Temecula Auto Repair and Radiator / used Audi
  used Audi

I'm thinking about buying a used Audi but I've heard they require a great deal of maintenance which can be quite spendy. Can a mechanic check the car before I buy and identify potential future problems
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2010-11-19 19:21
I could go into a lengthy speech about European vs Asian vs Domestic vehicle maintenance costs, but since I service ALL different vehicles I sure don't want to draw comparisons that might inflame some diehard brand-loyal customers! Besides, the truth of the matter is that all breeds are becoming much more complicated and costly to service, so it'd be hard to find much separation between them anymore. I think the real beauty of your question is the second half where you ask if it can be checked before you buy and the answer is a loud, hearty, resounding YES! The very best bang-for-the-buck that can be had is in having a "Pre-Purchase Inspection" done on any used vehicle BEFORE you commit to buying it. As soon as I write this I know that used-car salesmen the world over will assume I'm accusing them of fraud, but that isn't my intention at all. The truth of the business is that most of them really don't know much about what they're selling. They get a car that comes to them as a trade-in, and they sell it. Simple as that. If something bad was concealed when they got it, it's probably still concealed when you get it. How to avoid disaster? Get it checked first! We recently inspected three different cars for one of our regular customers just to find one good one to buy. Yes that cost them a few bucks, but it saved them a small fortune in avoided repairs! I hope this helps Kathy. If you like the Audi, have a reputable shop in your area inspect it thoroughly and then buy the darned thing if it checks out. The real cost of ownership is then up to you after that... get it checked by a certified technician 2-3 times per year and have all the regular maintenance done on schedule. Those steps are your best assurance against trouble down the road.
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Basics of California Smog Check Program

What is a Directed Vehicle? In order to comply with state law, the California Department of Consumer Affairs along with the Bureau of Automotive Repair (DCA/BAR) directs a portion of the vehicles registered in Enhanced Smog Check Areas of California to Test-Only and Gold Shield stations. These vehicles are called Directed Vehicles. Enhanced Areas are those parts of the state with "serious" ozone pollution problems.

What is a Test-Only?
 Test-Only facilities are licensed Smog Check stations that, by law, are only allowed to test cars; they cannot repair or service them. Any needed repairs must be performed elsewhere at either a Smog Check station designated as a Test-Repair or Gold Shield station.  Because of this unbiased status, test only stations are certified to smog all vehicles in Califronia.

What is a Gold Shield station? A Gold Shield station has met certain performance criteria and is now authorized to inspect Directed Vehicles. Gold Shield stations can perform State-Subsidized repairs under the Consumer Assistance Program (CAP). So basically Gold Shield stations perform the same test inspections as a Test Only station but, if your vehicle fails at their shop, they can charge for repairs.  If the state of California finds that a Gold Shield station is doing anything illegal or dishonest, there directed vehicle status will be pulled indefinetely. 

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