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At $14,000, Is This 2001 Audi S4 Avant an Adventurous Buy?

Nice Price or No Dice 2001 Audi S4 Avant Quattro
Nice Price or No Dice 2001 Audi S4 Avant Quattro

Today’s Nice Price or No Dice Audi S4 Avant is not just a rare sport wagon, it represents one of the best of that breed. Let’s see if this seemingly well-maintained example can still bring the heat.

El Dorado was a mythical city of gold, obsessively sought after by European explorers, most notably, the gold-hungry Spanish and Portuguese Conquistadors. The 1983 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz we looked at yesterday wasn’t the gold standard, but it was in pretty nice shape. At $22,000, though, that apparently wasn’t enough of a draw, as the car went down in an overwhelming 70 percent No Dice loss.

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Speaking of gold standards, what car do you think best represents that title when it comes to compact sport wagons? I know that’s getting pretty specific with the selection criteria, but then it kind of needs to be since the description could cover any number of wagons that, it could be argued, aren’t all that sporty.

Photo:  Craigslist
Photo: Craigslist

I’ll save us all the trouble of that argument by nominating the Audi S4 Avant as the singular benchmark by which all other sport wagons can be measured. Do you agree? Let’s have a look at this 2001 Audi S4 Avant Quattro and see if it meets our standards.

According to the seller, this is one of 22 U.S. S4 Avants to have been coated in Pearl White paint in the 2001 model year. I don’t know if that makes it appreciably rare or just rare because it was a less desirable color choice at the time, but there you go.

A two-owner car, it certainly seems to have been loved since it left the factory. That’s obvious in the car’s 177,000-mile road life and the massive fan of service and maintenance records presented in the ad in support of its care and feeding.

Photo:  Craigslist
Photo: Craigslist

The ad gives us a rundown of some fairly major maintenance and wear and tear replacements that have gone into the car over the course of just the last five years. Those include all the notable bugaboos on the 250-horsepower twin-turbo V6 — things like the timing belt and tensioners, water pump, etc. There are also new synchros in the six-speed gearbox and a fresh clutch to ensure they get proper exercise. A ton of other parts — Bilstein struts, wheel bearings, starter and brakes, and more — are also documented.

Photo:  Craigslist
Photo: Craigslist

That’s all wrapped in a car that, aesthetically, shows all those miles in its Pearl White paint. There are a number of scrapes and paint pops that mar the overall presentation, although none of those seem to be more than skin deep. It all could be addressed by a top-notch body shop but these pearlescent paint jobs are nigh-on impossible to blend successfully.

Photo:  Craigslist
Photo: Craigslist