Years constructed: 2002 to 2010
Bodystyles: 4-door luxurious saloon
Audi is about to launch an all-new A8, which continues the outdated custom of it having an aluminium spaceframe chassis and aluminium exterior panels, which each lowers the automotive’s weight and offers it some tech credentials. The A8 is a long-serving badge, although, which implies that older fashions may be picked up for one thing of a cut price, so this huge, luxurious, super-saloon may be purchased for lower than the worth of a brand new Fiesta. Higher nonetheless, Audi high quality implies that they’re fairly dependable too, so long as you get a very good one.
We’re wanting right here on the second-generation D3 Typ4E mannequin A8 right here, which was launched in 2002. Really, to be much more particular, we’re wanting on the facelifted mannequin which was launched in 2007 and which is distinguished by its huge single-frame radiator grille. As with all earlier and subsequent A8s, it’s a very good wanting automotive, however in a really delicate manner, and may from a distance even be mistaken for a lesser A6. Not good for show-offs, maybe, however supreme for these of us who like our luxurious with a aspect order of discretion.
There was a big number of giant engines accessible within the A8, not least the mighty 6.Zero-litre turbo-charged W12 engine shared with the Bentley Continental GT and Flying Spur (which each additionally bor-rowed liberally from the A8’s components bin in different areas). That engine could also be a contact out of attain, however the excellent news is that there are extra inexpensive variations on the market. You may attempt to observe down the four.Zero-litre, later four.2-litre, V8 diesel which is an incredible mixture of highly effective and economical, however one of the best one to go for is the three.Zero-litre V6 TDI diesel. Essentially the most primary engine supplied within the A8 it is perhaps, however the three.Zero-litre has greater than adequate energy for the A8’s comparatively gentle construction, and it may well do higher than 40mpg on a long term. Go for a post-2008 three.Zero TDI and also you’ll truly lower your motor tax invoice in half, due to its just-under-the-wire 224g/km Co2 score. (The two.Eight-litre FSI V6 petrol has, due to being front-wheel drive solely, barely decrease emissions of 199g/km, nevertheless it’s in the identical tax band).
Gear ranges can be all the way down to who has beforehand owned the automotive. Whereas all A8s are fairly luxurious inside, these which have beforehand been in skilled arms will in all probability be slightly extra primary, whereas these owned privately are prone to have extra choices, which included corresponding to rear-seat DVD gamers, and an inside leather-based improve that price as a lot as a small automotive all by itself.
How a lot ought to I spend? Circa €10-12,000 will get you a 2008 three.Zero V6 TDI quattro
Right here’s one we discovered:
2008 Audi A8 three.Zero TDI V6 quattro SE, 117,000km, two homeowners, for €12,900 from a supplier.
So far as huge, luxurious vehicles go, the A8 is fairly solidly constructed though, as ever, you’ll wish to be actually sure of the automotive’s historical past and repair file earlier than your purchase. If one thing huge goes flawed, it’s going to be costly to repair.
Despite the fact that the automotive is made largely of aluminium, you do must test for corrosion, as there’s a chemical response between the aluminium, paint, and primer which might trigger bubbles to pop up, particularly alongside the underside of the doorways.
Verify that the door handles and central locking all work correctly, as there’s a identified subject with the micro-switches which govern these capabilities.
The two.Eight and three.2-litre petrol engines can get by means of quite a lot of oil, whereas the four.Zero and four.2-litre V8 makes use of a belt to drive its diesel pump, and that wants changing each 160,000km. The V8 diesel additionally suffers from defective air inlet flaps (test for smoking or juddering engines) and that’s an costly factor to repair.
Verify for moist carpets (the air consumption underneath the windscreen can clog and let in water) and test that the MMI infotainment system is all working correctly.
The massive points are the air suspension (test that the automotive sits stage, and that it raises and lowers easily and quietly) and the four-wheel drive quattro system. In the event you hear a whining sound from the wheels when the automotive is on full left or proper lock, that implies that the differential is on the best way out and it’s hideously costly to repair.
Lastly, pay attention for knocking sounds from the suspension over bumps — should you hear them, it means the suspension arms (all eight of them) want changing.
There’s an ultra-high efficiency A8, the 5.2-litre V10-engined S8, which borrowed its engine from the Lamborghini Gallardo. It has 444hp and may dash to 100kmh ion simply 5.2secs. If you’d like certainly one of these, put together to pay prime greenback as any low-cost ones may have been abused or uncared for, nevertheless it’s a heck of a collector’s merchandise if yow will discover a very good one.
And while you’ve discovered your excellent Audi A8 don’t overlook to get it historical past checked by motorcheck.ie.