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Re: 91 200tq FIRE (the plot thickens)
Sorry to hear of your experience with the speaker fire (and also of your
wife's accident). What I can add to your database relates to a "special",
black '91 200q that, sometime in Winter of '97 _and_ again in Spring of
'98, was auctioned at Manheim (PA). This car was special in that it was
sold with an Audi of America factory extended, full one-year
warranty-although the car was "over-age" and "over-mileage" (beyond 90k
miles as I recall) for any normal "Audi Assured" extended coverage to be
still in effect.
The story I got from a local (private) used car dealer was that the car was
a "factory buy back". What? He explained that it "merely" had some smoke
damage from a trunk electrical fire involving the Bose stereo speaker/amps.
As a consequence of this fire, AoA had "bought back" the car from the
owner, and they were disposing of it at wholesale auction along with a
special extended factory warranty (to sweeten the deal, it would seem). I
thought that was a weird story, especially since I had never heard of a
fire originating from car speakers. But I was thinking about the stereo
signal and not the powered amps and about what 12 volts can do, in the
right (or wrong) place. Then I heard about Frank's car recently and now
Anyway, I was--during early '98--desperately looking for a '91 200q, and
this dealer told me he heard that the car's purchaser (from the Manheim
auction a few months earlier) intended to return the "smoked" car to the
auction ( I guess dealers will do that if the car doesn't turn out to be
substantially "as represented"--and maybe for other reasons). He said he
would bid on it, and if successful, would have it available for me to
And so it happened (in March, '98) the car was re-auctioned, arrived here,
and I (and my wife) took it out for a test drive. While we had it at my
favorite nearby garage for a quick look-see on a lift, we inspected the
trunk and sure enough there was plenty of evidence of much scorching around
the right rear speaker area. The car interior still had lots of grime from
the smoke--as well as significant odor, inspite of having had some
clean-up done. We decided to pass on it. It was sold soon thereafter to
someone in Syracuse NY, I believe.
I might be able to get the name of the new owner. Contact me privately if
interested (hah!), and I can certainly supply you with the name of the
local dealer who bought and then sold the car last year. I think this
should be pursued since it appears that this model could indeed be a
ticking (squawking?) time bomb. I'd sure like to know what Audi knows about
the hazard potential of these speakers. They certainly know about this
particular black/platinum '91 200q, and they clearly seem to have made an
effort to compensate the owner for the "mishap". Hope this is of some help.
Two or three incidents don't make a case for a factory safety defect, but
it's a start.
BTW, it's possible that a qlister (Dave Flagg) may have attended one or
another of those auctions involving this car, and might have information to
Good luck and keep us posted.
>This post stopped me dead in my tracks. Had been re-reading past posts and
>thought my situation was unique.
>20 April 1999, the exact same sounds came from the rear speaker of my 1991
>200 tq - but the car went up in flames(!!) and is a total loss. I was
>driving when this occurred and by the time I got out of the vehicle it was
>full of black, acrid smoke and I was holding my breath while pulling over.
>Not fun. Did a stupid thing and opened the trunk (luckily no flare-in-face
>effect) and clearly witnessed speaker as the source of the fire. 10 days
>short of owning it a year. Major bummer.
>Local Audi dealership was great (I had them doing most of my repair work on
>this beast), but AOA has shown legalistic unresponsiveness in three
>escalating rounds of communications. Had the vehicle towed to Key Audi in
>Jax, FL from the scene of the fire, and AOA never sent a rep over to see the
>vehicle, despite repeated requests. They state the car is too old, the
>sound system is aftermarket (well... aftermarket Pioneer CD changer, but was
>not "on" at the time...) and that this is entirely a matter between me and
>the insurance company.
>The sounds had manifested earlier in April and was looking to get speakers
>from another lister, so had gotten this info off one of them: "Bose Rear
>R.Le. 205 964 3103 441 035 412B"
>Then, 20 May 1999 spouse gets t-boned by a '99 GMC Suburban; her Buick is
>totaled and she gets a nasty smack in the head. I dropped the Audi issue
>entirely at this point, and haven't come back to it until I collected my
>1,000+ pieces of mail from the list.
>At first, test drove an A6 Avant, and then various other Audi's. But after
>AOA's attitude, I'm through with Audi's after 12 years driving them. At
>this point, I can't even stand looking at them. Yesterday bought a '96 Olds
>LSS. The most ambivalent car purchase of my life. Wife is doing better,
>gotta get her wheels next.
>I suspect that Audi of America is very likely to be hearing of or from me
>once again. Would anyone care to share their experiences regarding the Bose
>amplified speakers in this series vehicle?
>I'm a professional in my 40's and never had an accident (and technically
>still haven't) or engaged an attorney for other than contract and estate
>matters. I don't think I'm being a jerk here - was looking for some level
>of responsiveness from AOA, not early retirement to the Cayman's. Excellent
>insurance but out several thousand, I've got better things to do than
>concentrate on this crap, yet it sure seems to me that a collectible (?@#$#)
>like this '91 200 TQ shouldn't simply have gone up in flames. This is my
>first post regarding this incident. Judging from their behavior, it looks
>like AOA wants word of this incident to spread far and wide. Other data and
>video is available. Photos likely to follow on the web site at some point.
>Ok, there's the public purge. Thanks in advance for any advice or further
>Eric Geller Jacksonville Beach, FL
>'96 Olds LSS
>'91 200tq (burnt & not on Gerd Klauss's conscience)
>'87 4000csq (sold)
>'82 4000 (in Audi heaven)
>firstname.lastname@example.org -- you can bet this e-mail address will change...
>www.jacksonville.net/~quattro (for photos of the 200, pre-burn)
>From: email@example.com [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] On
>Behalf Of Frank Stadmeyer
>Sent: Wednesday, June 02, 1999 9:35 PM
>To: email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
>Subject: Looking for Audi/Bose rear speakers
>I presume that SCREECH!! SQUAWK!!!! BRAAAAP!!!! emmanating from my rear
>speaker with the attendant release of the all important smoke and odor
>component means that my speaker has expired.
Phil Rose Rochester, NY
'91 200q mailto:email@example.com