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Audi A4 2004 and earlier

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  • lauk0dglauk0dg Posts: 563
    Rumors are that Audi is working on pairing up Quattro and CVT but so far nobody can give an exact time when that will happen. I'd be really interested in this combo.

    The coupe version of the A4 is not a rumor anymore. The A4 Cabrio is coming late 2002 or early 2003 with a 3.0 engine in it. However it doesn't have Quattro, at least not in the early production ones that come to the US. However the Cabrio with Quattro should show up in US (instead of them keeping the nice ones in Germany :> )

    Billy
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,461
    Did anybody happen to catch the Audi commercial during the USA/Canada Hockey Game? There was a full shot of the Cabrio with what appeared to be Sports package (17" Avus Wheels). Beautiful car! I'm sure the coupe will be equally as breathtaking.

    2001 Honda Prelude Type SH/ 2011 BMW 328xi / 2011 Honda Pilot EX-L w/ Navigation

  • VW and Audi are now officially in separate "auto groups" -- Audi will be in the group that has the sportiest (and some could argue, most expensive) pedigree.

    Evidence of this will begin showing up in a recently "leaked" (announced?) Audi 2 seater with a mid-engine V8: estimated price when this hits the market -- $75,000.

    Audi is, over the next few months, moving their products up market -- over on Audi world, there is a feature on the allroad 4.2 and we've already lusted on this board over the hoped for S4 and the RS6.

    Looking at the situation that seems to be developing (as a long time Audi owner and fan) here is what appears to be shaping up (and this notion came to me while I was looking at the new issue of a british auto magazine, CAR -- where there was a full color two page Passat W8 advertisement): the next VW's coming out will be positioned, adjusted for inflation, about where Audi's were a few years ago when compared to BMW. In other words, the new VW's will be to Audi's where Audi's were in comparison to BMW's (price wise).

    Audi will "compete" with BMW and will move agressively upwards in terms of performance and sportiness (luxury will not be left out, but the character of the cars will be sporty rather than luxury). VW will compete with Audi, BMW and Mercedes for a few iterations of its models as it moves into more luxury oriented territory.

    I had been wondering how they were going to accomplish this with the current line of Audi and VW cars which seem to share many things in common. The Audi A3 vs the VW Golf, the Audi A8 vs the VW Phaeton, the Audi A4/A6 vs the Passat W8 and even the "regular" Passat with 4motion and the 2.8 V6.

    The TT while it shares many parts with "lesser" VW's is a clue to the Audi move toward a much sportier image -- no more "Audi's are just expensive VW's" from nay sayers. No more Tauris Sable twins, is my way of putting it.

    Audi's will have more HP, agressive suspensions and agressive "looks" than VW's over the next few years. The VW suv will be a more truck like version of the Porsche SUV and so on.

    All of this means perhaps that Audi's and VW's are and will over time push upwards (price wise) as there is apparently more room at the top.

    $37,900 VW's, $71,000 VW's and $75,000 Audi two seater sports cars may make sense.

    Stay tuned.

    P.S.

    I looked at a new A8L yesterday -- it was $71,000 -- dead on the price of the VW Phaeton. See what happens between now and 2004. It could get both exciting and expensive to feed this habit.
  • The one glaring hole in this VW moving upmarket plan may be the dealerships. I cross-shopped a number of vehicles before ordering the A4, and the Passat was one of them. The dealership experience reminded me of the standard Toyota/Nissan/Ford type experience ("What will it take to get you in a brand new XXX today?") The salesman seemed to know less about the car than I did (and this is not meant to indicate massive knowledge on my part), and the whole place just seemed to not be a place where I would buy a $40K, much less a $70K, car. In contrast, the MB dealership where my current car came from is much more soft music, marble veneer, can-I-get-you-something-to-drink-sir. I get a birthday card from the "sales consultant" every year. Can the current VW dealer network pull this off? Can you sell Bugs and Jettas to recent grads and Phaetons to the stock-option crowd in the same showroom? I kind of doubt it.

    Why should any of us care what VW does? I was first drawn to Audi because it represents something of a screaming bargain in this segment - luxury, sport, and at a price tage thousands less than BMW or MB. If Mark is right, those days may be coming to an end. I sure hope not.
  • was drawn to Audi (and still am -- TODAY) because it was and remains a bargain. And, I can't help but wonder how you can sell a Bug and a Phaeton at the same dealership (but with the right attitude and atmosphere, I suspect it is possible, because the relative differences will not be any greater than the Porsche Audi dealers that sell sub $30,000 A4's and over $110,000 Porsches -- the range in % terms is similar, i.e.). But, I also wonder how in the heck most of the VW dealers are going to address even a Passat W8 shopper.

    My dealer experience with Audi is with the "horizontal" sales person. I have to make the first move to get the salesperson to sell me the car -- they are all very low key, they have no lot lizards and the "make me an offer and I'll take it to my boss" -- never happens. I pulled into the VW dealership to look at a Passat (I thought it might be a W8) and a salesperson came out and knew nothing about a nearly $40,000 8 cylinder Passat. He was, however, very interested in my Audi A6 4.2. "I guess this is what our cars will be like in a couple of years, huh?"

    The heck of it is, I think that dingbat was correct -- today's Audi is tomorrow's VW.

    And, in spite of my earlier speculative comments, as Audi move's up the price scale, they will still be relative to BMW's, bargains. Which is also the position that VW wants to be in relative to MB and Jaguar. 99.9% of the content at 80 -85% of the price (plus all wheel drive across the entire range).

    I am interested in watching this unfold and I am at least concerned as to the affordability of these cars that I enjoy so much. As I said, I hope I can continue to afford them.
  • As many of you know, the Audis currently available today come with everything and sometimes more than their BMW rivals but for thousands less in price. BMW only gets away with their high prices because people are willing to pay for them and their name, where as Audi did not have BMW's name in the past (in fact it had a down-right bad reputation a decade ago in the U.S.). Audi is just recently becoming popular again with the introduction of the first A4 in 1996, but the Bimmer hype is not quite over yet, so Audi has to do something to beat the competition and their strategy is a lower price and very high (if not better) quality in their products.

    The thing to do is buy an Audi now, when the prices are still better than those of BMW and other competing companies, and then allow Audi's name to achieve the status of its rivals. That way, you win both ways. You get a very fine car that you can be happy with, and then its "status" in the automotive world slowly moves up as Volkswagen becomes a luxury brand and Audi becomes a high-end luxury/sport division. To me, you really cannot lose in this situation.
  • dej0dej0 Posts: 36
    Hey Gang,
    I agree that I think it is kind of crazy for VW to offer $40+ cars. It seems to me they are following the Toyota model. You can buy an Echo for $10k or a Land Cruiser for $50k with a nav system. My local Toyota dealer was pretty low key when I went in, but the VW dealer was very aggressive. Maybe they will learn. Toyota did push most of their lux cars into the Lexus mark, just as VW seems to be with Audi. I do think it is weird for VW to keep the $70k and $40k vehicles under their own badging. But if Toyota can keep their expensive SUV's under their own badging, maybe VW will be succesful too.
    Saw the picts of the A4 convertible on the Audi World site (www.audiworld.com). Really made me wish I had waited a while before ordering my new A4. Still, in four years when my 2 year old is really ready to ride in the back of a convertible might be more realistic. I think I still have one more month before the new car gets here.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,461
    So the saga has ended. The dealership replaced the entire instrument cluster (again) and my friend's Amulet Red '02 3.0Q 6-Speed is as good as new. Everytime he's in the car he says how much he loves it, the ride, the handling, the smoothness of the engine. For those of you shopping, if the dealer you're at has an Amulet Red car with a Sports Package on the lot, its worth a look. Beautiful!

    2001 Honda Prelude Type SH/ 2011 BMW 328xi / 2011 Honda Pilot EX-L w/ Navigation

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,461
    I don't want to start an Audi vs. BMW argument here by any means, but people do not buy BMWs just for the name. BMWs and Audis each have wonderful qualities as automobiles for the badge snob as well as the performance guru. Audis are less expensive because they can charge less for their cars and still maintain a good profit. Audi/VW employs the wonderful technology of platform sharing which greatly reduces their cost. Audi/VW is the industry leader in this field.

    2001 Honda Prelude Type SH/ 2011 BMW 328xi / 2011 Honda Pilot EX-L w/ Navigation

  • My Audi dealer has given me a 2002 A4 1.8T quattro with sport pkg, upgraded sound system (the Bose audio pckg) as well as some other things I can't remember now -- it has a tiptronic.

    I love everything about this car -- except the transmission. This car has 3K miles on it, rides and handles great, heated seats here in cold Cincinnati today are fabulous. The D or S position on the shifter do not provide satisfactory results -- either the engine races (S) or lugs (D) -- the shifting itself is smooth and I presume efficient -- the car seems to have been emasculated (or efemulated?) though -- and I have to believe it is the transmission since I have driven an A4 before but with the 6spd.

    I love this car, though in EVERY other way -- the ride is very firm AND very comfortable.
  • It's good to hear that you get an Audi loaner for your A6 maintainence. My dealer doesn't provide Audi loaner. Instead, they have pick up services to and from my work place.

    I have 2100 miles on my 2002 A4 already and it's still going strong and flawless.

    vince...8o)
  • *tsk* ...my dealer gives out Grand Cherokees as service loaners *groans* as they are also a Jeep dealer. Not as bad as it could be but I'd sure rather have an A6 when getting serviced --better than nothing, though.

    Vince-- I've been told that AoA will reimburse the dealer for a loaner if warranty work is done that requires the car to be kept overnight. So if you ever have to have warranty work done, be sure to inquire about that. Also, those dealers that do not have a free service loaner program usually have rental fleets which allow them to rent you a car at corporate (or reduced) rates while your car is being serviced.

    --'rocco
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,837
    We are looking for lawyers (any age, sex, kind of car) who are car nuts.

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  • I always sign a rental agreement with the dealer -- but the rate is specified as $0.00 -- I have to buy gas and they photocopy my insurance coverage card.

    The A4 I had seemed to be held back by the transmission, I was able to put 64 miles on it and tried the tip, the D the S -- I have recently driven both my wifes TT and a 2001 A4 1.8T with manual and they were great.

    A couple of visits ago the loaner was an S4 w/tip -- it seemed fine engine/transmission match wise, tho. But I still like the manual better. Perhaps the "flaws" IMO are reduced or virtually eliminated with horsepower and torque, like in the S4 or my 4.2 A6.

    I checked the dealer's lot while wating for some paperwork, and there were NO A6's or allroads and no A4 3.0's (at that moment) with manual transmissions. And, I must assume that most of the inventory was NOT for customers but for "stock" -- which is at once refreshing and kinda like watching "an old friend die." Sorry to be so dramatic, but if you have ever seriously driven virtually any of the Audi's in this country over the past 5 - 10 years with a stick shift, you really get hooked on them.
  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,461
    My friend with the '02 A4 who had his gas gague problem sloved has had the pleasure (or displeasure because he'd rather be in his own car) of sampling numerous Audis that hid dealer has as loaners (My guess id they're lease returns that the delaership can't get rid) including: An '02 A6 3.0Q, A '99 A6 2.8 Front Trak, A '99 or '00 A4 1.8T Q, A '97 A6 2.8Q, & A '96 A6 2.8 Front Trak. The dealership where he bought and services his car also has 2 S4s and 2 TTs in their loaner fleet (He has yet to get one of those). He said the '99 A6 2.8 Front Trak "felt" quicker than the '02 A6 3.0Q. The '97 A6 is loaded to the gills and drives much smoother than the '96 with Front Trak. He really liked the way the older A4 1.8T drove, even though it had the Tiptronic and base suspension. His A4 3.0 has a 6 speed & SP (among other things).

    2001 Honda Prelude Type SH/ 2011 BMW 328xi / 2011 Honda Pilot EX-L w/ Navigation

  • nyccarguynyccarguy Stamford, CTPosts: 7,461
    I agree with you. Although I've only driven an '01 S4 and an '02 A4 3.0, the Audi manuals are so easy to drive. The Quattro makes launching the car from a standstill very easy. I'd reccommend it to anybody to buy as their first manual transmission car.

    2001 Honda Prelude Type SH/ 2011 BMW 328xi / 2011 Honda Pilot EX-L w/ Navigation

  • Audi guys/gals -

    I'm in the market for a new car and have been comparing the A4, S4 and Subaru WRX. I'm aware of the explicit differences with the three: S4 has much higher performance than the A4; the WRX is a little "tinnier" and has less amenities than the Audis; the cost factors; etc. The one thing I'm not sure about is the differences under the skins of the A4 and S4. Specifically:

    - Chassis: Is the chassis of the 2002 A4 much different than that of the newest S4? Did they increase torsional regidity?
    - Suspension: I believe the 2002 A4 adopted the S4's suspension for the most part. Need confirmation.

    I guess I'm leaning toward the S4 for performance reasons, but I've always been a "state of the art" kind of guy, which is where the appeal of the 2002 A4 lies. If the differences are minor enough, I can overlook the S4's older styling (which I still find attractive anyway), take the performance and be happy with my decision. Basically, I'm looking for differences that would justify A4 vs S4 and vice versa.

    Thanks much!
  • lauk0dglauk0dg Posts: 563
    I own a 2001.5 A4 1.8T and test drove a 2002 S4 (old body style) and 2002 A4 1.8T with sports suspension (new body style), and also a 2002 WRX. I can definitely feel that the 02 A4 is structurally stronger when it goes over highway expansion cracks and flex joints. The suspension, in my opinion, is harder yet more comfortable than the S4 suspension. And those 17" rims on the 02 A4 sports pkg.....are just gorgeous.

    However, when it comes to power, if you can afford the S4, go with it. The S4 and the WRX are 2 totally different animals. The WRX is raw, and the suspension and engine are tuned so that you feel like you are driving a rally car. The turbo sounds awesome, but it's annoying if you are in a conversation with your passengers. The S4 is a more civilized version of power. It's also the ultimate "sleeper".

    I'd go for the 02 S4, then 02 A4, then 02 WRX.

    (Great to have another Chicagoean!!)

    Billy
  • nitpickernitpicker Posts: 89
    Sorry to have been AWOL from these boards for so long; I've really been swamped with work.

    Anyway...has anybody had a problem with creaking in the steering column? I'm hearing that occasionally when I turn the steering wheel on my 2001.5 1.8T Tiptronic. It isn't loud, and it doesn't happen very often, but I didn't know whether it was something I should be concerned about.
  • jlt75jlt75 Posts: 1
    Just purchased a 02 Audi A4 last week, and I love it.. I really looked for a long time at Audi's and other cars such as the Passat, Highlanders, Saab 9-5, and LandRovers. Im really glad I choose the Audi... I love it and look forward to driving it every day!
  • jdbtensaijdbtensai Posts: 122
    or at least a varied set of cars. a passat or a highlander, an audi or a landrover, or maybe a saab 9-5? :)
    good decision.
  • jagboyxkrjagboyxkr Posts: 53
    Has anyone else seen the new A4 convertible? It resembles the style of the new A4 sedan, but there are noticeable differences in the body panels besides having no fixed roof. Even the interior is different. I was wondering if Audi is planning to replace the style of the new A4 sedans built in the next few years with body panels that are closer to those of the convertible, or if they want to keep the designs and styles separate. The cost of production would be higher to have the cars not share components, and most other companies have their sedan and the convertible based off of it share many body panels to cut costs. The A4 sedan and convertible don't even share bumper panels or paint! Even the headlights and taillights are different units on each design. Also, is Audi planning a coupe version of the new A4? And, will the new S4 be based off of the new A4 sedan or the coupe/convertible? I'd hate to buy a brand new 2002 A4 sedan and find out that Audi is replacing the body panels of the 2003 or 2004 A4 sedan with ones that are the same as the new convertible's.
  • lauk0dglauk0dg Posts: 563
    I would doubt if Audi would replace body panels on the 2003 or 2004 sedan that soon. The older A4 bodystyle lasted from 96 to 01 here in US.

    I think the most expensive car component is the chassis. I believe the convertible shares that with the sedan. Bodypanels are just cosmetic fixes and they are not that expensive. Just like the Accord coupe and sedan which look different on the outside but are actually sharing the same chassis. The new S4 definitely bases itself on the sedan. I would think Audi will do the same thing as the 00 to 02 S4, which means they will drop a more powerful powerplant (currently most likely a 4.2L NA V8, but all of us would like to see a 2.9L twin-turbo V6), and put some more aggressive body panels and wheels and maybe a lip spoiler on it. It better beats the new M3's 333hp.....and would it be nice if the convertible can have the new S4 engine.....an S4 convertible.....mmmmmm is AoA listening????

    Billy
  • bburton1bburton1 Posts: 395
    Heard a rumor Audi is introducing a Constantly Variable Transmission in one of their vehicles. Anybody know any specifics about this. It is an old idea but to date no one has been able to design one that will work with a relatively powerful engine. Lots of potential advantages-essentially a direct drive automatic-really cool if it works. Hats to Audi/VW or whomever if they have pulled this one off.
  • gooniesgoonies Posts: 24
    how much lower does the sports equipped a4 sit compared to the non sports? does quattro make a difference? thanks
  • visordocvisordoc Posts: 48
    bburton: CVT is already here. It is available as the auto transmission for the Front-Trak (ie. fwd) new Audi A4's and A6's. Audi's next move is to integrate CVT with its Quattro.

    goonies: answers: 3/4 inch; yes, big difference. Sales stats show that over 90% of A4's in North America are sold with Quattro. Quattro itself defines Audi.
  • lauk0dglauk0dg Posts: 563
    I think you want to know if vehicles with Quattro has a lowered suspension vs non Quattro. No it makes no difference in height, at least not the published figures, if you ignore the additional weight of Quattro exert on the suspension. I know BMW 3 series equipped with AWD xi rides higher than the RWD siblings.

    Billy
  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,071
    I picked up the new European Car magazine today -- the issue is chock full of Audi and VW information.

    Including this:

    There is a 265HP Audi 4 cylinder engine that will be put into the new (2003) TT. Also there was a mention of a new 300 HP V6 that will be in the upcoming "S4" and will soon be made available for the TT. British CAR magazine says new S4 will have available a 340 HP V8, presumablly the same one that is in the S6 Avant here in the US.

    When I see the word available, I get excited, 'cause as much as I am lusting for more HP and torque, I think a 300HP V6 in a new A4 body with appropriate suspension bits would be better balanced and, I assume, would have the same early-on torque as the current 2.7T. The 4.2 IMHO is Audi's most versitile engine, but only when it is twin turbo'd. In the US, an up-powered V6 (2.9T) in an A4 would be my choice if there are options available between the V6 and V8 -- as I said, I would love an S4 and an S4+ with the differentiation being the # of cylinders.

    And, wouldn't it be just dandy if the 225HP 1.8T or the purported 2.0T makes its way into the A4?

    The new direction I read about in both the newest CAR and European Car magazine for Audi is incredible.

    Even the possible (short term) VW's with the W8 engine are at the very least "interesting" as Mr. Spock used to say.

    And BTW if you are looking for what's up with the Audi and VW product line, effective March 2002, check out the British magazine CAR (March 2002).
  • gooniesgoonies Posts: 24
    thanks for the replies visordoc n lauk0dg. lauk got what i meant on my question, though. the a4 is a great ride. i will be joining you guys soon. im waiting to see if all the speculation of new engines or upgrades plus painted lowers ect, ect. will be available next year.
  • nicksdnicksd Posts: 2
    Hey everyone,

    Lately I've been thinking of buying a 2002 Audi A4 1.8T. I have a few questions though, that I was hoping some of you might be able to help with. Here they are:

    1.) I want to get the sports suspension, but I'm worried about the tires. I live in Southern California so 99% of the time I won't be in snow but there will be times I'll want to drive in the mountains and it is possible I'll be in the snow. Is it possible to get the sport package with all-weather tires or is that not recommended?

    2.) I like the fact that the base stereo comes with an in-dash 6-CD changer. I like good quality audio, however, and was wondering if the Bose is worth the extra $600. How is the stock stereo? If I upgrade to the Bose, will it still have the 6-CD changer?

    3.) When will information on the 2003 A4's come out? Does anyone think there will be any substantial differences in the 2003 A4 that would be worth waiting for rather than buying a 2002 this summer?

    4.) I live in San Diego, CA. Anyone have experience with Audi dealers around here? If so, please let me know any suggestions.

    Thanks!
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