2004 Audi allroad 2.7T - SOLD
     
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In fact, even after purchasing a new Cadillac CTS sport wagon with more power and rock star looks, I preferred to drive the allroad instead—even with 130,000 miles, the Audi simply drove better.

What you are looking at in this 2004 Audi allroad is perhaps the single most effective winter driving vehicle ever conceived by the mind of man. Audi’s Quattro all-wheel-drive system is legendary, and when combined with a sophisticated traction and stability control system, ABS brakes, a suspension that can raise itself higher than a Jeep Grand Cherokee, and the right tires, there’s virtually no act of God that can stop the allroad. It’s also a superlative high-speed cruiser (it’s German, after all) and the twin-turbocharged 2.7 liter DOHC V6 was named one of the best engines in the world by the Society of Automotive Engineers. It’s a car with no vices that remains eminently practical and stylish under all circumstances.

I’ll be honest with you: this allroad (and yes, the small “a” is correct) is my personal car. I bought it in 2006 when it was just off a two-year lease to a lady owner. It had under 25,000 miles on it at the time, and for the next decade, it was my daily driver. Summer, winter, whatever, the allroad was always my vehicle of choice. In fact, even after purchasing a new Cadillac CTS sport wagon with more power and rock star looks, I preferred to drive the allroad instead—even with 130,000 miles, the Audi simply drove better. It has been bulletproof reliable the entire time I’ve owned it, needing only fluid changes, a routine belt change, and a pair of air springs up front, all of which are par for the course with allroad ownership (more on the engine in a moment). And at this point, you may very well ask why I’m selling it if I love it so much. Well, we just bought a Suburban that also doubles as our company tow vehicle, and it just doesn’t make sense to have three 4-wheel-drive vehicles for two drivers and since I’m still paying for the Cadillac and the Suburban, the allroad needs to go. Believe me, I often have second thoughts and the only request I have for the new owner is that I never see it again, because it’ll be like seeing an old girlfriend that you never quite got over. I don’t want that.

Cosmetically, the quality of Audi’s workmanship shows through. The Burgundy Pearl paint still looks great. Not perfect, of course, but for being 13 years old, it’s pretty darned nice. Audi galvanized the bodies on their cars to protect against rust and it works—this car is almost entirely rust free save for a small spot at the bottom of the driver’s door that would be easy to fix. Everything else is in great shape, including the fender flares (which are actually painted, not molded in-color) and all the aluminum trim such as the door “blades” and roof rack. You’ll also note that the roof is painted the same gray as the bumpers. This is a great-looking car, particularly from the rear ¾ view. Unfortunately, I’ve usually been driving it instead of admiring it from behind, but there’s no question that they nailed the look.

The interior is two-tone Sabre Black and Platinum leather, which is Audi-speak for dark and light gray. I was always careful to climb in and out without putting excess wear on the outer seat bolster, and while there’s a little scuffing there, it’s quite good. The rest is fantastic and everything works, including cold A/C, all the power windows, the sunroof, and all the gauges. On hot days the LED display fades out a bit, which is typical, but it’s no big deal and the Bose AM/FM/XM/CD stereo sounds fantastic. It’s still nearly silent inside at highway speeds and this car has the Winter Sport package, which includes heated front AND REAR seats, and they all work, too. Your friends will appreciate it, I’m sure. The leather-wrapped wheel has controls for the stereo and the 5-speed TipTronic automatic transmission snaps over into the manual mode with a flick of the wrist. It’s not the most quick-witted automatic transmission, but you’ll learn to drive with its quirks just fine. The cargo bay is positively huge and yes, it does have both the sliding cargo cover and the retractable dog net—too cool. Both rear windows and the big hatch window feature roll up sun shades built right in, and they do make a difference on hot days. In fact, it’s full of thoughtful little details: side mirrors that automatically tilt down when you put it in Reverse, pop-out storage slots in the doors, a sun visor above the rear-view mirror, A/C vents for the backseat passengers, map lights front and rear, a pass-through for skis, and even washers for the headlights. There’s simply not bad seat in the house with the allroad.

Mechanically, the car has been bulletproof reliable. Forget what they say about expensive German cars and their maintenance costs, this car needs gas and oil (always Mobil 1) and it’s good to go. But that said, it’s important to note that this car does have a brand-new engine complements of State Farm. See, four years ago, we drove it to a large car event that was pummeled by a massive rain storm—overnight, nearly 18 inches of rain fell. It was coming down so hard that when we went to start it in the morning, the drain in the air filter housing could not clear the water fast enough and the engine ingested water, which destroyed it. Now it’s important to note that the car WAS NOT UNDERWATER and was not totaled, it just swallowed water. The good news is that my insurance company bought us a new engine, installed, and while the car shows about 148,000 miles, the engine is only about 15,000 miles old. It’s fresh and ready to go and feels exactly the same as it did when I first bought it in 2006. That also means you have about 60,000 miles to go before you even have to start thinking about a timing belt replacement, which I recommend that you do before the 100,000-mile interval Audi recommends (the factory later revised their service interval to 75,000 miles). Anyway, the car has a new engine and it drives great.

The real miracle of the allroad is the drivetrain, and it’ll never steer you wrong. Quattro is incredible and even if you’ve driven all-wheel-drive cars before, never like this. I now have a Cadillac CTS sport wagon with AWD, but it pales in comparison to the Quattro system. Where the Cadillac only reacts to slippage by bringing the front wheels online, the Audi feels as though it’s constantly searching for MORE traction, all the time. In the winter, there is no weather that can stop you from getting where you need to go, especially if you use the snow tires that are included with the car (mounted on the original 17-inch allroad wheels). I recall one blustery morning on my way to work when I was at a red light next to a large SUV. I could see that he wanted to get in front of me and knew he would gun it when the light turned green. He did… and I did, and the allroad just WALKED AWAY from his big, macho truck with giant tires. I bent it onto the on ramp a bit faster than I should have and watched the traction control handle it. Behind me, the SUV started to spin and ended up facing down the ramp. Quattro, baby. Quattro.

The allroad is also assisted by an adjustable air suspension which can raise it enough to provide more than 9 inches of ground clearance. The system is fully operational thanks to two new air springs up front. They’re Arnott springs, which means they’re better than stock and come with a lifetime guarantee. It’s not like a hydraulic lowrider, so the rise and drop is slow, but you will definitely appreciate the added ground clearance when the going gets tough. We also just put a fresh set of rotors and pads on all four corners about two years ago and it sits on a set of Audi RS6 replica alloy wheels and 245/45/18 Goodyear tires with about 10,000 miles on them. And as I mentioned, the original 17-inch wheels are included and carry a set of 225/50/17 Continental snow tires with plenty of life left in them.

The car also includes all the receipts for maintenance on this car since I bought it, as well as all the tools, space-saver spare, air compressor, and all the books and manuals.

I love this car. It’s the best car I’ve ever owned. I have mixed feelings about selling it. It’s always a joy to drive and has never given me a moment of trouble beyond a few things that really weren’t the car’s fault. Next winter when there’s a storm, I’m going to miss it—a lot—while you will look forward to the end of the world so you can go out and have some fun with this car. For the money, you’ll never own a better combination of speed, luxury, practicality, and competence. You, too, will come to love the allroad.

Vehicle: 2004 Audi allroad 2.7T
Price: SOLD
Stock Number: 114053
Mileage: 148,904
VIN: WA1YD64B94N084666
Engine: 2.7 liter twin-turbo V6
Transmission: 5-speed automatic
Gear Ratio: 4.1100000000000003
Wheelbase: 108.5 inches
Wheels: 18x8 RS6 Replica
Tires: 245/40/18 Goodyear
Exterior Color: Burgundy Red Pearl
Interior Color: Platinum & Sabre Black leather
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