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Audi is a well-renowned and popular car manufacturer known for its high-quality and durable vehicles. However, it has come to light that some Audi engines may burn oil excessively.
So, do Audis burn oil?
All Audis burn oil to some degree, but a handful of models have been identified as burning more oil than would normally be expected. While Audi claims this is normal, there have been lawsuits filed against the company for problems stemming from the excessive oil consumption.
But which Audis are affected by this issue, and what can you do if you own one of these cars?
In this article we will explore the issue in depth and investigate whether Audi has done enough to address the problem.
Is it normal for Audis to burn oil?
Burning some oil is considered to be normal throughout the course of an Audi engine’s life. But in some Audi engines, this oil burning is excessive.
Like all engines, Audi engines will always consume a small amount of oil as part of the engine’s normal operation. This is particularly true of high-performance engines that put out a lot of power and put stress the engine.
But Audi has been inundated with complaints over the last decade referring to excessive oil consumption in a number of its cars.
This has been such a widespread problem that consumer rights groups have become involved, and investigations have been launched into the issue.
Which Audis have oil consumption problems?
Audi A3, A4, A5, A6, Q3, Q5, and TT models that were manufactured between 2012 and 2017, and were fitted with the company’s 2l turbocharged engine have all been affected by oil consumption problems that eventually cause engine damage.
There is evidence that cars built as far back as 2008, and fitted with the 2l and 1.8l TFSI engines were also affected.
There have also been reports that some 3l V6 engines can suffer from excessive oil consumption, although these reports are less widespread.
The problems have been known about for many years, but no significant action was taken until 2014 when a class action lawsuit was filed against Audi in the USA.
Whether the evidence is merely anecdotal or the result of wide-scale investigations, it is clear that there are issues surrounding the excessive oil consumption in some Audi engines.
What causes Audis to burn oil?
Lawsuits allege that a design flaw in certain Audi engines causes excessive oil burning. The flaw relates to the piston rings leaking oil into the cylinders where it is burnt off at a much quicker rate than normal.
While there can be a range of different reasons that an Audi is burning oil, many owners in recent times may have found that their cars are getting through high amounts of oil because of a problem with the engine’s piston rings. Or rather, that is where the evidence is pointing.
Over time, these leaks can lead to far worse oil consumption and even greater damage to the car if fragments of the piston rings break apart and enter the engine.
It has the potential to cost the unfortunate owner thousands in repairs, not to mention the much-depreciated resale value of the car.
In some cases there have been reports of engines failing before the 80,000 mile mark as a result of this problem.
Although many people believe Audis are known for their reliability, this is one situation where a problem with a relatively new car has caused a lot of anger and upset for paying consumers.
The lawsuit against Audi
In 2014 Audi agreed to settle a lawsuit in the USA that alleged a manufacturing defect caused excessive oil consumption problems, but this only covered certain cars built up until 2011.
In 2021 a new lawsuit was filed to extend the claim to cars built up to 2017.
The previous lawsuit only covered three cars; the ’09-’11 Audi A4, the ’09-’11 Audi A5, and the 2011 Audi Q5. The latest lawsuit involves many more cars than that, as we established earlier.
Although Audi’s parent company, Volkswagen, previously settled and agreed to replace the relative engine components on over 125,000 cars, the company did not admit fault during the case.
Audi argues that it’s normal to top off oil between services, but this doesn’t wash with the many owners that have been affected.
It is clear that there are several groups of consumers within America that feel they have been let down by Audi, and a lawsuit is often the only way that consumers can be properly represented in a case such as this.
Are other manufacturers affected?
As Volkswagen owns Audi and a number of other marques, many of its engines are shared with other group brands including Seat, Skoda, and VW themselves.
The engine that has caused the majority of oil consumption issues, the EA888, is also found in the Volkswagen Passat, Seat Leon, and Skoda Octavia to name a few.
BMW has also been the subject of oil consumption investigations in recent times, while Subaru reimbursed drivers for any expenses caused by their excessive oil burning issues.
What to do if your Audi is burning oil
The first thing to do is establish why your Audi is burning oil. It won’t always be the piston ring issue that we’ve delved into in this article; it could be something else entirely.
A dedicated Audi specialist will always complete an oil consumption test as part of their diagnostics, and Audi will only consider your car to have an issue if it’s burning more than one quart every 1200 miles.
If you want to test this yourself before taking it to Audi, fill up the oil and reset the car’s trip meter to zero. Once you’ve passed the 1200 mile mark, make a note of how much oil has been burnt.
Whether or not Audi will do anything about excessive oil consumption seems to vary depending on a number of factors, including location, previous service record, and the mileage of the car.
Unless your car is included in one of the lawsuits that has been filed, it may be down to goodwill on the part of Audi to fix it.
Either way, get in contact with your local Audi dealership if you’re concerned about your car.
All Audis will burn some oil over time, but there are a handful of cars that will burn it excessively.
If you own one of these cars, keep an eye out for the results of any lawsuits. Audi may be able to look into the issue at no charge. Details of the class action lawsuits in the USA can be found here.
Audi isn’t the only manufacturer to have been accused of oil burning issues, but as one of Volkswagen’s most popular brands, the company has been under a lot of scrutiny when it comes to this issue.
The oil burning issues experienced by some owners is enough to put many people off, but it’s worth noting that it’s still only a small proportion of cars that were affected.
24 thoughts on “Do Audis Burn Oil? (And What To Do About It)”
I just had the oil changed on my 2012 Q5. Now 700 miles later the car says it needs a quart of oil.
I had the same thing happen today. I didn’t even reach the 600 mile mark and the light came on to add oil. Now they are charging me $9000 to repair. The vehicle is a 2015 and doesn’t even have 90K …
Interesting…my 2017 Engine locked up. 61K and a $12,000 bill later…..NOT HAPPY
What model do you have? I have a 2017 Q7 that started with this issue at just over 80,000 miles. I get prompted for and add a quart of oil every 500-600 miles.
I think this is more common on these newer model vehicles than Audi cares to admit.
I have the same problem at 60,000 miles adding a qt every 600 miles. What are your plans?
Me toooo. 55k 2015 q5 and yes oil lite on again after a couple months. My mechanic says bring her In again but dang. Have not taken her to Audi dealership yet. She is not leaking or losing anywhere he can find. Very disappointed.
I have a 2014 Q5. I had to add a quart every 500 miles starting at 60,000 miles. Luckily my dealer was approved by Audi to cover the cost to replace all the pistons and rings. I just had this done so hopefully this will take care of the problem. Go to your dealer and ask for them to do an oil consumption test so they can submit it to Audi.
We have a 2020 Q5 w/ 63k miles on it. It burns at least a quart of oil every 5,000 miles (time between oil changes). Never seen this with any other car I’ve owned and I’ve owned over 30 cars. This is an Audi problem, period.
I brought my 2014 Q5 in for $5k worth of repairs including an oil leak. Since the work was done I now need a litre of oil every 500km.
So what you re saying basically is not to bother with the repairs ? So I took a gamble .. tired of north american failures , I thought I d try this fine german engineering i keep hearing about . Mint condition 2014 . Pristine leather . Ok it had 160 000 kms but it seemed well taken care of . ( i know , i know) it ran very well for first 3 mnths . This in harsh canadian winter climate. No engine light , no add 1 litre oil light . I get my first oil change and three weeks later , low oil light comes on . This is when i find out the brilliant no dip stick feature !! Bring it to volks audi dealer specialist, say wrong oil was used ( not true) told me my timing chain cover leaks ( also appears to not be true) i add oil every 500km with city driving sometimes sooner ! Engine light with improper timing chain setting periodically appears now as well . Am I correct to be seriously regretting buying what I thought would be a reliable , fun to drive used luxury car???
I have a 2015 A8 that had a new engine put in by Audi after 20k And now at 50k on the new engine it had to have an oil seal replaced. but has always burned excessive oil. This will be my last Audi.
Audi are great. If u can work on them ur self or can afford a hefty bill. 80% I see at my shop burn excessive oil and need new pistons and rings with a hefty bill. I will say, in North America, for fuel economy. Vehicle manufacturers to meet regulations went with low friction pistons and rings causing this issue for more than just Audi. Toyota had it with 2008 rav 4 and did the right thing by f Drixing issues.
I have a 2009 Audi A4 leaking oil who do I contact
My 2014 Audi A4 is having the same issue, I don’t even burn 400 miles and the oil light comes on. I only have 76000 miles on my car and dealership is not helping
Okay, mine is almost exactly the same. A 2014 Audi A5. I have kept track of the miles between oil changes since August. First I got 1000 miles. Then 760 miles. Then 720 miles. Then 550 miles. And this last time, 560 miles. My car has 77,000 miles on it. If I thought it would stay at 550 miles I would learn to live with it, but if it keeps getting worse, maybe the repair would be worth it. I have heard it’s 8000 to 9000 dollars and Audi won’t cut you a break at all. If anyone knows how to start a class action lawsuit, I’m in.
I think we should start another class action because of car shortage paying exorbitant prices shouldn’t have to be saddled with this contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and subject be 2022 class action audi ‘I’m in’
And I’ll look into attorneys to do something I hope this takes off
My 2012 Q5 drinks a quart every 200 miles!!!! @ 154k
Audi should be ashamed👹
My daughter has a Audi 7 doing same thing guard oil 2000 miles . 2016
Till this day I always considered buying one of these luxury second hand “bargains”, but from what I’m reading I’ll keep driving my Honda, stress free, cheap motoring, never lets me down even if I miss an oil change, it’s over 16yrs old, hardly have to put any money into it except for consumables, starts every time, doesn’t burn oil, almost 200k on the clock, modern cars aren’t worth buying tbh, too much cost & headache.
My 2011 q5 was burning thru 1 quart of oil every 60 miles. Spent the $6,000 to rebuild motor. Called Audi before I did Repair, they told me it was my problem. I tell everyone I know “NEVER BUY AN AUDI” NEVER!!!!
I purchased a new 2018 Q7. I really enjoy driving the car. I noticed that it consumed 1 quart of oil between oil changes. We did an oil consumption study and it came back within allowable tolerance. Fast forward, consumption stays reasonably constant. Now at 60,000 miles oil consumption has significantly increased. I have 1700 miles left on this oil change interval and I am adding my 3rd quart. This is such a disappointment for such a lovely car. I am making my last payment this month and I will most likely have to trade this one in before the engine fails totally. Why hasn’t Audi addressed this issue. I just don’t understand…
I am going through the same issue of excessive oil consumption in my 2015 Audi A3. unfortunately I bought it used. The car is in immaculate condition. Beautiful interior, excellent exterior. I am just sick but the thought of engine failure. I am a single mother and I thought I was buying a good reliable, dependable car. I am all in for a class action lawsuit. My email is SH45.SH45@yahoo.com.
I have a 2014 Q5 that was burning 1 qt every 500 miles at around 60,000 miles. Audi recently replaced all the pistons and rings. They covered around 80% of the repair. I give my dealer a lot of credit for advocating for me. They also replaced spark plugs and both timing chains. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this will fix the high oil consumption problem after 1 year of waiting to see if Audi would offer the goodwill to fix my engine.
Have a 2019 Q7 with 55,000 km. It has been using a litre of oil at least since new between service intervals. Audi says that is quite normal for oil consumption with this model. Now it is starting to use more oil so we are taking to dealer for an oil consumption test. Warranty is done in 5 months and I feel like saying good bye to it although it’s such a nice suv to drive. Will see what the test results are…