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Audi A4 2004 and earlier



  • equalizer1equalizer1 Posts: 177
    Audi has still not rectified the ridiculous error they made in my first service. I gave them bad marks when I got my post service survey, and I have still yet to hear from them to rectify what they didn't do in the first place. They will get a call tomorrow if I haven't heard anything from them today. I have to say that after spending almost $35,000, I am shocked at this treatment. I know this wouldn't happen at Lexus or Infiniti!
  • bartful1bartful1 Posts: 1
    Have put a deposit on an A4 2.8 with tiptronic and my order is about to go into production. Just before purchasing the 2001 model with manual transmission, the dealer informed me that base pricing was now 1 cost for both transmissions (approx. $1100 higher) to my surprise. My immediate decision was to select the tip because I would have to pay either way for its cost. But after reading a few comments about performance on this site, I wonder whether I made the right decision. I want a car with some zip. Any reactions to owners with tip?
    Unfortunately, all dealers in my area had only manuals available for test drives, and therefore, I could not evaluate comparatively.
  • equalizer1equalizer1 Posts: 177
    Apparently, according to the enthusiasts at, the tiptronic transmission is much better suited for the 2.8 than the 1.8.

    I have a Y2K 2.8 with tiptronic and initially, it was a little slow, but now with 5,000 miles on the car, it has loosened up considerably, and the pickup and go is great. It is not a muscle car, but I guess if you are looking at an A4 that is not your intention to begin with. It is plenty fast, and in the tiptronic mode, very responsive and fun to use. I would definitely get it. It's the best of all worlds.
  • lou33lou33 Posts: 1
    I have driven both the 5 speed and Tip. The 5 speed is definetely quicker and sportier. When I did a test drive with the Tip, I was expecting it to be a cross between a manual and automatic. It is really another automatic transmission with a gimmick. Granted, it is a good automatic with a good gimmick.

    An A4 = sport + luxury. If you want a car that is more on the sporty side, *definetly* get the 5 speed. If you want something more on the luxury side and you don't always like shifting then a Tip may be appropriate.

    You have a difficult situation since you have to pay for the Tip anyway. I have a '00 2.8 5speed. If I had to do it over I would still get the 5 speed even if I had to pay for the Tip. The manual just suits my needs better. I highly recommend that you find a Tip to test drive before you take delivery. After you drive both, there should be no doubt in your mind which is best for you.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Hey all, just trying to get some ideas for my new car. I'm trying to decide A4 or Subaru GT Limited. Any thoughts?

  • equalizer1equalizer1 Posts: 177
    A4-great car-love it!!!!
  • This isn't quite relevant, but I was driving my A4 Avant in Death Valley a month ago, and encountered a lot of Subie Outbacks. Everytime I saw them blasting along the gravel roads where I had to crawl due to lower clearance, I thought "gee, maybe I should have bought one of those". But every time I blasted by one of them on the highway I was glad I had the Audi.
    IMO, the Subie GT gets you fairly close to the performance of the A4 for less money, but you give up a lot on amenities.
  • cjv25cjv25 Posts: 2
    Now I've been told that an Audi 1.8T that has a chip in it (which costs only a few hundred dollars)will out perform any 2.8 since a V6 only has a minimal increase if it has been chipped.

    I am very close to making a decision, however,I am in need of performance, I love the way Audi looks, but will either of these cars inspire me or impress me.....chipped or not.

    Keep in mind that I have only test driven 2 cars

    1.1998 A4 1.8
    2.1999 a4 2.8 QUATTRO
    Neither one of these cars impressed me trmendously. Thanks for any help.
  • usc1990usc1990 Posts: 6
    Probably not much difference in performance between a stock 2.8 and a "chipped" 1.8. The 1.8 should be a bit quicker because of the lower weight of the car. I test drove both a 323i and the A4, didn't notice too much of a difference. For just a bit more than the 99 2.8Q you could get an S4:)
  • bollingerbollinger Posts: 207
    If you are willing to keep increasing your investment, you can make the 1.8T significantly faster than the 2.8. At about 170/180HP it is even or a little ahead of the 2.8. This is possible with cheap upgrades, primarily a chip.

    Throw in a KKK K04 turbo to replace the K03 and you can then get to 225HP or more, like in the TT. Then you will leave 2.8's behind by a fair margin.

    The S4 is significantly more expensive than the '99 2.8Q. You're looking at $43K or so.
  • We have tested the Audi A4 1.8TS Quattro with 180 HP. Visit us at:
  • jwilson1jwilson1 Posts: 956
    I'm looking at a '98 2.8Q A4 w/tip and almost 30k miles. It will be an "assured" (i.e., certified) car with the 75k warranty. It is dark red with a reddish/brown leather interior, moonroof, heated seats, and no visible signs of abuse. It is priced for $28,900 but it has sat on the lot for a few weeks and the salesman said it "might" go for around $26k as no one can "stand" the interior. (I like it.)

    Comments? Opinions on this package/pricing?

    I've read this topic for quite awhile, but I'm wondering if there is anything I should be paying special attention to? Problem areas?

    If I buy, I'd like to keep it for awhile -- any notion if it would make sense to extend the warranty to 100,000 mi. and 7 years with another warranty company ... or would the premium be so steep you think it would just be extravagant?


    Take care.
    Joe W.
  • tiltboytiltboy Posts: 63
    Hey, I'm new to this forum, and was wondering what the difference is between these two? If you had the same engine and transmission, and the Passat is built on the A-4 platform, What's the difference? Any questions or comments? Thanks
  • equalizer1equalizer1 Posts: 177

    Seeing as you're warranteed until 75,000, it will cost you upwards of $1-2,000 for maybe another two year's warranty. It might pay for itself, but I would probably wait to see if the car is problematic before I would pay for an extended warranty at that price for maybe one to two more years. I am going to get an extended warranty on my A4 even though the car has been rock solid for the past seven months, but I will be paying for four years at the same price you will be paying for 1-2 years. Warrantybynet seems to be the most reasonable one at about $1,000, but I believe it only goes to 6 years/100,000 miles. Research into it because some of the companies are charging alot of money for the same warranty you will get with warranbynet.


    There is a definite difference in ride, suspension and interior between the Passat and A4. I test drove both extensively before I purchased my A4. My brother has the Passat and even though it is a very nice car, he wishes he had sprung for the A4. Test drive both. You will come to your own conclusions. If you don't need the large trunk or backseat in the Passat, the A4 is the way to go.
  • Hi.
    Since a lot of people here talk about how the V6 is not fast enough, I decided to shed some light on your heads.
    The V6 is not supposed to be fast, it is supposed to be smooth. You want fast, spend 38 grand on as S4, wich isn't that much more, if you put all the standard equip. it has on a 2.8.
    The VW GTI (1.8T) is faster than the GTI GLX (2.8 VR6) as it is and if you get the late TT turbo kit (225 hp) it'll be a lot faster, but not nearly as smooth.

    And for those people who ask what's the difference between the Passat and the Audis, just ask yourself this: do you want to see a big VW logo or the four rings on the steering wheel? Passat 4Motion has the same Quattro as do the A4 and A6.

    There was also some guy comparing A4 and Impreza. Drive 1.8T vs 2.5RS. You'll see the difference. 1.8T is a luxury car that is fun to drive with handsome interior and a lot of cupholders. The Impreza's glass is a bit too close to your head for comfort and has tacky interior. 2.5RS also has a lot lower center of gravity and stiffer ride.
    Impreza is a supercar, that has been chewing 'real' supercars since 1994. From my point of view: you can buy the A4 and keep it until you get old, or you can get the 2.5RS and live now. If the 2.5RS is not fast is not fast enough, wait a little for the Turbo and the devilish WRX. Comparing Impreza to A4 is like comparing M3 to Trans-Am WS06 packaging with some bad [non-permissible content removed] chip. M3 - "...Latest of the German engineering...True supercar..." blah-blah-blah... The Trans-Am is faster anyway.
  • turbojetturbojet Posts: 4

    Although I have never posted before, I have been reading all these posts for quite some time. Thank you all for your helpful posts! This site is great.

    I am still in complete dilemma; I can't decide between an A4 or Acura TL. However, at a nearby dealer, I found a Black 1.8T with all the options and the Ecru interior that I want, and since finding a car with color and options of my choice was not easy, I think I should seriously consider buying this. However, I read that you people think that Black color is difficult to maintain. Exactly how bad is Black?

    Unfortunately I don't have a garage and my car will be parked outside all the time. Is this too bad for a black car? Are automatic car washes not good enough to keep it clean, or are they actually harmful to the finish of the car?

    Thank you in advance for any helpful responses.
  • equalizer1equalizer1 Posts: 177
    I think I can shed some light on your dilemma. My husband and I own a Y2K A4 2.8 and a Y2K Acura 3.2 TL. We love them both, and even though the Acura out accelerates the 2.8, we both think the A4 is much more fun to drive. The Acura has great performance, stability and acceleration for a luxury car, but the A4 has the perfect balance of luxury and performance. We take the A4 when we really want to have fun in a tossable car, and the Acura when we want to drive a smooth, luxury car with nice performance.

    I am sure if you chip the A4 1.8, it could be just as fast as the Acura. My husband actually wanted to get another A4 instead of the Acura, but I couldn't see have two of the same car, and wanted something different to alternate driving.

    The A4 has been fantastic. I look forward to driving it every day, and like it more every time I drive it. We have owned it for a little over six months, and have had the Acura for only two weeks so it is really hard to give a full comparison, but I have to admit the NAV system in the Acura is unbelievable. It is so accurate that it is hard to believe the technology out there. If getting the NAV system is important to you, the Acura is your best bet. The NAV system on the Audi is nowhere as easy to use as the Acura, plus the Acura has the entire continental US on one DVD disk.

    I hope I helped and didn't make you more confused!
  • equalizer1equalizer1 Posts: 177
    P.S. - Black is really difficult to keep clean and requires extra attention over most other colors. There is alot of discussion about "black Audis" at You can search the archives and find alot of information about this.

    Most people who own black cars say even though it requires more maintenance, they wouldn't choose any other color.
  • jwilson1jwilson1 Posts: 956
    ...depends on how fussy you are with the appearance of your cars. If you get grumpy when your ride doesn't look sharp, forget the black as a daily driver.

    I have three cars: a black, a white, and a (Ford) green. The white is a piece of cake to take care of, even if it is a little anonymous. The green actually isn't bad either, cleans up pretty easily and wears a little bit of dust and dirt without too much fuss. But the black shows everything -- and I don't mean you have to look. Inside of an hour, parked at this time of year near oak trees, it can go from a glistening show stopper to a grungy, dull pig. Which is fine because the black one is my toy so I like to putter on it -- including washing at least twice a week, more in pollen and dust time.

    It's also a trick to keep black from spotting, streaking, scratching and haloing as you clean. Certainly it can be done without any treatment near as fancy as indicated on some of the maintenance topics here at Edmund's, but it is still a frequent time robber. Again, not a problem for someone who doesn't care too much about the sharpness of the ride, but I doubt that's you turbojet, or you wouldn't have asked.

    As a general rule (not trying to start a fight here;) light colors are easiest to maintain -- white, silver, gold, beige, etc. Greens and reds, even in dark colors aren't too bad. Blues seem a little worse for some reason. And black is a couple steps worse than even navy, etc.

    Take care.
    Joe W.
  • turbojetturbojet Posts: 4
    Thank you Equalizer1 and jwilson1 for your responses. Actually I was little disappointed today, since the Black A4 1.8T I went to see at the dealer does not have sport stearing! I had found a car of my color choice (Ecru interior) and the options I wanted, after a lot of trouble, and now it does not have sport stearing.

    I guess I will have to order 2001 A4, (and then I will probably get Silver color).

    Thanks anyway for your responses.
  • equalizer1equalizer1 Posts: 177
    I have the A4 in silver and it is pretty much self cleaning, with the exception of a snowstorm. I usually wash it every week, but it really could go weeks without washing and still look pretty clean. Since I don't have much time to really take care of a black car, this was my best compromise. I remember owning a black car a few years ago and my husband said that would be my first and last black car and he was right. It looks great when clean, but it was constantly dirty, and trying to keep the swirl marks off was an exercise in extreme detailing skill.

    You are making a great choice! Good luck!
  • jpdallasjpdallas Posts: 1
    The silver is lovely on this vehicle. I stopped in and spoke to my salesman yesterday. I asked him if they had sold a million silver A4s since I bought mine in April (it seems that I see tha many). He said, silver is the most a matter of fact, we are thinking of ordering all 2000s in silver. I agree with you that not a lot of time spent washing is necessary. I hope you like yours as much as I like mine...
  • gemsgems Posts: 15
    one of my friends is thinking about going for a A4 1.8T without Qtro. He has also considered VW Passat 1.8 and has test driven both with manual tranny. I think he is more inclined towards A4 just because of the luxury features /image/name. He is not a car nut like some of the people here and probably because of that he didn't see much difference in the handling and performance between the two cars. I need some info to pass it on to him.
    I) Is it a good time to get better deal on a 2000 A4. He has been tol by the dealer that 2001 A4's are coming in
    2) Is there any difference between A4 1.8 T models for 2000 and 2001
    3) What is the price most of the people have paid/ he should pay for A4?
    4) Is there any option he should choose with the base A4 1.8

    Btw I was able to find lots of Passat Vs Car X topics and A4 vs car X topics …but no
    A4 vs Passat topics ??? Your help is appreciated….
  • equalizer1equalizer1 Posts: 177
    If you friend doesn't need alot of backseat room, then the A4 is the way to go. It is more sporty and tossable. I own an A4 and my brother has a 1.8 Passat, and he said he wished he had gotten the A4 because of it's sporty road manners.

    As far as changes on the 2001 A4's, the body style is not changing, the warranty is changing to 4 yrs./50,000 miles with free maintenance-instead of 3 yrs./50,000 miles as it is right now. The side curtain airbags will be standard and I am sure I am leaving out a few other things. The price of the 1.8 will go up a few hundred dollars, but the purchasers of the 2.8 will be in for a surprise if they want a 5 spd. Apparently the 2.8 will only be made with automatics, unless you special order a 5 spd. There will be a price increase to reflect this of $1200, which won't be a big deal to people who want the automatics, as that is a little more than they would pay now, but the 5 spd. 2.8 people will still have to pay the $1200, regardless of the fact that they are getting a 5 spd. In essence, they will be paying for an automatic they don't want.

    I think the extra year's maintenance on the warranty is worth it alone to wait for the 2001. I would have probably waited if I had known this.

    Good luck!
  • gemsgems Posts: 15
    Thanks Equalizer. Rear seat room is not important for him. By free miantanance , you meant regular oil changes and 15k, 30k tune ups? In that case I would say 2001 is the way to go!!!!.
    One more question ...Since he is going for an A4 without Qtr option , does it make more sense to buy a Passat ? I haven't driven a Passat 1.8 so I really don't know how both FWD cars compares!!!
  • equalizer1equalizer1 Posts: 177
    Yes the free maintenance covers everything except tires (unless they are defective). It covers brakes, brake pads, windshield wipes, oil changes, major inspection intervals, etc.

    Again, he really needs to drive both cars back to back, as the FWD version of both cars will be very different. The A4 is much more tossable and fun to drive in AWD and FWD versions. The Passat is fun to drive in a family car sort of way. He can't go wrong with either, although the Audi has a warranty twice as long as the VW, has a much nicer interior MHO, and is much more agile.

    BTW, if you want more information go to and look up under "search" in the A4 forum, and there is plenty of information regarding the A4 vs. the Passat. All you need to do is put in the word Passat and you should come up with lots of information comparing these two cars.

    Good luck!
  • Passat and A4 are both nice cars. Audi Maintenance is free on 2000s, but just for 3 years. Your friend might want to consider Quattro, since it helps resale value. And I think that sometime the 1.8T engine will get tweaked to 170HP, not sure when, nor do I know whether that applies to the Passat and/or Audi.
  • baverybavery Posts: 2
    Seems like Audi is confusing everybody with the way it has described 2001 A4 2.8 manual transmission pricing in its dealer materials. A dealer I spoke to about this matter checked with Audi and clarified that while for 2001 autos will be standard in A4 2.8/s, if you want a manual transmission, you won't have to pay for an auto to get it. See what I mean about confusing? Put another way, go with a manual and take $1,200 off a car with an automatic. Has anyone heard otherwise?

    Turning to colors I'm thinking of the dark blue. Any thoughts out there about this choice?
  • turbojetturbojet Posts: 4
    After a lot of thinking and test driving, (I was doing this for a few months!), I finally ordered a 2001 A4 1.8T with sunroof and cold weather package. I should get it in September.

    My only other choice was 3.2 TL. However, I really wanted a manual transmission, and the "sportshift" did not satisfy my craving for manual transmission, after many test drives. Although I love the TL, this was a deciding factor against it.

    Its funny to think that for around $30K, there is no other nice car with manual transmission!
  • equalizer1equalizer1 Posts: 177
    I posted above that my dealer said that all 2.8's would come standard with a 2.8 transmission, with a $1200 premium (which would basically cover the cost of the automatic, plus some...). Unfortunately, he told me that a 5 spd. would have to be special ordered, and would cost the same $1200 premium. In essence, he said, a driver of a 5 spd. would be paying for an automatic he doesn't want. He said the demand for the 2.8 5 spd. was very low compared to the 1.8 and that's the reason they're doing this.

    Until we see what Audi does, I rarely go by the dealer.
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