Question about 2000 Alfa Romeo 156

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Motor control system failure

Hi, recently noticed that my Alpha Romeo 156 (petrol) was producing too much (white) smoke from the exhaust but did not think too much about it. Whilst driving the 'motor control system failure' switched on and I quickly pulled over and stopped the car. I switched the car back on and the 'sytems check' declared the car OK. So I proceeded to make my way back home, but when changing gears I realised that the car lost a bit of strength in acceleration between gears (almost as if it wanted to choke out) and at this point the warning light came on again. I stopped the car once more, but this time the lights remained on after I started it once more. What worries me is that I serviced the car only a week before this happened. Any help would be great.

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  • Anonymous Apr 09, 2009

    I took car to dealer and they said I had a faulty ignition coil. As soon as I changed this the car worked fine. One month later I had the same problem and therefore I was adviced to change the remaining three ingition coils. Again the car beeped with 'motor control system failure' a month later. The Alpha Romeo technicians are now telling me that the Catalytic Convertor is faulty as a result of the ignition coils having been faulty. Problem is that the catalytic convertor for the 156 2,0 JTS is really expensive. The other problem is that I really think that the problem might be the fuel injection. If I have the catalytic convertor changed and the fuel injection is still faulty, this is going to conk out the new convertor. I am really at odds as to whether the mechanic has identified the problem correctly or not. I really need to pick the brains of one of you guys.....

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It does not sound like a head gasket and it is not likely to be the ECU. It is more likely electrical:
1st Check the battery - Variations in voltage really upset the Alfas
2nd Electrical - most likely candidates are ignition coils; stressed wiring; or Lambda sensors. Finding a reputable mechanic that can correctly identify the issue is the biggest challenge otherwise it can cost $ in trouble shooting.

Posted on Jan 08, 2013

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Motor control system failure means either 2 things
1 A fault with the ecu
2 A fault with the exhaust and lambda sensors

Posted on Jan 02, 2010

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Have the engine checked for a blown head gasket

Posted on Apr 21, 2009

  • Dennis Ham Apr 26, 2009

    HAVE YOU HAD HEAD GASKET CHECKED BY WAY OF AN AIR TEST ON EACH CYLINDER YET THIS IS THE ONLY WAY OF CHECKING IF IT IS BLOWN WATER WILL BE BLOWN OUT OF RADIATOR DURING THIS TEST

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Could be the cambelt slipping, when was it changed last?

Posted on Mar 30, 2009

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Sounds like a head gasket

Posted on Mar 18, 2009

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WHITE SMOKE OUT OF EHAUST


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Alfa 156 motor system control failure message


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Heap of white smoke on startup but not always


White smoke usually occurs when there is not enough heat to burn the fuel. The unburned fuel particles go out the tailpipe and typically produce a rich fuel smell. It's not unusual to see white smoke in the exhaust during cold weather until the engine warms up.

Faulty glow plugs or control module can cause white smoke on engine start up.

Low engine cranking speed may also produce white smoke.

If white smoke is still visible after the engine has warmed up, the engine may have one or more bad injectors, retarded injection timing or a worn injection pump.

Low compression or air in the fuel system can also be a source of white smoke.

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Motor Control System Failure


Motor control system failure means either 2 things
1 A fault with the ecu
2 A fault with the exhaust and lambda sensors

http://forum.alfa156.net/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=9754&PN=1

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