2001 Audi RS4

In the 1980s, it was a heck of a lot easier to get European spec cars into the U.S., as witnessed by the still substantial amount of them that can be found for sale. Most were European market BMWs and Mercedes-Benz models that weren’t available here, although cars from France, Italy, Japan and even South Africa also made it in. But as rules tightened and U.S. product line offerings improved and expanded, owner importation of cars from Europe slowed down. Now, it has become labor intensive and expensive to bring one of these models over, to the point where many enthusiasts spend countless dollars recreating Euro-spec cars rather than federalizing one from Europe. The Audi RS offerings before the RS6 are perfect examples of this; many Audi fans have built their own RS2 (in coupe guise) and RS4 replicas from U.S. spec cars. There were some die-hard individuals, however, who were not dissuaded from the difficulties of importing the “real deal” cars. If I had gone through that trouble it would be for a car I was never going to sell again; but lucky for us, some of these newer imports come up for sale from time to time. Today’s RS4 is an example of one such rarity:

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Year: 2001
Model: RS4
Engine: 2.7 liter twin-turbocharged V6
Transmission: 6-speed manual
Mileage: 61,000 mi
Price: $75,000

CLICK FOR DETAILS: 2001 Audi RS4 Avant at 2Bennett Audimotive

2001 RS4 Avant- Black Leather interior with Carbon Fiber trim
Fully federalized and legally registered in USA.
Almost flawless. Well maintained. Major restoration last year. Navigation updated to Nav plus, 2B turbo back 3″ exhaust, body is very nice, front seats just upgraded to Recaro with more power features, brakes are new, 2B Coil Program height adjustable suspension, just installed MTM software and performed a complete timing belt group replacement.
61,000. miles.
$75,000.
The car is in our showroom now. More info available upon request.

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The Bennetts are well known in Audi circles and have always had top-notch offerings at equally top-notch prices. $75,000 for a 12 year old Audi wagon is certainly top dollar, especially when these cars market for generally $15,000 to $20,000 in very good condition in Europe. Replica RS4s built on U.S. spec chassis, like the black one Paul recently reviewed, tend to be hitting the market between $40,000 and $50,000, which is already a massive premium over a good condition B5 S4 avant, which will set you back less than $20,000 for the very best examples. For the asking price, I’d expect the original and valuable RS4 alloys to be on there in perfect condition, and I’m not sure having it modified really helps the pricing; if anything, I’d think it detracts from it slightly. In general people wanting this car at this price point want to do it their way, not follow someone else’s vision.

Now, before you say “I can build one for less than that”, I’m not sure you can. To do the body right will set you back $15,000-$20,000. Add in the engine mods, upgraded suspension, brakes and wheels, and you just built yourself a $65,000 S4 if you started with a very nice example. In that light, the 2Bennett car isn’t outlandishly priced, especially considering it carries the Quattro G.m.b.H. build title. It’s also one of only a handful here right now, and that pushes the value up slightly. Despite this, I think you’ll start seeing more people serious about wanting one of these importing them from Germany over the next few years given the gap in value. If it were me and I had to have a fast B5 fix, I’d buy a 1.8TQA sport, chip it, and put the remaining $70,000 into the bank to wait a few years for values to fall a touch more and a few more to appear over here. But, if you have to have a real B5 RS4 right now in the U.S., this is just about your only option.

-Carter

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7 Comments

  1. Cool car but $75k??. Option 3 is find one in Europe and have it federalized. Should cost a lot less than $75k.

    For my $75k I would take a 993 for the summer and a B7 RS4 for the winter.

  2. Pete’s got it right. I love these RS wagons, but the opportunity cost of spending $75,000 on this example would be absurd. Want a low-mile 997 Turbo? How about a pristine 993 C2 or C4? G55? Maybe two low-mile M5s? I understand that this is the quintessence of an enthusiast vehicle, but I’m still scratching my head as to why the hell someone would voluntarily drop $75k on a grey-market wagon with 60,000 miles.

  3. I guess, to play devil’s advocate, by that logic why would anyone pay $15,000 for a S4 when you could have a chipped 1.8T put out the same power for $6,000? I agree the price is in the stratosphere, but think of it this way: They own the car outright, if they sell if anywhere close to 75K they profit hugely and can grab another. There are an awful lot of folks who shell out serious coin to have the genuine article (Sport Quattro, for example) rather than a replica. There are also an awful lot of folks that are unwilling to go through the importation headaches and costs, even if it were to save them some money. Personally, I think it’s pretty crazy to shell out $20,000 just in body modifications to make a copy of a car that you can buy for less than $20,000 – but there are a lot of people who do it. Sure, you could also buy 6 Kias for the price of this car – but none of them would be a RS4. Point is, as I said at the bottom; if you have to have a B5 RS4 in the U.S. right now you have basically only one option. And agree or disagree with their choices (both overchargers and replica makers), I’m glad they give us the chance to see these cars in U.S..

  4. Hi, I have started to follow this website about a month ago and I thoroughly enjoy looking for new entries on here, especially about the Audi Avants.

    I love the Audi Avants, but I am yet to own one. Carter, could you elaborate a little more when you refer to “If it were me and I had to have a fast B5 fix, I’d buy a 1.8TQA sport, chip it, and put the remaining $70,000 into the bank ”

    Does 1.8TQA stand for 1.8 Turbo Quattro Avant? Why the 1.8 and not the 2.0TQA?
    Would this be a 1.8TQA from the same year (2001) as the RS4 in this particular blog entry?

    Sorry for the NOOB questions, if you could point me to an Audi forum or something similar, that would also be great.

    Thanks.

  5. As amazing of a machine as this is your paying a 70% premium for exclusivity, not substance IMHO. Regarding the non-original spec wheels, these cars were notorious for bending them. I would sell my soul for a pristine original RS2, but this just isn’t my bag.

  6. Jaco,

    Thanks for your interest and keep following us – look for more Avants in the future! Yes, the 1.8TQA stands for Turbo Quattro Avant, and the 2.0 wasn’t available in the B5 chassis (which this RS4 is). There are plenty of good Audi fora to check out; quattroworld.com has a good base of knowledge and participants if you’re looking.

    UrSDriver,

    I agree completely – I lusted after a S2 Avant that parked near my flat in Cambridge. Perhaps in a few years I’ll muscle up the courage to look into importing either a S2 avant, S6 plus Avant, or V8 Evo. A man can dream, right?

  7. Pingback: 2001 Audi S4 Avant (RS4 Conversion) – REVISIT | German Cars For Sale Blog

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