'89 200 Quattro Turbo Advice Needed

Hello,
I am considering buying the car above, '89 200 Quattro Turbo with the cold weather package. While doing some research on this model, I thankfully found
this newsgroup. I hope someone is willing to share some insight, either here or via e-mail.
The car is in very good condition it seems. It's got 145k miles on it, and has had the following work done in the past few years:
Timing belt, water pump, steering rack, new tires, master brake cylinder, slave cylinder, fuel line hoses.
That I can see right now, the front passenger side window doesn't like to go up all the way, and the odometer is stopped working at 144828 miles. Parts don't seem that expensive and there's a lot of them on eBay from various shops around the country.
I like working on cars, and have worked on a Saab 99 and older Volvo's in the past. However, I actually need this car to be a reliable one, and to replace a Ford with numerous electrical and transmission problems. What am I getting myself into buying the Audi. Asking price is $1500.00. Never wrecked, no rust, and the paint and interior are in pretty good shape. A lot of the small things could be easily fixed up.
Thank you for your time and help.
Bill Graham snipped-for-privacy@nc.rr.com
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Not a bad car, but it's no problem-free ride. It's old. The "winter package" is moot, as the drivers seat heater pads are usually dead by now. I now own 4 type 44 quattros, (All 5000/100/200/V8 are type 44 cars.) and I've had to replace the drivers lower pad on all 4. (At least your passengers butts will be warm.) At this vintage, age begins to show. Heater core/blower motor repair is always ominous, $500-ish. (Parts under $200) Steering pump can go, $400-ish. (Again, part under $250.) Driveline major is very reliable. I just bought one, '89 black on black, paid $1,000, but it was a trade-in at a friends dealer. It needed a steering pump, a radiator, and a drivers lower seat heater pad. The passenger outer mirror doean't heat, I have a new glass, but haven't stuck it in yet. It's got 200K on it. Total parts bill was under $600. If you;re handly, buying the Bentley is job 1. www.rb.com . This is a very easy car for shade-tree maintenance. Also, you'd want to upgrade the ECU to gain 50+HP. They really need a little more steam. It's a half-hour job, and a whole new car.
Find yourself a decent parts source, and life is good.
There is nothing like a quattro in inclement weather.
wrote:

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Thanks very much for your reply. Certainly nothing is problem free. But if I'm going to have problems, I'd rather it be with something other than a 4 cyl. Ford Contour.
The heater pads all work, very well. But if they didn't, I wouldn't care that much. The Saab 99 I had possessed the heated seats, and they never worked. I got that car out of tobacco field in NC, and one new $250.00 starter later, a battery, and general stuff I was able to drive it from NC to NE and back. I like working on cars that are fun to work on and fun to drive. This car seems like a good choice for that.
The odometer is annoying, and makes it a harder sell with my wife.
What exactly is the ECU? Parts costs associated with that job?
Thanks again,
Bill Graham

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One of the best resources is www.sjmautotechnik.com . It is full of insights and information for this car. Scott Mockry, the site owner, also does ECU upgrades. There are many choices out there for upgrades, but none of the other options have not devoted as much time to help others. Scott deserves your business. He also sell the parts you'll need. I want to say the upgrade runs $350-ish. But for 50-60HP, that's not bad money. If the speedo works and the odo does not, it's broken. If nothing works, it's commonly the speed sensor on the gearbox. A busted odo can be repaired, Ohio Valley Speedometer comes to mind. At 150K, however, why bother? I have two V8's, a 5KCSQ, and a 200Q with a total of 850,000 miles between them.
And no, she's no tempo.

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Bill, There's a section in the Tips section of Blaufergnugen's (Audi parts vendor) web site providing a checklist for purchasing a used Audi Quattro: http://www.audiquattroparts.com/technical_tips/audi%20quattro%20checklist.htm As for web resources: www.audifans.com - mostly owners of older Audis (pre-1995) here - searching the archives will provide you with a ton of repair tips and tricks and troubleshooting help. Check the archives, if you don't find an answer, then post a question to the group. A few of the folks on the Audifans site are developing a "Knowledgebase" to simplify the search for repair/troubleshooting/upgrading/etc. stuff. www.audiworld.com - the 100/200/5000/V8 forum (aka the V8 forum) discusses Type 44 stuff. I find that there's a bit too much "RahRah Audi" and fluff (the posting is all in the subject line, and the signature line of some is like a parts bin inventory/ingredient list of what's been put on the person's car) going on at Audiworld (read CR's posting about the respective German marque clubs) - As a Type 44 owner there's just some things that I (and many others) curse Audi for - like fragile doorhandle parts (search for "Team Doorhandle"), overly complex brake hydraulics (search for "Brake Bomb"), etc. All that said, however, I enjoy my car immensely despite its faults. It had countless owners before I got it, and after working through some super frustrating problems caused by PO (previous owner) neglect - like a blown headgasket and cooling system problems - I now have an excellent daily driver that I mostly do routine maintenance on. Keep JPF's contact info if you get the car - he's a good guy to know in this biz. For new parts - www.audiquattroparts.com , www.zzmotors.com , and others dealers are on the web. For used parts - check www.car-part.com or with specialized Audi recyclers like Shokan at www.800allaudi.com Cheers! Steve Sears 1987 Audi 5kTQ 1980 Audi 5k 1962 and '64 Auto Union DKW Junior deLuxes (SPAM Blocker NOTE: Remove SHOES to reply)

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Thanks one and all for your comments.
I spoke to two local euro car mechanics today.
#1 said: don't get it, you won't be happy. They will take all your money. Great for him, but not for me. He said get a Saab 900 with a good transmission or a VW instead.
Problem is, I have a car with a lot of problems that I hate to drive. The Audi I am looking at has had a great deal of money put into it already, but currently has no problems. I'm trying to buy more time and enjoy what I drive. I've been one of those out of work technology execs since last January. I do not want a car payment, and the money I have can cover this car and then some. The way the car has presented itself to me at a time in need feels somewhat like providence and fortuitous.
#2 said: all euro cars have their own special problems with which they take your money. Audi's have hydraulic problems, electrical problems, and AC/heating problems. Saab's have transmission problems and so on. A Toyota Camry doesn't have problems, but they are like driving a boring appliance. He said that US cars and Euro cars are not that different in parts costs.
When you fix something in one of these, does it STAY fixed? Are there upgrades (i.e. Hydraulics) that can be made when doing repairs that are better than standard OEM parts replacements that increase the life of the repair?
At the end of the day I'd basically be trading a 96 Ford with mounting problems, for an 89 Audi that currently has no problems, and I'd have a little cash left over.
Sincerely, Thank you all. If I get it, I'll try to grab the Bentley manual (a little more pricey than a Chilton's).
Bill

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Bill, There are different things that can be done to modify troublesome systems in the Type 44: Hydraulics - the pressure accumulator, which is charged with nitrogen, loses its charge over time and causes problems - you can get a rebuilt one that makes it rechargeable (there is a guy in Southern Ontario doing some - the procedure was outlined in Audifans) or you can buy a new one - way more expensive but will probably last longer than you have the car. I have also heard of people refitting a vacuum assist system from an earlier (?) Type 44 to eliminate the "bomb" altogether. Doing that also eliminates the use of the big, leak prone power steering pump that charges the brake accumulator as well as the rack. Headlights - the current passing through the turn signal stalk assembly is way too much when using things like flash to pass - installing relays to switch power from the headlights is not too difficult, and will reduce the future need for electric troubleshooting here. As soon as the snow starts _really_ falling, you'll appreciate the quattro system on the car. In the largest winter storm last year, with about 12" of snow on the road (more in drifts) I was the only car moving on some roads - even my boss in his big Dorf F250 diesel 4x4 went home early - I had to make some deliveries in-town and was blasting past minivans, cars and SUV's stuck and ditched all over the place - you would have loved the looks I got. I'm going to get a window sticker that says "I only dragrace in 1 foot of snow" Cheers! Steve Sears 1987 Audi 5kTQ 1980 Audi 5k 1962 and '64 Auto Union DKW Junior deLuxes (SPAM Blocker NOTE: Remove SHOES to reply)

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Hey Steve, did you lock either of the differentials when you drove around in the message you posted earlier? I'm a little worried about locking the center dif and doing some damage if I need to turn too sharply at any real speed. ps- drop me a line at me e-mail addy. You gave me some advice a while back about the Q chip and I need the guys link sent to me again...
Steve Sears wrote:

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I am not S.S., but I can tell you with assurance that you should *never* lock the diff when there is any significant traction. If your '89 is the same system as my '90TQ (I believe it is.), the lock only functions up to about 15 mph in any event. It is just enough to get you moving under the worst traction conditions and it then automatically reverts to its usual 'open' settings, retaining AWD at all times. The earlier Quattros had manually-controlled center and center/rear diff locks that could be left engaged all the time if you were dumb enough to do so. It would wreak havoc on the tires, but I've never heard of a driveline failure from it. The Quattro drivetrains are remarkably durable but it's still a good idea not to abuse them.
In years of ownership in Wisconsin, I've only seriously switched the diff lock on a handful of times (the BMW club ice driving school doesn't count) and even then had only marginal success. The reason is simple: most of the time when you manage to get a Quattro stuck in the snow, it's not because of the surface; it's the depth of the snow - 'bellypanning' the car. If the wheels aren't *touching* the ground with enough force, it doesn't matter how many are locked. Always remember to shovel deep snow from under the *center* of the car and *leave it* under the wheels.
When you're done memorizing that, you need to learn how to trim previous posts when replying ... -- C.R. Krieger Been there; done that.
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Hi AMR, (Sorry - I'm on a full time site and haven't been in the office of late) Yes, I had the diffs locked - I know, much to the chagrin of CR - I usually lock the center in lousy weather on the highway - rain storms, snow, etc. - but take it off on the slower stuff, street corners are no fun with the center locked - and brutal with both center and rear ("Hey, what's wrong with my car???? oooooh, yeah. clickclick."). In talking at our local Audi pub night - one of the guys was talking to (I think) Sprongl about track racing and locking the diffs - he said that he used to lock all the diffs on the track - dry, wet, whatever the weather (of course, tires be darned - it's a track car and the tires get replaced regularly). That day I did most of my driving with all 4 locked - of course in the corners I was spinning bigtime - but I meant to do that - It was a blast. To prepare for winter, I usually take the car to the local grocery store when we have our first real snowfall and do about a half hour of slides, spins, etc. (entertain the bored cashiers...) BTW, the '87 will disengage the ABS when the diffs are locked, but hey, the ABS doesn't work on my car anyway. On the other stuff - http://www.homestead.com/Ben_Swann/boostin.html - there ya go. Cheers!
--
Steve Sears
1987 Audi 5kTQ - qlcc in, V8 taillights on, eurolights soon
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Actually, in crappy conditions, I used to lock the center diff on my old 4000Q as a way of getting some cheap ABS benefits. It was truly rare when I bothered to lock the rear as well and I normally had to shovel the damn thing out anyway. >:^(

When you've got enough power to spin a wheel if the diffs are unlocked, then it's perfectly alright to lock them. I'd like to know what that feels like ... ;^)
Still, am I mistaken in thinking that the '89 (like the '90 200TQ) diff lock (rear, only, IIRC; while the center is Torsen) *automatically disengages* at low speed? I have no doubt the '87 might not have this feature, as my '86 4KQ did not nor did my dad's '87 100Q; but I thought the 200 got it with the '89 redesign. -- C.R. Krieger Been there; done that
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Shokan now - I saw it on a trailer travelling along the 401 to a rally once - I was paying more attention to the 4000q that was following the convoy, as the car on the trailer looked [shudder] like Mustang with some kind of body kit. It wasn't until near my exit that I noticed that it was actually an S1 - darn.

guide shows that the '89 200 had a " Lockable rear differential with automatic disengagement" - is that what you are referring to? Cheers! Steve Sears 1987 Audi 5kTQ 1980 Audi 5k 1962 and '64 Auto Union DKW Junior deLuxes (SPAM Blocker NOTE: Remove SHOES to reply)
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Yup, that's it. '89-'91 100/200 with the "diff" switch below the parking brake. Unless, of course, you yank the rear seat and cut the white/blue wire. it's the speed signal. The factory decided that the diff unlocks and re-engages the ABS when you hit around 15Mph. Cut the wire, and she stays locked until you unlock it. If you're horking through the goop, the spinning wheels can easily hit 15. With the Torsen centre, it's just as locked as the '87 with the manual locking knob. 'Course, nothing beats the V8 with Torsen rear and fully locked, clutched centre for pure get up and go. JPF
On Mon, 1 Dec 2003 15:19:31 -0500, "Steve Sears"

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My '91 100q spd automatically disengages the center lock when speed exceeds 15 mph. A friend had the '89 tq and I am quite sure it was the same. (Several Audis later he just got his '04 S4 4.2 V8 / 6 speed ... now that IS a car!!)

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My '89 200 TQ is the same as well.

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Sounds like he doesn't like working on them - or isn't that familiar with doing so. He's simply telling you to pick up a *different* set of problems that he *is* familiar with.

He's correct and he sounds more pragmatic.

Generally, yes.

Discussed by another poster.

A *little*? These suckers are *three* *big* volumes (the '89-'91 car; *not* the previous '5000' - only *two* *big* volumes) and sell for about a 'C' note. That said, they're well worth it.

There is? Of course, being only 5 miles away, I usually just go over and see Jim in the office. ;^)

LOL! Danke sehr!

This is the one correction I wanted to make in your post. You're dating yourself, Sears. The *early* Type 44 (and all early- and mid-'80s VWs & Audis)door handles sucked and broke by design. The later ones (this is an '89 he's looking at) have the *New!* *Improved!* door handles. It is, IME, no longer an issue.

Second that! Bear in mind he can be a tad more irascible than I am sometimes - and he's a lot more valuable resource to you than *I* ever will be.

More good stuff. Good job, SS. -- C.R. Krieger Sig broke.
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<snip>

breaks in the later Type 44 flush handles is the lock - weak cast part on the back of the cylinder is to blame there - stamped replacements are available. <snip>

Steve Sears 1987 Audi 5kTQ - Type 44 1980 Audi 5k - Type 43 1962 and '64 Auto Union DKW Junior deLuxes - Type F800 (SPAM Blocker NOTE: Remove SHOES to reply)
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On Tue, 4 Nov 2003 08:44:28 -0500, "Steve Sears"

Sure, but then the cheap plastic teeth fall off the stamped piece, and the alarm doesn't work! Gimme' the old handles any day. They bust once a year, but you don't have to pull the door panel to fix it!

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JPF, Hmm....good to know since I have a set of doors from a '91 200 with the flush handles I was planning on swapping to. Oh well, no alarm, no worries - I'll just leave the doors unlocked - or get around to installing that remote lock/unlocking kit I got at Wally Mart that has been sitting in the garage.... Cheers! Steve Sears 1987 Audi 5kTQ - appearance change in the works 1980 Audi 5k - has a cool Type 43 Turbo chin spoiler - ooooh!!! 1962 and '64 Auto Union DKW Junior deLuxes - tricked out with headlight eyebrows (SPAM Blocker NOTE: Remove SHOES to reply)
wrote:

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wrote in message

Come to think of it, you're right! I've replaced a couple of those. But, technically, it *isn't* the door *handle*, is it? ;^)
I guess I overlooked it because the redesigned parts *fixed* the problem while they never did change that damnable potmetal mounting point on the older ones. -- C.R. Krieger (Been there; fixed that, too.)
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