4 Levels of Expense You Can Expect with Used Audi A4s

Mickey | Cars and Trucks | Wednesday, December 22nd, 2010

Buying used is a good way to acquire a luxury vehicle at minimal cost. However, you may face multiple expenses from repairs and other optional expenses. Used Audis, such as A4s, make good choices, as they are more reliable for luxury vehicles, and they have some known issues which will allow you to be prepared, such as timing belts, sludge, suspension, coils, and optional mods.

Most Expense

The timing belt will need to be changed frequently on used A4s, and this will generally cost around $600 and up, depending on the shop. Not changing it early (around 50K miles) will result in very expensive engine damage. Suspension ball joints wear out early as well, which will cost $500 and up. And tie rod ends are commonly problematic, which will also cost around $500.

Medium Expense

On the 1.8T engines, ignition coils often go bad. This will be a few hundred dollars to repair. The anti-lock brake systems often spring electrical problems, sometimes with just the light, sometimes with module. To get this diagnosed will cost around $100 or so, depending on the shop.

Least Expense

One of the biggest problems in used A4s, especially in 1.8T engines, is oil sludge. This too can result in serious engine damage. However, avoiding it is relatively inexpensive. Just be sure to use only synthetic oil, and to do changes much more frequently than the manufacturer suggestion (i.e. every 5,000 miles instead of every 10,000).

Optional Expense

In addition to the common problems, you may want to consider adding some power modifications to increase the horsepower and/or sound of your A4. Most expensive of these includes the supercharge, which costs around $4500. Least expensive is the chip, which is around $400. And adding noise to the car can be done very cheaply. New intakes and exhausts are only a few hundred dollars, especially if custom built.

If you buy used, Audi A4s can be a good and reliable choice. Repair parts are not all that expensive; most expense comes from the labor. But with a used A4 at least you will have some idea of what to expect. Keep the oil changes frequent, and with only synthetic. Change the timing belt early. And keep in mind what types of mods you will want to do. Knowing this before hand will help you choose an A4 that is right for you.

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