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B5 A4 Avant 2.8 quattro


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Following the sale of my B6 S4, today I collected a stop gap Audi to run around in, a 1999 T early facelift A4 Avant 2.8 quattro manual

Scanned Autotrader for the last three or four months, mainly A4s, but also A6s.  Avant essential, ideally quattro, no autos, no 1.8 non turbos!

Funny how things work out, this arrived on Autotrader the day after I took a deposit on my B6.  Was prepared to travel, but only 36 miles was a bonus

139k, FSH, book stamped every 10-15k until 2011 and plenty of receipts, service invoices and mots from the last five years.  Last owner since 2004.  Clutch is high, but no vibration when you depress the clutch (from the flywheel) unlike the previous 2.8 I test drove.  Couldn't get it to slip when it was fully up to temperature on the test drive, nor today.  Last one properly crunched into first second and reverse when standing still, this one doesn't at all

Exhaust is blowing somewhere.  Brakes take a good shove, discs are a bit rusty, car has only done 1000 miles since last service / mot in January which probably doesn't help.  Minimal disc lip and thick pads all round.  Did a few heavy stops tonight heading out for a few pics after a super quick wash.  Tax and mot due January 2015.  Alloys have had faces wet painted at some point.  Pair of Michelins and Dunlops, all 5/6mm+

Drives great, zero suspension clonks, grips well, goes surprisingly well!  6CD, full black leather, heated fronts, armrest, air con nice and cold

Negatives - usual B5 issues of DIS, volume control, tailgate plinth and rear wiper motor

Will look awesome on my B5 S4 winter wheels (but no I'm not touching the mirrors, grille, badges etc)


And the same angle as the B6....


And yes its also Dolphin grey!    8)


Cheers to Booster for HPI


Cheers to Chris_B for the recommendation - cannot believe its been four years now.

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Looks pretty tidy from here!

The high biting point on the clutch may not be an issue, Nicki's A6 2.8q was the same and did loads of miles including regularly towing 2+ tons.

I'll look forward to seeing it next week (and not having the oldest Audi at the meet)!

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After I biked home from work I spent about three hours hoovering the interior and cleaning the leather.  Stopped when it was getting dark.  Its come up really well.  Found a biscuit wrapper, a one penny piece, two bottle caps, a Waitrose wine carrier and a kids book!

Another wash tomorrow and a layer of Autoglym Super Resin Polish before MK Weds.   :D

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Autoglym leather cleaner and a microfibre.  Gliptone liquid leather still to go.  +++


Cleaning plans went out the window when S4 plate transfer paperwork from DVLA was on the doormat when I got home from work.  Buyer immediately jumped on train to collect.  Gave A4 quick wash (at 11pm in dark!) but nothing more.

Edited by Ian_C
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  • 2 months later...

Update.  Really enjoying B5 ownership.    +++

The very first things I did after collecting the car were order a set of replacement plates (£20), Osram Nightbreaker headlights (£16.60) and led sides (£5)

The rear discs and pads weren't great, what I thought was a sticky caliper was in fact one of the pads close to the backplate, so I decided to let my local garage renew the whole rear axle.  They also gave the car a once over and some advice on the blowing exhaust flexi.  Brake fluid had already been done Jan 2014.  Car stops MUCH better.  £139.48.  

More recently went up to a family wedding, collecting my 84 year old grandpa from Oxford on the Friday and headed up to Yorkshire to see one of his other grandsons (my cousin) getting married to a Sheffield girl.  Filled up in MK before collecting him and almost made it back to MK before filling up again.  406 miles on the trip, 57 litres, 32.5 mpg, I had to drive in smooth and safe mode!

The blowing rhs downpipe flexi however sheared this week.  It went from sounding like a lovely old school Italian V6 - with a lovely pop redlining second and changing up with the split flexi being in front of the cat - to just being embarrassingly loud and rough.  No sensors rear of the flexi, so no reason the engine wouldn't run right, but it sounded dire, especially from cold start up, and with the flexi now sheared, I knew the weight of the exhaust hanging down could damage the rear section.  So I parked the car up, booked it in, used my 205 GTi in meantime etc

Rather than try and repair the flexi, the garage sourced a type approved cat and downpipe.  It sits slightly lower than the factory one (and runs closer to the gearbox mounts) but does the job - it's no lower than the S4 Milltek was.  The old downpipe came off the manifold fine thankfully, the new one fitted with new gaskets, new clamp for the join downpipe-to-rear, rear section needed one patch and one new hanger welded on.

So with the main jobs now done, as the car was in the garage I asked them to mot it, expecting a list so I knew what needed to be done before the 20th Jan 2015 deadline, but to my surprise it passed first time!  Only two minor advisories, same as on Jan 2014 mot, rusty front brake discs and play in the rear anti roll bar bushes.  So I have brought the mot date forward by 2.5 months but I'm absolutely delighted, the exhaust problem has been bugging me for a while.

Not sure I want to admit what I paid today collecting the car!  354.96 including mot.  But I got the car for a good price knowing the exhaust was blowing, and I prefered to go for a proper downpipe and type approved cat rather than the cheapest I could get my hands on off ebay that may have been a worse physical fit also.  Now drives so smooth and quiet!

No new pics really (this car is no oil painting!) but one from an MK Meet that hasn't been posted in this thread already


Will however take a few pics when I swap to winter wheels and tyres soon

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I would imagine that any monies spent on it, even judging by what has been posted above, would be attainable back in the selling on price of the car.


When you look at cars of that age and mileage, they don't drop much money at all and are always in good demand when looked after.  It seems like a sensible stop-gap option to me and not one that he's likely to suffer financially from.  He might even be able to make a small profit on it.

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Haha only essential maintenance unfortunately!  Hopefully sorted for the time being now its through the mot


Took it out for a spin last night after a quick wash, its soooo quiet now, but on the other hand you can now hoon away from the lights / junctions without sounding anti-social!

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  • 3 years later...

Well I never planned to keep what is affectionately known as 'the snotter' four years and 18k!  Bought a high spec 2007 B7 A4 Monday night as my replacement bread van, so its time to say farewell to the B5.  I will post a proper advert across the forums before the weekend, any early interest before it goes on Pistonheads please post or send me a message, I would prefer to keep it within the forum!  Available to view immediately in Bedford, including throughout this BH weekend, fast train 35 mins from London if you want collecting from the station

A brief summary of work completed since I acquired it Aug 2014....

Rear disc and pads (Eurocarparts) - Sept 2014
Aforementioned exhaust work + Mot - Nov 2014
Front disc and pads (Pagid) + most recent air filter - April 2015
Engine flush + oil change + rear roll bar linkages + Mot - Oct 2015
Pollen filter + second hand replacement scuttle cover - Dec 2015
Wheel alignment, new coolant header tank (TPS), most recent coolant change, most recent brake fluid change, Mot - Oct 2016
Most recent front wipers (Audi - I cannot stand sh!t wipers) - Mar 2017
Most recent oil change - Sept 2017
Track rod end + Mot - Oct 2017

Current mot expiry 6th Nov 2018

Current mileage 156k

Air con worked when I got it but slowly became less effective.  I asked my local garage to regas it before Le Mans last year but they were not able (ie. not allowed) to regas because the system failed the initial pressure test.

The interior fans also have a mind of their own, they have always gone up and down in speed randomly as you drive, but more recently they have been slow to start when you start the engine up, or spin for a while then slow down without you touching them as you drive.  Weird.

Drivers heated seat wires not very effective after 19 years and 156k of bums!

Clutch was high when I bought it, 18k later I'm on the same clutch, no slip under normal driving, although it definitely is not going to allow you to do a Fast and the Furious 'sidestep the clutch' quarter mile launch!

Cambelt + water pump last done 2012 @ 129k

Now back on the same 16" wheels and tyres as when I bought it, 3mm Michelins and 4-5mm Dunlops, two alloys are fairly clean, two aren't as good.  Removed the Avus this evening ahead of the car going up for sale.  Sunset pic yesterday, others from Sunday when I washed it, was pretty much dark when I finished swapping wheels this evening



Edited by Ian_C
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