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Audi A4 2004 and earlier

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  • drc4drc4 Posts: 56
    I really love my melange A4 because it hides dirt and minor scuffs extremely well and to me, the color really enhances the A4 styling, exuding class. My car always seems to turn heads and people have even stopped me in parking lots to look at it. This is my 3rd vehicle of this color and it's just so easy to take care of and can look great even when it's a little dirty. I know there are a ton of gold cars out there... Accords, Camrys, Maxims, etc, but you won't see many melange A4s and the Audi styling easily sets it apart from the competition! I've owned a couple white cars and although they can look sharp when freshly detailed, they required much more attention than melange.

    It was fate that my dealer had this particular car on the lot, which was special ordered for a foreign customer who wanted the navigation then changed his mind. Because of this I got an unbelievable deal of $150 over invoice after some fancy negotiating. Strange how things can work out. Sounds like the melange A4 at the other dealer may be a decent deal, though I'm wondering why you wouldn't want Quattro, which not only significantly improves residual value/resale...moreso than any other feature on the A4s...but also has a tremendous effect on the numbers used in figuring the loan or lease (especially a lease). But then I realize some people don't really need it, which is why Audi provides a choice.

    Again, the bottom line is whatever makes you feel great about your purchase with no regrets. BTW, Equalizer1 was a big help and influence on my decision to get an A4. I haven't regretted it! Mine goes in for its 10K mi free service tomorrow and hate to be without it for even a day...although they always give me a new A6 to drive (trying to get me to trade up!) and I can handle that. Last time they gave me an A6 twin turbo and I hated to return it.

    Good luck and whatever you decide on, I hope your dealer treats you as well as mine treats me.
  • DRC4

    You and I obviously are on the same wavelength. When I read your posts, it seems you take the words directly out of my mouth.

    As you and I had discussed a few months ago, I really wanted the Melange, and my husband wanted the silver. We went back and forth on this for a while, until he won. I still sometimes wish I had the Melange, but the silver has grown on me. I think there are more interesting interior color combinations that you can have with the Melange, as opposed to the Silver. Oh well......

    I'm glad I helped you in your decision. It really helps when you are in love with your car. Then being a walking commercial makes it easy and honest to let others know the advantages of a certain product.

    COTMC

    I truly don't think you'll ever regret getting the Bose, even at the $600 price. Most of the premium stereos on other cars are around that price. As I said in a previous post, I think besides the sound, that the fact that I would have had to have the dashboard ripped out to get an upgraded aftermarket system, made the Bose choice a no-brainer.

    Again, good luck with the car. I love the Melange, and it sounds like you got the perfect combinations all around at a great price.

    Like you said, with 4 yrs. fully paid maintenance, how can you go wrong?
  • drc4drc4 Posts: 56
    Actually, silver is the most popular A4 color by far as you undoubtedly know from monitoring the AudiWorld A4 forum. Like melange, silver really accents the A4 styling and looks great. But you're correct that it's very limited as to compatible interior choices, and I think you made the obvious, best choice. Strange, but of all the A4s I see around here I've never seen silver. There are several black, white, a couple reds and blue. As rare as melange is and thinking I had the only one in the area, I'm upset by the fact that there's another melange in my neighborhood! What are the odds? Oh well... at least as far as I know there's only 2 of us. My sales manager said melange is like the white pearl TL - hard to get and limited, so I like the idea of having something unique.

    I have no doubt the Bose system is audibly better than the stock Symphony system. The problem I have is door rattles from speaker response that I haven't had a chance to fix yet. The speakers are fine, it's just inner door elements rattling. Do you have any rattles resulting from your Bose? Maybe Audi takes a little more care in assembly with the Bose system.

    I took my car in today for its 10K mi service and the A6 was unavailable so they gave me a new Jetta. Nice car. It was interesting to find the sunroof doesn't exhibit any air noise, unlike the noticeable noise in my car. It's dead quiet. If it can be achieved on a Jetta, why can't Audi do it on a $31K A4??? One of those little life annoyances that makes you say, "hmmmm."

    Take care.
  • drc4drc4 Posts: 56
    After driving the Jetta today while my A4 was being serviced, I truly learned to appreciate my car and Quattro even more. We had 25-35mph south winds all day, causing direct cross winds on our east-west interstate. The Jetta was noticeably quieter with no wind noise from the sunroof but it was all over the freeway in the strong cross winds, requiring a lot of correcting. On the drive back home after picking up my car, the same strong wind was just barely noticeable. The Quattro tracked perfectly and I couldn't feel any buffeting or drifting. Gotta love a heavier car and Quattro for a better margin of safety and driving comfort in these conditions!
  • You're right about the sunroof noise. It is very loud. As far as rattles in the door, I had one about a year ago, and it was the interior door handle and they fixed it right away. I have had nothing wrong with the car since. It is as tight at the day I bought it!
  • Crack open one of the rear windows. That should help to alleviate some of the wind noise
  • drc4drc4 Posts: 56
    Thanks for the input but I think you're referring to the thundering/pounding caused by unequal pressure at certain speeds when the sunroof is open. I'm talking about a closed sunroof. I guess I should have made that clear. It's too cold here right now to be running around with the sunroof open!! Fortunately, the unequal pressure thing (with sunroof open) isn't as bad on my A4 as with previous cars but when I do experience it I just crank the sunroof up or back a notch until I'm out of the 35-40mph range, where it usually occurs.
  • cotmccotmc Posts: 1,081
    Hi. I just wanted to attempt to answer your question on why I don't necessarily want Quattro.

    I think a large part of the answer is that I live in an area where I won't see the benefits as much as most people. I live outside of Phoenix, AZ, in an area that never sees any snow and very rarely experiences any rainfall. Secondly, the roads here are very straight, flat, and boring. Almost every single street is on a straight North/South or East/West grid allignment.

    Thirdly, I value all the straight ahead accleration I can achieve, without doing aftermarket mods to the car or engine. The FWD version is 250 lbs lighter, and this makes it a little faster.

    Also, we have an SUV with AWD, and so we have some added traction with our "family" vehicle, in case we need to drive in unfriendly road conditions. Our AWD SUV would almost always be the vehicle of choice for any family road trips. This A4 would be mostly my own personal transport to/from work and around town.

    Finally, I have a goal of staying close to $25K on this purchase. Even though I may see all the investment returned to me if I sell the car in 3 years, I would prefer to keep the extra $1750 in my own possession.

    If I lived up north, or even if I lived on the West Coast where they have some interesting highways, I would likely give very strong consideration to buying the Quattro. I just can't see enough benefits for my particular situation.

    If you think I should consider additional reasons for purchasing Quattro, I'd be interested in reading them. However, I'm not sure my mind can be changed at this point. My tentative purchase deal of $25,340 for a new 2001 Melange 1.8T with ecru/clay leatherette interior, Premium Package, Sports Package, and Bose is almost too tempting to pass up. Having found out it has the ecru seats and clay dash/carpet makes it even more tempting.

    By the way, I finally received a 2001 A4 brochure! My previous homework was outdated. The Advance atmosphere ecru leatherette seat option provides both a clay dash and a clay carpet. The 2000 brochure stated the Advance atmosphere with ecru seats provided a brownstone dash and an ecru carpet. I'm definitely happy with the changes for 2001!
  • I agree with you. If I lived in Arizona (and that's probably the only state in the US I would consider this), I probably would save the $1750 for the quattro and go with the FWD.

    There are plenty of people on this forum if you go back a bit, who live in warm weather climates that have FWD A4's and are very happy with them. Quattro really shines in the rain, and if doesn't rain often in your neck of the woods, the FWD should be just fine.

    Good luck!
  • I mentioned your (closed) sunroof noise on the one of the Audi forums, because I was interested in whether any of those enthusiasts experienced the same thing. Only one said they had, and here was his solution:

    "My sunroof started doing the same thing a couple of months ago. Here's what got rid of it for me. There's some sort of fuzzy material all around the sunroof. This fuzzy stuff had gotten compressed over time and became a lot more solid. I took a toothbrush and brushed it out again all the way around...Squeak is GONE!"

    It might be helpful.
  • laurasdadalaurasdada Posts: 2,624
    I just thought I'd throw in my .02 regarding AWD. I bought a new car 19 months ago, and while I loved the A4, it's size was just a little too small and price just a little too high for my needs at the time. Anywho, I've lived in New Engalnd all my life and been a skiier most of my life. Regular trips into the mountains of Vermont and Maine. In all those years, through all those snow storms, I can probably count on the fingers of one hand the number of times I wished I had AWD. I've always driven FWD and it has been more than sufficient to get me there and back. Never even had snow tires, although my current ride has traction control which has become a favorite.

    I understand the usefullness of AWD (esp. Quattro), but I do not desire the added weight (and associated decrease in performance and fuel economy) and complexity. I believe FWD is sufficient for 99.99% of the situations I've driven in. Just mho, doesn't make me correct for everyone. Looking forward to late next year when I'll be new car shopping again. 2002 A4 will definately be on my list, maybe even a TT! Are Audi interiors the best, or what?

    Hope y'all enjoy your rides!

    '13 Jaguar XF, '11 BMW 535xi, '02 Lexus RX300

  • Hey, your toothbrush technology worked for
    me! Thanks a lot!
  • cotmccotmc Posts: 1,081
    I sold my 99 328i today, and within a few hours later I completed the purchase of a 2001 A4 1.8T FWD with melange ecru/clay, Premium, Bose and Sports Package. As I may have stated earlier, my most significant reason for doing this was financial: After selling my 328i and purchasing this A4, I walked away with an extra $3000, even after paying all my fees and taxes. Now I have a brand new car with a new warranty and 4 years of free maintenance. Since I needed to buy new tires for the 328i (I warned the buyer he would need to buy tires soon), I figure I actually came out about $3700 ahead. (By the way, I had purchased that 328i as a used car about 15,000 miles and 14 months ago, for less than a thousand more than what I sold it at today. That is why I can argue that I received some financial benefits from this.)

    But forget the financial benefits. I really like this car! I was worried it would be a noticeable step down in quality and performance from my 2-year old 328i, but once I started driving it home, I became greatly impressed with this A4! That little engine gave me 34mpg on the highway tonight, and that 170hp engine loves to rev and accelerate. This car is quick and nimble. The manual shifting is extremely smooth, and the ecru/clay interior is VERY classy, especially with the melange exterior. Although real driving enthusiasts probably aren't too happy with the Sports Package 16" 10-spoke rims and the Dunlop 16" SP8000 tires, I think they are quite nice. I've found that the lower profile 17" tires wear out too fast, and they typically provide a little too much road feel and noise for my taste.

    Equalizer1: Thanks for the great feedback on the audio system and interior color choices. Your audio feedback helped influence me toward the Bose upgrade.

    DRC4: Thanks for the great feedback on your melange A4.

    It's funny: when I was at the local Audi dealer last week, I saw a row of A4's in blue, black, silver, and melange. With all of them side-by-side, I didn't give much of any notice to the melange color. When I drove to the other Audi dealer outside of town to purchase my A4 today, and I saw my melange A4 sitting by itself in the showroom, this car really stood out as a very nice looking and classy car. My appreciation for this color choice grew on me when we stopped at a restaurant, and again after we arrived at home. I feel fortunate that the dealer had my exact desired options in this melange/ecru/clay color mixture. I couldn't have ordered a better combination if I tried!
  • Just bought a 99 A4 2.8Q. I thought these came with the remote key as standard, but the dealer told me that was actually an option and only gave me a normal key. Is he right? And how do I tell if the option is installed and they've simply lost the key?
  • Seems to me that the folding key with remote entry was part of the Convenience Package on my late model '98, but I'm going from memory and I'm not sure if this may have changed with the '99 model year.
  • getz1getz1 Posts: 63
    I am very interested in the A4 1.8T, but am curious if anyone knows if the next model year will have any minor changes. The 30 hp boost makes a tremendous difference, but the lack of power seats, leather, etc. in a 30K car is odd. It seems that audi is excluding these options in an attempt to make the A4 2.8 more appealing as it currently stands in comparison to the 1.8T. I can't justify spending an additional 4 grand for the ammenities that should be available in the 1.8T, when the 2.8 makes only 20 hp more with slightly slower acceleration. I would prefer to wait for these options to become available, as I am sure they will once the A4 3.0 is introduced. However, the dealer seems to suggest that the 3.0 is still 1.5 years away, which is an awful long time to wait for power seats. Does anyone else find it pecuilar that audi would not offer the same options between the 2.8 and 1.8T A4 models.
    Thanks,
    Getz
  • Congrats on the new car. You'll love it more every time you drive it.

    Have fun!
  • cotmccotmc Posts: 1,081
    getz1:

    From my point of view, power seats and wood trim are about the only significant differences between the 2.8 and the 1.8T. The other difference is that you cannot order the 1.8T with the leather option. I believe the power seat feature is the most significant difference, and that Audi wants this to remain a differentiator to help distance the 1.8T from the 2.8.

    Since you would much prefer the power seats instead of the manual seats (the 1.8T does have a power lumbar support adjustment, of all things!), you definitely have my empathy. I agree that the current 2.8 doesn't seem to be a very good buy after the hp increase for the 1.8T, but Audi might start offering some very good incentives on the 2.8 soon. (That's just a guess; not based on anything I've heard.)

    Do you know if the 2002 1.8T will offer power seats as an option? Or will you automatically go with the 3.0 as soon as it is available, regardless of how the 2002 1.8T is equipped?

    Regarding the 2002 models, I was told they should be available by September. Maybe October at the latest. Your dealer is either misinformed; or he is lying in an attempt to sell you a car now; or Audi just had a major schedule setback that only your dealer is aware of!
  • Guys,

    Need your help with this one...

    I have a 1997 Audi A4 1.8t. Haven't driven it in quite some time (was overseas). Got back, and when I tried to start it, i juist heard this continual "chk chk chk chk" sound (not the usual cranking sound, but not completely dead either!). Anyway, the battery indicator was at 8 volts (lowest indicator). So, I thought this was a battery issue, and used my other car to jump it. No luck! It would continue making the same sound. Any idea what I'm dealing with here? Last time I drove it, it was fine...What could have happened?

    Any advice at all would be deeply appreciated!

    Thanks to one and all!...

    -Sri-
  • cotmccotmc Posts: 1,081
    I won't be of much help, but I can't help but suspect it is your battery. A good battery would never indicate less than 11 volts!

    I would recommend trying to jump-start your A4 again, but this time double-check that the battery cable clamps are biting into the battery terminals, and that the battery terminals are relatively clean. If that doesn't work, then I would recommend taking the battery into an auto parts store, such as AutoZone or Checker, and let them test it.
  • getz1getz1 Posts: 63
    I will definetly wait for the 2002 1.8T, in hopes of the power seats. The 3.0 will be nice, but for the type of driving that I do, the 1.8T is sweet. The low end torque is inspiring, and this is an amazingly tossable little car. I just hope they dont mess with the body style to much, as currently it stands as a wonderful blend of sport and luxury. Thanks for your input.
    -getz
  • Does anybody knows that the 2002 1.8T comes with 170hp or 150hp? Last week I read it from Road&Track and Motor Trend that it would only comes with 150hp?? Are they correct? Any info would be much appreciated!
  • cotmccotmc Posts: 1,081
    Good news! According to the January issue of Automobile magazine, the 2002 A4 1.8T will be 170hp. The A4 3.0 will have 217 horsepower and 221 ft-lbs of torque. The article also mentions that the U.S. launch time will be in July 2001.

    getz1: If I were you, I'd try to take a look at the pictures of the new 2002 model. I'm not too sure I like the styling of the upcoming model more than the existing model. That is why I had no problems buying a 2001 model. (I hope I don't regret it next year!) The rear end of the 2002 A4 seems to have a strong resemblence to the A6. From what I can tell, Audi may have tried to add some class and luxury to the look, at the possible expense of some of the "sporty" look of the existing model. There are a couple pics in the January Automobile issue. I think audiworld.com has a link to some pictures of the 2002 model.

    In favor of the 2002 model, there is more interior room, the body is more rigid, and the suspension is improved. According to the magazine, the 2002 A4 should be a better driving automobile.
  • drc4drc4 Posts: 56
    SAR21102:

    Thanks for the input but I guess I just didn't make myself too clear in previous posts although I did specifically mention "air" noise in post #541, 3rd paragraph. The "noise" I'm talking about is wind noise coming from the closed sunroof due to a bad seal or bad design... or both. I have no squeaks at all in my car - but too much wind noise with the sunroof closed. This is a well-documented complaint on the A4 Forum. I wish it was just a squeak because I can usually easily fix that kind of stuff.

    Cotmc:

    Congrats!! I've owned 3 BMWs in the past and I had to laugh when you said you were afraid the A4 would be a noticeable step down in quality and performance. The performance issue may be debatable, but from my experience, Audi is - if anything - a step up in overall quality. I'll be flamed by die-hard BMW owners for that, but who cares...it's just a personal observation. You're going to love the A4 but don't put too much stock in the MPG accuracy of the OBC. Use the good old manual method to figure your MPG on fillups. Sometimes my OBC shows 50 or 60 MPG and jumps all over the place. I always drive with the "miles remaining" display, which seems to be relatively accurate and much more useful.

    Enjoy the new ride! I still look back and admire mine in parking lots, where I always park in an end spot as far away as I can get. No dents or dings yet after a year and it's good exercise. Keep us informed on your new love affair.
  • drc4drc4 Posts: 56
    Does anyone besides me despise the spell check system on this forum? Probably the most annoying system I've seen in any program.
  • cotmccotmc Posts: 1,081
    Yep, it's a great ride! Just the same, it's a good thing this isn't an A4 vs 3-series comparison topic, or there would be some flaming going on! ;-)

    I don't pay attention to the real-time MPG display in the trip computer, but the averaged MPG display seems to be pretty consistent so far. But I understand your point -- compute MPG the old-fashion way and see how much the computer's averaged MPG calculation deviates from that.

    The spell checker gets a big thumbs down from within every topic I've been observing. Our family car is the new Acura MDX SUV, and there were a handful of people in the MDX topic who all agree with you. I don't use this spell checker at all! I just do a quick visual double-check before I post, and I occasionally do one or two edits after the initial post. I also try to avoid any words that are tough to spell! ;-)
  • We must have the same taste in automobiles - my wife and I own an A4 and have an MDX on order, although I still may switch that to an allroad if the rumored tow hitch finally becomes available sometime before May when the MDX is scheduled to arrive.

    We sure LOVE the A4 though - a 98.5 silver 2.8Q with all the options - just past 30,000 miles with no problems, and it looks and rides like new.
  • drc4drc4 Posts: 56
    If possible, post some pictures of your new car on the A4 forum or e-mail me. I'm really curious about the interior color combination. I just can't imagine clay with ecru & melange and would like to see how it looks. My dealer doesn't have any cars with that combo.

    Thanks... and I imagine you've been driving the A4 as much as possible!
  • I guess we all have similar tastes, as my husband and I have the 2000 A4 2.8, and the 2000 Acura 3.2 TL. Although it is not the MDX, it is still an Acura. We have a Jeep as well for the real 4 wheeling.
  • cotmccotmc Posts: 1,081
    I guess Audi's and Acura's go together! Neither manufacturer seems to have the vaunted "top-tier" reputation from their country (as Mercedes/BMW and Lexus have that ranking); but both offer upscale luxury, emphasis on value and performance; and reliability that is just as good as those "top-tier" nameplates.

    Equalizer1: If you ever need to reduce the vehicle count from 3 to 2, the MDX offers a great compromise between your 3.2TL and a mid-to-full sized SUV. (Well, it won't have the same offroad capability of your Jeep...) I had a 2000 TL as a loaner car just a couple months ago, and I really liked its low-end torque and good acceleration for its size. However, I was still happy to get back my MDX at the end of the day. :-)

    Jbaumgart: A May delivery of your MDX seems to be a fairly extensive wait! I hope the wait isn't too annoying for you. I can't help but think it would be annoying for me. Let me know if you live anywhere out west, if you might like me to check a couple of my local dealers. I've recently (3 weeks ago) had one dealer tell me she had unclaimed MDXs arriving in March. The Audi Allroad sounds like a great vehicle, but I think it is too expensive for my budget. Has the Allroad been in production for a year or more in Europe, or is it entirely new? If it is a brand new vehicle, I would likely trust the first-year reliability of the MDX more so than that of the Allroad. I could be wrong, and of course your mileage may vary, but I think companies like Acura tend to have fewer first-year production bugs.

    By the way, the MDX makes for a great complementary vehicle to the A4!
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