View Full Version : Looking to buy 2.8l A4, what to look for?

11-22-2010, 05:06 PM
Hey guys, I currently own a satin white pearl 2007 STi (limited clone with an ewg ATP 3076 and supporting mods), 1989 Nissan 240sx coupe with a full Silvia swap, and a 1996 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited. The Jeep has been my daily for the last several years, but compared to my other vehicles, it is boring as hell and feels "loose" due to being a coil-sprung solid-axled rig, so I'm on the hunt for a new winter vehicle/daily driver.

I have been looking at B5 A4s for the last couple of weeks, as it stands now the average A4 is just at the tip of my budget for a daily, but the market for used Subarus is so crazy around here, I'm looking for a change of pace. I recently stumbled across a guy that is looking for exactly what I am daily driving, and he is driving a 1996 A4 2.8l Quattro with the cold weather and sport package (please confirm, it has the 3 spoke steering wheel and 5 spoke wheels), with 150k on it. It sounds like it is currently in good running condition, but is about to need a bunch of maintenance (timing belt, water pump, spark plugs, air filter, fluids, etc etc) which is a given on any 10+ year old car.

I have been lurking here and am aware of some of the common problems to check for (MIL lighting up with the key in the "on" pos with the engine off), front suspension arm bushings, random oil leaks, and of course the health of the clutch. Is there anything else I should be specifically looking for when I go to look at the car? I understand the timing belt repair is a pretty hefty undertaking, does anyone know how many hours the FSM/Bentleys quotes it at? I am pretty handy with a wrench so I am fairly confident that I will have no problem with doing it myself, I just wanna know so I can use it as a bargaining chip against the value of his car over my Jeep (which needs less major maintenance). I tried to find a quick DIY writeup on the timing belt replacement for a 12v 2.8l, but came up with nothing, can anyone help me find that?

And for shits and giggles, here are a couple pics the guy sent me of his A4...

and two of my STi... just 'cause.

11-23-2010, 10:43 AM
"I've done a 30v...
Just follow the 1.8t how-tos on http://www.audiworld.com.

The only difference is, you need the cam lock tool to lock both of the cams in one place, plus there are no timing marks on the cam sprockets so you have to be EXTRA careful..."

If you feel comfortable doing this you will save a ton of money and more power to you.
My first audi was this same car (color, package and everything).
If you're not set on this car let me tell you that the difference in power between the 12v and the 30v is night and day.
You might pay a little more because it's a year or two newer car but it has 30 more horsepower and gets better fuel economy which to me is a pretty good trade off.
I own a 30v now and love it.

11-23-2010, 12:38 PM
30v here to,
As what to look for;
-Control arm (Front & Rear)
-CEL (Scan the computer for problem)
-anything that look wrong...

Why not keep your Suby all year? It's AWD you know ;)