Junkyard Find: 1994 Audi 100 Station Wagon

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin

We examined part of the endgame of the Audi 5000 debacle in the United States with a junked 1990 Audi 100 Quattro sedan in Denver. Having banished the toxic Audi 5000 name, Audi called these cars Audi 100s until everyone was thoroughly confused, then renamed it the A6, which they still use today.

Here’s a sort of unusual example I saw at a Denver yard a month ago: the final year of the Audi 100 name in the United States, and it’s a wagon.

234,126 miles! Pretty impressive, I’d say.

We can assume that approximately 228,000 of those miles were clocked by a meticulous first owner, who took care of every single maintenance item as it became due and fixed small problems as they arose. Then the person who applied this tasteful decal took ownership, and within a year the car was here.

Delmarva Public Radio is in Maryland, as are the breweries and coffee shop represented by these stickers, so we might guess that the car’s final owner bought it in Maryland and then moved to Denver (where cannabis is legal and so cheap that you can find it in junked Suzuki Swifts).

From there, it didn’t take long before something on the Audi broke that cost more to fix than a few boxes of Snoop Dogg’s Peanut Butter Gems, and that was that.

The prices you get for scrap cars have crashed (down to $20-$50 a ton in most parts of the United States), and so the next stop was my local self-serve wrecking yard, which will sell few parts from this oddball machine.

Vorsprung durch Technik!







Murilee Martin
Murilee Martin

Murilee Martin is the pen name of Phil Greden, a writer who has lived in Minnesota, California, Georgia and (now) Colorado. He has toiled at copywriting, technical writing, junkmail writing, fiction writing and now automotive writing. He has owned many terrible vehicles and some good ones. He spends a great deal of time in self-service junkyards. These days, he writes for publications including Autoweek, Autoblog, Hagerty, The Truth About Cars and Capital One.

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  • Never_follow Never_follow on Jan 13, 2016

    Sad end to a nice wagon, even if it's got pretty basic specs. Rear facing third rows always make me smile, and the bench and hardware are actually still worth a chunk of change to the right buyer. I'm really curious as to how they killed a 2.late though. There's nothing too fragile on that thing other than electronics, and in such a basic model, not too much to go wrong.

  • NomNomChomsky NomNomChomsky on Jan 14, 2016

    I owned one of these. The platform is actually fairly reliable, particularly by the standards of that era VW product. If you DIY you can keep one running for small dollars. Keeping them perfect will cost you a mint. The drive train and body are solid. Electrics are a bit more iffy, about par for the era. Climate control is reliable but complex, so all fixes are expensive and/or annoying. I liked the styling and Quattro enough to hunt down an S6 Wagon. Drove it for five years. Built the engine. Now it's for sale. These are really great cars, just not cheap to keep. The stuff that breaks generally won't leave you stranded.

  • MaintenanceCosts "But your author does wonder what the maintenance routine is going to be like on an Italian-German supercar that plays host to a high-revving engine, battery pack, and several electric motors."Probably not much different from the maintenance routine of any other Italian-German supercar with a high-revving engine.
  • 28-Cars-Later "The unions" need to not be the UAW and maybe there's a shot. Maybe.
  • 2manyvettes I had a Cougar of similar vintage that I bought from my late mother in law. It did not suffer the issues mentioned in this article, but being a Minnesota car it did have some weird issues, like a rusted brake line.(!) I do not remember the mileage of the vehicle, but it left my driveway when the transmission started making unwelcome noises. I traded it for a much newer Ford Fusion that served my daughter well until she finished college.
  • TheEndlessEnigma Couple of questions: 1) who will be the service partner for these when Rivian goes Tits Up? 2) What happens with software/operating system support when Rivia goes Tits Up? 3) What happens to the lease when Rivian goes Tits up?
  • Richard I loved these cars, I was blessed to own three. My first a red beauty 86. My second was an 87, 2+2, with digital everything. My third an 87, it had been ridden pretty hard when I got it but it served me well for several years. The first two I loved so much. Unfortunately they had fuel injection issue causing them to basically burst into flames. My son was with me at 10 years old when first one went up. I'm holding no grudges. Nissan gave me 1600$ for first one after jumping thru hoops for 3 years. I didn't bother trying with the second. Just wondering if anyone else had similar experience. I still love those cars.
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