Looking to buy A4 Cabriolet


On the Drive or On The Redline
Nov 29, 2006
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Hey guys,

I currently have a '53' A3, and I am lookin to buy an A4 Cabriolet for this summer. Got a budget of around £14/15k, and I've seen a few cars that I like the look of.

Is there anything I should be aware of that goes wrong on these cars? my budget will generally get me between 02-54 plate (dependant on miles) but I really like the facelift front end... is there anyone who has changed the front end to the new one? I assume its just the bumper, bonnet and lights? If so, how much does it cost?

And what engine would you recommed? There seems to be plenty of 1.8T, but is the 2.4 going to be a better choice? :think:

Any advice would be gratefully recieved!
How about this one ?





Every And I mean Every option on this car Its A 3.0 Sport which is suprisingly economical 1 owner 45,000 Miles Needs not a single penny spending on it NO DENTS DINGS OR ANY BLEMISHES !!Mint original condition !!
looks lovely, but i dont know about insurance on a 3.0l, il have to find out tomorrow. where r u situated? PM me if u want
On the 1.8Ts, if you are looking at a car around £14/15k then make sure the cambelt has been done otherwise you will end up with a fair old bill. Also cars of this age should have seen perhaps a couple of sets of pads / discs depending on mileage. You'll be suprised what you can pick up from main dealers at the moment, so you'll get 1 years warranty.

As for 1.8T / 2.4 debate. Well have a search around on the forum for all sorts of views about drivability / MPG / Extra power etc etc

As I've said before, I'm on my second car with the 1.8T engine, but go and have a drive and see what you think.

I have seen some earlier '52' / '03' cars privately going for sub 12k, many seem to be 'SE' models and some have only part leather. But there are plenty to go and have a look at. Also seen some 3.0 with higher miles (100k) going for the same sort of money.

Need any help with retrofitting any cabriolet parts then don't hesitate to contact me...

Thats great, thanks. I've just heard back from my insurance, and I can have either the 1.8T or 2.4, but not the 3.0 (as i'm only 20). I went to pay my local dealer a visit yesterday, they seem to have some nice '03' ones available with 40,000miles(ish). The 1.8T is in a lower tax bracket aswell, so I think that may be a good option, maybe go for a remap aswell. I think the dealer is going to be the place for me to get one, don't want to be lumbered with a massive service bill in a few months, plus I could always trade my A3 in, saves trying to sell it (although I'll see how much they will give me).
Hi Andy

Here is one thread that is in a similar vein. Maybe this could help. Also here.

Hope this helps. :)

ALSO... the Hofele front bumper you want is priced here (supply only I think). NOLOGY's is a stunning example
Great stuff, thanks for the links. Ye, I saw some photos of his car, its stunning. Really like that bumper. I may have to reseve a little money and get one straight away. Does anyone know how much it would be to get it painted? rough cost?
good choice mate, mines the 18T not very quick but nothing a remap cant sort, very heavy car so check brakes and clutch aswell.
good luck.
Thanks for all your advice guys, been really helpful.

Think I've found the one I want. It's not from a dealer, but It's an '03' 42,000miles, 1.8T sport, Red with black leather, just had 4 new tyres, 12months MOT etc, looks like a good buy on at £14,750.

When I asked the dealer about the Cam belt, they said they don't change them until about 80,000miles, is this true? or do people have them changed earlier? Besides clutch and brakes is there anythin else I should watch out for?
An 03 is 5 years old now. I wouldn't buy it unless the price is right, or they agree to change the cambelt, pulleys, tensioners and water pump. 1.8Ts are known for water pump problems, the new uprated ones have metal impellors. I don't know how a dealer can warrant not changing a belt on a 5 year old car. So what happens if the car was 10 years old with that mileage, would you still trust the cambelt ?!?!?! I wouldn't !

Mines a 53 with 63k and I've had the belt and pump done
The one I'm looking at IS NOT from a dealer, do u think thats too expensive? I've still got to ring and ask what was done in it's last service, so it may of had that done. How much does it all cost that you've just listed? Bet It's a pretty penny?
Cambelt, pumps etc is around £400
I've just had a full major service, full OEM pads and discs all round, plus cambelt, pump etc, new plugs, oil and brake fluid change and that was £800 - this is not at an Audi dealer either !
An '03' with low miles for that money sounds OK, DEPENDING what service history there is ! Check tyre condition as 18s aren't that cheap, check the alloys, pads/discs, fluid changes / pollen filter / air filter changes as it can all add up if its not been done. If its on variable servicing then it may have only ever had one oil change at approx 20k (most variable services tend to stick fairly close to 17-20k). If its on fixed servicing then there should be some nice history with it as it should of had at least 4 services if not 5.

Also, what options has the car got fitted as there is quite a few 'basic' T Sports, and be careful that is not just an SE model.

But anyway, the spending won't stop no matter which version you buy, just check my signature below for my mods.............

Have you got any photos of your car? it looks amazing.

It had a long life service last year, and its got a FASH. It is a sport, with leather, heated seats, electric lumbar support, Parking sensors, 6cd changer, 12 months MOT and four brand new dunlop tyres. The guy seems really genuine, and its sounds like its been looked after, sadly its in South Wales, and I'm in Leeds, and I can't get down to see it until next saturday. I've seen others with more extras on it, but they seem to be a little more expensive, and when I've asked about tyres etc, they seem like theyl need to be changed within 10,000miles. which would be another cost. I suppose i can always retrofit any extras I, such as Interior light pack etc.

If I can get him down on the price, that will pay for some or most of a service if it needs a new cambelt I suppose.
Hi Andy, yes I have some pics of the car in varying states of modification !
Give me your email by private message and I will send some to you.

All I would say is that if you buy it I would have the cambelt done straight away, then you've got no major worries for another 4/5 years depending on mileage then.

I think if you drive sensibly with the 1.8T then 10k is very easy to achieve on tyres.

Retrofitting is where its at though ! OEM all the way !!!

Let me know if I can help you with anything......

andy did your panel filter make any difference sound wise ?
Yes, the panel filter made a difference. However I do get fed up of all the arguments about induction kits etc !!!! I've run them on my Focus, Octy vRS, Polo and now my cabriolet. I found that the panel filter gave a little more spool up noise and improved higher end revs / speed. I got mine for £12 on Ebay - just a bit of luck really !! Now I've got the green cotton filter its even better, but the noise is NO WHERE near as good as my Carbonio carbon pipework and filter that I had on the Octy !