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Audi A6 Maintenance and Repair



  • I am looking for a new car for my mom, 64 years old. She loved the A6 Quattro 3.0 but not the price. The main thing she worries about is the bad repair record. How bad is it? Are the problems fixed for 2003? Are the problems major or minor? She won't get a navigation system so those problems are mute. We also drove the Volvo S80, Lexus ES300 and Acura TL. None of these cars comes close in comparison to the Audi as far as ride, comfort, handling and style. But there's always the Lexus/Toyota quality.
  • zueslewiszueslewis Posts: 2,353
    The Audi A6 is one of their "most popular" cars. Avoid.
  • gold49gold49 Posts: 23
    I own a 2001 A6 2.8. Twice we've ripped the bumper off, and twice we've had it repaired AT NO COST by our Audi dealership.

    The first time I was pulling into a parking space and heard a major grinding noise- and found that a normal sized cement parking block had ripped off most of the front bumper. I took it in the next day to the dealership, and asked how often they repaired the bumpers.

    The response I received was not what I was expecting. The service manager admitted that this was a design fault in the car- that the front bumper clearance was a few inches lower than it really should be on the 2001 A6. He repaired it at no cost, but with a warning to be careful.

    Well, a few months later my wife had a similar experience. We very nicely went back to the dealer and asked for a replacement again. After several minutes of cordial disagreement, the service manager again agreed to fix the problem at no cost. Now....whether it matters that a family member purchases an A8 from the dealership whenever he hits his 50,000 end of warranty, I'm not sure. But this is a problem that is not uncommon, and if you are under warranty I'd demand they fix it.
  • Twice since in two years the fuel pump failed to shut off while filing my car - both times at full serve stations. My local station told me later that this had happened before and after afterwards they had their pump handles replaced. No problems since. (They only charged me for the amount I typically purchase - not the amount on the pump. Their idea - not mine.)

    When I picked up the car in February '01 ('01 2.7T w/6-speed) the salesman cautioned me about the low front end. In New England we have granite curbing in many places so most are careful anyway. I've had no problem.

    Question - lately when I start my car there is a loud whining coming from under the hood - turbo or turbo fan? Doesn't happen every time. Not always noticeable while driving but sometimes. Any ideas??? Should I call the service manager?
  • I no longer own my A6, but occasionally I still check the message boards to reinforce my decision to trade it in. Up until 9/02, I owned a sweet 2002 A6 4.2, which was an exquisite car inside and out. Put on 10,000 miles in 8 mos. and loved every mile. I never experienced one problem, although the brakes consistently squealed. The service advisor said that was common in humid climates, but now that I've read about all the brake replacements I'm not sure he was telling the truth.

    Even though the car was wonderful, I simply couldn't put up with paying $50k for a car and receiving "economy car" service. With even routine maintenance, Audi just couldn't get it together. When I got a nail in a tire, a new one had to be ordered from Germany. When I took the car in to have the tire replaced, the Parts Department had lost the new one. Even a routine oil change took 3 hours!

    The service I received was so poor, the Service Manager gave me a free 4-hour detailing, and in true Audi form, they detailed the car beautifully, then rotated the tires afterward and left the wheels filthy!

    Even Audi of America was incompetent. They called me to follow up on service visits I never had and when they followed up on actual visits they referred to my "A4"!

    The Service Advisor told me one time that the Germans (Audi) introduce the new technology and the Japanese (Lexus) perfect it. Well, why then wouldn't I rather have something that has been perfected rather than in the experimental stages? The "old" technology is fine with me as long as it works.

    So I've come full circle... I traded a '99 Lexus SC300 for the Audi. Now I've traded the Audi for an '03 SC430. Do I miss the teutonic feel, unbelievable handling, and growl of the A6 V-8? Absolutely. Do I need the aggravation and lack of support from their entire organization? Absolutely not.

    Even when I called Audi of America (and faxed them) to let them know why I'd traded the car, no one ever followed up.

    I see Audi advertising much more these days and selling more A6's (rightly so). They are also moving a lot more A4's. However, I don't see significant expansion in their service/support facilities. That makes me glad I traded mine in. They can't even handle the current service demands. I can only imagine what future owners will go through.

    Thanks for letting me put in my 2 Cents!
  • zueslewiszueslewis Posts: 2,353
    "When I got a nail in a tire, a new one had to be ordered from Germany. When I took the car in to have the tire replaced, the Parts Department had lost the new one"

    Audi covered a tire under warranty that had been pierced by a nail? For free?? And you're complaining?

    I don't know of another manufacturer that would do that.
  • No, the tire cost me $250.
  • zueslewiszueslewis Posts: 2,353
    makes sense. Sorry for the misunderstanding.

    OEM tires are junk, unfortunately, and aren't carried in regular shops.

    Good luck with your Lexus. I work exclusively in lemon law and breach of warranty cases (no, I'm not a lawyer, I'm an automotive consultant) and I see LOTS of A6s.
  • Luvinmylex,
    I would be interested to know which dealer gave you such poor service that you decided to get rid of your A6 4.2. You can e-mail me at: phonemax1 if you would rather not post on this medium. It sounds like you deserved better service for your $50,000 Audi "investment."
  • Just this week I traveled from Montana to Oregon to buy a 1996 A6 Quattro wagon with 85k miles (my first Audi). What a fantastically better ride than my current 1999 Subaru (now sporting a new FOR SALE sign). The posts here seem to suggest that there are plenty of problems with the A6. I am hoping that this 1996 (having survived this long) may have fewer inherent problems than the newer ones...could this be true? The former owner had bought the car from an auction and could not help me with the two obvious problems: (1) the moon roof is not working, and (2) the heater only puts air out of the central air goes to the feet or to the windshield. He said that the battery had gone dead a few days earlier and that most likely there might be some computer settings that had to be set again. Does this make sense? I was pleased to get 25 mpg on the return trip to Montana and really like the car. By the way, the seller had advertised the car as a "one-owner car"...but I learned through CARFAX that there were a couple of former title transfers...the seller was a little embarrassed. Through some detective work, I located the last owner (prior to his auction purchase). She worked for an Audi dealer in California and had bought the car from a former lease situation at 55k and had religiously cared for the oil changes every 3k miles, timing belt & water pump replacements, etc, during her 30k with the car. She suggested that the moonroof problem might just be a solenoid that needs replacing. Any suggestions from you readers is appreciated. At $12,000 I hope I made a good purchase. Can anyone here tell me why (I hope) a 96 might be better than the newer A6 years? Is there a "good year" in terms of fewer mechanical problems? I am 65 and retired and cannot afford to get into a really bad car repair situation. Thanks...and Happy New Year to you all.
  • I am thinking of buying a 1999 A6 with 30000 miles. Any suggestions? What is a good price for this car? The car I am looking at has a Third Row seat. I heard that AUDI discontinued it due to safety issues. Is this true?
  • You didn't give condition (1-5) or specific option list but assuming the Audi is in excellent condition, a selling price around $20,000 sounds like a pretty fair deal.
  • Back on Dec 28 I posted a question asking if anyone might help me understand how the A6 models have changed in the years since the 1996 one I just learn whether there are "better years" or "worse years" in terms of repairs. No one has been on this board since Dec 31, so I am hoping with this second request that someone will share a little information with me. Since then I have learned that my sunroof only need a minor electrical connection repair...but that the central air heating module needs replacing (at about $730 for the part alone). Also, some dash lights that I thought only needed bulb replacement - actually required an electrical module replacement (another $250 for the part). It is starting to look like my investment in this Audi was not a good thing. But I still really like the car. Will anyone out there help me with information about other years and/or case I sell this one and pick up a different one. I am also open to getting an older Audi V8 - since they can be purchased quite cheaply. Any thoughts? Thanks.
  • If you were to do a web search with the terms Audi and world, you might find a wealth of Audi info.
  • rikia1rikia1 Posts: 4
    I have brought my Audi in for the same defect, coil replacement, 3 times. My vehicle is a few weeks shy of one year old. The entire vehicle shakes above speeds of 45mph. Coils were supposedly replaced to amend this problem, but my car is still shaking and I have not been able to enjoy the vehicle, nor feel safe driving it. Has anyone else had this problem? According to the dealership, 40 cars were in the dealership for the same problem, although mainly A4 3.0 models, with a few A6 models, although it seems like mine is the only one that has been in for repairs 3 times! It is very frustrating!
  • You have to understand that your 1996 A6 is a completely different car than the newer A6 models.
    The 1996 was built on the previous Audi 100/200 platform, & it has a lot more in common with those cars. is a great resource to learn more. I have owned a bunch of older Audis & in fact I have a 1996 A6 right now which I recently bought. I paid $15k for a 30,000 original mile car. My only major concern with these cars is the transmission (I have the older 4 speed automatic, it's not the tiptronic). They are sort of delicate & I've had to replace one before. However, I feel it's a reasonable trade off for an engine that will give you 200,000 miles or more with no problem, & solid, luxurious, all weather mobility with quattro. As far as your sunroof & heater problems, yes, repairs are expensive. But also dealers seem to have an uncanny knack for finding the most complex & expensive solution to any given problem. I don't know where you took it, but I never use Audi dealers except as a last resort. There's really not much reason to with older cars. I recommend you try to find a good independent mechanic with some experience with Audis. Good luck
  • I just read all of the posts in the A-6 area. Unfortunately, you only hear from people with problems here. It would be interesting to see what the percentage of satisfied A-6 owners are.

    Our 2000 A-6 2.7 (33,000 miles) has been plagued with problems since the day we picked it up. It started with the recall related to the fuel gauge (we bought it in February - the part arrived at the dealership in late August). The cluster has been replaced four times. $5,000 worth of warranty work on the front end. In seven times in the last six months for an EPC light that will not stay off for more than three days (it just came on again - I can't WAIT to see my buddies at the dealership). Leak in the cooling system. On and on and on.

    I asked the dealership to print out our repair history. It is pages and pages long. While we like driving this car and it IS comfortable inside, no one should have to spend this much time driving to and from the dealership and in loaner cars. Funny about the guy complaining about Acura loaners. We get little Chevys, Fords, Mitsubishi Gallants and Dodge Intrepids. That's what I paid $40,000 for. This is a great country!
  • I own the exact same vehicle-'00 A6 2.7T (41,000 miles) w/tip/xenon. I have only had a few little problems-i.e.-- the front window guides breaking, a little paint peeling, the air didn't blow cold enough once and was recharged, and of course, the infamous gas gauge recall.

    All problems were fixed in a reasonable amount of time with not too much hassle dealing with loaner cars, etc.

    No breakdowns, turbo failures, or warning lights coming on in the dash up to this point.

    If you would like further, detailed info about this car, click "marleybarr" and I will be happy to e-mail back!
  • nquayenquaye Posts: 2
    First time participant wanting to see if anyone has had the misfortune of sharing in a bad experience I had this past Friday:

    I leased a 2000 A6 2.8 Quattro in March 2000, coming due in June of this year - 2003. I've loved my car for many reasons, and so was in the market to either go up to a 4.2 or even take a look at the new A8s.

    Early last year, I experienced an odor of some sort in the car, that caused my eyes to water and my nose to burn. The problem was somewhat alleviated by opening the windows, but as I'm wont to, I ttok the car in - made it an early service trip. the dealer checked it out and found nothing, and indeed when I drove off, the smell wasn't there.

    I attributed it to any number of things: leaking windshield wiper fluid, or as I'd washed the car before the incident, maybe some solvent or the other. I even ludicrously assumed it was the sun mixing with residue of wiper fluid! Long and short, had no clue and the dealer didn't find anything.

    This past Friday, my fiancee and our 3 month old are in the car and I get a call. She starts to describe a smell which I finish for her - the odor was back. I told her I'd experienced the same thing and that I was going to schedule and appointment with the nearest dealer, which I did.

    1 hour later, she calls me to tell me my car is on fire. black smoke came out of nthe air-conditioning vents, and then flames followed. Bottomline: traumatized passengers, totalled car, scared and royally pissed fiance.

    Who can relate?
  • asiu28asiu28 Posts: 7
    Hi, rlenguyen
    I bought my A6 in Sept. 2002 and I have about 1200 miles so far. I think my A6 also has the same CVT problems that you mentioned. Occasionally, when I put in the reverse (R), the car jerks a few times, and if I put in Park (P) then reverse, the jerking stops. Took to the dealership twice and nothing was done. The results were like yours: computer showed everything is OK. Do you still have that problems? Have not seen your posting lately. Besides this, it is a great car. Keep posting.
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