5100 Quattro – 1989 Audi 100 Quattro plus bonus Audi 5000CS Turbo Quattro Avant

You can’t really talk about historically significant cars without the Audi C3 5000/100/200 coming up. Aside from being attractive cars that paved a new design direction, taking inspiration from Citroen and NSU, they also took Audi away from some of the rather frumpy designs of the previous years, particularly with the elegant Avant wagon. The flush windows, flush wheel covers, and aerodynamic design inspired many other manufacturers, most notably Ford with their Taurus. These cars were also built under license in various countries – in China as the Hongqi, primarily for government employees, in South Africa where many imported cars were built from CKD kits, and in Japan under a joint venture with the truck manufacturer Hino. They also took the 1983 European Car of the Year award, so 32 years after they were introduced (!!), let’s check out a couple of examples. First off is this 1989 Audi 100 Quattro sedan, for sale for C$2500 in Abbotsford, BC.

1989 Audi 100 Quattro right side

Sadly, many German cars of this era were grey, just like the weather there, and for some reason that trend has held through to today. However, that doesn’t take away from the excellence of this design, and with the black trim and silver BBS mesh wheels, the car looks very smart. This car has a non-turbo 2.3-liter inline 5, putting out all of 130bhp, but is fortunately equipped with a manual 5-speed transmission.

1989 Audi 100 Quattro left side

The car is said to be fully loaded, but 100% stock, and the pictures bear that impression out. The included documentation shows the original selling dealer was Atamian Motors, and a quick search shows that to be near Boston. While corrosion is rarely an issue in these, you’ll want to keep that in mind while doing your once-over. The selling second owner says the first was a lady on the island, so perhaps that is a now-defunct dealer closer to the car’s current home, although the speedometer in miles suggests this was originally a US-delivery car.

1989 Audi 100 Quattro interior

While the seller offers plenty of photos, not much detail is given on the mechanical condition, other than to say much work has been done recently, and it only needs a little TLC to be 100%. That rather vague description means you’ll have to call and go for a test drive to understand what’s on offer, but the appearance suggests it won’t be a waste of your time. With only 131,000 miles on the clock, it should have a fair amount of life left in it.

1989 Audi 100 Quattro engine

The seller is pitching this as a collector car, which might be a stretch, given there were over 800,000 Audi 100 sedans built over the model run. While this appears to be an excellent example of the type, and attrition has taken many, your collection might benefit even more from the addition of the much rarer 200 Avant, which had more powerful engines available, benefitted from the even-more-elegant Avant styling, and of which just over 6,000 were built.

1986 Audi 5000CS avant turbo left front

That said, with only over 6,000 built and their popularity as a ski/winter car, there are pretty slim pickings out there. So the next best thing is perhaps this 1986 Audi 5000CS Avant Turbo Quattro (what a mouthful) for sale for C$1000 in Maple Ridge, BC (near Vancouver). With just over 100,000 built, it’s still fairly rare, so you won’t see yourself coming and going all the time. This particular car is said to have spent 2000-2012 in storage, and the seller purchased it and performed a revival (resurrection? is there a way to say this without going all biblical?). Check out the location of the radiator next to the engine in the photo below, truly one of the oddest radiator placements in all car-dom.

1986 Audi 5000CS avant turbo engine

Since its reawakening (there it is again!), the car has benefited from many new parts, including a new clutch, some brake work, a new engine mount and timing belt/tensioner, and various fluids and other wear parts. The seller has about $1400 into the car, half in repairs and half in acquisition cost. The car still has a sagging headliner, a cracked exhaust manifold, broken sunroof cables, and a failed ABS system. The car is also said to run for 15 minutes and then die, which the seller attributes to particles in the fuel system, in spite of repeat cleaning of the fuel tank. The list of new parts does not include fuel filters or lines, so perhaps that’s a starting point. A new tank is mentioned in the listing, but it’s not clear if it’s included. Would you consider this a classic car, or is it cursed by looking too modern to have that classic-car feeling?


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2 Responses to “5100 Quattro – 1989 Audi 100 Quattro plus bonus Audi 5000CS Turbo Quattro Avant”

  1. Milo Says:

    That Avant has been been for sale for quite awhile now, probably close to 5 or 6 months. The running issue seems to be scaring people off, which given that the current owner hasn’t fixed it in that time might tell you something.

    • Chris Keen Says:

      Hmm, those all sound like great bargaining chips for someone who has the time to do some diagnostic work – maybe $500 cash would leave the seller happy that it’s out of his driveway.

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