A4 B9 2.0TDi reliability and common issues

PhilGreen4455

Registered User
Hey folks

New-ish B9 owner here. I've got a 4 year old A4 B9 2.0TDi 150 manual. It's got 35,000 miles on the clock.

What is the general concensus as to reliability of these with the EA288 engine? What are the common issues, and at what mileage do they generally start to be problematic?

Also I've got a couple of fairly minor gripes at the moment - one of which is a quiet 'clunk' from the drivers seat area when pulling away - pretty sure it's not suspension related - it's coming from inside the car. I've taken the seat out and examined it but can't find anything loose. Oddly it doesn't clunk from cold - only after driving for half an hour. I'm thinking it could be the seatbelt intertia real...

The other minor issue is after driving in town/stop-start for a few miles, I get a slight clutch judder when pulling away. It's not major, but worried it could point to DMF issue? Or is this normal?

Finally, what is the cambelt interval for these? I've heard/seen conflicting guidance so would be good to get views. I'm aware the EA288 has a lifetime belt-in-oil for the oil pump, but I'm talking about the cambelt specifically.
 

CornishB9

Registered User
Had my 2.0TDi S-Tronic for nearly 4 years and it will be 5 in November. 55 000 miles in and no issues at all, what so ever with the engine or gearbox.
 

monkeyhanger

Registered User
Not sure specifically for the A4, but the 2.0TDI units are rock solid for reliability, only issues I could see would be related to the newness of the AdBlue tech. My Dad's 2013MK7 Golf GTD with the 2.0TDI 184ps output engine and DSG (same as S-Tronic) is up to 135k miles without missing a beat. He's had 2 previous high output TDIs with huge mileages too *MK4 1.9TDI130 up at 172k miles and a MK5 GT-TDI170 up at 165k miles, all were still going strong when he got rid of them and all of them have had a tuning box attached for the majority of those miles. I had a 2013 MK7 Golf GTD (Manual) and that had a DTUK box taking it up to about 240ps and 500Nm.

These engines are robust (I feel less confident about TFSI longevity).

From what I've read on many VAG forums, if a DSG box is going to fail catastrophically, it'll do so early in its life, well within warranty (usually dodgy mechatronics unit).
 

PhilGreen4455

Registered User
Not sure specifically for the A4, but the 2.0TDI units are rock solid for reliability, only issues I could see would be related to the newness of the AdBlue tech. My Dad's 2013MK7 Golf GTD with the 2.0TDI 184ps output engine and DSG (same as S-Tronic) is up to 135k miles without missing a beat. He's had 2 previous high output TDIs with huge mileages too *MK4 1.9TDI130 up at 172k miles and a MK5 GT-TDI170 up at 165k miles, all were still going strong when he got rid of them and all of them have had a tuning box attached for the majority of those miles. I had a 2013 MK7 Golf GTD (Manual) and that had a DTUK box taking it up to about 240ps and 500Nm.

These engines are robust (I feel less confident about TFSI longevity)..

I think the cars you mention above are all fitted with the EA189 engine. The 2015-on A4 (B9) is fitted with the newer EA288 engine which substantially different to the EA189.

(Happy to be corrected on the above.)
 

tickedon

Registered User
Also I've got a couple of fairly minor gripes at the moment - one of which is a quiet 'clunk' from the drivers seat area when pulling away - pretty sure it's not suspension related - it's coming from inside the car. I've taken the seat out and examined it but can't find anything loose. Oddly it doesn't clunk from cold - only after driving for half an hour. I'm thinking it could be the seatbelt intertia real....

Is it when the car gets up to 28mph-ish? If so, the clunk noise is an ABS brake test and nothing to be concerned about...
 

PhilGreen4455

Registered User
Is it when the car gets up to 28mph-ish? If so, the clunk noise is an ABS brake test and nothing to be concerned about...

No, it’s definitely not the ABS self test. It’s every time you pull away (the ABS test should only occur once when you first pull away after starting the car), plus it’s coming from the B pillar.
 

monkeyhanger

Registered User
I think the cars you mention above are all fitted with the EA189 engine. The 2015-on A4 (B9) is fitted with the newer EA288 engine which substantially different to the EA189.

(Happy to be corrected on the above.)

The MK7 GTD and equivalent A3 definitely comes with the EA288 TDI engine, initially with a 184ps output and no adblue, then fitted with adblue tech at the MK7.5 facelift. It was fitted as far back as June 2013 when the first ones filtered through, because the MK7 was EU6 compliant for all engines and the EA189 wasn't EU6 compliant.
 

cuke2u

Registered User

monkeyhanger

Registered User

Wiki is only as accurate as the author wants it to be. Probably written by someone from the USA where the EA288 was possibly only accessible to the North American Market in 2015. The engine has been around since MQB platform came in for the MK7 Golf and equivalent A3, Leon and Octavia generations, with the engine being available early 2013 (the lower specced cars coming late 2012 without access to that engine until 2013.

My dad was one of the first in the country to get a MK7 Golf Zgtd, late July 2013.

The MK7 GTD had the EA288 engine, as referenced by this thread from DTUK doing tuning nox development in 2013:

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sou...Vaw3DbNq9MmT2_Aa3OKEGI84e&cshid=1592828733837

Prior to the MK7, the hot diesel MK5 Golf got the EA189 2.0TDI PD 170ps, the MK6 got the CR version.
 
Top