Used Car Reviews & 1991 Audi 80 2.0E|Hooniverse

27 Aug 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on Used Car Reviews & 1991 Audi 80 2.0E|Hooniverse
Audi 80

Used Car Reviews #8211; 1991 Audi 80 2.0E

Audi 80, 1991. Again a black car – what is it with them?

I#8217;ve grown fond of the smallest of the #8217;80s-#8217;90s Audis. While there#8217;s something ever-so-slightly porcine about the round B3-B4 bodyshape, the build quality and resistance to rust make it a well-surviving car.

Of course, it does count which one you pick and how you keep it; one 80 I checked out some time ago with a friend had such a leaky camcover gasket that we had to abort the testdrive after mere minutes and turn back; billowing underhood smoke is not a good selling point. Another didn#8217;t try to set itself on fire but had peeling paint, and another (a brown one, no less) was saddled with the 1.6-litre diesel engine that just wouldn#8217;t go.

So, could today#8217;s car redeem what the earlier ones had screwed up?

Checking out local ads, I noted this 1991 example for sale at a used car dealer, along the strip where most of the dealers are around here. The ad made note of its cleanliness, and it didn#8217;t lie; with zero rust, very few paint chips and a spartan but mostly unworn interior it was a car that had kept its cool. I#8217;ve no idea how hot it could be in the summer, though, with no A/C or sunroof and in midnight black.

The car didn#8217;t come without some pointers of the 252 000 km odo reading; the driver#8217;s door hinges let the door drop a little when opened and needed to be adjusted, and there was the smallest patch of wear on the driver#8217;s seat#8217;s left seatback bolster. But the recently-waxed metallic paint looked good and clean under fluorescent lighting, and the panels appeared straight and true.

How do you like those fuel prices? From top: E85 ethanol, 95E10 ethanol/fuel blend, 98E5 premium and at the bottom is diesel, with a 13-cent/litre raise at new year#8217;s.

The Audi#8217;s last owners were said to be an elderly couple, and the Audi#8217;s image would certainly suit the story. The pre-facelift 80 doesn#8217;t really lend itself to visual improvements, with the rounded, jawless front and slab sides combined with coin-sized wheels there#8217;s little one can do to freshen things up while maintaining the classic German minimalist style. A set of Ronal cross-spoke wheels could be sourced easily enough, I think.

The latter, B4 80 is still the same basic car but looks like it#8217;s grown an attitude #8211; and the Competition Quattro special edition looks fairly excellent.

Even the clock was on time. But, there was something to complain about #8211; see the one section on the rev gauge that#8217;s had a light go out? That#8217;s a minus in my book.

The sound system was a fairly fiddly Sony unit. This car needs a period-correct Blaupunkt.

Behind the wheel and out on the road, the Audi battled snowy crosswinds admirably. The two-litre four has the guts to propel the smallish car fairly well, with a satisfying thrum audible. I#8217;m sure that were the car a quattro, the weight of the system would bog it down #8211; but the four-wheel-drive 80s did come with a 16-valve version of the engine, instead of the eight-valve here.

Audi 80

While I liked the snick-snack gearbox that felt pretty much the same as it does on newer VW-Group cars, the clutch on this car didn#8217;t feel as confidence-inspiring. Blame the elderly owners, I thought. The steering wheel was tilted slightly to the right when driving straight ahead, so an alignment would need to be done #8211; quickly glancing the car#8217;s papers I noticed some front end parts had been replaced and that could#8217;ve screwed the alignment.

Still, there was a whine to be heard from front right, in highway speed.

And while we#8217;re talking maintenance, who replaces the timing belt three times in 100,000 km/60k miles?

Timing belt: 148k #8217;00, 214k #8217;06, 240k #8217;10. Unless there was something that needed to be replaced with the belt taken out, like a crank seal, this is a bit hasty.

Still, under hood things were so clean you could#8217;ve eaten off the engine. If the dealership had steam-cleaned it, I#8217;m all for it; if the previous owner had kept it well #8211; even better. It#8217;s the cleanest 20-year-old Audi engine I#8217;ve seen.

A good sign.

So, unless that faint front-end whine is something dear, this 1800 euro car seemed a decent buy, despite inspection due date looming in March. It would need about a hundred#8217;s worth of fixing with getting the alignment done for both the steering and driver#8217;s door, but that#8217;s about it. The winter tires under the car were fairly inoffensive Bridgestone Noranzas, but the summer set could do with fresher rubber #8211; though, were the summer steelies replaced with a set of period alloy wheels, that wouldn#8217;t be an issue.

To end with, 252k on the clock is a bit on the high side for me to be absolutely infatuated with the Audi, but it seems to have worn its km:s well. The odo could read 70k less and I wouldn#8217;t suspect a thing.

Does the shininess of this Audi win you over, or does its dullness make you give it a pass?

Audi 80
Audi 80
Audi 80
Audi 80
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