1997 Audi A4 2.8 Quattro 2.8 from North America


Numerous known problems that dealers cannot or will not fix


Intermittent problems with Electronic Control Unit (ECU) since new. Dealer refused to replace although service bulletin was issued that it should be replaced.

Transmission went at 53,000 miles (tiptronic) dealer says entire transmission must be replaced - cost $9,000 USD

Rear differential seals (L/R) and rear transmission seal went at 50,000 miles

Temperature control sensor went at 39,000 miles

Passenger rear wheel bearing went at 42,000 miles

Driver front passenger control arm went at 49,000 miles.

General Comments:

My 1998 2.8 A4 Quattro was my first Audi. For the majority of my 3-year warranty, nothing major went wrong with the car. It was a purchase not a lease.

Despite intermittent ECU and cold-start problems, the car was reliable until the 4th year.

At that point, I had leased a second A4 2002.

The car is incredibly unreliable now, and incredibly expensive to repair. A $9,000 transmission repair is ludicrous at 53,000 miles. AoA refuses to assist.

Never buying Audi again.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 5th February, 2003

3rd Jun 2003, 15:02

I have a 1997 A4 Quatro and we also have been having problems with the transmission, starting around the 52,000 mile mark. It makes a terrible noise in 1st and 2nd gear. The dealer recommended repairing the transmission, a $4,000 endeavor on a car whose blue book value is only about $12,000. We got a 2nd opinion from an independent transmission shop - they have seen *many* of these. This is apparently a very common problem that Audi is not acknowledging or addressing in any way.

1997 Audi A4 SE 1.8 from UK and Ireland


Good Fast car


Nothing at all.

General Comments:

A few months after getting the car a roof slate fell on the rear left door. I have not yet got round to fixing it. But it still looks stunning. The alloys are starting to look a bit naff now compared to big 17 inch wheels. It has all the bits :

Air con.

Climate control.

Electric windows.


But it has very light steering god in the town, but bad on the motorway. For a factory radio it is very good sound and very good to use. Audi were very good the only thing I needed was a brake light, it was free! also fitted. For a 1.8 it is a bit slow getting there, but can hit 130 flat out.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 8th November, 2002

20th Jun 2003, 18:20

Yes, the A4 does have ridiculously light steering. At no time do you ever get the feeling that the steering wheel is directly connected to the front wheels. This car has abysmal handling; the chassis communicates nothing to the driver - cornering at speed involves turning the steering wheel and hoping for the best.

The interior on the SE model is no better than a VW, cheap and nasty looking plastics. And it is so noisy. I traded a Mondeo for an A4 1.8 SE and could not believe the amount of tyre roar and wind noise in the Audi. For A4 SE money you can get a V6 Mondeo with much better equipment, much better handling and much more refinement.

This lousy Audi is best avoided.

7th Jul 2003, 17:11

I forgot to mention the awful ventilation system. Whenever it rained I had to turn the air conditioning on to prevent the windscreen from misting up. Opening the windows did nothing to help; only the AC directed at the screen would keep it clear. Rubbish!

1997 Audi A4 SE 1.8 from Malaysia


Excellent car (I think better than BMW3), let down by poor representation


Right lower arm of front wheels replaced at 10000km. topped up power steering fluid at 20000km. otherwise fine.

General Comments:

(Dynamic Shift Program) transmission can be unsure even when climbing moderately steep slopes, can be a source of discomfort/annoyance as the engine tends to 'roar' on climbs.

Otherwise, the car is fun to drive & handles great compared to japanese competitors.

I travel long distance frequently on expressways, so auto-cruise would have been super, but dealer very hesitant to install OEM component. I feel dealer support is weak in this area. In this case, I get the impression BMW for example, listens to their customers better?

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 24th May, 2002

1997 Audi A4 SE 1.8 petrol from UK and Ireland


Car delivered with aluminium dash trim not matching doors!

Driver's seat creaks.

Bumper paint chipping badly after 8,000 miles.

General Comments:

Excellent car that loosens up with mileage. Sports suspension tightens up handling nicely. Power only just adequate....turbo would be nice!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th April, 1998

1997 Audi A4 SE 1.8 petrol from UK and Ireland


None since August 1997 and 5,000 miles (it shouldn't have).

General Comments:

I would recommend the car but suggest that people consider the turbo which I don't have.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd March, 1998

1997 Audi A4 SE 1.8 petrol from UK and Ireland


Alarm is too easy to work around. Three break-ins so far

General Comments:

Audi should put a proper security system on this car. Otherwise it is great.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th December, 1997