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The Most Complained About Audi Cars

If you’re shopping for a German luxury car, then you might want to take a look at the cars that Audi has to offer if you want a dash of athleticism. While other German brands like Mercedes-Benz aim more toward comfort and BMW leans mostly toward all-out sportiness, we like to think of the Audi as the automaker that splits the difference between the two. However, Audi cars have had their fair share of issues in the past and according to Carcomplaints.com, there are some model years that you should look out for.

Audi A4

The A4 is Audi’s mid-size sedan offering that competes with the Mercedes-Benz C-Class and the BMW 3 Series. The car has been around since 1994 and is currently in its fifth generation, however, it’s had its fair share of issues over the years. According to Car Complaints, the worst year to purchase would be the 2011 model year.

There are currently 17 complaints concerning “excessive oil usage” as owners have noted having really low oil levels in their turbo 2.0-liter engines. In fact, there was a class action lawsuit for this issue for both the A4 and Q5 models, so it might be best to stay away from the 2007 to 2012 vintage of A4s.

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A 2020 Audi A4 on display at an auto show
The 2020 Audi A4 | Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images

Audi A6

If you’re looking for a larger, mid-size luxury sedan, then an Audi A6 is a great way to go. It’s been in the Audi lineup since the mid-90s, so there’s likely an A6 for every budget, however, you might want to stay away from the early-2000 vintage as Car Complaints lists the year 2000 as the worst model year.

The worst issue is transmission failure. There are a few complaints listed by A6 owners that the transmission needed replacing, which caused thousands of dollar’s worth of work. We would recommend sticking to the newer models if you happen to be interested in one of these cars.

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2019 Audi A6
2019 Audi A6 | Audi

Audi A3

The Audi A3 is on the smaller end of the brand’s spectrum and is the car to get if you’re looking for a luxurious compact car. According to Car Complaints, you might want to stay away from the 2015 model year, though, as they were plagued with excessive oil consumption as well. In total, there are 21 complaints for that model year and that doesn’t surprise us, considering that was the first year in the latest generation. As always, stick to the newer models if possible.

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2017 Audi A3
2017 Audi A3 | Audi

Audi S4

The Audi S4 is the high-performance version of the brand’s A4 sedan. If you’re in the market for one of these models, then we highly suggest finding one in the 2013 model year and newer as the older models had a V8 engine that was prone to timing chain component issues, which are very expensive. Case in point, Car Complaints lists the 2005 model year as the worst with the main issue being an “engine rattle on startup.” This was a pretty common symptom of a failing timing chain, so just keep that in mind if you’re currently in the market for an S4.

2018 Audi S4
2018 Audi S4 | Audi

Audi car complaints

Audi cars are definitely some of the nicest German luxury cars that can bring you great value if you’re willing to put in the time and effort in finding one in a good condition. We recommend always getting an extended warranty, if possible, as part and labor for repairs are expensive. As you can clearly see when it comes to issues with excessive oil consumption on some of the models.