Are Audis Good Cars?

Isabel Armiento
Nov 28, 2021 · 3 min read
While Audi is known for its cutting-edge innovation, luxurious designs, and high-quality construction, the automaker is less prestigious when it comes to reliability. Recently Audi’s reputation has suffered due to quality control issues—not to mention the Volkswagen “diesel gate” scandal, in which VW (which owns Audi) was caught reporting false diesel emissions information.
So, are Audis good cars? More importantly, should you buy one? It all depends on who you ask, what you value in a car, and which model, make, and year you’re talking about.    
An Audi S4

Why are Audis good cars?

Different car enthusiasts have different opinions on whether or not Audis are “good” cars. Some love the brand, while others criticize its reliability. A major issue is the cost and frequency of Audi repairs: these vehicles are known for being high-maintenance, and the cost of upkeep alone will be enough to keep some drivers away. 
Nevertheless, Audi has a lot going for it. One upside is the brand’s reputation for powerful and fuel-efficient engines. These engines can surpass 200,000 miles without much maintenance on the part of the car-owner. According to Rusty Autos, the best gas engines on offer include the V6, V8, and V10.
Rusty Autos adds that the “diesel gate” scandal that destroyed Audis reputation only affected certain models and years, arguing that anything made after 2016 is fine. 
If you want to buy an Audi, consider choosing one with a TDI diesel engine, which requires little maintenance and offers high performance. Also, do your due diligence and research which makes, models, and years are most reliable before buying.

Why Audis are bad cars

That being said, many consumers will still avoid Audis due to the brand’s reliability issues. For example, a recent J.D. Power dependability study placed Audi below the industry average in terms of reliability, a first for the automaker. 
Consumer Reports agrees with this assessment, advising car-buyers to steer clear of Audi A4s and Q7s, which have low reliability ratings. Aside from these two models, however, CR reports that Audis on the whole are “about mid pack in terms of reliability.” 
Plus, CR praises Audi for its “technology and style,” “performance,” and “well-crafted interiors,” adding that “nearly every model is a solid performer with a high-grade interior.” 
At this point, most of Audis reliability gaffes are in the past. Over the automaker’s history, it has announced plenty of recalls due to a host of issues: busted cylinders, oil leakage, electronic problems. Consumers looking for a used car are urged to cross any Audis made from 2008-2012 off their list. 
According to Hot Cars, Audi’s past failings still haunt the company today, despite the vehicles’ top performance, luxurious interiors, and high-quality design. In 2019, UK vehicle warranty provider Warrantywise ranked Audi the 28th most reliable of 36 car brands, based on its “dependability rating” system. 
Similarly, in 2019, the UK Reliability Index ranked Audi 34th out of 40 brands. The automaker was given a score of 195, with the average score being 100—but scoring high isn’t a good thing, as the metric rates the cost and frequency of repairs predicted for the vehicle.  

The verdict: Are Audis good cars? 

So, are Audis good cars? Ultimately, it’s up to the car-buyer to decide what kind of car is right for them. Audis have a lot to offer, but if reliability is your top concern, maybe opt for a different brand. 

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