Mazda 6 Forums banner

1 - 20 of 40 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,070 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
We are looking at a 2004 Audi A4 Quattro 1.8T for the wifey to drive. I need help or some insight on problems with the model or anything out of the ordinary that would be helpful in making the decision. I know the first thing is that it's probably slow, but I can chip it rather easily and a friend of mine is an avid VW tuner with the same engine. Handling and driving dynamics really mean nothing as my wife drives sensibly. As long as it handles close to the 6, no worries. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,079 Posts
When you get it, make sure you get one which has the sport package. Believe it or not its not all that slow, but you have a good choice of modifications for that powertrain. Good luck with it. If its used, consider an extended warranty of some sort, or purchase one thats certified.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
990 Posts
Don't even consider buying it unless you get some sort of extended warranty. Routine service is expensive & when things go wrong (which they most likely will), they'll cost a fortune.

They're nice cars, though...especially with the Sports package. I'm assuming you're thinking of a 1.8T...decent engine with good aftermarket.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
634 Posts
A few comments on A4's (I had a 97 1.8t before I bought my 6):

1. The front suspension, while engineered to perform well, doesn't hold up well at all. As opposed to a setup with upper and lower A-arms it has 4 individual control arms with a small ball joint on each arm. The ball joints wear out frequently and the entire arm must be replaced. There were recalls on the B5 (96-01) A4's for this, but I don't think anything was changed significantly.

2. Don't touch a 1.8t unless you're certain that it has had synthetic oil for all of it's life. Dino oil gets cooked in the turbo and eventually ends up as sludge in the oil pan. over time this builds up and clogs the oil pickup tube. the next step...bye bye motor.

3. Timing belts. They have a habit of breaking anywhere after 60k miles. Broken timing belt = lots of bent valves = big $. There was a recall about this on the B5's too. If you buy an A4 make sure to change the timing belt at 60k, not the 90k (or whatever) interval that audi suggests.

4. If you chip it the added stress on the turbo will likely cause it to wear out more quickly. Also the stock bypass valve (equivalent of a bov) will have to be upgraded as it won't handle the increased boost.

Those are the big money issues with 1.8t a4's. There are, however, a host of minor issues to go along with the big ones. I would never suggest that anyone buy an A4 based on my experience, especially if you plan on owning it for longer than it's warranted for.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,405 Posts
Why not look at a Passat? Same engine, a little less on the amenities but it will be several thousand cheaper. As Long as the car isisnt abused I don't see any problems with it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,188 Posts
Maybe, after learning all of that, perhaps a lease of a new model may turn out to be the best option. How about a Saab? Or a Volvo?
[/b]
Volvo is a great choice, I've owned the S40 and the S60, I prefer the 60 but the light turbo on the S40 was kinda fun just lacking in interior space. You can't beat the safety for the money!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
634 Posts
Why not look at a Passat? Same engine, a little less on the amenities but it will be several thousand cheaper. As Long as the car isisnt abused I don't see any problems with it.
[/b]
Passat = same list of problems as A4 but no quattro.

How about a Subaru Legacy GT if you're looking for AWD? That's what I've been drooling over for a bit.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
978 Posts
Passat = same list of problems as A4 but no quattro.

How about a Subaru Legacy GT if you're looking for AWD? That's what I've been drooling over for a bit.
[/b]
Second that ^^ but without some of the prestige of the name, but you'll have the satisfaction of thumping the a4 :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,070 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Test drove it. Had 8k miles on it and felt like it had 40 something. Unpredictable turbo kicking in. Not fun. Thanks for all the comments....now she is looking at a Volvo...maybe..It has to be AWD. No Subie, :barf: Saab would be wonderful if only they made an AWD.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,079 Posts
Saab makes an AWD in their 9-2x Sportwagon. I've sat in one and been driven around in it, although it has Subaru underpinnings, I think it looks a littl better than its Subaru counterpart.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
68 Posts
Not too sure what price range you are looking for, but you may also want to consider the Infiniti G35x if you are looking for all wheel drive. You may be able to pick up a 04/5 model at a decent price. The only negative (at least to me) is that the X models only come in automatic :( , that may not be a problem 4 you though.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
206 Posts
If it is an automatic, you have to deal with considerable turbo lag simply cause the turbocharger has a hard time figuring out when it should kick in for some reason with that transmission. That said, my good friend has I believe an '03 A4 Quattro 1.8T with the 5-speed stick, and it's a lovely car. It's feels just as quick as my 6, and the interior is to die for. I don't think he has the sport package since he has 16" wheels instead of the 17"s you normally see on the A4, but the car still handles quite well and soaks up a lot of the bumps that shake the living crap out of my 6. My personal vote is for the A4 (it's what I would have if I could have afforded it).

Saabs are mediocre in my opinion. The 9-3 shares most of its platform and technology with the Pontiac G6 if I am not mistaken, so if you're after the drive you can probably make do with the G6, and the build quality and materials of the Saab don't warrant its "premium" price tag that GM has stuck on them. Volvos are pretty boring, IMHO, but if it's for your wife, I guess that's all right.

My personal vote is with the A4. Get an extended warranty and maybe have it checked out by a third party mechanic prior to purchase just to be certain, but in my experience they are wonderful rides (and unless my buddy is just lucky they hold up pretty well since he has beat the living sh!t out of that car).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,070 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Saab makes an AWD in their 9-2x Sportwagon. I've sat in one and been driven around in it, although it has Subaru underpinnings, I think it looks a littl better than its Subaru counterpart. [/b]


Oh you mean the Saabaru? I really don't consider it a Saab, but too small....it's more than just the underpinnings, check the engine, tranny, everything but the front end. Even the interior is virtually untouched. They didn't even have the balls to relocate the ignition like they did on the 9-7 (Trailblazer)...Very sloppy IMO. Anything the same size or bigger than the 6 would be fine for her, but has to be luxury, so that rules out even the best Subie, VW, (except the Phaeton beast). The G35X guzzles, plus it's just a Nissan, really, a trumped up skyline. We are looking to get 19-21 city and 27-30 hwy by EPA standards. We can always get the mileage on the sticker anyways.

S60 AWD looks promising. I get S-plan with a big down payment so it wont hurt much. The S40 T5 AWD is sweet, but too small. Max will have to be 33-34K MSRP. Equals about 30-31K Invoice. Anything has to be auto and never a Wagon, that's for me to get with a stick. Thanks for all the replies guys. Keep'em coming.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
634 Posts
If it has to be luxury I'd say go Volvo as well. just don't go racing any subies with it.

BTW had you bought an A4 and chipped it you'd get turbo lag similar to the subie's...but not nearly the horsepower.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,070 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Strictly the wifey's car. She's not the speed demon type, nor does she look to whip up on anybody at a stoplight. The stock power was fine with her. It just didn't feel at all as good as my 6. It was quieter over the road and on bumps, but that is where the advantages end.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
990 Posts
The Legacy GT is pretty nice inside. As far as the G35 being a "tarted up Skyline"...maybe its just me, but that doesn't seem like a bad thing.

The S60 AWD's are nice, but they're really not that big inside. A good friend of mine had an S60 T5 (manual) and now has an S60R....the back seat is pretty cramped. He did mention that there are lots of incentives on the S60 right now. I'm not sure if the AWD model is included, but its definitely worth looking into.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,499 Posts
Why is AWD such a selling point?

I'd avoid the Saab 9-3. It feels like the tarted-up Malibu that it is, and it has the cheapest and flimsiest cupholder I have EVER seen.

How about an Acura TL? That would be my pick in this market. It drives great, it feels great, and you really feel luxurious and pampered.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,070 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
AWD because of the weather. She can't call out of work unless there are either tornados, 2 feet of snow, or hurricanes. Other than that, she needs to be there. But the mileage in the Grand Cherokee is hurting. 19mpg max. Not acceptable. I wish I had AWD because it could be raining at home and then by the time I get close to work where the twisty hilly roads are, it could be 6 inches or more of snow. Couple close calls last winter, but the traction control helped (almost didn't). She's always told me, "when we can afford it, I want an Audi". That was 7 yrs ago.
We'll see if we can afford cost of maintenance. I hope I don't have to go to the dealer much for anything other than warranty. I like doing all my own work on the car.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,499 Posts
I have no problem getting anywhere I need or want to go with my Mazda6. 11" of snow a couple of weeks ago and he pulled his way right through like a champ. Weather is not considered an excuse here either.
 
1 - 20 of 40 Posts
About this Discussion
39 Replies
16 Participants
Tripod
Mazda 6 Forums
Mazda6club.com is a forum dedicated to the Mazda6 / Atenza. Come and discuss reliability, performance, modifications, and more!
Full Forum Listing
Top