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Older than old school
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
(For all of us doing timing chain guide jobs.)

This is why (from Jalopnik):

From the article:

Here's the background: the previous Audi S4, which came out in 1999, used a timing belt rather than a timing chain. This annoyed the hell out of everyone, because the belt had to be changed every few years, and the only way you can do this job, or any job in a 1990s Audi, is you have to remove the front end, and the engine, and all the glass, and then you have to do a little jig on the service drive that involves a socket wrench and some lederhosen. For this, you may bill 31 hours.

So what Audi did on the V8-powered S4 model, which came out in 2004, was obvious: they ditched the stupid belt for a chain, like most other automakers. And since the chain was now designed to last the life of the car, Audi decided to stick it waaaay in the back of the engine, up against the firewall. Apparently the theory was that the chain would be so robust, and strong, and dependable, that it would never have to be serviced. You can probably guess what happened next.

Yes, that's right: it had to be serviced.

You see, as it turns out, the chain itself didn't have any problems with dependability. But Audi, being Audi, decided to use substandard materials for the chain tensioners, and the cam adjusters, which are two related ***8211; and highly important ***8211; components that keep the chain turning around and around and around every time you drive the car. The result is that these parts eventually fail, requiring the replacement of virtually everything you see in this amazing image of an Audi S4 engine worryingly sitting outside an Audi S4:




Now, I know what you're thinking: this doesn't seem so bad! Hoist the engine out of the car, replace a few tensioners, and a few adjusters, and maybe a timing chain or two. And then you're good for another eight years!

Well, here's the thing: there's no such thing as "not so bad" in the world of used Audi repairs. According to this excellent summary of the problem over on the Audi forums, an Audi dealer charges around eight grand to fix this issue. You want to do it yourself? No problem. The parts alone are three grand, and then you have to consider the hours you'll spend under the car, covered in grease, wondering why the hell Audi designed this vehicle so that it could only be fixed by a creature the size of a cicada. All for a car that's only worth about fifteen grand, according to average pricing on AutoTrader.com.

That's right. Not only do you have to take the engine completely out of the car to replace the timing chain guides, once you do, you are faced with an engine that looks like it was created by a mad scientist--or maybe a committee of them.
 

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One wheel roaster
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looks like a nightmare!
 

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... or Rube Goldberg.

The first time I saw the rear end of an Audi V8 opened up, I was blown away!

BTW, the A8 has the same basic engine.
 

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2,410 Posts
really

I don't need this post to know why...I drive it everyday...

But still what an engineering nightmare...
 

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Holy crap!

Sent from BimmerApp mobile app
 

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....
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1,421 Posts
I actually had a B6 S4 daily (the first body style of the v8s), the motor was absolutely lovely to rev and the car itself felt like it was a solid piece of steel it was so taut.

Once the CPO ran out I shopped some aftermarket warranties and the prices had skyrocketed to $5k+ (!). Had i bought an aftermarket warranty a year earlier it would've been closer to $2k...I guess the warranty companies had been slow on the uptake and the RS6 guys were using and abusing them lol. Looks like i'm lucky to have sold her when I did - this was back in '09, i dont recall reading anything on the forums about this issue back then

not mine, but her twin...

 

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Otto Zwei-Punkt-Null
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Ummm? You have to remove the glass??? Why..
 

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Why so many sprockets, chains and guides?


Why didn't they attach the cam chain directly to the crank sprocket?


Stupidest design for an oil pump chain and sprocket. Where they running out of space or something?
 

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Why so many sprockets, chains and guides?
QUOTE]

One of those sprockets on the lower left drives a shaft that runs thru the block to the front of the engine. That shaft has a pulley on the front that drives the AC compressor.
 

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I never knew Audi's are DIY type of cars......Maybe except changing some light bulbs, but even those are nightmarish. Hell, ask anyone who owns the first generation of Audis with those LED headlights, that last about a few months......They cost how much? In comparison a BMW Hella xenon self leveling headlight costs pennies......
 

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As a B5 1.8T Tip Quattro owner, Audi makes me lose faith in German's building cars. And, this car is not as nearly as complex as an S or the aforementioned V8.

For instance, removing the battery required me to run throttle body calibration to get the car to run and idle. Also, VAG used a long pinch bolt on the front upper control arms (4x per side) that is notorious for seizing. Then, VAG hooked the car radio to the ODB-II port which means that aftermarket radios send straight 12v to the port which will blow up diagnostic tools. Likewise, failed modules such as ABS will keep you connecting to the ECU via ODB-II port. Not to mention the fact I've replaced the downpipe 2x on a car with 102k miles.

BMW has had no exhaust issues nor seized bolts. It sits outside 24x7 and is at 250k+ with no lights. Audi has a failed ABS module and exhaust leaks. Also, I own a 1986 Porsche 944 Turbo which had NO seized exhaust bolts (155k) when I had to remove / reinstall the head (yes, timing failed, timing failed on the Audi too which is how I bought in 2004. Porsche is easier to work on. Audi you have install the exhaust manifold before dropping the head.)

I will never buy another Audi/VAG product unless it is Porsche. And, then, it will likely be pre-VAG take over.
 

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BMW Snow Plow User
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2,233 Posts
I'm just surprised they didn't ruin Porsche yet. All they seemed to have done is drive earnings up to ridiculous levels, partially due to lower cost for them due to synergy with supply chains or something, or maybe just blackmailing the suppliers.
 
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