Saved from Scrap: 1980 Audi 5000S

In the long list of Audis I don’t really consider particularly appealing, the U.S.C2 is pretty high on the leader board. A design befuddled by Federally-mandated bumpers, perhaps its redeeming quality is that it introduced us to the characteristic inline-5 thrum that would hold over until the end of C4 production. Of course, what really made all of those cars sing was forced induction, and so within the C2 range, the model that ostensibly is the most desirable is the Turbo. And it was, when in ‘5T’ Euro 200 form. However, the U.S. cars were turned down, weighed down, and solely opted with a 3-speed automatic. Interest in this post has, at this point, waned nearly as much as the surviving examples have.

There was also a diesel, and a turbo diesel, version the C2. While they make frozen molasses heading uphill look brisk, they’ve at least got the diesel clique going for them. That leaves the normally aspirated Audi 5000S third in desirability in my ranking for a chassis I wouldn’t intentionally seek out. Not high praise, and this is coming from a pretty strong defender of the ringed corner of our world. But you could get a 5-speed manual, at least. This car doesn’t have that going for it, either, alas.

But am I glad someone saved one from being scrapped? Yeah, I sure am!

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1980 Audi 5000S on eBay

1982 Audi Coupe with 36,000 Miles

Anthony Bourdain has been pretty successful with his show Parts Unknown, in addition to the many other reasons he’s been an award winning chef and writer. In that show, he’s always on the lookout for new and rarely heard of cuisine from around world. And, for the most part even though I’m not a ‘foody’, I find his presentation, travels, and quick summaries of far reaching historical periods pretty enjoyable. He is, for lack of a better comparison, the Jeremy Clarkson of food critics – at least, a bit. In one memorable-to-me episode, he set out to find this magical, amazing and hereto unheard of cocoa plant. But he wasn’t going just to taste this new and interesting food; he was going to secure rights to harvest the plant and to profit. And, frankly, he couldn’t have seemed less interested or involved in any step of the process. He complained, whined, and lackadaisically mused about the chocolate he’d later offer for $18 a bar throughout the episode, ignoring the cultural and economic aspects of the lives the people of Peru – where the bar’s magical ingredients come from. I was left feeling at the end of the episode that it was less an investigation of the process, and much more an advertisement for the overpriced consumerism he was going to attach his name to. Why wouldn’t you pay $18 for a chocolate bar – he’s Anthony Bourdain and he obviously knows more than you, so ante up!

The point of this is story that I’m left feeling that many of the inflated markets are doing just what Bourdain did; cashing in on a name and a reputation coupled with a market surge. One classic you can get into without all of the market hoopla, though, is pretty much any classic Audi outside of the Quattro – for now:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1982 Audi Coupe GT on eBay

Avocado Audi: 1980 Audi 5000

Recently, in addition to my usual car hunting I had the pleasure of doing some house hunting. The market is all over the place; you can pay a huge amount and get a brand new but not particularly stylish or well built home, or you sift through overpriced polished up turds and absolute wrecks that require complete rebuilds. Sound familiar? Quite a few of the homes that we went through in our journey featured near original kitchens – remember when Avocado was the color of everything? Laminate, appliances, cooktops, lounge chairs? Everything had to be that shade of green. Now, in 98% of cases, that’s a very bad thing since it not only looks dated, but tired and tasteless too. But sprinkled in just the right amount – a vintage freezer, for example, it somehow is really chic. And just like Chic manages to also be cool in small doses, this C2 Audi 5000 in Onyx Green Metallic with matching green…well, everything looks spectacularly awesome:

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 1980 Audi 5000 on Cleveland Craigslist