Audi is renowned for its sporty, luxurious cars. But are Audis good cars?
Yes, Audis are good cars. However, some models might be problematic and difficult to maintain. Consumer Reports gives a kicking to models like the A3 and E-Tron. The criticism is justified in my opinion, but the definition of a “good” car varies among individuals.
When it comes to luxury and high performance, Audi stands its ground. Here’s what you need to know:
Are Audis Good Used Cars?
Buying any used car involves some element of risk. While the risk is amplified in old cars, you get great deals. As a high-end luxury car, most new Audis are relatively expensive.
If you’re on a limited budget and want to own an Audi, you should go for a used model (such as the 2015 Audi A4). Even so, used Audis share some common mechanical problems. Here are a few examples:
Ignition Coil Issues
A common issue among most Audis is that of faulty ignition coils. You need to inspect these coils before buying a used model.
Used Audis might be prone to oil leaks. The leaks tend to originate from the camshaft tensioner or the valve cover gasket.
An old Audi might have issues with the digital dashboard displays. Some owners have also reported the failure of tail lamps and lamps.
As a luxury brand, Audi keeps up with modern innovations. When you opt for a used car, you’ll be stuck with older technology.
You don’t necessarily encounter these problems in all used Audis. A well-cared and serviced car is unlikely to be troublesome. Avoid surprises by inspecting and researching an Audi before buying. Get its VIN and be updated on things like:
- Real mileage
- Number of previous owners
- Accidents involved
- Service history
A good used Audi should also be visually pleasing. Ensure you’re getting a model with great interior looks and an appealing exterior.
Are Audis Expensive to Fix?
Audis might not be the most expensive luxury cars in the market, but they top the charts when it comes to repairs. Audis are very expensive to fix. All Audis require at least $987 to facilitate annual repair costs. This cost is in stark contrast to the average of $652 required by other comparable models.
New Audis are much more dependable, but the same cannot be said for older models. Over time, Audis are besieged by issues like:
- ABS light issues
- Electronic failures
- Exhaust leaks
- Oil leaks
- Check engine light problems
- Overheating car components
Each model comes with its repair demands and costs. Overall, the bulk of expenses goes to labor and replacement parts. Audi parts are relatively expensive compared to average models like the Chevy and Kia. With that said, the cost of parts is comparable to other luxury manufacturers like Mercedes.
Simple Audi components are relatively inexpensive, while high-tech and new parts cost more.
Repairs in an Audi dealer are also likely to cost more. Below are the average repair costs (diagnosis, labor, and parts).
- Electrical problems ($130-$1000)
- A/C replacement ($2900)
- Oil pressure sensor ($600)
- Water pump replacement ($900)
- Oil leak issues ($130-$260)
- Spark plugs ($170-$220)
- Ignition coils ($250-$380)
- Catalytic converters ($1,664- $1,736)
Are Audis Expensive to Maintain?
Unlike other rugged brands, Audis demand maintenance. Audi recommends minor servicing for all models whenever they clock 10,000 miles. You can read the full maintenance schedule (for all models) here.
As a luxury car, it’s expensive to operate and maintain. For 10,000 miles, you will incur $200-$300 in basic maintenance costs. The service costs can be as high as $870 for larger mileage intervals.
Regular maintenance goes a long way in extending your Audis lifespan. Besides, you detect glitches at an early stage and end up saving on replacement parts. Audi maintenance entails:
Routine oil changes are needed to keep your Audis engine in top shape. Audi models require oil change whenever they go 10,000 miles. This mileage reduces to 5,000 if you’re a city driver who engages in frequent stop-start driving. Oil change for your Audi car should cost anywhere between $130 and $140.
Your Audis battery can serve for three years before requiring a replacement. However, dead battery situations occur at any instance. To avoid such a predicament, you need to test your battery every three months. Eventually, you’ll need a new battery for your Audi, and it will cost approximately $300.
Brakes are prone to wear and tear and should be checked once or twice each year. Audi recommends brake pad replacement after every 35,000 to 60,000 miles. You don’t have to wait this long—check and replace your brakes whenever they take too long to stop. Audis brake pad replacement costs $350-$400.
Worn-out tires perform dismally and might cause accidents when driving on slippery roads. Loss of tread is the primary indicator of a worn-out tire. Immediately replace any tire that shows such conditions. Audi dealerships charge up to $330 per tire. However, if you include installation costs, the amount can rise as high as $1,400.
Air Filters Replacement
Audi filters cost up to $130 to replace.
How Long Do Audis Typically Last?
Audis aren’t known for their longevity. The average lifespan of an Audi is between 150,000 and 200,000 miles. However, you can’t authoritatively put a cap on a car’s mileage. Many factors affect vehicle longevity.
If you regularly maintain your Audi, it should last for a long time. Your driving technique is another factor to consider. If you’re too aggressive on the road, it’s unlikely your Audi will survive past 200,000 miles.
Are Audis Reliable?
Audis reliability has fluctuated over the years. Early models were labeled a sinkhole of problems, while newer models have fared much better. Audi currently has average reliability of 3.0 out of 5.0.
Several factors are taken into account when assessing the dependability of a vehicle. The key factors include repair costs, frequency of breakdowns, the severity of unscheduled repairs, to name a few.
The higher than average annual repair costs of Audis means that owners have to part with more money.
Experts estimate that Audi owners visit repair shops approximately 0.8 times a year. These visits are largely unscheduled, and 13% of them are severe cases. A reliable car should have fewer visits to the dealership for repairs.
What Model Year Audis Should You Avoid?
It’s not uncommon for vehicles to have one or two defects. However, when flaws affect specific models, it becomes a major concern. The following Audis have received unrelenting complaints from customers.
2019 Audi Q8
The 2019 Audi Q8 is a problematic model. Since its production, the model has been recalled twice for manufacturing defects.
The two major defects are abrupt loss of steering control and loose shock absorbers. Q8 Owners have also reported glitches with the automatic transmission, engine, electrical components, and throttle response delay.
2017 Audi A3: Airbags Issues
Far too many defects have besieged the 2017 Audi A3. So far, the NHTSA has issued four safety recalls on this model. The main problem has been the malfunctioning Passenger Occupant Detection System (PODS).
This problem affects the deployment of airbags during accidents. Other issues include knocking engines, dysfunctional fuel systems, brake issues, and electrical flaws.
2012 Audi Q5: Oil Guzzler
This model has lots of engine snags. It’s infamous for consuming too much oil after covering 80,000 miles. You’re likely to spend more on oil than what you’re used to. More drawbacks include oil leakages and airbag malfunctions.
2004 Audi A6: Fuel-inefficient
The 2004 Audi A6 is likely to drain your pockets due to its high fuel consumption. The fuel injector tends to fail and supplies more fuel than is needed.