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Thread: Thinking of getting a cheap used A8 instead of A4/A6

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    Thinking of getting a cheap used A8 instead of A4/A6

    I drive alot for work approx 30-40k per year and have been doing so mostly in my 1998 A3 1.8T Sport which is now at 269,000 miles. I have now decided I need to change this car as I dont want to spend the needed £700+ on repairs/maintenance, since it has to be on its last legs now anyway.

    After looking into used A3s, A4s, A6s and not really finding much I was happy with for the price, I had a look at A8s and could not believe how cheap you can get a 2003-2005 plate for, with under 100k mileage going for between £4000-£7000! The standard spec on an A8 is amazing (so no need to keep trying to find a car that has leather AND bose AND heated seats AND quattro!).

    Also being their flag ship car, the frame and build is of the highest standard/quality/finish - I'm assuming there will be less going wrong, breaking, snapping, wearing over the years. Plus the design of this particular D3 model is much better to me than any of its younger siblings.

    My questions to you A8 owners, is based on my worst fears with owning this car:
    1) How much was your biggest repair bill?
    2) The size of the car is really big, worried about multi storey car parks, supermarket car parks (which is job related so use often), narrow city roads etc. I have driven the family 240GL Volvo estate around years ago and wasnt really that bad. But have you had any horrible incidents based on the huge size of the A8?

    Thanks in advance,
    zahg

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    munchkincoupe's Avatar
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    Depends on which A8 D3 that you are going for - presuming a diesel on that mileage

    I've got a 3.0 tdi quattro 2005 - largest bill - £750 last week - grumbling noise from the front end on start up turned out to be the aircon pump about to explode - got the mechanic to do some other replacements whilst parts were off and running well now

    The length of the car is the biggest issue so try and get one with parking sensors front and rear. Yes they are wide but I've only had problems in older car parks. Kerb weight is very similar to the same age A6 due to the aluminium chassis of the A8 it's just that the A8 has more gadgets as standard so more things to go wrong

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    That is exactly what I have resolved to get, a 3.0 TDI Quattro. If I see an amazing bargain petrol or 4.0/4.2 TDI then i will go for it, but mainly focusing on the 3.0tdi.

    Another reason im going for an A8 over lower models is parking sensors front and rear as standard I believe. Just confirmed that heated seats are standard in front. True i guess that there are more things to go wrong, I'm banking on the fact that its an A8 which should have better materials/parts/detail and comfort that will last, so less repairs needed over time, and I get to enjoy the ridiculous amount of mileage I do every year. cheers



    Quote Originally Posted by munchkincoupe View Post
    Depends on which A8 D3 that you are going for - presuming a diesel on that mileage

    I've got a 3.0 tdi quattro 2005 - largest bill - £750 last week - grumbling noise from the front end on start up turned out to be the aircon pump about to explode - got the mechanic to do some other replacements whilst parts were off and running well now

    The length of the car is the biggest issue so try and get one with parking sensors front and rear. Yes they are wide but I've only had problems in older car parks. Kerb weight is very similar to the same age A6 due to the aluminium chassis of the A8 it's just that the A8 has more gadgets as standard so more things to go wrong

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    biggest single bill I've had for my S8 is £1,546 for timing chairs etc to be redone, after that it was £1,121 for some prop shaft work and sticking the new brakes on.

    even with that, I'm still running at 0.67 pence per mile.

    as for the size, I tend to stay away from new car parks as their spaces are tiny, and I had a fight with a council down South for giving me a parking ticket for 'not parking in the marked bay' I fought them and proved the car doesn't actually fit in their bays, and low and behold, they had been made smaller than the usual recommended size so I got off that one...

    they are well made, but still suffer from water ingress which is annoying... but I can do 600 miles a day and jump out the other end fresh as a daisy...

    great cars....

    :thumb:

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    They are great cars and the smoothest I have ever been in or driven. you will fall in love with them BUT..
    You will definitely be spending some money on them. I have not had a big bill yet but my fingers are crossed as there are some common things that will go wrong with them like the air suspension, boot lid motor, motorised screen mechanism,soft close door mechanisms, touch door mechanisms. This forum is quite quiet for A8's but if you go to Audiworld.com they have a very active A8 D3 forum going with all the info you will need. I have only had motorised screen problem (which WILL go bad) I fixed it myself by following a guide. Would have cost £400 at audi. I have only done 6000 miles and got the car with 70000 on the clock. My boot motor needs doing but I can live with that, my driver door touch button lock and soft close is gone but again I can live with them and when I see any of the parts cheap on ebay I'll grab them and do them. If you have VCDS it will come in handy if you haven't you will need it if you want to save yourself some money. After saying all that I have the 4.2 TDI and i absolutely love it and want to try and keep it as long as I can.

    Enjoy
    Audi A4 TDI 130
    Remap
    18" Alloys
    Electric heated leather recaro interior
    Lowered bilstein suspension
    Alpine cd player Genesis amp Jl sub
    Ipod ashtray mount

    Audi A8 LWB 4.2 TDI
    19" 12 spoke alloys
    Walnut Trim
    Walnut steering wheel
    Silver Grey Platinum Leather interior
    Audio upgrade removed bose
    Audison bit one
    Morel speakers
    Genesis Amps

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    munchkincoupe's Avatar
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    Agree with the above - long trips don't get me down now. I used to get back pain previously but no more thanks to heated leather and multi-adjustable seats.

    My boot lock went but I got the part from audi and fixed it myself. Some of my front sensors don't work but have got some replacements so it's on my to-do list.

    Factor in tyres too - I've got the 20" alloys and it had cr** brands on when I got it so I went for Pirellis - £250 per corner

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    Thanks for the info guys, and for the tip about the other forum. Thought it was a bit quiet in this a8 section compared to the a3 one which I normally check out.

    Still not put off with getting a used A8, have the luxury of a bit of time in looking for the right one. Now it's just the wait till I find it (and save a bit of cash).



    Quote Originally Posted by cocain View Post
    They are great cars and the smoothest I have ever been in or driven. you will fall in love with them BUT..
    You will definitely be spending some money on them. I have not had a big bill yet but my fingers are crossed as there are some common things that will go wrong with them like the air suspension, boot lid motor, motorised screen mechanism,soft close door mechanisms, touch door mechanisms. This forum is quite quiet for A8's but if you go to Audiworld.com they have a very active A8 D3 forum going with all the info you will need. I have only had motorised screen problem (which WILL go bad) I fixed it myself by following a guide. Would have cost £400 at audi. I have only done 6000 miles and got the car with 70000 on the clock. My boot motor needs doing but I can live with that, my driver door touch button lock and soft close is gone but again I can live with them and when I see any of the parts cheap on ebay I'll grab them and do them. If you have VCDS it will come in handy if you haven't you will need it if you want to save yourself some money. After saying all that I have the 4.2 TDI and i absolutely love it and want to try and keep it as long as I can.

    Enjoy

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    Had mine a few months and no issues. Boot motor makes a noise when operating and i think more than it should but it still working.

    Scuffed rear bumper, chipped strip on passenger door, crack in windscreen.

    All from being left in a car park. Trust me, park out of everyones way. Parkin sensors are also a god send!

    Dont want to get hit with a repair bill in all honesty!

    4.2 tdi and i get amazing mpg (for engine / car size) on motorway amd im deffo sure if you stuck to 60 you could get near 40mpg.

    I live 2 miles from work and the car takes agessss to get upto operating temp (not cabin tho cos auxillary heater) so i really only get like 18mpg to work and back.

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    Whats this touch button lock and soft close?!..... and water ingress???......

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    Palmer I'm going for a 3.0 TDi but I see the next few cars in my life just being a string of A8s upto S8/W12 (even if they are 10 year olds). 4.2 V8 - cant wait already even before owning my 3.0! I've gone and actually visited dealers 3 times now all over UK - 3rd time lucky hopefully! 2006 £8500ish 88k miles =)


    Quote Originally Posted by PalmerA8 View Post
    Whats this touch button lock and soft close?!..... and water ingress???......

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    Quote Originally Posted by zahg View Post
    Palmer I'm going for a 3.0 TDi but I see the next few cars in my life just being a string of A8s upto S8/W12 (even if they are 10 year olds). 4.2 V8 - cant wait already even before owning my 3.0! I've gone and actually visited dealers 3 times now all over UK - 3rd time lucky hopefully! 2006 £8500ish 88k miles =)
    Think the 3.0 would be better for your mileage.

    Even though its performed faultlessly im just waiting for something to go thats expensive :/ mines juat turned over 80 done 2k in it so far...

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    Theres a button in the boot door that u press when opened and it shuts. Also doors can close when not fully closed shut, they auto shut them slowly (not seen this option in person yet).

    Quote Originally Posted by PalmerA8 View Post
    Whats this touch button lock and soft close?!..... and water ingress???......

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    I'm banking on the cars overall strength and reliability to last me 10 years if I end up having to keep it. I'm gambling that I will have less going wrong in general over the next 5 years, compared to an A3/4/6. And mileage wise, i dont doubt this car can go on over 400,000 miles and still be a decent ride.

    The limited test drive i did today was so awesome, even tho it was rush hour all over. Sensed the difference in power when flicked to S on the gearstick. Never driven a 3.0 ltr car before, has left me really wanting more asap


    Quote Originally Posted by PalmerA8 View Post
    Think the 3.0 would be better for your mileage.

    Even though its performed faultlessly im just waiting for something to go thats expensive :/ mines juat turned over 80 done 2k in it so far...

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    Happy to announce, badboybaby Audi number 3 was born 18/2/14 approx 7.30pm!! Two and a half hour drive from manc to bristol was pure bliss. Love it, feel i made the right choice. ’S’ mode wow thats gonna cost me =]

    Late night pic:

    photo Badboy III Audi A8 Feb 18th 2014.jpg
    ScottD3 likes this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by zahg View Post
    Happy to announce, badboybaby Audi number 3 was born 18/2/14 approx 7.30pm!! Two and a half hour drive from manc to bristol was pure bliss. Love it, feel i made the right choice. ’S’ mode wow thats gonna cost me =]

    Late night pic:

    photo Badboy III Audi A8 Feb 18th 2014.jpg
    Lovely mate. Does it have any options?
    Did you go with the 3.0 tdi in the end?

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    Ps post some daytime pics when you get a chance

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    Yeah went for 3.0 TDi in the end. Options (over the massive amount of standard options!): Sports trim/suspension? (please clue me in on the diff apart from cosmetic between Sport and SE), bose, xenon plus, front+rear climate and heated seats, alacantra package, int/ext light package, folding mirrors, touch button boot close, Digital TV, electric front seats and steering column, vavona wood trim panelling (pictures dont do the cool 3d effects justice, and didnt realise this was a natural wood effect!), GSM telephone, tip semi-auto with paddles AND headlamp wash! The old R2D2 headlamp wash i had on my 1998 A3 I had owned since 2 years new had stopped working these last three four years - always loved that feature. That car was the trade in! Hope this car lasts me as long. -zahg


    Quote Originally Posted by kanecullen89 View Post
    Lovely mate. Does it have any options?
    Did you go with the 3.0 tdi in the end?

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    As you can probably tell I'm too excited and buzzin to sleep, some better pics:

    P1030134.jpg

    P1030138.jpg

    P1030140.jpg

    P1030143.jpg

    P1030153.jpg

    P1030154.jpg


    Quote Originally Posted by kanecullen89 View Post
    Ps post some daytime pics when you get a chance

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    Wow great find!! What a huge spec list!!!!
    On the lower models sports pack normally means sports suspension (slightly lowered and stiffer than SE) and more sporty style seats with bigger side bolstering

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    Thanks, still pinching myself - cant believe i managed to get such a beast for the budget i had. The car had been reduced in price from just under 10k twice down to just under 9k before i saw it. Can only assume the few minor dings/scuffs and cigarette burn in drivers seat put people off it? Or maybe the vavona wood trim looked a bit weird in the photos? Really happy with the motor.


    Quote Originally Posted by kanecullen89 View Post
    Wow great find!! What a huge spec list!!!!
    On the lower models sports pack normally means sports suspension (slightly lowered and stiffer than SE) and more sporty style seats with bigger side bolstering

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    Enjoy your new motor, if your not already on a8 parts forum, you will find lots of good info and stuff there.

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    Thanks Delboi! And thanks for the tip about the A8 parts forum. Not been there before but looks excellent, will certainly be reading up lots there cheers


    Quote Originally Posted by Delboi View Post
    Enjoy your new motor, if your not already on a8 parts forum, you will find lots of good info and stuff there.

 

 

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