I get a lot of emails and comments on my blog from readers looking for a specific part (most commonly, front bumpers, RS4 grilles, or xenon headlights) and are frustrated at how much a new, OEM part costs from the dealership – I agree, Audi parts ain’t cheap.
Even worse, certain models (like S and RS cars) tend to have a premium on their parts, even if the parts are nearly identical to the base models, just because Audi (or the OE manufacturers that make the parts like Bosch) know they can get away with it.
The joy of the internet is that you have tons of options on what parts to buy, and where to buy them from. There is also a ton more transparency and information at the buyer’s finger tips, so you can cross-shop or wait until discount seasons like Black Friday or other holiday sales that are fairly predictable.
But if you’re in a lurch to find that perfect part, and you don’t want to wait around forever hoping it goes on sale, I’ve build this handy guide just for you to find cheaper parts for your Audi online.
I plan to keep this as an ongoing list, so if you see an Audi dismantler or good used part source that I’m missing, leave me a comment and let me know your experience with them and I’ll edit this post to include them if positive – for now, this is focused on people who live in the US, although I’m sure there are plenty of great resources in the EU too.
Audi Dismantlers & Junk Yards
These are junk yards, body shops, or similar businesses that specialize in taking used (and usually, wrecked) Audis and selling off all of the parts. These are great places to go because they’re OEM parts, but being sold at discount since they’re used and the dismantler just wants to get rid of as many parts as they can, as quickly as they can, so they can make room for the next project.
While an Audi might get totalled in an accident, there is typically a lot of parts on the car that are reusable, and worth way more “parted out” than if they were to simply take the car to the scrap yard and get the value of the metal from it. The dismantlers that specialize in Audi/VW tend to be the best as they have a good understanding of what parts they have and can help you find the exact part you need – generally I recommend searching around to see if there is a junkyard in your area that specializes in European cars, but if not, these websites/businesses ship all over the US and can be a great resource:
- Shokan – located in New York, I’ve known several people to order parts from here like used Recaros and been pleased with the service and the accuracy of the condition of the parts.
- Audis4Parts – located in Arizona and specializes in Audi S4s, especially B5s, but carries a bit of everything now a days
- AutoHaas – located in New Jersey and has a massive following, more popular for VWs but has Audis too
- Wolf Auto – located in Minnesota, with good reader reviews
Chance are, there is a local junk yard near you (if you’re in a major city) that specializes in German or European cars that are worth checking out. Go to your friend Google and type in junk yard + city name and figure out what’s in your area, then make a habit of bookmarking those websites or dropping by from time to time to see what gems are in store. You may even find opportunities to flip parts and make a few bucks if you know what you’re looking for!
Online Classifieds Sites
Another great idea is to buy off other Audi enthusiasts and owners, which these sites are good for. It will sometimes be harder to find the exact part you’re looking for, but if you do then you’re buying directly off the owner so it is typically cheaper and more clear exactly what you’re going to get.
The downside is that since this is peer-to-peer based selling, be weary of the occasional scam artist or person misrepresenting what they have, and be sure to ask plenty of questions and get pictures or references of every detail if you have any concerns – sites like eBay are nice since they have seller feedback, or if you’re meeting someone on Craigslist do it in a public place to avoid any drama.
- Craigslist – search “auto parts” under your local craigslist and see what you can find there – keep in mind people might know exactly what they have, so if the specific item you’re looking for isn’t returning any results try searching broader terms like “audi” and seeing what comes back – sometimes you’ll even find people parting out wrecked cars that can be a treasure trove of cheap, used parts.
- Audizine Classifieds – now powered by Panjo, this is the mecca for enthusiast parts including wheels, coilovers, and other mods. Generally sellers are pretty trustworthy and reputable, and the Panjo marketplace offers both buyer and seller protection which is great, as well as the ability to show all parts by vehicle or part type which often leads to you realizing you needed stuff you didn’t even know about before, haha.
- eBay – there are a ton of new & used parts on eBay for your Audi, just make sure to read the entire description to understand if you’re getting a OEM part or an aftermarket replica made in China. Depending on the part you’re looking for, you’ll likely either find a ton of options or nothing at all, so it can be hit or miss but is probably the most straightforward & easy buying process if you find what you want.
- VWVortex/Fourtitude Classifieds – generally fewer parts compared to Audizine or all duplicate listings of parts already listed on Audizine, but sometimes you’ll find some good deals from folks who just don’t frequent the ‘Zine for whatever reason and only list their parts on the Vortex or Fourtitude (they share the same classifieds). Likewise, the 5×112 bolt pattern is shared between many Audi/VW so it can be a good place to find wheels, if that’s what you’re looking for.
- Facebook – most vehicles tend to have their own Facebook group where enthusiasts will sell and trade parts, so find one for your vehicle. If not, the Audi Club of North America has a great classifieds group, and there are tons of groups dedicated to 5×112 wheels and other parts you may be interested in.
New OEM Discount Parts Resellers
Last but not least, if you can’t find something used and need to buy a new, OEM part, you can often find them cheaper than the dealership by looking online. The following websites often work in tandem with a dealership, Audi/VW directly, or the parts suppliers of Audi/VW, to get the parts at a discount and pass some of those savings along to you. This can be great if you have a very specific part you can’t find anywhere else as they carry virtually everything, or if you just want a new, OEM part and don’t want any of the risk/uncertainty with buying a used part.
- GenuineAudiParts.com – commonly known as “GAP” on the message boards, these guys have it all, and the parts are all OEM and authentic. Generally much cheaper than the dealership, although sometimes the dealership will price match if you show them the price and feel like haggling a bit.
- AudiUSAParts.com – similar to GAP, but good to cross-reference…
- AutohausAZ – generally cheaper than the dealership, another good place to look…
- ECSTuning.com – typically the least cheap of these options, but sometimes they run sales or specials with free shipping on coveted, high-demand parts that blow the doors off everyone else, like Seat Cupra R lips. It’s worth checking, and they have a huge inventory and knowledgable sales staff to help out.
- Amazon – they’re especially great for maintenance items (air filters, oil changes, light bulbs, fuses, etc.) but they do have a bit of everything, and if you have a Prime membership that is free 2 day shipping.
Often times if you find a discounted price at one of the above sites, you can call your local dealership, show them the advertised price, and they’ll match it – allowing you to still pick it up in person and get it quicker than these sites would otherwise.
Last but not least, remember everything is negotiable. If you’re dealing with an e-commerce store, call their 1-800 number and ask a bunch of questions, then ask for their best price or at least see if they can throw in free shipping – chances are, they can. If you’re dealing with a private party, chances are you can haggle more, as they don’t have any use or value in keeping the product and would rather have cash today than have to keep working at it for a while longer.
No matter what you buy, or where you buy it from, use common sense. Don’t send PayPal funds as a friend if you don’t know the person, it’s worth the extra few percent to have buyer protection. Get the parts insured when shipped in case something gets damaged, and don’t take the seller’s word for it on condition of the parts – ask for detailed pictures. Anyone asking for funds from Western Union should be a giant red flag, run away fast!
Got any other helpful hints or suggestions? Leave a comment!