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A8 / S8 (D3 Platform) Discussion Discussion forum for the D3 Audi A8 produced from 2003-2010 and Audi S8 produced from 2006-2010

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Old 01-28-2014, 02:48 PM   #1
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Default Inspection advice on 05 A8

(long time A6 owner, lost to the dark side - aka E-class - now trying to get home).

Found a pristine 05 A8, 78k, prior CPO, timing belt done. Not a pleasant experience with the dealer, but I'm not buying him, I'm buying the car. He insists car is 10 out of 10, so I'm taking it to another dealer for an inspection.

SA at dealer 2 could give a yam, he's just filling in for a lad out sick. So I asked them to keep it overnight, test it cold.

A CPO inspection is 3hrs, a pre-purchase PPI is typically one. SA says dont bother with the three hours, end product wont be different.

I asked how much time the tech would spend digging around with the software for pre-fault codes, his answer was non-specific.

SA wasnt rude, he just didnt seem that interested.

So I think, maybe, if I ask them for something specific, and offer to pay for it, that its probably a good investment.

I got burned on the e-class, dealer 'inspected', catalytic converter and 02 sensors lasted about a week, I presume that could have been seen with a scanner ahead of time (gained 2 mpg with fresh plugs and O2).


Question is, what exactly should I ask for, over and above their usual PPI?

What might I expect in terms of a hard copy output from the software scan? Are there different layers of detail that could be examined, if I knew the right words to say?

How important is it to speak directly with the tech?

Thanks, folks. Hope you can help me get home.
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Old 01-28-2014, 04:40 PM   #2
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Are there reasons that you want an 05 instead of newer face lift model 06+. Check these threads out.

http://forums.audiworld.com/showthread.php?t=2858810
http://forums.audiworld.com/showthread.php?t=2859299

If I'm buying a low miles car 77k/9 = 8.5k miles a year, I would try to get it from the original owner, I would be able to feel the owner. Normally, original Audi owners are honest, they don't cheat for a few bucks. I always buy Audis from private owners (original owners most of the time).

As I understand about the car business, Audi A8 are very "soft" as salesmen would tell you when you take the car in for trade. So, logically, Audi owners would be better off selling the car privately for more money, but if the cars have problems, then the best is to trade it in, no headache and bad Karma if the problems are intermittent if selling to people.

Anyhow, it's just MHO. It doesn't matter where you take the car to get checked out, some problems will not show up until you use it daily. I'm sure there are good cars sold by dealers, but I like private owners and the ones without stories to tell.

Don't waste your money on inspection, do it yourself, if the car is at the dealer, they clean everything already, oil leaks and stuff.

Take your time and go every day to test drive the car for at least a week, day, night, morning... turn off the radio, drive slow, fast, coasting, accelerating, sit in the front, sit in the back, listen for all noise and feel the smoothness of the car, borrow a VCDS, scan the car after every drive. After the test drive, check the radio, check all the buttons, MMI, navigation, trunk up/down... every switch is money, every switch links to money... The more homework and test you do, the less chance to get a lemon. Don't fall in love with the car because you'll hate it when it has cancer...

I actually bought a car from the dealer exactly the way I recommended - it is my 96 A6 in 03, and it's still with me now and running 160k miles with original timing belt and everything. The owner of the dealer didn't want to give me test drives any more, but we did make the deal, everyone was happy.

Cheers and good luck,

Louis
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Old 01-28-2014, 04:53 PM   #3
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Default If you are serious on an Audi...

consider buying the VAG COM/VCDS cable preemptively. The HEX USB CAN one: http://store.ross-tech.com/shop/cat/VCDS.html Used on any modern Audi you will ever buy, and cover most anything soup to nuts electronic--not just motor and tranny, but all the major electrical and electronic subsystems. On an A8, or any A6 in last 10-15 years for that matter, you want a clean bill of health on this stuff. If you intend to own and keep an A8 post warranty, you should get it anyway, even if you will have others do any major work.

Once you have it, as long as you have a PC based (OS) laptop, you can scan it yourself just hooking the cable to the OBDII port and copy the results inside of 15 minutes.

BTW, whether you scan it yourself or have the dealer do it, you will want to see/read the "readiness codes." Search the web, but basically using those codes you will know if the drivetrain related (aka "smog") error codes have been cleared inside of the last 10 cycles. For example, a detailed link about it: http://repair2.com/v/volkswagen--au...e-charts-w1262 If the codes show a recent clearing (have not yet reset to "ready"), I would not proceed until they can show you the car with the readiness codes past that reset count. The dealer can also run a routine to set them to ready (per the attached link I think), and that in turn will turn on the CEL if it has issues. Likely with your Merc. bad experience as an example, reading down to the readiness codes would have told you someone reset them just before you bought and before the light came (back) on. Some states (including CA where I am) won't pass a car on smog until the readiness codes have all reset; that is, they (and the vehicle electronics) are hip to reset tricks just before a smog test.
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helpful cross reference to a C6 post with MMI and other TSB's that also cover D3 A8's.


Last edited by MP4.2+6.0; 01-28-2014 at 04:59 PM.
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Old 01-28-2014, 05:02 PM   #4
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Thanks Louis, points well taken.

The car is 3h away, so I'm going to have to get by with 1 dealer inspection and maybe 2 personals.

Re: 05, I need the SWB for domestic harmony.

Followup-

To make me sound smarter, what is the name of factory software system? Is it also VCDS?
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Old 01-28-2014, 07:16 PM   #5
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If SWB is one of the criteria, there are more SWB with 06 & 07+. The 06 I have I bought @73k miles and now 87k miles without fixing anything besides mods. Yes, it's the last year of the timing belt. Some people don't like the 1 piece grill (facelift), but I think technically, more bugs had been ironed out - Bluetooth - MMI components.
3 hrs away, take a weekend and test drive the car or at least a whole day. If you have kids, bring them along, let them sit in the back and try to break something... :-) I'm not kidding, they will find things that you would miss. And if any salesman who doesn't like kids, I would get a new one.

Cheers,

Louis
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06 A8L Quartz Grey/Black (3/13)
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Old 01-28-2014, 07:42 PM   #6
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+1 on the kids. My son found a couple items that needed to be fixed prior to purchase.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ltooz_a6_a8_q7 View Post
If SWB is one of the criteria, there are more SWB with 06 & 07+. The 06 I have I bought @73k miles and now 87k miles without fixing anything besides mods. Yes, it's the last year of the timing belt. Some people don't like the 1 piece grill (facelift), but I think technically, more bugs had been ironed out - Bluetooth - MMI components.
3 hrs away, take a weekend and test drive the car or at least a whole day. If you have kids, bring them along, let them sit in the back and try to break something... :-) I'm not kidding, they will find things that you would miss. And if any salesman who doesn't like kids, I would get a new one.

Cheers,

Louis
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Old 01-28-2014, 08:06 PM   #7
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Default VCDS is new name for VAG-COM

The VCDS is the new name for VAG-COM, it's the software to scan your Audi using OBDII hardware. The original full blown supported hardware and software version is sold by ross-tech and they only work with windows, so if you're a mac user, you're out of luck.
I like Audis because VAG-COM exists. I hate to take the car to the dealer to turn off these warning lights.
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08 Q7 3.6 Premium Silver/Black (4/08)
06 A8L Quartz Grey/Black (3/13)
04 Cabriolet 3.0 CVT Red/Black (5/11-Sister)
98 A8 Melange 4.2 Quattro (7/04-5/11)
http://www.dognmonkey.com/audi
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Old 01-28-2014, 08:06 PM
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