Project Commuter

hydo14

A2OC Donor
As promised a while ago in the Today I... thread I am finally writing up about my project commuter. Back in the normal times (before COVID-19 and lockdown) I had a long commute from Shrewsbury to North Wales which I was doing in an 8V Quattro A3 TDI and that was okay on fuel getting 45-50 mpg for the journey, but after a year and a half of this and racking up >45k miles on it I chose that my wallet would be better served by something that didn't depreciate quite as quickly when hitting it with that sort of mileage.

After a bit of hunting around I was really intrigued by the A2 as an economical car that would also still be fun on the twisty country roads that make up my adventure to work and coming from a 200 bhp car I couldn't imagine having less than 100 bhp so settled on a 1.6 FSI sport, the A2 bug had bitten me and I really liked the versatility of the seat layout and large interior space and then the car being able to fit in any space in the car park (even sharing a space with a smart car at times).

From this I decided I needed a 1.4 TDI with a better spec for fuel economy and comfort:
InkedIMG_20200824_142914_LI.jpg

The car I found towards the end of summer 2020 was a 1.4 TDI 74 SE with the following extras, some of which I have only very recently found:
  • Bose
  • Working OSS
  • Fog Lights
  • Red and black interior (although this one has definitely lost it's red seats somewhere along its life)
  • Winter pack, heated mirrors, washer jets and headlight washers
  • False boot floor
  • DIS
  • Cruise control
  • Multifunction steering wheel
  • Automatic Climate Control
  • 4x Electric windows
 

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hydo14

A2OC Donor
Disaster strikes! In quick succession I went through a pothole and destroyed a wheel as well as the sunroof starting leaking, time for the car to go in the garage until I found the bravery to remove the sunroof and resolve the water coming in and find a new wheel to replace the destroyed one.

Thread here on what was up with the sunroof and how I resolved it.

The leaky sunroof also caused the rear speakers to stop working as the cones had gotten wet, these were hard to source however luckily I found a whole Bose system on our favourite auction site and this sorted out the crackly noises, and I guess I have a spare amp, sub and tweeters now...
 

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hydo14

A2OC Donor
With lockdown continuing and boredom setting in and rather than spending my evenings sitting at the same desk at home that I had spent all day at doing work at but playing computer games instead it was time for more garage project work on the A2 this time focussing on fuel economy. For this I added the underbody spoiler from the 3l as well as the winglets and fabricated replacement heat shields to go around the fuel filter. I also created a blanking plate for the front grille and swapped out the thermostat as I think the one in the car was a bit unhappy.

 

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hydo14

A2OC Donor
A big update to the project car which I am now having to admit this TDI really has become

The suspension was a bit soft and the car appeared to be on it's original shock absorbers along with an advisory on the MOT for the ball joint dust boots being worn. Time for a full suspension overhaul, lots of lovely goodies piled up ready to be installed
IMG_20210227_170543 (Large).jpg


Found the cause of the soft rear suspension. I am quite surprised that the MOT did not pick up on this issue. Although because of the spring cushions being missing and the seat being a bit dirty this was very hard to see. Very happy to have found this at this time rather than it falling out on me
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hydo14

A2OC Donor
Despite having overhauled the front suspension on my FSI so I sort of knew what I was getting into with access to the top of the drivers side strut but blimey does the extra obstacle of the webasto make the access even worse. To add to this the bolts that attach the anti-roll bar to the console bracket had not been correctly reinstalled at some point (foreshadowing) and they had become bent meaning that I had to cut them out the car:
IMG_20210305_094256 (Large).jpg

Also glad I found this problem as I wouldn't have fancied the ARB popping up into the frame rail when I was going around a bend! The bolt was so bent into the console bracket that this required a replacement part - luckily a local scrappie had one which I installed a new bushing in and good as new.

Then, the car not being content with my misery at this point the pinch bolt on the passenger side strut had been overtightened beyond its yield point (probably reused too) so that the head of that bolt sheared off as soon as I even thought about putting a spanner on it. Thanks to the wonderful help on here though got this all sorted though.

IMG_20210227_181613 (Large).jpg


To replace the wishbones I followed this wonderful guide https://www.a2oc.net/community/index.php?threads/front-control-arms.37844/

All shiny and new. I did go back and paint the heat shield with black hammarite, as I couldn't stand to know that everything else was clean and new.
IMG_20210306_161453 (Large).jpg
 
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A2Steve

Member
Despite having overhauled the front suspension on my FSI so I sort of knew what I was getting into with access to the top of the drivers side strut but blimey does the extra obstacle of the webasto make the access even worse. To add to this the bolts that attach the anti-roll bar to the console bracket had not been correctly reinstalled at some point (foreshadowing) and they had become bent meaning that I had to cut them out the car:
View attachment 78726
Also glad I found this problem as I wouldn't have fancied the ARB popping up into the frame rail when I was going around a bend! The bolt was so bent into the console bracket that this required a replacement part - luckily a local scrappie had one which I installed a new bushing in and good as new.

Then, the car not being content with my misery at this point the pinch bolt on the passenger side strut had been overtightened beyond its yield point (probably reused too) so that the head of that bolt sheared off as soon as I even thought about putting a spanner on it. Thanks to the wonderful help on here though got this all sorted though.

View attachment 78727

To replace the wishbones I followed this wonderful guide https://www.a2oc.net/community/index.php?threads/front-control-arms.37844/

All shiny and new. I did go back and paint the heat shield with black hammarite, as I couldn't stand to know that everything else was clean and new.
View attachment 78728

Looks lovely, we’ve been doing very similar work over the last few days. Most of the bolts on these cars now seem to be heavily corroded so an angle grinder is an essential part of the toolbox.
 

Mka306

A2OC Donor
I wish I could afford another A2 but I am equally happy having just the one that way I won’t have to file for bankruptcy as my first A2 is already costing me more than I paid for it, that said I am in no way complaining as I love having a car project again and it will be just how I want it in hopefully the not to distant future.
I feel no amount of A2’s will ever be enough if you love them as much as we all do so good on you and keep the A2’s alive!!
 

audifan

A2OC Donor
I suppose also depends on how many drivers live in the house as they all may want an A2. Either way you can only drive one car at a time.
 

Mka306

A2OC Donor
I personally find unless the car was from a club member then it will take about two years to get everything back to Audi standards. Plus what you decide to upgrade........
Blimey that long, well I’m happy to take the time as I am already enjoying the OEM repairs I’ve done. I can only assume the time is down to the parts being hard to find?
 

hydo14

A2OC Donor
I suppose also depends on how many drivers live in the house as they all may want an A2. Either way you can only drive one car at a time.
Yep it's due to the number of driver's. Two of them are in very active use with the third to act as a bit of a van
 
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