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Audi A6

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Comments

  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,237
    You're my kinda guy. Pay cash and drive it for 6+ years.

    That's exactly what I'm in the process of doing with my current vehicle. If the Audi long-term reliability reputation were better, I might be doing it today in a 2.7 A6, or if they'd bring the diesels to the U.S. . . However, I'm only a bit over five years into my current vehicle and expect/hope to get 2-3 more years out of it.

    Point being. . .keep us posted. If you drive less than 15K miles/year, you have the ability to be covered by a warranty the whole time. I generally blow through the mileage limits, so actually require a vehicle that doesn't break.

    Love Audis. Hate trips to the dealer, even if they're "under warranty." My time is worth something -- quite a bit more as I age.
  • . . .for 6 years or 100,000 miles.

    And, glad to have helped.

    And, to each his/her own on the auto vs stick.

    You must know by now that I also have a tiptronic in my new A6.

    My allroad is missed, you will certainly enjoy yours.

    Someday, someone will explain why paying cash for something that depreciates as rapidly as a car will make sense.

    Congratulations.
  • bargamon1bargamon1 Posts: 110
    Mark,

    If you have a boat load of cash and can't be bothered with those "pesky" payments, then it makes sense!

    Too much "opportunity cost" associated with paying cash for me.
  • jonwardjonward Posts: 8
    Thanks for the information folks. I'll go with the 17-inch probably. Incidentally, I was not looking for a "sofa" type ride. We live in the middle of nowhere VA with lots of windy, 2-lane roads. Currently have an 2002 S430 and have to keep the adjustable air suspension in the middle position. Set for a soft ride it literally made me car sick. Can't wait to leave that 2-ton albatross to get back in an Audi.

    Anybody remember the 5000 S? That was a CAR. And thanks to 60 Minutes reports was available used for a song.

    Test drove the Audi, BMW 530 and Infiniti M. The Bimmer had the best ride, I think. The Infiniti had the best navigation pkg. So I bought the A6.
  • Yes definately. I have an 05 A6 with 17 in wheels and it rides horrible on bumpy roads or any road with expansion joints. I would trade my 17in wheels for 16's in a New York minute
  • jjw6414jjw6414 Posts: 6
    I have a 2 month old A6 3.2 V6 with the sport package and everything else. Really do like the car. However, I recently moved to a new area with some very bumpy roads on my usual route to work.. I love the handling with the sport suspension, but the ride is very bumpy. I am not much of a car guy and could use some advice on how to smooth out the ride a bit in my new surroundings. Other than swapping the summer UHP tires for some all season tires, any advice.
  • carnaughtcarnaught Posts: 1,577
    Have you made sure your tires aren't over inflated?
  • jjw1965jjw1965 Posts: 1
    Yes. They were a bit overinflated when I brought it home, but fixed that. Do allweather tires make a big difference? If so, UHP tires or grand touring? any ideas.
  • rjlaerorjlaero Posts: 659
    All season tires can actually make your car ride harder because of the stiffer sidewalls. Summer tires have a softer compound rubber to make them sticker to the road, but you may have problems in the peak winter months with snow and such. But summer tires can wear out in very qucikly and can get rather noisy as well.

    Tires differ greatly from brand to brand, and one all season tire may ride better than the other. I've seen Michelin, Pirelli, and Continental tires on the new 05 A6.

    The sport suspension with the 18 inch rims is going to give you the hardest ride setup on the new A6. I think the best combination of ride and looks is going with the 18's and regular suspension. The 17 inch wheels don't look good on the A6, and the 18's make a huge differnce in stying and really set the car off.

    But for those of you who live in the land of potholes, you may have to make a different choice.
  • Advice: (-) minus zero your tire size and go to a tire noted for its ride characteristics. This data and subjective reviews, too, can be found at tirerack.com.

    Minus sizing will have to be determined, by you, to be of merit. Perhaps simply going with grand touring tires of the same size will be sufficient to improve the ride.

    Of course, the sport suspension package is a "system" -- and this system does rely on the tires, wheels, springs, sway bars and struts working in cooperation with each other. The springs on the sport package model are less soft than the non sport and the car is slightly lower, the swaybars are probably about 20% thicker which controls body lean at the expense of some ride softness.

    I would certainly ask someone who has NO interest in selling you a set of tires, for instance, what their advice on this matter would be.

    BTW, minus zero sizing would probably allow you to go from a 40 series tire to a 45 series tire (which may also have some winter benefits due to the fact that it should be more narrow, too.)

    I went with the 18" tires and "no season" tires -- thus far, however, I have pretty much enjoyed all aspects of the A6 3.2, but I have not pushed it handling wise to the point where I might appreciate the summer only performance tires.

    UHP all seasons are, too, pretty stiff on the sidewalls, since they attempt to perform more like a summer tire than an HP all season tire.
  • jjw6414jjw6414 Posts: 6
    Thanks for the advice markcincinnatti. I had read up a little over the weekend and had come to a similar conclusion on the minus sizing. I live in Dallas and drive downtown (bad roads) or on the tollway (good roads). Love the tollway with this car, hate the inner city roads. I drove both the sport and nonsport with 18 inch tires and went with the sport because I was tired of "soft" cars. However, I would probably make a different choice if I had the mulligan. Only have 800 miles on the car as I took three weeks of vacation right after I bought it, and the dealer has promised to make it as palatable as possible if I switch. Not sure what I will do, probably just drive it for a couple of years and then rethink. Probably will re-tire if I keep it.
  • rjlaerorjlaero Posts: 659
    You could always put the regular springs back in the A6. Springs aren't that expensive, and it's a whole lot cheaper than trading in or switching cars.

    You would probobly have to do another 4 wheel aligment, and it might cost you $500-600 bucks or so with labor.
  • At that price, I think I would seriously consider HP Grand Touring tires, instead of mucking around with the springs (you would still have the lower jounce struts and thicker anti sway bars leftover) -- just a thought.
  • wbreaux1wbreaux1 Posts: 55
    Marks made the rhetorical (I think) remark "Someday, someone will explain why paying cash for something that depreciates as rapidly as a car will make sense."

    I'm not sure if this is someday, but personally I don't understand Mark's logic. It seems to me that when you acquire (buy or lease) a car, you must pay for the use you'll have from the car, which includes mileage, wear and tear, etc. It then becomes a financing decision as to whether you pay for it up front or over time, buy or lease, etc. I believe that the financing arm's of car companies make money, so why does it necessarily not make sense to pay cash and avoid paying them?

    I'm sure you've seen all the articles as have I about all the people who are "upside down" on cars. I can't see how that makes much sense. To me it actually makes more sense to borrow money for things that hold value or appreciate, otherwise you're left with debt and no asset.
  • jjw6414jjw6414 Posts: 6
    Follow-up. Knocked off work early and went back to the dealership and drove cars over the same bumpy course the local mercedes guy used to show off the E350, which rides really well. Drove my A6 with sport suspension and 18 inch pilot sport summer tires. versus an identical A6 with standard suspension, 18 inch wheels and pilot all season tires. I am keeping my A6. The ride is firmer but I cannot give up the handling and stability of the sport suspension. Sure, you feel more of the small stuff but fly over some railroad tracks going 50 or so and the sport suspension recovers immediately versus the standard setup. Both these cars are firm, but I think the handling outweighs the slightly rougher ride. I also noticed that the S-line A6s (with sport suspension) are all shod with Continental all-season tires as is the A6 4.2 with the adaptive air suspension. I think those tires are a better fit for the setup. I do think some of my dissatisfaction lies with the tires and I am headed for a different set. Reviews of the pilot sport summer tires all praise the handling but the ride is rougher than other options. The best A6 I have driven is the 4.2 with the adaptive suspension, but in my mind there is not enough there to warrant the 8-10K difference in price. For >62K i am probably looking at a different class of cars.

    Great experience with the dealer today. Willing to go the extra mile (even on the finances) to make sure I got the car I want. Might be back soon for a Q7 for the wife.

    Thanks to all for the good advice.
  • My point was to paraphrase my accountant who says, "buy what appreciates, rent (or lease) what depreciates."

    Although I can also add, one reason perhaps NOT to pay cash is "opportunity cost" of money or even the "peace of mind" that accrues to one with more liquidity.

    Of course my accountant also claims that most folks grow up to buy a car (on time payments) and rent an apartment which gets them no equity and often minus equity.

    The deals on leases, at this juncture, available make them difficult to pass up.

    Perhaps if I could acquire a two year old car off lease with about 50% of its original factory warranty (and also be CPO'd), that would would be the most financially sagacious "acquisition" method.

    Buying a new car in cash -- seems to ME -- like burning twenty dollar bills to light a cigar (and I don't even smoke.)

    To each his/her own.

    One of the folks I work with just bought a new Ford F150 4 door "all lux" pickup truck ($44,000 MSRP). He got it for $33,000 (employee pricing, etc etc etc.)

    We played a little bit of a speculative game -- after 4 years, if history is a good guide, the truck will have retained a larger % of its MSRP than most cars, after 6 years even more and after 10 years, "fugettaboudit."

    Not only is this Ford pickup truck more luxurious than most cars these days, it seems to have been a bargain. I rode in the thing and it is "library quiet" has a great sound system, has power everything and a [thirsty] V8 engine. It does not (at least I hope not) handle like any Audi. But, it seems more car like than it has a "right" to.

    I am not thinking of going to the pick-em-up side of life (at least not yet.) But, if I HAD to live with this vehicle (gasoline prices would bother me, somewhat) I would not feel like I would be out of place in a suit driving it (even here in Cincinnati.)

    Maybe, "rent what depreciates, buy what appreciates and buy trucks" makes the most sense.

    I'm not quite ready for that -- yet!
  • bargamon1bargamon1 Posts: 110
    Its the finance charge vs. Opportunity cost.

    Assume you can average 8% on 50k for 6 years Thats 79,000K Sure the stock/bond market fluctuates, but lets bring that to its historical level of 10% Thats $107,000.

    Naturally the finance cost is going to bring it down, but remember your paying off a loan, so the amount borrowed decreases.

    What really determines is the ability to make payments? Lets assume this person is not retired. Can he/she afford to make monthly payments? Does this person need to grow his/her net worth?

    Example. It takes 53 months compounding at 8% making $800 permonth savings into an account to reach $50,000. That same 50k if left to compound at 8% (use cash flow to pay $800 monthly payments) would grow to $71,000. Subtract the interest on the car, and thats the opportunity cost! Id rather have a growing lump sum! But thats my preference. I always have the ability to pay off this loan with the lump sum if I need too! This gives me options with my money. (depending on liquidity).

    Same can be said for real estate, or anyother LONG TERM investment. One of my stocks pays over 4% dividend and has a nice growth record in the 15 y;ears I have owned it. If that 4% about pays my interest, then I still have the growth.

    ALso, if your income rises, paymentst becomes a smaller %.

    If I have substantial net worth, very little income from compensation (retired) and a good bit in bonds for income, then perhaps paying cash makes sense. And of course there are many other situations also where it make sense.

    It depends on your goals, net worth, liquidity factors, and preferences! There is no right or wrong. Nobody has to spend 50k or more on a car!
  • liferulesliferules Posts: 531
    Your argument is good, but I still have issue with renting a car (leasing) and having no equity when all is said and done. The 36 or 48 month lease expires and you are left with nothing except the money you've paid to rent the vehicle at a premium with interest. Granted, the individual who buys the vehicle outright still loses equity, but at least there is still something there at the end....just my way of seeing things... Its the same thing as renting an apartment vs. buying a house but on a smaller scale.

    I agree that if one were to invest the money of purchase into a good stock ETF, then you'd probably win the entire game, but most people who lease don't consider it this way and don't have the lump sum of cash on hand which they then invest. Thus, there is not investment to offset the interest loss by renting.
  • bondguy1bondguy1 Posts: 228
    I lease the A6...because after 3 years, I won't have to worry about engine problems because of older age of car. I also depreciate the miles for work ( a percentage of them, not all miles). I think unless you are going to keep a car for 6 plus years, then it doesn't make sense to purchase. Most people today don't keep a car more than 6 years (in this country...in Europe, they drive them until they die). You get the extra benefit of owning the car after 5 years of payments ( I used 60 months financing to keep payment on purchase closer to lease payment...although it's still more expensive payment) for one additional year if you trade it in in after the 6th year. I think in mose cases it's a wash...because you are putting a bigger down payment down when you purchase (thus the money you're getting back after you sell). And, some cars aren't worth that much anyway after 6 years and 80K plus miles. If you put very few miles on your car a year, this changes some benefits in favor of buying. I think the bottom line is that most people lease instead of purchase because it enables them to get a much nicer car for less money per month. If I put nothing down on a lease and $15K down on a purchase, and car is worth the same $15K at lease end ( which is a big MAYBE), and payments are less for leasing, then wheres the benefit to the purchase?
  • cdnpinheadcdnpinhead Forest Lakes, AZPosts: 3,237
    That 8% on $50K for six years is nice work, if you can get it.

    Here's a scenario for you: Pull $35K out of a collection of stock mutual funds in January of '00 & move it to a money market (can't remember, but 4 - 4.5%). In May, after the market is well along on its slide to oblivion (that lasted 3, count em, years), pay cash for a car, which would have cost more to finance then than money markets (let alone anything else) were paying.

    Three years after purchase, comparing what the car was worth to what the investments would have been, plus the cost of financing, yielded an interesting, and rather different result than your well thought out (generic & optimistic) scenario.

    Granted, mostly luck, but it worked for me. The next time (on my wife's vehicle, which was a truck, by the way), we dollar cost averaged what amounted to a cash purchase, over ~20 months.

    If you want a new vehicle (or need one because the warranty on an inherently unreliable & expensive one runs out), leasing makes lots of sense, particularly if the manufacturer is "participating" to move the iron.

    If you keep cars a long time and drive them 15 - 20K mi/year in the meantime. . .not so much.
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