An In-Depth Guide to Buying a Used Audi A4 (B8 Generation)

An In-Depth Guide to Buying a Used Audi A4 (B8 Generation)

In this guide, we will walk you through everything you need to know about buying a used Audi A4 from the B8 generation, built between 2008 and 2015.

We’ll tell you about its common problems to you understand what to look for, and we’ll also discuss some of the best Audi A4 B8 engines.

Read on to learn more!

Overview: Audi A4 B8 buyer’s guide

The Audi A4 B8 was a popular car when its production started in 2008. It replaced the B7 generation and brought a fresh design and improved technology.

One of the standout features of the B8 Audi A4 is its signature Audi-styled exterior, with a sleek body, sharp lines, and the iconic Audi grille.

Over its production years, the B8 Audi A4 saw several updates and refinements.

In 2012, the model received a facelift that included updated front and rear styling, enhanced interior quality, and new engine choices.

These changes not only improved the car’s performance but also its fuel efficiency and emissions, making it a more environmentally friendly option.

In addition to the sedan and Avant versions, keen drivers can check out the Allroad version, which offers even more ruggedness and practicality.

But before buying an Audi A4 B8, you should understand all the features (and common problems) of your new ride.

So, here’s a buyer’s guide overview of the Audi A4 B8:

Audi A4 B8 (2008 – 2015)
(Used) Price range$2,000 to $20,000 (excluding S4 and RS4)
Available trims (US)– Premium
– Premium Plus
– Prestige
– (+ S Line)
Sought-after options– Automatic headlights and wipers
– Xenon headlights
– Seat heating
– Parking sensors
– Bang & Olufsen stereo
Common problems– Oil consumption
– Water pump
– Transmission type
– Sunroof leaks
– Door locks
– Equipment level
– Timing chain and tensioner (gas cars)
– High-pressure fuel pump (diesel cars)
Best buy for– Families
– Businessmen
Best Audi A4 B8 for fuel economy1.4 TFSI S tronic or 2.0 TDI S tronic
Best Audi A4 B8 for practicalityAudi A4 B8 Allroad
Best Audi A4 B8 for reliability1.8 TFSI or 2.0 TDI made from 2012 to 2015
Best Audi A4 B8 for performanceThe Audi S4 or RS4
Popular accessoriesRaceChip
(- And more!)
Maintenance costs$117.15 per 1,000 miles (source)
Towing capacity1,300 to 2,100 kg / 2,866 to 4,630 lbs (source)
Alternatives– Mercedes C-Class
– BMW 3 Series
– Volvo S60
– Volkswagen Passat

What to look for when buying a used Audi A4 B8?

Let’s start with the essential information you will need when purchasing a used Audi A4 B8; what are its common problems?

Although it’s not a reason to completely neglect the Audi A4 B8, it has some things you should check before purchasing.

Here is a list of the most important ones!

1. Oil consumption

What is it?

Oil consumption on the Audi A4 B8 is frequently caused by bad piston rings. This allows oil to slip past the piston into the combustion chamber, causing it to get burned together with the fuel.

Why can it be a problem?

Some models of the Audi A4 B8 are notorious for having very high oil consumption.

The early models of the 2.0 TFSI petrol engine have a reputation for burning oil, causing them to consume up to 1 liter of oil per 1,000 km or even more.

Learn more: Is Your Audi Burning Oil Too Fast? (Here’s How To Fix It!)

How to check or avoid it?

Unfortunately, it’s almost impossible to check if an Audi A4 has high oil consumption unless you drive it for longer distances.

The best way to avoid this issue is not to buy an Audi A4 produced between 2008 and 2011 with a four-cylinder petrol engine. (Unless the piston and piston rings were replaced not too long ago, and the engine oil was renewed frequently after the repair.)

Luckily, diesel Audi A4 B8s don’t suffer from high oil consumption as much!

Is Your Audi Burning Oil Too Fast? (+ How to Fix It!)

2. Leaking water pump

What is it?

A water pump is a vital part of any car used to circulate coolant from the radiator through the engine, helping to keep the vehicle from overheating.

Why can it be a problem?

The water pump on the Audi A4 B8 has a plastic construction.

Prolonged exposure to high heat can result in small cracks that will eventually worsen and lead to coolant leaks.

How to check or avoid it?

Signs of a leaking water pump include fault codes from low coolant levels, fluid build-up around the water pump, or an overheating engine.

Leaking water pumps are most common on Audi A4 B8s produced between 2008 and 2011, so those are some years you might want to avoid.

The best way to prevent a leaking water pump is to get an Audi A4 B8 produced in 2012 or later, as Audi updated the design of the water pump to prevent premature leaks.

3. Manual or automatic transmission

What is it?

A car transmission acts as the bridge between the engine and the driven wheels. The transmission can alter and optimize the ratio of engine speed to wheel speed, much like a manual gearbox on a bike.

Why can it be a problem?

The Audi A4 B8 was available with a manual transmission and three(!) versions of automatic transmissions. Some of these were very reliable, while others had some issues.

How to check or avoid it?

Here are the four different types of transmission available on the Audi A4 B8, together with their reliability:

  • Manual transmission. Generally reliable. However, ensure there are no (resonating) vibrations when lifting the clutch and accelerating from a standstill; this could mean that the car needs a new clutch and dual-mass flywheel, which are expensive.
  • Tiptronic automatic transmission. Most reliable. Especially if you change the gearbox oil every 60,000 kilometers (37,000 miles).
  • S tronic automatic transmission. Least reliable. Has the fastest shifts but experiences common issues with the mechatronic unit or conductor, causing shuddering or hesitation.
  • Multitronic automatic transmission. A CVT gearbox that can be very reliable, especially with frequent oil changes and a calm driving style.
Audi A4 B8 automatic transmission

4. Sunroof leaks

What is it?

An Audi A4 equipped with a sunroof allows passengers to get a great view of the sky above and a chance to feel the breeze flow through their hair on sunny days.

Why can it be a problem?

Sometimes, the sunroof seals will start to leak, causing water to get into the cabin. Other times, the sunroof won’t close properly anymore. And there are no leakage problems; the sunroof can even squeak or rattle on bad roads!

How to check or avoid it?

The best way to avoid these problems is to get an Audi A4 B8 without a sunroof.

If you want a sunroof, ensure it opens and closes nicely and there are no signs of water leakage.

Also, it’s advisable to occasionally lubricate the sunroof rails to keep the seals in good shape.

Audi A4 B8 sunroof
Rubber seal protectant can help keep the sunroof in good shape

5. Faulty door locks

What is it?

The door locks on the Audi A4 B8 allow you to lock or unlock the car doors.

Why can it be a problem?

It’s not uncommon for the door locks on the Audi A4 B8 to stop working.

When that happens, you won’t be able to unlock and open the doors from the outside anymore.

How to check or avoid it?

You can check the door locks simply by checking if all doors are closed when the car is locked and if all doors are open when the car is unlocked.

If you have a broken door lock on your Audi A4 B8, it’s best to buy a (new) replacement door lock.

Audi A4 B8 white from the side

6. Equipment level

What is it?

Optional equipment on a car allows you to customize the vehicle to meet your needs and preferences better.

High-tech navigation systems, heated and cooled seats, blind spot monitoring features, parking aides, lane departure warnings, and entertainment systems are all considered optional equipment.

They’re often included with Audi’s higher trim levels, such as Premium Plus or Prestige.

Why can it be a problem?

The Audi A4 B8 has a reputation for having very little standard equipment.

That means there’s a massive difference between a poorly equipped and a well-equipped Audi A4 B8!

How to check or avoid it?

The best way to deal with this ‘issue’ is to get an A4 equipped with as many optional extras as possible.

For example, if you care about the aesthetics of your Audi A4 B8, try to find one that’s equipped with Xenon headlights; it makes a huge difference in the car’s appearance!

Because if it doesn’t have Xenon headlights, the A4 B8 will be equipped with cheap-looking halogen headlights.

Here are the most sought-after options for the Audi A4 B8:

  • Automatic headlights and wipers
  • Xenon headlights
  • Seat heating
  • Parking sensors
  • Bang & Olufsen stereo
Audi A4 B8 with Xenon headlights
Audi A4 with Xenon headlights

7. Faulty timing chain and tensioner (petrol only)

What is it?

A timing chain and tensioner help keep the crankshaft and camshaft synchronized to ensure the proper timing of the engine’s fuel-air mixture and exhaust cycle.

Why can it be a problem?

The timing chain and tensioner may wear out prematurely on Audi A4 B8s made between 2008 and 2012 with the 1.8 TFSI or 2.0 TFSI engine. With ‘prematurely,’ we mean at 150,000 kilometers or even earlier!

If the tensioner doesn’t function correctly and there is any slack in the chain, the chain can slip and disrupt the entire timing system.

And if that happens, you will likely end up with extensive damage to your engine’s components or even a wholly destroyed engine.

How to check or avoid it?

An early sign of a worn timing chain and tensioner is when you hear a loud, short rattle from a cold engine start.

The best way to avoid this issue is to get an Audi A4 B8 with the redesigned timing chain tensioner. This means getting an Audi A4 B8 from 2013 or later.

Learn more: Audi A4: 6 Engine Problems Reported By Owners In 2024

8. High-pressure fuel pump (diesel only)

What is it?

A high-pressure fuel pump ensures that the right amount of fuel is delivered to the engine at the appropriate pressure and volume. It helps the engine run efficiently, reducing emissions and boosting performance.

Why can it be a problem?

When the high-pressure fuel pump fails, tiny metal particles are thrown into the fuel system, causing the injectors to break and the fuel tank to be contaminated.

How to check or avoid it?

This issue mainly persists on the 2.0 TDI diesel engines made from 2008 to 2012, but it can also happen on the 2.7 TDI and 3.0 TDI engines.

The best way to avoid this issue is to use high-quality fuel for your Audi A4 B8.

Best Audi A4 engines and models to buy used (B8 Generation)

With various engines of the Audi A4 B8 being available, which one is right for you?

Of course, that answer is different for everyone, so here are four great options depending on whether you value:

  • Economy
  • Practicality
  • Reliability
  • Performance

The best Audi A4 B8 for economy

If you’re looking for an economic Audi A4 B8 option, then you have two great options.

Looking for a gas-powered car? In that case, the 1.4 TFSI S tronic with 150 horsepower offers smooth acceleration with top-notch fuel economy thanks to its efficient seven-speed automatic dual-clutch transmission system.

Its combined fuel economy is a staggering 58 MPG or 4.9 L/100 km!

Would you prefer a diesel? If so, you will find the 2.0 TDI S tronic with 150 horsepower even more fuel-efficient. It has a combined fuel economy of 71 MPG or 4.0 L/100 km.

The most practical Audi A4 B8

The Audi A4 B8 Allroad has been lauded as one of the most practical cars in Audi’s A4 lineup.

Its combination of the all-wheel drive system, the increased ground clearance, and the spacious cargo area make it well-suited for long drives and challenging road conditions.

Audi A4 B8 Allroad 2.0T black

The most reliable Audi A4 B8

If you’re looking not to break your wallet and get the most reliable Audi A4 B8, you should try to get one from the later production years. That is, preferably from 2013 or later.

The most reliable petrol engine for the Audi A4 B8 is the 1.8 TFSI with 170 horsepower made from 2012 to 2015.

Meanwhile, the most reliable diesel engine for the Audi A4 B8 is the 2.0 TDI, with 143 or 150 horsepower made from 2012 to 2015.

Lastly, try to get one with the Tiptronic automatic transmission and without a sunroof!

The best Audi A4 B8 for performance

If you’re looking for the most high-performance Audi A4 B8, look no further than the S4 and the RS4.

Both vehicles are powered by a turbocharged V6 engine with plenty of power.

Audi S4 B8 3.0 V6 TFSI

The Audi S4 is a perfect choice if you prefer to remain in the range of standard luxury while seeking increased power and more luxury for your drive.

Meanwhile, the RS4 is perfect if you want your vehicle to stand out from the crowd, fueling wild dreams and pushing those horizons even further with top-class performance levels!

What are the pros and cons of getting an Audi A4?

The Audi A4 is a vehicle every car enthusiast should consider – it has several great features that make it stand out from other cars in its class.

But on the other hand, it also has some downsides.

Audi A4 grey S Line

So, is it the right choice for you?

To help you find out, here are 11 pros and cons of the Audi A4:

  • Pros
    1. Great balance between being compact and practical.
    2. It’s comfortable to drive.
    3. High-quality interior.
    4. Quattro all-wheel drive.
    5. Safety features.
    6. Available as a sedan or estate.
    7. German engineering.
  • Cons
    1. Lower resale value.
    2. High price tag.
    3. High maintenance costs.
    4. Not as inspiring to drive as its competitors.

Click here to read our article covering these pros and cons extensively!

FAQs about the Audi A4 B8

Check out these FAQs below if you have any more doubts about the Audi A4 B8!

Can the Audi A4 B8 tow a caravan?

Most, but not all, Audi A4 B8s can tow a caravan. The towing capacity of an Audi A4 B8 lies between 1,300 and 2,100 kg (2,866 – 4,630 lbs), depending on the variant. Meanwhile, caravans weigh between 1,100 and 2,400 kg (2,425- 5,291 lbs).

Is the Audi A4 B8 expensive to maintain?

From our research, the maintenance costs of an Audi A4 are roughly $117.15 per 1,000 miles (or $78.10 per 1,000 kilometers). For someone driving 20,000 miles annually, this equals a yearly maintenance cost of $2,343.

What is an Audi A4 Allroad?

The Audi A4 Allroad is a raised wagon version of Audi’s popular A4 sedan. It combines the practicality and ruggedness of an SUV with the smooth ride and handling of a wagon.

What is the difference between the Audi A4 S Line and the Audi S4?

The main difference between the Audi A4 S Line and the S4 is that the S4 is equipped with a more powerful engine.

How long can an Audi A4 B8 last?

From listings on AutoTrader, you can see that an Audi A4 B8 can last at least 200,000 miles or 320,000 kilometers with proper maintenance.


In conclusion, the Audi A4 B8 is a great car, but there are some things you should check before buying one.

The most common issues are high oil consumption, a leaking water pump, and faulty door locks. Check for sunroof leaks and equipment levels too.

For gas-powered cars, beware of the faulty timing chain and tensioner. Lastly, for diesel cars, be cautious of the high-pressure fuel pump issue.

If you’re still interested in getting an Audi A4 B8, check out these seven tips for your Audi A4. We bet you never knew some of these features existed!

Have a great rest of your day!

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *