quattro digest, Vol 1 #3433 - 5KQ as daily driver

l.leung at juno.com l.leung at juno.com
Thu May 16 17:46:51 EDT 2002


I have made a similar change (still have a sort of split roof '85 GTi Solo =
car (treefall), though I had a stepping stone by having an Audi 4000 Q as w=

Compared to the GLi, the Audi 5000/200 Quattros (turbo) are as fast or fast=
er than your modded VW. Turbo can be boosted to over 200 HP easily and as f=
ar as the engines bottom and top ends are concerned, they are relatively bu=
lletproof. The problem is the softgoods (i.e. rubber bits) which are gettin=
g rather old in a car that runs rather hot (much hotter than the already ho=
t VW's). Since both cars (VW A2 chassis and Audi type 44)are rather reliant=
 on vacuum for emission control and general operation, it is something to k=
eep track of and maintain if you want real reliablity.

That said, the Audi is MUCH quiter, MUCH smoother riding and still fun to d=
rive, though the car isn't as agressively fun as the VW's, which are more f=
un at slower speeds than the Audi's (but, here it's a matter of size, gener=
ally, a well designed 2500 lb car will likely be more fun than a well desig=
ned 3500 lb car, that's life). It is ALOT roomier, and since you don't have=
 a hatch, you'll find the trunk even more ridiculously useful than the alre=
ady cavernous A2 Jetta trunk.

As for fuel economy, I have never gotten the sometimes lister claims of nea=
rly 30 MPG on the highway, generally getting around 20 - 24 MPG in mixed dr=
iving, but that's both before and after chipping the car, so the chip didn'=
t seem to hurt the fuel milage. You can, being a turbo car, control your fu=
el economy somewhat by staying off the loud pedal, but what fun is THAT! Be=
ware, in either car, you should run at least 91 octane, self destruction is=
 prevented by the knock sensors in either car, but the turbo car is more se=
nsitive to fuel than the 16V.

Finally, when it comes to maintenance, the Audi is a much more complicated =
and involved car, it's just soooo much more loaded in content, it's a luxur=
y car, not the economy car that the A2 VW's were. So being it, maintenance =
is more expensive (pricier parts) and often (more to go wrong). That said, =
generally speaking, the 200 models (89 up) are more reliable than the 5000 =
CS models, partially due to age, partially due to many bugs worked out over=
 the years.

Either way, I believe you'd have fun (as long as you much of your own work,=
 otherwise it'll make you poor) with the Audi, but keep in mind its a bigge=
r, more involved car. I certainly don't think of it as an Autocross car (he=
nce I still have the GTi) but it's still fun, and a more comforting daily d=
river. I WISH it could get GTi gas milage, but seriously, WHY should I expe=
ct it?

A reasonable compromise would be a 4K (Really a fun, balanced AWD car, but =
getting REALLY old with all that accomanies age) or an Audi 80 or 90 quattr=
o (not much experience there, but they are certainly lighter and less compl=
icated than the type 44 (5000/200) turbo quattros). They just don't have th=
e ease of HP that the turbo cars have, nor, due to their lesser numbers, ha=
ve the ease of aftermarket hop ups as the A2 cars have.

That's just my opinion, but heck, my cars have certainly kept me in the VAG=


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