What makes Audi maintenance so expensive?

I recently saw an ad selling a 1998 A6 Quattro for $9500 but some members (and car reviews) suggested that it was very expensive to maintain. Is that
because of the labor, or the parts themselves? Consumerguide.com says that changing shocks/struts costs $1600 (and brakes for $745). Is that due to the shocks (and brakes) being expensive, or because it's more work? If I find a cheap (but good) mechanic, can that lower the price? I found a set of 4 shocks on the Net for $200 (although they weren't for Quattro), and that's more or less what I pay for shocks for a '90 Volvo 240DL (about $50/shock). In terms of awards, Consumerguide.com gave it a Best Buy. On the other hand, JD Power says that reliability of 1-3 years and 4-5 years was only 2/5. The funny thing is that the 1997 model received better reliability numbers in JD Power (most were 4/5). How come? Needless to say, I just love how the car looks.
Thanks.
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Joe wrote:

A friend was quoted $1400 for brake service (new pads and rotors on all 4 wheels, nothing fancy) on a A4Q. This was at the dealer. OEM parts were about $340 (for all 4 wheels), so I would say labor was overly expensive. He did the work himself and saved about $1k.
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The short answer is: Because the market bears it. People who buy $35K and up cars don't usually balk at $1600 brake jobs. The dealer's can get it and Audi can get top dollar for parts, so they do. Aftermarket parts are available for a lot of the common wear items like brakes and struts, but they are generally of lower quality (but not always). I have a '99 A4 2.8Q and a '95 525i in the driveway, but I do all my own maintenance and on the rare occasion that I have to buy OEM parts, I just grin and bear it. For what it's worth, the Audi has been unreliable. Several oil leaks, bad air bags, faulty connectors, radiator that failed way too early, poorly designed hose clamps that all started to leak at the same time, etc. I think they are a bad risk if you don't have a warranty and can't do the work. The BMW on the other hand seems bullet-proof at 187K (still on the original clutch).
Randolph wrote:

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You get what you pay for. I've been driving Quattros since 1984, and wouldn't buy anything else. My wife likes Toyota/Lexus SUVs, but she also loves Audis. If Audi made an SUV, there wouldn't be a Lexus in my garage. I find Audis reliable and no more expensive to own than any other car. I remember one 15,000 mile maintenance I did on one of my Audis and a friend's Honda cost $140 more. Go figure.
I have never replaced shocks on any Audi I've owned, and I've had brake jobs done at a resonable price. The *worse* maintenance problem I've had was a leaky seal on a transmission, and *that* was covered under warranty.
I think you would be happier with that 90 Volvo 240DL even though I can not imagine driving such a shit box, new or old.
YMMV, however.
Dave RS6
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Dave LaCourse wrote:

LOL. I once drove a 240-series wagon (estate) for a time. Auto tx, and orange. The Swedish Pumpkin, I called it. Good car for a high-school aged male. ;)
BTW, if your daughter's date is driving a station wagon, don't let her go...
E.P.
P.S. That car was slow, and handled like a tank. It was also very thirsty for its size. Shit brick, more like. :)
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wrote:

Not much longer to wait then... Audi Q7 :)
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On Mon, 18 Apr 2005 09:56:02 +0100, "5potnoodle"

We just bought a Lexus for the SWMBO, so it'll be a couple of years before we get the Q7. Haven't seen pictures of it yet.
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Dave LaCourse wrote:

Tell her to go look at a VW Touareg. Not really and SUV, but something auto pundits call a PUV. (Performance Utility Vehicle. One could also call it a PEV. Penis Enhancement Vehicle.)
AP
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wrote:

Tried the Toureg - it was ok, but not my first choice. I drove all the SUVs (except American made), including the Allroad. I tried to convince her she needed the Porsche Turbo S Cayenne, but she wouldn't buy that line. d;o)
Dave RS6
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