocks go crazy!), and the desire to have a Ferrari, I think a 308 is a good starting point. :-) Many Ferrari mechanics I know have sworn by the little 3L as very solid if maintained. Maybe eventually I can bump to a 328 later :-)

People ask those stupid prices all the time but never get them. Real selling prices 328s are not that much more and worth every penny of the added expense.
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post #15 of 36 Old 11-13-2013, 08:48 AM
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Catalysts having nothing positive to offer the engine, particularly OEM offerings which were only used to get the cars through more strict emissions. They do help reduce all of the unpleasantries associated with a straight exhaust though. If you are allowed to run an improved product like the Hyperflow catalysts, which keep obnoxious exhaust fumes to a minimum, affect the engine's efficiency very little to none and meet your Country's emissions regulations, everyone is happy.

Totally disagree.

A. Hyperflows are crap and they do not stand behind their product. In California where we need to pass real emission testing I have had a nearly 100% failure rate for Hyperflows and their response is "too bad, so sad".
B. While cats offer nothing positive they also offer almost nothing negative to the motor and are a major benefit to the air.
c. In the scenario of the OP for a legal precat car he needs to go back to 1977.

Last edited by Brian; 11-13-2013 at 10:00 AM.
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post #16 of 36 Old 11-13-2013, 08:54 AM
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Thank you for that very clear message.
BTW, here in Switzerland, it became obligatory for new cars in 1987 to have catalysators. The 328 is therefore a transitional model, early ('86) cars have none and the later have catalysators. Would you rate the difference in engine behavior (power, overheating or other issues) worthwhile to consider rather a non-cat version as better over the cat version ? And if yes is that a general assumption for every kind of engine, generally ? Thanks !

The CH version of the 328 was the lowest powered version in the world. If you were just to go to Germany, France or Italy and buy one of any year it would be faster. And you would have a fuel injection system that was the same as all other versions. The CH car had it's own and as I understand it some of the parts are very difficult to get.

As far as cat or no cat? By the time the 328 was made the cats were really good and had nearly zero performance effect. The performance losses on some of the versions were attributable to other modifications made. Many versions had lower compression and revised ignition advance curves. Of the various changes, those two were responsible for almost all the power loss.

Last edited by Brian; 11-13-2013 at 10:02 AM.
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post #17 of 36 Old 11-13-2013, 12:46 PM
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The CH version of the 328 was the lowest powered version in the world. If you were just to go to Germany, France or Italy and buy one of any year it would be faster. And you would have a fuel injection system that was the same as all other versions. The CH car had it's own and as I understand it some of the parts are very difficult to get.

As far as cat or no cat? By the time the 328 was made the cats were really good and had nearly zero performance effect. The performance losses on some of the versions were attributable to other modifications made. Many versions had lower compression and revised ignition advance curves. Of the various changes, those two were responsible for almost all the power loss.
Understood! Thanks Brian.

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post #18 of 36 Old 11-13-2013, 01:12 PM
 
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Good point...If I can score a 328...it would be a plus over the 308.
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post #19 of 36 Old 11-13-2013, 01:32 PM
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Good point...If I can score a 328...it would be a plus over the 308.


It's like the old average desmogged 77 308 Wayne Carini is selling. He's asking $69000 for it.

All the carb'd 308 owners on the other sight are slapping each other on the back and lighting Cubans over it.

He'll never get it, He'll never get close.

It's good to want but the market sets the selling price
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post #20 of 36 Old 11-16-2013, 04:16 AM
 
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It's very true the market sets the price. The more people desire a carb 308, the more they will increase in value regardless as to whether they are superior or not. Look at the air cooled porsche vs liquid cooled. The cars look the same they drive the same but they aren't when it comes to $$. Saying the 308 carb won't garner a 60000 price tag is as ridiculous as saying the S&P wont hit 1800. That's the beauty of free markets... you don't know, and what people are willing to pay while it may be incomprehensible to some, is considered value to others. And when only 2000 carb GTB's were made, it would seem that you might be wrong..

Signed a 308 GTB carb owner
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