Thinking about buying an A8 quattro. Should I?

Kent McLean kentmclean at
Sat Mar 26 14:52:06 EST 2005

Britt Crowell wrote:
> So as a joke i bid on an A8 on ebay. 
> I got out bid by $100 but the winner didnt pay so the seller sent me a second chance offer.
> Its a 1997 you can check out the links and specs here
> And If any has access to Carfax and can run this that would be cool too
> WAUBG84D0VN009739
> So what do you guys think about this car? 

"As a joke" isn't a good way to start a relationship. :)
I've been toying with the idea of buying a V8 for some time now,
but the price of an A8 has dropped below the $10K figure:
So, this made me ask the question: $6-8K for a '93 V8, or
$10K for a 4-year younger A8? The difference is as low as
$500 a year, which is cheap (think 4 years of maintenance
for only $500/year).

The big differences between the V8 vs A8:
* less complex electronics V8 vs. OBD-II compliant A8
* T*rsen diffs vs. EDL quattro
* 4 speed vs 5 speed automatic
* old rubber bits vs not-so-old rubber bits

As for "your" car, at 97K miles, the car *should have* had it's
timing belt replaced.  If not (and that may be a good reason
for the current owner to dump the car cheap) it will have to be
done to prevent expensive damage when the belt breaks. The belt
and other bits runs about $800-1000; add another $800-1000 for
labor.  So your $10K car becomes a $12K car.  In the picture of
the driver's seat and dash you can see some wear in the carpet
by the door sill.  Maybe not a big deal, but may not sit well
viewing it every time you enter the car.

The '97 lacks the Tiptronic automatic, but for about $150
in used parts, you can replace the existing gate with the
Tiptronic one, connect some wires and -- voila -- you've
got Tiptronic.  I believe the '98 got double-glazed windows,
for a quieter ride, which is another reason to perfer the '98.

So, it looks to be in decent shape, but it may need some $$$
to bring it up to spec, making it less of a bargain.

I also copied the V8 list; they may have something to say.

That's my 2 cents.

Kent McLean
'94 100 S Avant, "Moody"
'89 200 TQ, "Bad Puppy" up in smoke

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