SIX6SIX - Intro Thread/Saga of S6 V10 Ownership

Soooo… where to begin…

(I don’t quite know how to embed pictures yet, but I’ll come back and update/edit)

I bought a 2008 S6 with full Audi dealer service records from a used car dealership As-Is with under 60k miles, unitronic tune, bilstein sport suspension… And I think that’s the gist of what had been done to it. $21-22k+tax etc… traded in my 08 A4 with like 116k miles and like $5k in the red when all said and done… The goal at that point was to get one of the last V10 engine sedans from Audi that’ll probably ever be released. The car ran/runs flawlessly though, so I didn’t think it’d be much more than maybe a couple leaks to cover. Great. Low miles. Great. I expected to have to sink $5k into it on random stuff just off reading through the forums for the few days between me trying to decide between the S6 and this 09 S8 that was at a dealership near this one.

Cool, so I got the car, great… paper tags… not so great… bought in different state than where I live… but it’s cool. Took to inspection, but the car had dark tints on it so I figured I’d get a pass with the stipulation of tint removal. Nope, CV boot on driver’s side need to be replaced and front pads/rotors replaced… but that’s not all, there was also of course… oil leaks… soooo off the to shop I went lol… first I had to get a duplicate key made though so I went to the local Audi dealership. When I’m there, the service guy is like “Ohhhh, that’s <insert previous owner’s name>'s old car… He put like $8k into it over the time he owned it…” the guy says lol… I say, “oh really, great!”… guy prints out the stack of service records from just the previous owner (i think I’m #3 on this car)… blah blah blah… i get the key later and off to the shop I go…

At the shop, I tell em to just go through the entire car and fix everything that can be fixed or replaced… Car goes up on the lift. I’d go through the entire list of what had to be replaced, but long story short it was a shit load of gaskets (requiring an engine and transmission drop/tear down), the front brakes/rotors, rear pads, and the advanced key system wasn’t working. Bill, slightly over $5k (thanks to a cool ass shop owner that has empathy lol), plus intake spacer kit from JHM, and other random stuff like Abt center caps for the S6 wheels… Car was out of my hands for the following 3+ weeks lol… towards the end I had to get an extra set of bolts for the intake spacer kit and the guys at JHM were spot on with getting those sent to me overnight so i could get them to the shop. There was an Audi event that I foolishly prepaid for, thinking my car would be done long in advance… nope… it was done, right on time lol… 2 days before I had to leave to go to an event at VIR, leaving 1 day for testing. I got it back Thursday I think. I got a check engine light after like 90-100 miles of driving lol… so back to the shop it went Friday morning before I was set to leave for the event.

Vacuum leak, and some code about an error in motor 2 in the intake manifold… They look through it and figure it’s just a small vacuum leak since the car is running perfectly otherwise… cleared codes, did more checks… nothing… I drive off into the sunset (not literally since it was too early in the day)… about 30 miles later, the same codes come up… so whatever, figure they’ll just go through the entire engine again and check all the hoses when I get back… .that was the plan anyway since they warranty their work (like all shops I guess)… So I head down to VIR… probably the best road trip i’ve ever taken and the longest I’ve ever driven by myself in single sittings… so comfortable and fast… so hard to stay within reasonable speed limit range, but i managed it…

Arrive at tech/registration for the PCC ACNA event and everything checks out great. get my stickers (car #999) <get it…? “NEIN! NEIN! NEIN!!!”… aka German Dikembe Mutombo lol>… but yeah, off to hotel… so many lovely cars there… porsche cup cars, so many audis, and a bunch of BMW M-cars… Off to bed…

Next day bright and early, registration, helmet pickup (ended up buying one by the end of the weekend), driver’s meeting, classroom time, etc… met my instructor… fkn amazing driver/teacher… J. Hoover PDAutowerks… First laps out I was timid since it was literally my first time driving on a race track… No big deal… he shows me the racing lines, braking zones, etc slow speed… I sped up as we went on in the first session but not much… after that he took me out in their A4 TTU car… Annnnd that was a life changing experience for me… Seemed like just about every other car out on the track at the time except for the Porsche cup cars, were holding him up as we went around the track… it was amaaazing lol… but anyway, i learned the proper lines and braking pressures, etc from those 3-4 laps riding…

Second session driving… I was wayyyy faster since I now had a good idea of what lines, braking, etc to replicate and more importantly because he was walking me through every step of the track with proper hand signals to relay brake and throttle pressures as we went, reiterating where I need to be looking as we go, safety of course, and pushing me to improve my times each lap we went along… So it seems that I may had impressed him a bit… but in the next sessions I hear that I gave him a scare here and there with how much we were on the edge and how fast we had picked up speed from session to session… pretty much by the end of the day i was passing hellcats and e46s with mediocre drivers like me… could smell their brakes burning as they tried furiously to keep from letting me pass… but alas, they could not keep us back forever lol… I can’t wait to figure out how to embed images so you guys can get the gist, as they had professional photographers there. I also took a bunch of pics of course since it was my first time with the car really since the few days after I’d bought it, and
because there were so many amazing cars there.

Second day, more of the same… it was wonderful to hear the tires squealing on their very limit as we carved the corners at well over 100 up through turns I think 6-8 and slightly under around turn 9. Again, more hellcat, M3, etc passing… the glorious aroma of the brakes heating up on the cars ahead trying to keep us at bay lol… now I understand why this car is so well appreciated by the owners, yet so loathed for the growing pains it forces you endure lol…

Anyway, the second session of the day, I go incredibly fast… and the instructor begins timing my lap… Unfortunately, he timed the 4th lap, and they cut us short with checkered flags down the back straight where we had previously gone 120-140 consistently each session as well as extremely fast around the last 4-5 turns. Sooo, I’m hooked on track driving now, but I don’t have a track car yet, so I was going to buy one… buuut wait… the S6 saga isn’t into stability quite yet…

I drive back home… everything completely fine except for the same CEL from when I left (thinking it’s a simple vacuum leak)… Runs flawlessly back just like it did there… all said and done, I had done just under 1000 miles from the time I picked up the car from the shop to the time I got back home. Planned to drop car off Tuesday morning to be checked over inside/out… again, running flawlessly the entire time except for rough cold starts… soooo the shop owner drops me off in a vehicle their testing before returning it to the customer.

Also, the Audi Exclusive carbon fiber lower rear diffuser shows at the office (YESSSS!!! SCORRRE!!!)… unfortunately it’s been fuckin impossible to find the carbon fiber trunk trim piece to match it. No dealership anywhere seems to have it I guess since it was so rare in the first place… maybe someday someone will find one in a back closet or lost in some german brothel… one can dream… anyway, I also ordered a piano black dash, pedal set, and extra springs all around from an RS6 off ebay. Waiting for the seller to enter the shipping cost so I can complete the trans. Anyway, then I get a text from the shop owner saying to Facetime his phone lol… I don’t like Apple, soo I called him and told him to send me a video. I’d post the video but I gotta upload it first… long story short… there’s plastic shit broken in the fuckin intake manifold and I got lucky that this was caught just in time and without any damage, etc… lol… sooo there’s a silver lining… I just need a new intake manifold I’m thinking… No big deal… Call around… Nobody has one… Then I get to JHM (the people I called first, but they’re so busy I just left a voice message). Send an email and Dru (thanks to you and all of the V10 guys at JHM, other guys, etc) responds confirming what I had been hoping was impossible… The part is on backorder from Audi direct and we have to wait at least 4 weeks until they come out with the redeveloped part… bright side is, this will probably fix the issue as I’m sure Audi will test and retest the fuck out of this new intake manifold before we get it. it just also means I’ll probably be without my S6 for at least 4 weeks lol… I paid for overnight shipping too lol… Maybe I’ll leave that so it can go right back out the door whenever it shows up lol… The exhaust, I was going to order it, and probably still will, but today’s events have just soured things a bit as I was just looking for a track car to buy/have built since i need to learn how to drive manual anyway (yes, I said it… I never learned how to drive manual lol)

Also, Special thanks to everyone at NGP as they also helped me out a lot throughout the weekend. Also won a charity auction that included an APR gift certificate. I asked them if I could trade it in for a JHM tune and they were like “nah” because the certificate came from APR… sad face… ah well, I guess I’ll just do the APR tune first (whenever I get my car back lol) and then get the JHM tune not long after and use it for comparison/review… Based on what everyone says here, JHM is the only way to go… but yeah, first, must get the car back lol… day by day… time will tell…

oooof! Even with issues you had a roadtrip to a trackday event and an uneventful ride back! Awesome! Serious bummer the intake flappers failing wasn’t caught while you had it off previously.

In any event, sounds like you’re on the home stretch! Look forward to pics and vids!

Okay, I still don’t know how to embed pics but here’s another attempt lol

There are from VIR… Apparently the CEL I was experiencing was due to a leak in the intake spacer kit I got from JHM. I doubt it was them but I took pics, will call them, and probably send back for them to check just in case. Bright side, after they came off, the CEL was gone and now inspection is done. Just waiting for intake manifold, but car runs fine in the interim. knock on wood


(no edit privileges yet lol)

And here’s a vid with the Audi Exclusive carbon fiber rear diffuser. Can’t find that carbon fiber strip. It seems it may be impossible. Ah well.

Need to call JHM to pay for the exhaust also…

wow - for as heavy as this car is, it corners pretty flat! Well done - you’re going to have a very very nice example of an S6 when it’s complete!

More pics…

…and more pics

Instructor’s car:

Thanks man. Let’s just pray that we can all keep the maintenance demons away lol

Great story. Where does your car (S6) sit in relation with the others that are there. In the picture looks like a VW Bora at the back?

Definitely faster around track than most of the other normal street cars, except for the Porsche products that were out there… faster than M3s, etc around track or at least faster than the one that was in my group.

Can you provide me with some more details regarding the intake spacers? This sounds like it may not have been torqued down all of the way or there was an issue with a gasket. There is no way for a spacer to cause a leak unless there is a straight up hole on it, which would be extremely obvious and highly unlikely.

Yeah pretty solid it was a gasket issue as it was a leak at the far end. Can see if I can get you and the shop owner on the phone if you want to hear his analysis (i should’ve just recorded video). I have pics on my phone, but need to add them to here… let me see if i can do that now…

The car looked really sure footed on the track. The exhaust will really make a big difference. You know my vote sell off that charity APR tune and help pay for the exhaust and the JHM tune. The combination of the JHM tune and catback makes a huge difference.

As for the intake spacers it had to install error. Like jake said if there is a leak its from the intake not being tq down all the way. you need to go back and re tq the intake manifold after the first warm up cycle and then again after the 5th warm up and run cycle.

Something looks off with the gasket in your picture. maybe it is backwards. You can fit the driver side gasket in the passenger side but if you do so it wont match up correctly and I believe will place the lifted section in the wrong spot.

most phenolic spacers I’ve used were just machined delrin or similar - can’t see this one being any different. If the mating surfaces are flat and the whole assembly doesn’t warp when torqued down, there’s really not much that can go wrong… I’m leaning towards a gasket problem as well.

Well said. The idea of the phenolic material is that it actually molds to heads and intake manifold. My spacers on my s4 have witness marks on them from how they molded to the heads and intake. So the entire point is that they almost always seal up good

Yeah think that they were just held incorrect for the picture, but installed correctly, so probably just a gasket failure/defect that allowed the leak. Nonetheless, spacers are off for now. Will probably order a new set of gaskets/seals for the kit and try again when the new intake manifold comes in from Audi (via JHM).

On a lighter note, I was able to find a company that can get me the carbon fiber trim piece for the trunk (part# 4F5853927C) to match with the diffuser I’d previously found/had installed (part# 4F5807521AE), as well as an OEM carbon fiber grill (part# 4F0853651AM). Trying to figure out how to mount the license plate after adding this replacement grill. Prefer it to be in the center like normal, but can’t figure out if normal license place mount/bracket will still fit/work. Also have carbon fiber B pillar replacement and carbon fiber rear center console coming… 3M Crystalline tint today… Soooo eventually we’ll see how all of this turns out I guess…

ooOoOooO! Post pics!

I happily live in a state with no front plate requirement :smiley: Debating on an RS8 style honeycomb grill.

Yes in for pics. If you can before and after are always the most exciting. Sometimes it can be hard to tell the over all difference showing the before really gives a nice persoective. espically on cosmetic stuff.