Anybody got any ideas

This is an Audi 1996 A6 2.6 SE auto. Has been faultless since I bought it when it was one year old. Then tonight when I get in it at Clacton in Essex and start up
there is a grinding wirring sort of noise coming from the engine or gearbox when it is in park or neutral but the noise goes away when in drive or reverse. I manage to drive it home no noise in drive, gearbox and engine working perfect, but there are no headlights, indicators, air con, or wipers. Have to drive home giving hand sigs and using headlamp flasher as headlights. (upset quite a few people I can tell you). When I got home I tuned it off and then restated it again. Electrics are all working again, but the noise is still there at standstill in park or neutral.
Anybody know of this problem
Regards David.
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On Mon, 25 Aug 2003 00:11:48 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@clara.net (dave smith) wrote:

After some investigation today I hope I have found the cause of the problem.
When I start the car the ignition switch is getting stuck in the start position. The audi shuts every thing down when the starter is turning, the grinding noise is the starter motor. When I go in to drive the starter stops turning because of the override switch that stops the car starting when in drive. I hope I am correct as this seems quite a cheap solution to a scary problem. Now I wondering do I have to change the switch or does it just need some sort of lubrication.
Regards David
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On Mon, 25 Aug 2003 14:36:33 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@clara.net (dave smith) wrote:

The key switches on that vintage Audi apparently have a propensity to fail, so your diagnosis is likely spot-on. I don't recall reading of anyone rehabilitating the key switch, so replacement of the switch assembly is likely...
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