Last post on Dec 09, 2013 at 3:18 PM
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#9753 of 10048 Re: Need some advice [Mr_Shiftright]
Jan 22, 2013 (4:26 pm)
I bet you $1,000,000 if you really grilled him about what he means by "maintenance-intensive" he'd admit on the stand under penalty of perjury that it means he just hates to work on them because he's either ill-experienced, under-experienced, or just plain thinks they are a pain in the behind to work on (which is true on a lot of things).
A mechanic really has to know what they are doing or they will get really frustrated working on an Audi, and even when they are skilled, may get frustrated anyway.
Takes 3 hours to replace the $100 recirculation valve, as an example. Now, some Audi dealers might try and charge $250 for the part, but....
Still, I'd rather have to pay $400 then get a transmission rebuild on a domestic at 60K miles for example.
#9754 of 10048 Re: Need some advice [andres3]
by Stever@Edmunds HOST
Jan 22, 2013 (4:33 pm)
An audible backup system saved me from banging the rear fender in a rental car in Chicago a few years back. My brother tows a large pop-up and likes the rear camera. Makes lining up the hitch a breeze.
Finding all the toys on a manual transmission may be getting harder since manuals too often mean a base model.
#9755 of 10048 Re: Need some advice [steve_]
Jan 22, 2013 (4:42 pm)
Maybe some auto manufacturer will invent an app where you can put your smart-phone on the rear bumper and "beam" the image to your car's display via bluetooth or something. Saves the extra cost of the camera.
Also, if someone rear-ends you, that camera may be toast and that'll add dollars to the Claim amount. $$$$ That means way more $$$ for insurance premiums.
#9756 of 10048 Re: Need some advice [andres3]
Jan 22, 2013 (5:18 pm)
Magellan sells a backup cam kit for $150. You get a 10% off accessories coupon when you buy one, so even less, and it is wireless.
I like them because you can place you car within an inch. I can leave just enough room for the trash cans and still open the hatch without getting wet under my car port.
I will stop short of recommending a Magellan because their Nav *blows* compared to Garmin. Simply no comparison.
If Garmin launches a GPS that accepts a video input for a backup cam I'd buy 2 of them tomorrow.
#9757 of 10048 Re: Need some advice [andres3]
Jan 22, 2013 (6:08 pm)
My friend with the A3 does spend what I would consider to be an absolutely inordinate amount to maintain the car - it seems to need major servicing about every 10K miles if you go by the book? She considers it worth it. I test drove the A3 when it first came out, and almost bought it, so I can appreciate why she thinks it is worth it. But I drive too many miles in a year to purchase a car that is that maintenance-intensive.
#9758 of 10048 Re: Need some advice [andres3]
by MrShift@Edmunds HOST
Jan 22, 2013 (7:50 pm)
Ah, no. He loves his work, and he knows Audis inside out and backwards, so I think he's right in this case.Besides, he makes a good living working on Audis, as few technicians have the skill, or the desire, to do so.
Naturally, your results may vary, and based on your reports, you've been very fortunate.
Let's be fair about and perhaps say--an Audi is not a car you want to buy a) out of warranty and b) with a lot of miles on it.
That's the advice I give people anyway. Play the odds.
#9759 of 10048 Re: Need some advice [Mr_Shiftright]
Jan 22, 2013 (8:24 pm)
I am guessing, as with BMWs, this applies more to the big/complicated models, and not so much the A4/A3, that should not really be much different to maintain or work on than a VW?
I imagine there is a heck of a difference between working on an A4 2.0T and an A6 2.7TT! Or one of the V8s.
#9760 of 10048 Re: Need some advice [cdnpinhead]
Jan 22, 2013 (9:31 pm)
The issue with the synthetic oil in the Cadillac cars was due to three factors:
1 - The synthetic "oil" is really just an oily goo with anti-wear additives added. Minus those additives, it's as effective as dish soap in keeping your engine parts from grinding together. The level has nothing to do with it. How clean it looks doesn't either. How much life the "oil" has left does.
2 - The oil life sensor was designed in typical German fashion and accurately reads the life left of the oil. Not how long it is until you need to change it! When it reads zero, it's not time to change the oil, it's your engine is about to destroy itself as the anti-wear additives are completely gone/used up. ie - 0% protection remaining. This was an oversight at GM and GM started telling its mechanics to recommend people come in when it showed 50% life remaining.
The new CTSs after about 2009 or so have new oil life sensors in them that are calibrated to be twice as sensitive (ie - they read 0% at the old one's 50%). If you change your synthetic oil every 5000 miles or 6 months, your car will be fine. Since it costs about twice as much as conventional oil, it works out to about the same price for upkeep.
3 - synthetic oils respond very poorly to being revved hard and extreme heat. That's because they use up their anti-wear additives quicker and then there's nothing to fall back on. The oil looks clean but as before, so does dish soap. You have really little warning before the oil just cooks itself. Dino-based oils on the other hand provide some protection no matter how old they are, so wear will happen but catastrophic incidents are less likely to happen (and you'll smell very hot oil in most cases when you park the car). People who run at high RPMs (manual drivers?) are advised to consider switching to a semi-sytnthetic instead of a pure synthetic and change every 3000 miles..
note - a lot of this info comes from S2000 and RX-8 forums where oil problems are common due to the high RPMs. Most people are advised to run semi-synthetic or racing oil. The CTS doesn't rev to 9000prm, so normal attention to the oil is fine.
Note - my dad has a CTS and changed it every 6K miles and it's still running like brand new.
But wait, it gets better!
GM recently is advising that new "performance" Cadillacs such as the CTS must use their Dexos approved oil. GM's own genuine Dexos appears to be fully synthetic on the package but it's actually a synthetic blend.
note the Castrol GTX semi-synthetic in the list.
I feel for the people who didn't realize this, but anyone could have reasonably figured out that GM was figuring it out as it went along and using the consumers as test subjects.
#9761 of 10048 Re: Need some advice [scwmcan]
Jan 22, 2013 (9:28 pm)
I know it may not be acceptable, being American and all, but what about a Buick Regal, maybe even a GS, with how poorly they are selling now I bet you could get a good deal on a GS, and may even be able to get in under our price target, and they do have a manual as well.
Appreciate the ideas scwmcan.
Personally I think the Verano is ugly in the back, and I'm not going to buy a car from GM which has very spotty reliability, plus was bailed out even though a failure. I also think there's a good chance GM may fail again, and since I keep cars 8-10 years, I need the support for quite a while.
#9762 of 10048 Re: Need some advice [benjaminh]
Jan 22, 2013 (9:35 pm)
It seems like you've gotten a great and reliable ride from your Acura, and yet you seem almost eager to leave the brand. Just curious as to why? Just ready to try something different?
I appreciate your comments. I like my TL quite a bit and it's certainly been very reliable. It's a nice car. But I don't find it giving me the passion that my '98 A4 (stick, 6 cyl) did. The TL is more like a sport cruiser - a bit too big and it wallows in turns. It's steering is ok but a bit numb. That's why I like the previous TSX as it's smaller and pretty agile. The new one is just too big and is pretty numb as well. The ILX is a tarted up Civic and I want/need a bit more refinement than that.
I'm glad Honda is finally turning it around a bit with the new Accord, but I really do want something a bit smaller than the TL.
I appreciate the list; I'm just a bit appalled at how little choice us stick drivers have these days. And I guess overall I'm less impressed with some of the latest cars, even though they have more electronics gadgets than in years past.
Probably I'd love a loaded Mini Cooper if I could get past the really small size. I may have to go out and drive one.