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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Its good to see this forum, I have had very good experiences in the past with forums associated with my cars at the time. I am 58 and driving a Chrysler Crossfire, which I really enjoy, ~45k miles and it has performed flawlessly for the couple of years that I have been driving it (note: the crossfire is a 1st gen MB SLK320 with a sexier body, imo). So, my wife has some lower back pain issues and I would like to be in something "cushy" again (previously was driving a 95 Eldorado ETC, for 10+ lovely years). So the Phaeton is very alluring and, well is an extraordinary sedan. So there is one for sale in my vicinity ... next closest is about 300 miles .. :) ... this is in the San Jose area.

So I realize that it is in the timing belt replacement time frame.... I have emailed the dealer and asked if there are any maintenance records, esp re: the timing belt replacement. I realize that repairs/maintenance can be costly and having recently put my 3 sons through college, am not in the mood for a profligate expenditure. I am good at diagnosing and fixing, especially with the help of an informed body of helpers, ie a forum such as this. In the past, I have been able to keep my Eldorado's Northstar system going for nearly 200k miles on my own with the help of a great forum until I bought the Crossfire and sold the still flawlessly working Eldo. ... saw the xfire in a dealers lot and could not resist.

So, I can't read this whole forum top to bottom in the near time frame, and some of the bits I have read are scary! So how cautious should I be? The cautious side of me says, fuhgeddaboudit, but the risky side says, when will you ever be able to own such an automobile.

I have always been a gear head and have taken some risks in the past (2 peugeot diesels for instance - remember I am in the US - rebuild the engine of one) have read as much as I could find on the web about the Phaeton, watched J Clarkson opine on the cars brilliance, etc. But would appreciate any practical advice .... It scares me to take the risk of buying one, but owning and driving it is, a thrilling thought that I can't easily turn off.

How often do issues leave the driver stranded? Some seem to be completely reliable and others are horror stories ....

Thanks for any advice!!!
 

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No Regrets

I purchased my 2004 4.2l with 78k miles almost 2 ears ago. No regrets whatsoever. I flushed brake, steering, transmission and coolant fluids. Deactivated TPMS and seatbelt chime. Watch your tire wear. I was getting tire noise at about 15k into a new set but realized stock alignment spec was the culprit. I had rear camber moved 1/4 positive and all tires are wearing evenly with no noticeable change in handling. Buy it and enjoy it.
 

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I've had my 2004 V8 Phaeton for six years now and I've never been stranded or had to limp home. Has the car needed attention now and then, yes, but those times were pretty rare. My cars reliability might be the luck of the draw or just finding a Phaeton that was lovingly maintained when I bought it. The few service issues I've had would be no different than what I might expect with any car at this level. The more gadgets or options a car has the more likely the car will require service. If one wants bullet proof reliability buy an old stripped slant six Plymouth Valiant or six cylinder Chevy Biscayne with 'three on the tree' :D.
I'd keep my Phaeton until the wheels fell off if I used it more but have reluctantly decided to let someone else enjoy this remarkable machine (I've listed it in the Phaeton classified section of this site). Would I be hesitant to buy a used Phaeton? Not if that Phaeton was properly maintained and had all its service records. Do your homework and you'll find that Phaeton with your name on it. They're out there :).

Ron
 

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Hello, I'm in the San Francisco Bay Area also and I come across Phaetons for sale from time to time. The car you are referring to has been "on the lot" for some time now and does not interest me for some reason. There was a silver one being sold by a private owner that seemed well maintained not too long ago. Before that, a beautiful white v8 four seater with 45k miles was up for sale in the north bay. Just don't be too impulsive and good luck. I'll keep my eyes open for you.

Damon
 

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2006 Blue/Green Beauty for sadly for sale

Its good to see this forum, I have had very good experiences in the past with forums associated with my cars at the time. I am 58 and driving a Chrysler Crossfire, which I really enjoy, ~45k miles and it has performed flawlessly for the couple of years that I have been driving it (note: the crossfire is a 1st gen MB SLK320 with a sexier body, imo). So, my wife has some lower back pain issues and I would like to be in something "cushy" again (previously was driving a 95 Eldorado ETC, for 10+ lovely years). So the Phaeton is very alluring and, well is an extraordinary sedan. So there is one for sale in my vicinity ... next closest is about 300 miles .. :) ... this is in the San Jose area.

So I realize that it is in the timing belt replacement time frame.... I have emailed the dealer and asked if there are any maintenance records, esp re: the timing belt replacement. I realize that repairs/maintenance can be costly and having recently put my 3 sons through college, am not in the mood for a profligate expenditure. I am good at diagnosing and fixing, especially with the help of an informed body of helpers, ie a forum such as this. In the past, I have been able to keep my Eldorado's Northstar system going for nearly 200k miles on my own with the help of a great forum until I bought the Crossfire and sold the still flawlessly working Eldo. ... saw the xfire in a dealers lot and could not resist.

So, I can't read this whole forum top to bottom in the near time frame, and some of the bits I have read are scary! So how cautious should I be? The cautious side of me says, fuhgeddaboudit, but the risky side says, when will you ever be able to own such an automobile.

I have always been a gear head and have taken some risks in the past (2 peugeot diesels for instance - remember I am in the US - rebuild the engine of one) have read as much as I could find on the web about the Phaeton, watched J Clarkson opine on the cars brilliance, etc. But would appreciate any practical advice .... It scares me to take the risk of buying one, but owning and driving it is, a thrilling thought that I can't easily turn off.

How often do issues leave the driver stranded? Some seem to be completely reliable and others are horror stories ....

Thanks for any advice!!!
Unfortunately I will be selling my 06 Blue/Green beauty due to my parkinsons. It is , I believe , the most dramatic color VW ever used. Currently has 43,000 miles. Light Tan leather. Must be sold to someone who truly appreciates these incredible automobiles!
 

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06 Blue/green for sale

Sorry, new to the forum.
Car is located at my home in Palm Coast Florida.
A tear will be shed when she leaves. At least we will still have the Passats - 05 4m wagon and 06 3.7L (Wifes) LOVE my Black 4m SW but alas she has sustained NUMEROUS dings and scratches. I ding it then fix it. Becoming a real battlewagon. I could never let the same fate befall the Phaeton!!!!
 

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How often do issues leave the driver stranded?
There's as good a chance as any that a vehicle that allegedly cost $1.3 billion to develop will respect you enough not to leave you at the roadside.

That's in the same league as the Mars Rover program. The Phaeton is prettier and more comfortable, though! :)

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
There's as good a chance as any that a vehicle that allegedly cost $1.3 billion to develop will respect you enough not to leave you at the roadside.

That's in the same league as the Mars Rover program. The Phaeton is prettier and more comfortable, though! :)

Chris
This thread was the reason I posed that question, in fact I think it might be where 90% of my misgivings came from. Glad it is not a frequent occurrence.
 

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This thread was the reason I posed that question, in fact I think it might be where 90% of my misgivings came from. Glad it is not a frequent occurrence.
I think all prospective Phaeton buyers have been spooked by these boards to some extent, but thankfully the members have always done a good job counterbalancing those fears.

As for myself, I had actually started to seriously investigate a Phaeton purchase, but when I saw how much my '12 Tiguan had depreciated....:facepalm:

Let's just say I need to re-evaluate how I move forward with things. I would recommend a good warranty for one of these suckers though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Hello, I'm in the San Francisco Bay Area also and I come across Phaetons for sale from time to time. The car you are referring to has been "on the lot" for some time now and does not interest me for some reason. There was a silver one being sold by a private owner that seemed well maintained not too long ago. Before that, a beautiful white v8 four seater with 45k miles was up for sale in the north bay. Just don't be too impulsive and good luck. I'll keep my eyes open for you.

Damon
Damon:
I suspected that car might have been there for a while, don't know why, so glad you corroborated my suspicion. I did stop and look and it was in the back row and blocked in by other vehicles and a bit dusty. Didn't speak to anyone, etc.

I would think that these used car dealers are buying at auction and they would shy away from Phaetons due to the likelihood that they will have difficulty selling. So it puzzles me that its even there ...

Thanks for the info .. I need to drive one and make certain that my wife will be comfy before going forward. I realize it's hard to imagine not being comfortable in those seats, but its not always as straight forward as it might seem! :)
 

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All modern cars have engine speed sensors, and all modern cars have ABS controllers. All machinery of any sort suffers failures.

Apparently the average driver will have suffered 20 "no-go" events with various cars they are attempting to drive in their lifetime, of which about three quarters are due to either a flat battery or running out of fuel.

It sounds like you should be nervous of driving any car in case it stops! ;)

Regards,
Chris
 

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This thread was the reason I posed that question, in fact I think it might be where 90% of my misgivings came from. Glad it is not a frequent occurrence.
In my case, I was able to get home with the car idling. Now we know what the problem is, however, in future it'll be a simple case of pulling the ABS fuse and driving home with no ABS, although I suspect it'll be at least 8 years before it happens again.

I should also mention that in the several years I've been following this forum, this is the first mechanical issue I can remember that has left anyone stranded.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Please don't think I am dissing this bit of automotive art ... it is not often that one can label an automobile "art" and especially one that is not decades or many decades old. I am a software engineer, but my education is in the arts, MM degree from Peabody Conservatory, so I hope to have some credibility when it comes to seeing beauty and design excellence in something masterful that had been designed and or built. I think I can see a work of art when it is in front of me. I suppose that for one who is not financially comfy at least, there is risk, but I have done that in the past ... to obtain a car such as this seems like a the best that I might at this point in my life ever obtain, so I am wary, but dang the thing is quite lovely in its design and execution.

So I will keep my eyes open and I have sent a message to the dealer of the vehicle that I mentioned, but have not heard back. I asked if they knew any of the maintenance, particularly the timing belt, and how many owners ... some of that should not be difficult for them to ascertain with carfax, but they have not replied. So I am not going to pursue this one unless some additional info pops up.

And dlouie, would be happy to get your advice in the near future on this car or if an when another turns up ... :)

Thanks to all!
 

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Good luck, I hope you find confidence in the engineering and delight in the art in your future P!

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Good luck, I hope you find confidence in the engineering and delight in the art in your future P!

Chris
I have no lack of confidence in the engineering ... nor the delight !!

Its my ability to absorb the consequences!! :)

Nonetheless, I will probably continue down this course, weather the vehicle initially mentioned nor the next one that becomes available in the vicinity ... !

Thanks again, all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Hello, I'm in the San Francisco Bay Area also and I come across Phaetons for sale from time to time. The car you are referring to has been "on the lot" for some time now and does not interest me for some reason. There was a silver one being sold by a private owner that seemed well maintained not too long ago. Before that, a beautiful white v8 four seater with 45k miles was up for sale in the north bay. Just don't be too impulsive and good luck. I'll keep my eyes open for you.

Damon
It is now sold .. so i will be looking patiently elsewhere ... Odd though, I did actually look at it and it was in the back and dusty and wasn't looking well cared for. Surprised that it suddenly was purchased.
 

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There appeared to be a lot of strange, shady behaviour going on when I was looking for one, too. Cars being advertised that didn't exist, listed numbers not answered, I don't think used car traders play by the same rules the rest of us do.
 

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They advertise one that they fancy might be a good deal that they don't own, in the hope that they can quickly pull it trade if they get any takers.

Chris
 
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