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[Audi A3/S3] Audi Quattro 1.8T - rear suspension arm snapped!


stevek
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My 1999 vehicle has just had a failed lower rear suspension control arm snap at the wheel connection.

Apparently the vehicle was subject to a recall in 2001 to have the connecting bushes replaced with a modified type. I suspect that this wasn't done - the bush supplied by Audi to repair the broken one was a bonded / sealed type, the failed one had rubber gaiters.

Audi cannot / will not advise if they have in fact done the mods - does anyone know if the bushes with gaiters were fitted at the time of the recall?

Customer Service is cr*p - they don't seem interested even though this may be a serious safety issue if the recall mods have in fact been done - the modified parts may also be subject to failure. Scary if it happens at speed, mine happened as I was pulling onto my driveway - whole family now refuse to travel in the car as a result.

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My old car had a recall for that very problem. I think you have a very good case for getting any corrective work paid for under warranty. If you have already paid for the work, VAG may still reimburse you. My cousin had 1987 Jetta that had a front diff recall that he paid for before it was a recall and he got back 110% of the cost

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Have waited over a week for Audi to come back to me to tell me if the recall work was done - still waiting!

Meanwhile I really need to know if the modified bushes fitted at recall were a sealed type or had a rubber boot.

I am afraid that either my car has not had the mods done in which case any of the other 3 bushes / arms could fail.

Or, more worryingly for all Quattro owners - if my car has had the mods done, then this may be the start of a new spate of failures of the modified parts (if this is the case then the consequence of a failure at high speed doesn't bear thinking about!).

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Nothing in Sevice Book to say anything other than routine servicing has been done. Still waiting for Audi to come back to me and advise - car has been off the road for almost 2 weeks as a precaution!

I think I'll just get the work done at my expense and try to claim cost back from Audi - and change the car for a Subaru.

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Still no response from Audi Customer Services - talked to VOSA as they are the Government Agency responsible for overseeing all recalls, they are going to speak to Audi direct.

They too are quite interested to know if this is a failed original, or a failed modified part.

Will post outcome once (if) Audi actually do come back to me.

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Finally got response(s) from Audi!!

Yes the recall work was done, but not by an Audi garage (??)

Yes the recall work was done by an Audi garage but they didn't actually change the bushes as per the reason for the recall, they just had a look at them!!

Anyway, they have now taken the car away on a low loader (as my local Audi garage refused to drive it) to do the recall work at Audi expense.

VOSA have asked me to submit a report and pictures for their own consideration.

For any 1999 / 2000 Quattro owners (A3 / S3 / TT models), it would be wise to check that your bushes are the modified type.

(Don't know how to insert pictures - I have photos of "old" and "new" type bushes and they're easy to check).

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  • 2 months later...

Audi finally admitted that the car was taken in for recall work but that they didn't actually carry out the mods as required (no reason given).

They have now agreed to refund my out of pocket expenses, including 19 days loss of use of vehicle while they investigated the history of the car.

I have since got rid of the car - and I wouldn't touch another Audi with a barge pole. Customer service is deplorable.

VOSA are still investigating.

NB. IF YOU'VE GOT A 99 / 00 QUATTRO GET THE REAR CONTROL ARM BUSHES CHECKED - YOU REALLY COULD BE RISKING YOUR LIFE IF THESE HAVEN'T BEEN CHANGED. DO NOT TRUST AUDI TO HAVE DONE THEM!!!

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When I got my A3 Quattro this was one of the first thing's I done. After reading reveiws and reports on the net about the car I realised that there were Safety Recalls on the car. All I done was phoned Audi Customer Service UK with my registration number and asked for a report on any recalls that have been done and if there were any outstanding on my car.

Luckily the work had been carried out.

Chris

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It's a real place, tel. 0800 699888, you can also try the AA website and do a search for Recalls it will give you details of which models were affected. NB. This affected all Quattro's A3/S3/TT for the period.

It's quite esy to tell the old style control arm bushes have a gaiter and spring clip for weather protection. The replacement type are sealed rubber and the metal body of the bush can be seen to be proud of the mounting.

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I wouldn't hold your breath - they promised to send me a cheque for my costs within 7 to 10 days and that was 3 weeks ago, it looks as if I'll be going to court to get a resolution.

Meanwhile VOSA are carrying out an independent inquiry into how my car was taken in for work under an Official Safety Recall but the work wasn't done. Personally I hope they throw the book at them - the consequences of a failure at high speed are really frightening. The facts are that Audi saved a few bob by not doing the work, then they had the cheek to state that "failure of these parts has never led to an accident" - it would seem that they feel that they are above the law. The fact that they are prepared to gamble with people's lives for the sake of £30 worth of parts and a few hours labour cost is too shocking for words. I can only hope that mine is an isolated incident and that there are not hundreds of other owners still at risk!

I have pictures of old and modified bushes, if someone can send me details on how to post them I'll do so?

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