Junkyard Find: 2002 Audi A4 1.8T Wagon

Murilee Martin
by Murilee Martin
junkyard find 2002 audi a4 1 8t wagon
Here in Denver 15 or so years ago, the Subaru Legacy Outback wagon was king among car shoppers looking for a vehicle suited for their dog-owning, ski-slope-visiting, REI-shopping lifestyles (that is, most of the population). But what about those who wanted an all-wheel-drive wagon that was a bit less… stolid?While you could get the Outback with a manual transmission or a six-cylinder engine (sorry, one or the other) back then, only the most rabid Subaru fanatics would describe the driving experience of the Outback as fun. That’s where the second-generation Audi A4 wagon came in, and they sold very well here. Here’s one that looked to be in pretty good condition when it got rear-ended, spotted in a yard just south of town.
I see plenty of these cars in the local auto graveyards, but most of them have automatics and so I walk right by. This one has the proper five-speed manual.
I own a 2004 Outback with a five-speed, and the driving experience (not to mention the industrial-grade interior) is about as exciting as that of the Mitsubishi Fuso I once drove for a tropical-fish distributor. This car, with the 170-horsepower turbocharged 1.8 engine, had just five horses over the naturally-aspirated H4 Outback and weighed about the same, but the extra five or so grand on the price tag got you a less truck-ish experience and more high-zoot interior stuff.
The annual cost of ownership of a second-gen A4 increased by several thousand bucks each year after about age five, what with the devilishly complex electronics and leading-edge engineering, so you had to be deeply in love with your car to keep one running into its 16th year.
That’s why the damage from an obvious rear-ender is so depressing here. I blame the smartphone for this.
Some local Audi devotees will score some of the good mechanical and interior bits out of this car, and then it will return to the scrap ecosystem.
The wind howls… because it can’t keep up.
If you want to see every junkyard Audi I have documented prior to today’s Junkyard Find, go here.
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2 of 24 comments
  • Cimarron typeR Cimarron typeR on Jul 02, 2018

    Funny to see this vehicle in Denver jy,as my brother in Denver just bought an 02 ultrasport wagon MT(I think the Ultrasports got a 6mt, not sure) with just under 190k. He sold his daily driven Ur- S6 to someone who flew up from Dallas .He was too afraid of it getting hit with current traffic in metro and replacement body parts are scarce . At that level his vw/audi mechanic said it needed a clutch,diverter valve. His reasoning for the purchase was that it was more solidly built than available hot hatches , and more tossable than current A3, just not a lot of low end torque, even with reflash(previous owner had it done). Not bad for 3k purchase price. I think that these wagons long term may have some value to DTM guys, I always smile when I see e46 wagons,etc., and people keep them in pretty good shape as compared to e46 325 sedans.

  • Chris724 Chris724 on Jul 02, 2018

    I'm still driving my '02 A4. Same color as this one, but a sedan with an automatic. The A/C still works great!

  • Abqhudson Passenger seating in recent accords has been unacceptable with my 5’2” wife forced to look at the dash while sitting in the hole provided.
  • ToolGuy Real Subarus are green and coated with dust from at least three different National Parks (Gateway Arch doesn't count).
  • ToolGuy Good for them.(And their customers. $2500 first-year subscription on top of the system cost? That ain't me)
  • ToolGuy T E L L U R I D E is not on this list(I can keep my poster on the wall)
  • ToolGuy My impression is that Honda has been coasting on its reputation for awhile now.(To Honda's credit, they aren't standing on the Self Destruct button like Toyota seems to be)