1997 A6 Quattro, good car???

I have a chance to buy a two owner 97 A6 Quattro with automatic trans for $4500. It has 134K miles and only a few minor body dings. It has Bose audio, moon roof, almost new Michelins, memory seats and lots of
other goodies. It looks great, drives great, no accidents, good service records, has no mech probs that I can see. I noticed that high mileage Quattros dont sell for much at all. Is there some mechanical disaster looming soon? I have owned Audis before but never a Quattro. I was astounded at the difference in handling on a winding road compared to a non Quattro Audi. Feels like it is on tracks. Anything I should know before buying? Has the 2.8L V6 and uses about a quart of oil every 1700 miles, but looks from the records like it has always done that even when young. Any advice greatly appreciated.
Mark
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I wouldn't be worried about buying it but realize that all the 'goodies' will likely need some attention. Nothing serious but DIY wrenching can save you quite a bit if you want to keep everything like new. That's not saying that there are any known issues but just that time catches up with mechanical things.
Quattro will like outlast most other components. Check for any obvious leaks but if none it should be good.
If the Timing belt / water pump haven't been done do them right away. Plan on these at 65 - 70 K intervals.
With this mileage you should expect to replace wheel bearings. The will probably cost $175 - $350 per corner unless you DIY. Parts cost is about $80 - $100 per bearing and needs a press or bearing too to replace.
The V6 has a reputation of leaking valve covers and cam seals. these can be replaced but it is more than an incidental procedure that is beyond most DIY projects and will probably cost $400 to $600. If this is the cause of the loss of oil you will be able to smell it when driving. It is not a progressive issue and you can avoid the cost if you are willing to put up with the minor oil smell (it drips on the exhaust manifold and causes the smell)
Any maintenance issues are a lot less than new car payments over two or three years.
I have driven four Type44 Audis to 200K and more without any issue with the Quattro.
If you like the car, go for it.
377 wrote:

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377 wrote:

bought it when it had 170K miles on it, but had someone look it over for me and they gave it a pretty good thumbs-up. So far nothing too major - had to replace a transmission sensor, and later the brake lines all around, but it's been dependable and a nice highway car for road trips.
More recently picked up a '97 A4 Quattro 2.8L (5-spd sedan) with 170K miles on it as well, and am VERY impressed with how it feels & drives. Has needed nothing mechanically (although it's only been a few months now).
I'd just get it inspected by a good independent Audi shop first, but otherwise would go for it! :D
Good luck.
Bart
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Thanks for the feedback guys! Very helpful. Thanks for taking the time to respond. The car had the timing belt replaced 3000 miles ago so thats a significant expense I have dodged for a while. I LOVE the way Quattros hold the road on a tight turn, a totally different experience from a FWD A 6. I am going to get it checked out by a dealer and buy it if nothing horrible shows up.
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On Thu, 17 May 2007, 377 wrote:

I remember when I bought my first Audi (a 4000CSQ) in 1985. I had never driven a Quattro before. I test drove the FWD 4000 on a dry December day in upstate NY over a local loop of about 10 miles, liked it very much, and then immediately drove the Quattro version to find out if it was worth the additional expense. I decided on the Quattro within the first quarter of a mile; simply night and day difference.
I bought the Quattro, and early in its life, decided to try and get it out of shape on pulling into the (empty, large) snowy parking lot at work. I could certainly get it out of shape, but only with some effort, and was astonished, when I got out of the car, to find out that it was so slippery I could hardly stand up.
I now have a 2002 A4 3.0 V6 quattro with 95K miles, still good as new. Everything works on it (except that I don't know about the cruise control; I've never used it). It feels like it will go forever, but when it dies, I'm getting another.
Steve
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