Audi Repair Questions? Ask a Mechanic for Answers ASAP
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So I'll start by saying that the trepidation is valid. If the car has a very good maintenance history, regular oil changes done at 5-7500 mile intervals, then this engine should work well for you at least until 150k miles. However, with spotty or no maintenance history, I'd be concerned. The key here is to open the bonnet when the engine is dead cold, have someone else start the car, and listen for any telltale metallic rattling near the rear of the cylinder heads. Any noises like that, and just walk away.
Please let me know if I can offer any further information.
Well, I have owned 2 Audis with this engine in it, or at least the US variant of it. The first one I bought to resell, knowing that it needed an engine due to a failed chain. That car had approximately 120k miles on it, and had spotty maintenance history. The second one had no problems at all with 130k on it.
As far as customer cars go, we work on a few dozen 3.2 cars, from A4s to A6s to Q5s. I will say that once they reach that 150k mark, most will show signs, either an engine light or outright running problems, that something in the chain drive has failed.
From my experience, at 90k miles, if maintenance is kept up, you should have a good 50k miles to go before a large repair is needed.