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Re: what to look for in 1990 100 Q ?

errol wrote:
> I am looking to buy this car.  It is a 5 speed.  It has 90,000 miles,
> one-owner and clean all over . Dealer says that he fixed an electrical
> short that made the abs lights to come on when you changed from 4 wheel to
> 2 wheel drive. Other than that everything worked. Price is $ 6,800. The car
> appears to be flat in the first two gears ,then in 3rd it is peppier. Unusual?

Yes VERY VERY unusual since you may have stumbled upon the *only*
Quattro in existence that has a switch that allows you to go from 2wd to
4wd! The Quattro system is all wheel drive all the time! There is a rear
diff lock switch located aft of the shifter (between the seats). When
the rear diff is locked, the ABS OFF light should come on since ABS is
not possible with the rear diff locked. This is a normal condition. If
he "fixed it", I really wonder what else he "fixed." 

> What should I look for and what should I be weary of?
> I am sorry to repeat a subject that has been possibly covered many times
> before but a search of the archives was not possible due to technical
> problems.

OH boy...there is alot here. First though strongly consider walking from
this car just because of the misinformation already given to you. ALso,
if he rigged the wiring to disable the ABS OFF light then you already
have one problem that will need to be attended to. What happens when you
bring the car in for service and he screws something else up? I would
prefer to buy the car from the owner who also has a stack of receipts
showing proper care of the car.

I would start searching for a 5000csq/200q instead. My shop has a 200q
here for sale that came out of the south. If you are interested, let me
know I will give you their number.

What to look for?

1. Normal Used car Check list...
   a. open trunk, lift liner and look for any unusual seams/welds. 
   b. Check body gaps. All should be equal and flush with each other.
(chrome trim on 200q doors sometimes looks uneven. My 200q looked just a
little uneven since brand new).
   c. Pull off center caps and make sure all five/four bolts are there.
   d. Look for paint irregularites (not scratches, but evidence of a
   e. Open hood/doors and look for evidence of paint overspray on
   f. Check Brake pad thickness. (pull wheel off). 
   g. Take care to trusted mechanic OR AT LEAST any mechanic for a full
prepurchase inspection. Expect to pay for at least one hour labor maybe
two. If dealer says no to this, run (not walk) away. Hopefully your tech
will be familiar with Audis. 
   h A/C.
   i. Get under the car and inspect the other seams of the car. Do the
same for under the hood. Remember you are looking for irregularities. Go
to http:// www.ecocar.com. Realize that people buy wrecks and fix them.
Note that Ecocar makes special issue of cars that have a clean (not
salvage) title! 

2. 100/200/5000 specific check list.
   a. Hydraulic system leaks (rack, p/s pump, lines)
   b. Bad Bomb (use "Q-list bomb test")
   c. Binding Rear Calipers/Caliper Arms (especially in North East).
   d. all window switches and door handles.
   e. Functioning climate control system center vent flap spring. 
   f. functioning temp-guage.
   g. Proper Boost pressure/engagement.
   h. Exhaust Manifold cracks
   i. Functioning sunroof
   j. All I think of right now, I'm still sleepy. Q-list?

3. Receipts.
   A. Timing Belt/Water Pump
   B. When was alternator replaced last?
   C. Starter?
   D, Oil Change interval?
   E. Does it look like the PO took care of the car? See if you can find
out his/her name and call! If the dealer hedges on this, it better be a
good excuse. BTW, I can't think of a good excuse for not having the PO's
name and I sold cars. They do have it on record. I think any excuse,
including "she/he doesn't want to be contacted or we maintain our
customers privacy" is reason enough to walk. 

This is all I can think of right now. I know the moment I hit "send" 10
other ideas will pop in my head so realize that this is a very
incomplete and only briefly thought out list. There is certainly much
more to inspecting a 5000/100/200 and I think the list will add some
more information to my post.

Final Note: When buying a used car set aside a buffer of cash from your
budget to handle unexpected repairs. It is very rare indeed when you buy
a used car (especially a Audi) that will be competely trouble free for
some time. Most people don't trade their cars in when they are running
The problem might be very minor, so don't worry too much when it shows. 
Hopefully you will have eliminated many of the cars w/ BIG problems  and
used the smaller problems to negotiate a better deal.

Osman Parvez
Albany NY
89 200q 175K 
85 Mr2 77K