11th Jan 2006, 18:35

Hi all, I bought a 97 A8 with 100k miles four month ago and enjoy it. What a ride! Transmission problem is VERY common on pre-facelift (up to 2000 models) cars. There is NO known cure for so called thumping and "hunting" in fourth gear around 40 m/h. The only way to fix it is a rebuild TC and valve body, which is around $2500-3000 including installation. Check the forums.audiworld.com/forumdisplay.php?f=8 for details, read some, ask members questions, they will help you a lot!

Beside the tranny issues, the car is great. So far I only did scheduled maintenance such as tranny oil and filter (this recommended to be done every 40k if you don't want your tranny die on you any time soon), I also did a timing belt (to be done every 90k!) with water pump and all tensioner/rollers/cam seals. This was a PITA since I did it myself in a garage, but it only needs to be done once and was completed in 15 hours. I also planning to fix oil cooler leak and oil pan gasket replacement soon, my summer project. The car is really easy to work on if you have a Bentley manual and VAG-COM. What also can I say? Take one for a drive, you'll fall in love; at least I did.

22nd Jun 2006, 13:31

Hi all,

I currently own a 1999 Audi A8. It has got to be the most brilliant car on the planet! I have just recently hit 283,000 kilometers and the engine runs like an absolute dream. I have run into very few expenses over the years, however I rebuilt the transmission at roughly 215,000 km. The car is full of acceleration and is fantastic on the highway. I definitely recommend this automobile to anyone who desires to spend the money because you will be guaranteed the performance.

Keep them wheels rollin...

15th Mar 2007, 14:34

I recently purchased a 1997 A-8 (two months ago). I have put about 2,000 miles on it so far. I too have the transmission searching for the right gear around 40 miles per hour, but I enjoy the car so much that a little gear searching does not bother me that much.

I drive around 2,000 miles per week for my job. I save my A8 for play time when I get home. The little things that bother pertain to the interior. The driver side armrest broke off. The front seat electric head rests do not go up and down anymore (you can hear the motor, but nothing happens). There is a noise coming from the passenger seat that I can not pin point yet, and there is a squeak coming from the rear roof area. All in all not a whole lot to complain about.

I would recommend this vehicle to anybody who appreciates the size of a Cadillac, power and handling of a Porsche, non-ostentatious design of Audi and the pure childish fun you experience when you get it all in one car.

31st Mar 2007, 06:29

I own a 1997 Audi A8 4.2, I have owned Cadillac's, Volvo's, Bmw's, and still own a 1997 Jaguar, My Audi is the best driving car out of all of them. My Audi just turn 159,842 miles, the famous transmission problem happen. I was just going to sell it, but I like the car so much I am just going to fix it, I have owned the car for 9 years and is the only problem I have ever had with this car. So to put a little money in it now, it will not hurt. So if you have a Audi you understand what I am talking about, the car is a very good car.

6th Jul 2007, 23:57

Can someone help me? I just got a 1997 Audi A8 4.2 and I love the car. I had a Volvo, but I love my Audi, but it is killing me.

I just put a rebuilt tranny in for $1900.00, but now the timing belt is going. I hear a noise in the front; it sounds like a diesel truck.

Now my problem I need help on is that my air conditioning is blowing cold in the middle cold on the right, but hot on the left and hot in the back. I'm pulling my hair. Can someone help and can tell me what to do?

If I take it to the dealer they're going to charge me a lot of money.

If there someone out there that had the same problem that can help, let me know.

Thank you


7th Jul 2007, 06:04

Ditch it and buy another Volvo - I would!

3rd Oct 2007, 09:29


After reading your comments page, I have to make my feelings heard about my Audi A8 4.2 Quattro,1995, mileage 255,500 Km. I am a engineer by trade and this is the best engineered car I have worked on. When I purchased this car I went through her with a fine tooth comb. All I replaced was the cam belt, idler gear, oil filter, fuel filter, fan belt and drive shaft gaiter other than these wear and tear parts, the car is in mint condition. What a car, the comfort of a Roller and power of a Ferrari I rate this car 5 star. Thanks Audi.

8th Oct 2007, 21:31

1997 Audi A8 transmission "problems" are not really problems it just the car caring to much about the comfort of the driver. The A8 is so advanced for its day and proves to be a real drivers car. PS my stupid air bag light is on, and my head rest doesn't work, but I'm so in LOVE with the car that I think the little problems that go wrong are cute VW quarks.

10th Jan 2008, 19:32

On the 97 A8 comments, listen to the guy who said "ditch it and buy another Volvo". I'm heading into my third transmission at 110K... countless control arms and tie rods. Timing belt and too many leaks to be ecologically sound. We all get caught up in the fact that it's comfortable to drive, especially if you're tall; truth is, once out of warranty they all need an exorcism. I was to dumb to figure it out and now it's a push off the cliff or spend more than it’s worth… Get out. If You are reading this while thinking about buying an A8 out of warranty, slap yourself, take a cold shower, then flush some of your cash down the toilet… same thing.

21st Apr 2008, 01:25

If you want to drive a super car then the 1997 a8 is it.

22nd Apr 2008, 15:17

I have a 1997 A8 and while I love the automobile, I have had my share of problems.

CV boots seem to be made of a rubber that decides to last only a year or so regardless of mileage. I've complained to Audi that the CV boots aren't that substantial.

I had the usual transmission problems and replace it @ 80,000 miles.

I had an oil leak @ 60,000 miles so when they fixed that, they also put on the new timing belt at the same time. Now I have a water pump leak that would cost about $1,800. I wish the dealer would have suggested replacing the water pump @ 60,000 since they had the front-end off and apart.

I have a train station car so I've only put 82,000 miles on it. I looks and drives great but maintenance has been an expensive issue for me. And each time it seems to be "just another $1,500".

For a vehicle that new runs in the 80's in list price, and was in the low-mmid 60's back in 1997/98, the maintenence record is not great.