A Buyer’s Guide To Audi Engines

by | Jul 23, 2022 | Tips

One of the most sought-after vehicles on the secondary market is the Audi automobile. The great longevity of many models, appealing finishes, good equipment, and outstanding technical data are only a few of the factors contributing to this interest. But you should use caution while selecting a secondhand “vehicle with rings.”

First off, cheap pricing are frequently a sign of distorted mileage or undiscovered flaws. The cost of components and repairs is another factor. The expense of upkeep will be significant even if nothing breaks. Avalanche-like ownership costs rise concurrently with a growth in the Audi class.

The Audi A6 could be intolerable if the Audi A3’s maintenance costs are still manageable. The more sophisticated suspension, electronics, and closely packed engine compartment are everything.

Both diesel and gasoline engines have the potential to provide unforeseenly significant expenses. A breakthrough in gasoline engines happened in 2007. Then Audi received 1.4, 1.8, and 2.0 TFSI under the hood. Numerous issues occurred simultaneously, including the timing drive failing, the appearance of oil zhor, and collapsed pistons. When the 2.4 FSI replaced the quick and dependable 2.4, the V6 started to fail a bit early.

Over the years, there have been many different diesel engines produced by a variety of manufacturers. Some of these engines have been more successful than others. For example, the 1.9 TDI was a great success, while the 2.5 V6 TDI was not. The latest versions of these engines, such as the BAU, have addressed the issues that led to the failure of the 2.5 V6 TDI. Another example is the 2.0 TDI PD, which was replaced by the improved 2.0 TDI CR with common rail injection. In general, diesel engines have come a long way in terms of technology and reliability, and there are now many options available to consumers.

See our: Audi Engines For Sale

Petrol Engines

1.6 8V – low maintenance

Good dynamics and economy shouldn’t be expected from a 1.6-liter gasoline engine. The least expensive Audi to maintain is the 1.6 8V Audi A3. Avoid driving a vehicle with such an engine if you prefer sporty driving.

The Audi A3 (1st and 2nd generations) and A4 are equipped with this powerplant (B5 and B6). It was also commonly utilized in other cars made by the VW Group. Only the original A3, which weighs a little over a ton, has rather respectable rides. Too hefty for 1.6 is A4 B6. The drawbacks include increased fuel use. 9 gallons per 100 kilometers seem rather high given the dynamics.

But in the age of sophisticated motors, this is the only device that ensures minimal running costs. Only failed ignition coils and throttle contamination may be noticed as usual faults. nothing pricey. replacing the timing belt? installing gas-related equipment? Particularly when compared to engines with direct injection and a timing chain drive, it doesn’t get any less expensive.

The engine’s head and body are made of aluminum. Five bearings support the crankshaft, and multi-point (distributed) injection is in charge of the fuel delivery. The head of the block contains the camshaft.


  • a straightforward design;
  • Low-cost repair;
  • accepts HBO’s introduction;
  • The car’s modest price.


  • weak dynamics (the A4 is particularly difficult to overtake);
  • a considerable amount of fuel is used.

1.8 Turbo – powerful and reliable

Even today, the 1.8-liter turbo engine merits consideration. It is sturdy and very inexpensive to fix. It is also appreciated that tweaking is an option.

The 1.8 T offers respectable performance and reasonable fuel use. One of the earliest turbo engines to see widespread usage is this one. Along with Volkswagen, Skoda, and Seat, it is also present in Audi. Even in industry, the engine was used.

The engine features an aluminum block head with 20 valves, a forged steel crankshaft, and a cast iron block (3 intake and 2 exhaust per cylinder). One camshaft is driven by a toothed belt, and a short chain links the second shaft to the first. Fuel injection is dispersed in a KKK turbine (invariable geometry) without moving blades. The block weights roughly 150 kg in its “dry condition.”

The 1.8 Turbo quickly proved to have a lot of promise. Serially, 240 horsepower was taken away from it, and during tuning, it could readily handle a boost of 300 horsepower. Of course, as it can already be cliche, caution should be used in the instance of a tuned unit.

But more frequently than not, sports outings did not use the turbo engine. A vehicle on such an engine uses between 9 and 14 litres per 100 km in typical driving circumstances.

Age has revealed a number of flaws (including timing and thermostat), yet fixing them doesn’t cost a lot of money.


  • an effective trade-off between power and fuel use;
  • The availability of replacement components;
  • A large selection on the market.


  • a number of unpleasant flaws that are characteristic of ancient, high-mileage vehicles (oil consumption and timing problems).

Application instances

  • A3 I (8L) Audi;
  • TT I for Audi (8N);
  • A4 B5, B6, and B7 models.

2.4 V6 – only until 2005

Despite the development of more powerful inline turbo-fours, early versions of the naturally aspirated petrol V6 are still preferred by Audi enthusiasts. Of course, you shouldn’t plan on using little gasoline – at least 10 gallons every 100 kilometers. Even 20 liters must be taken into consideration in the city. However, the journey will appear enjoyable.

The 2.4-liter engine has two distinct generations that should be identified. They are the same size and volume, however there was modernisation in 2004. The cast iron block and 30 valve head were there prior to the modification (5 per cylinder). After that, a timing chain, direct injection, and an aluminum block with 24 valves were added.

Recent advances have been unsuccessful. After many tens of thousands of kilometers, carbon deposits started to build up on the valves as a result of the direct injection system (FSI). Small mesh filters were found to be malfunctioning in the oil system’s timing chain tensioner. Chain jumps and other significant damage often happened from complete disregard for noise. Audi solved the timing drive’s vulnerability in 2008, however the engine was unable to bear the strain of 4-cylinder turbocharged engines.


  • excellent elasticity;
  • excellent reliability (just prior to the upgrade);
  • versions with dispersed injection may install HBO with no problems.


  • the constrained significance of adding HBO to an updated FSI;
  • costly timing errors (FSI);
  • fairly high fuel use.

Application instances

  • Audi A4 II (B6)
  • C5 and C6 Audi A6.

1.4 TSI/TFSI (EA111)

In the 1.0-1.4 liter category, the 1.4 TSI earned nine “Engine of the Year” awards between 2006 and 2014. It is noteworthy that the variant with twin supercharging received the highest title (turbocharger and compressor). The variant with only one turbocharger, however, was as well received.

The 1.4 TSI engine (which made its debut in 2006) received favorable reviews at first. The little supercharged engine ran smoothly and used gasoline efficiently. Fuel economy isn’t at all low while driving dynamically, but this is true of most downsized engines. This is hardly the worst thing, however.

Numerous problems with durability plague the 1.4 TSI. For instance, the chain tensioner and timing chain rapidly failed. The control electronics, nozzles, and phase regulator all failed.

The variant with twin supercharging had the most problems, with pistons and piston rings being broken, as well as the mechanical compressor’s electromagnetic clutch failing.

An improved 1.4 TSI EA211 series engine (with timing belt drive) was released in 2012 and has received favorable feedback for its longevity.


  • excellent performance;
  • comparatively little gasoline use.


  • a timing chain with a limited lifespan and a tensioner;
  • issues with the pistons in the double-boost variant.

Application instances

  • Audi A1;
  • Audi A3 models II and III.

Diesel engines

1.9 TDI – durable and economical

The most recognized diesel in recent years is this one. There’s no reason not to check out an older model of Audi that has a 1.9 TDI because of its strong structure and low maintenance costs.

The 1.9 TDI engine is legendary. produced and improved on a regular basis since 1991. Many other Volkswagen Group cars have found use for it.

The 90-horsepower variant with a distribution-style injection pump is the most dependable and reasonably priced to operate and maintain. The engine features a straightforward layout, a flywheel with a single mass, and a turbine with constant shape.

Yes, there are occasions when small issues arise. Take, for instance, the use of a fuel pump, an air mass meter, and an exhaust gas recirculation valve. But in most cases, faults are not brought on by bad design or subpar materials, but rather by a reasonable age and heavy usage.

The 1.9 TDI has additional solutions that may lead to issues in its newer, more powerful counterparts. We are discussing a DPF, a double flywheel, pump injectors, and a variable geometry turbine. However, even these variants seem better when seen in comparison to diesel engines.

The 2006–2008 BXE version, for instance, was installed in the second-generation Audi A3’s engine, is the exception. After 120–150 thousand kilometers, the liners often turn.


  • basic style;
  • strong endurance
  • little gasoline use.


  • a lot of recycled ideas (the engine wasn’t installed until 2009, and a 2-liter turbodiesel has been progressively replacing it since 2004);
  • poor work environment: vibration and noise, particularly when an engine is cold.

Application instances

  • Audi A3 models 8L and 8P;
  • B6 and B7 Audi A4;
  • The Audi A6 C4 and C5.

2.0 TDI CR

The majority of Audi vehicles are powered by a 2-liter diesel engine. They started using the common rail injection technology in 2007.

Volkswagen engineers completely modernized the 2.0 TDI after realizing it had serious design issues with unit injectors. The most significant innovation is altering your eating habits. Along with replacing the block head and installing new camshafts, other improvements included replacing the pistons and fixing issues with the oil pump drive. As a consequence, the engine’s longevity was greatly increased, although there were drawbacks as well.

You should research the car’s history before purchasing an Audi with a 2.0 TDI engine. These were often inexpensive models bought for business or corporate garages. They have a ton of miles on them and weren’t always properly maintained.

The turbocharger and dual-mass flywheel are common places for problems to occur. Piezoelectric injectors here fail no more often than rivals. Fortunately, these can be fixed. The manufacturer replaced high-pressure lines as part of the servicing program.


  • strong performance with reasonable fuel use;
  • strong durability (particularly when compared to 2.0 TDI PD);
  • many different variants.


  • high maintenance costs due to intricate designs and pricey replacement components;
  • despite being relatively new, a large number of copies have seen extensive mileage.

Application instances

  • Audi A4 III (B8)
  • Q5 Audi (8R);
  • A6 III Audi (C6).

3.0 TDI

There are further benefits to the 3.0 TDI in addition to high performance and dynamics. Therefore, despite the somewhat expensive maintenance expenses, many people pick it with joy.

The 2.5 TDI V6 had damaged the image of Audi’s diesel V6 engines, and the 3.0 litre turbodiesel was created to restore that image. The 3.0 TDI gained admiration for both its longevity and performance. The crank mechanism, cylinder head, and block all proved to be quite sturdy. There is one piezoelectric injector and four valves for per cylinder.

The equipment is the key area of concern. They most often run into a timing drive, whose replacement is highly costly. Four chains were utilized up until 2011, then two. On the gearbox side, you may find the drive chain. You must take the engine out in order to replace it.

Not exempt from the DPF and intake manifold damper flaws (repair kits are available). Later versions of the engine have far fewer faults since the engine is always being upgraded.


  • a strong work ethic;
  • excellent performance;
  • little gasoline use;
  • Many engine components have a long service life.


  • the cost of timing, intake manifold, and DPF troubleshooting;
  • Many of the versions available have a lot of miles and poor technical quality.

Application instances

  • A5 I (8T/8F) Audi
  • The Audi Q7 I (4L);
  • A8 II Audi (D3).

Unsafe decision!

The Audi lineup includes some excellent in theory but severely underwhelming in reality engines. It is important to bring up the first-generation 1.4 TFSI with its poor timing chain drive. A timing belt-driven variant that is more dependable is now in use.

The excellent performance of the “EA888” coded 1.8 and 2.0 TFSI engines is alluring. They do, however, have excessive engine oil consumption. The electronics, camshafts, and turbine all have issues.

Within the diesel fleet, there are bad apples. For instance, the Audi A2 has a 1.4 TDI with pump injectors. The issue is the emergence of crankshaft play, which cannot be inexpensively eliminated. The 2.0 TDI PD is infamous for its faulty equipment durability and breaking head. The timing, lubrication, and power systems of the 2.5 TDI V6 are plagued by various errors.


When Audi engines were guaranteed to operate quietly, purchasing one was simpler. The version is what you need to focus on right now. Motors that were very successful as well as those whose creators ought to be embarrassed were utilized. However, even a somewhat dependable contemporary engine can cost a lot to service and maintain.


Potential issues, causes, and solutions have been identified in the above article based on the experiences of car owners and repairers, as well as web materials such as forum blogs and technical support bulletins. This data is supplied exclusively for the purpose of reference. Only appropriately qualified persons should perform repairs and/or changes on your vehicles.

While it’s important to keep in mind, it’s also important to note that the amount of times anything is mentioned here should not be seen as a sign of its reliability or frequency. Various owners, driving in different ways, and caring for their vehicles in distinct ways will cause two identical vehicles to perform differently.

As previously said, this material is supplied primarily for reference reasons; nonetheless, we hope that by doing so, we will be able to supply you with essential knowledge that will allow you to make informed decisions whenever you encounter any of the aforementioned setbacks.