Go Back  AudiForums.com > Audi Models > Audi A8
 Need to Know before I Buy... >

Need to Know before I Buy...

Audi A8 This full sized Audi A8 sedan offers interior luxury and spaciousness comparable to any car in the full sized luxury sedan class

Need to Know before I Buy...

  #1  
Old 04-06-2006, 06:29 PM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 2
Default Need to Know before I Buy...

Considering getting rid of our EuroVan for a 1997-2000 A8 4.2 Q. After just browsing a little, I have seen class-action suits against tranny, low engine life estimates, etc. etc.
SO, being basically completely new to Audi, I know the following:

I like the looks of the A8 and the interior, I know German cars are well-built, comfortable, and safe.
We just spent $1800 doing the notorious headgasket job on our E320 wagon. The mechanic said A8's can have the same problem, but they are fabulous down the road.

So, what are the strengths of this car, but more importantly, what are the weaknesses. Am I correct to understand the car has two timing belts, rather than chains?
From what I understand, the 4.2 version has the engine mounted the 'traditional' way, as though it were a rear-wheel drive car but of course it has AWD. What about the 3.7 L version? Not interested in that car, but what's the difference? What is the best year to buy? Is the "Porsche" designed tiptronic 5 auto in '98 better than ZF trannies in '97 and previous? When looking at a car, what should you look for? What fails in terms of electronics, interior gadgets, etc? I am completely new, and the only Audi I would have an interest in is the A8. Please give me all the info on the A8 problems / features you guys can.

Thanks in advance.
 
  #2  
Old 04-08-2006, 03:12 AM
AWDaholic's Avatar
Senior Administrator
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Lotsa places, currently Metro D.C., USA
Posts: 13,574
Default RE: Need to Know before I Buy...

I think you'd get a better cross-sectional representation if we just posted the problems we A8 owners either have experienced, or are experiencing.

1999 A8 4.2Q, current mileage 78,000 (roughly), purchased used, Dec 2004 @ 48,000 miles

current issues:
Cruise control only works 1:5,000 tries, and eventually disengages, even on those rare occasions when it DOES work.
Trunk release button (from inside car) doesn't work 1:5,000 tries, but it always works from the fob, so it's just annoying.
Drivers-side climate-control display stopped, ummm, displaying. Still functions, just doesn't show it.
Drivers' side arm rest broke OFF (I'm told this is a design weakness that my retarded behavior stressed to the breaking point.).

(known) future issues:
Need to replace the timing belt, SOON. 90k miles is right around the corner...
Left & Right side Anti-Gravity unit will need recharging @ 150,000 miles, or else I won't be able to continue flying over, around, and through traffic that gets in my way...
 
  #3  
Old 04-08-2006, 11:10 AM
1st Gear
Join Date: May 2005
Location: B-more, MD
Posts: 91
Default RE: Need to Know before I Buy...

I have a 98' and the car has been flawless (to this point). I love the feeling of getting stared at in envy by people driving new cars that cost 5 times the price of my used A8! The performance is exceptional, the value is amazing and you really can't go wrong.
....That being said, there is always a price to pay. The transmission on these cars are 'Clunky' at best, and unresponsive at worst. I constantly swear that I'm hearing things in mine but have never had any issue. Since mine is the 98' I have the tiptronic which I use all the time. The 97's didn't have it, which is why I didn't get a 97'. If you like to drive 'spirited' like I do, you ABSOLUTELY want the 98' and up.

I think the other key here is to buy from someone you trust and to demand service history or an inspection. If the car was even moderately well maintained, you should be fine. Just beware of those $9-$12k 'bargains' out there. They're NOT bargains unless you work for Audi and have a cheap spare parts bin.

In hindsight, the only 'buyers remorse' I had when buying mine was not getting a third-party extended warranty.. which wasn't offered due to the high miles on the car I bought.

Lastly, depending on where you live, you may want to test drive a few A8s to make sure the car fits you well. I usually don't like big cars, but this one drives like an A4 or Passat. If you are in the DC area, I think AWDHolic or I could show you ours to see what you think. IF not, see if you can get a hold of someone in your area who has one and can give you an honest opinion about the car!

Good luck!
 
  #4  
Old 04-08-2006, 08:48 PM
AWDaholic's Avatar
Senior Administrator
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Lotsa places, currently Metro D.C., USA
Posts: 13,574
Default RE: Need to Know before I Buy...


ORIGINAL: gapa8

....That being said, there is always a price to pay. The transmission on these cars are 'Clunky' at best, and unresponsive at worst.
That's why I spend most of my time in "TIP" mode...

ORIGINAL: gapa8

I constantly swear that I'm hearing things in mine but have never had any issue. Since mine is the 98' I have the tiptronic which I use all the time.
Like I said... And OH how I wish I could afford to import teh 6-speed manny tranny. I'd spend ALL day embarrasing EVERYBODY!!!

ORIGINAL: gapa8

Just beware of those $9-$12k 'bargains' out there. They're NOT bargains unless you work for Audi and have a cheap spare parts bin.
Again, troo!

ORIGINAL: gapa8

In hindsight, the only 'buyers remorse' I had when buying mine was not getting a third-party extended warranty.. which wasn't offered due to the high miles on the car I bought.
Also troo!!!

ORIGINAL: gapa8

I usually don't like big cars, but this one drives like an A4 or Passat.
Well, I AM a BIG CAR guy, but I do somertimes find myself wishing I hadda A4 STUFFED with an RS6 mota... [sm=gears.gif] and a 6-speed...

ORIGINAL: gapa8

If you are in the DC area, I think AWDHolic or I could show you ours to see what you think.
Mines needs some cosmetic work (fuvkin vandals!, stoopid cement column in teh parking garage, retarded *** ME!!!), but I'd be happy to take you out for a spin if you're ever in the DC area (when I'm not out travelin for my job). He's from somewhere in NH, according to his profile...

Anybody from the upper east wanna volunteer?

Gapa, you ever get them brakes done?
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

© 2019 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.