Appreciate some input on a car decision


Hello Oppo, I’ve been a long-time reader and recent commenter and was now granted posting rights.

As very few of you know, earlier this year my wife and I bought a vehicle that was one I’ve always wanted, an Audi A6 3.0T quattro Avant. We both love it and it’s been great for us since.


Unfortunately last week an aggressive lady in a Toyota LandCruiser who was weaving through traffic and aggressively tailgting people, ended up rear-ending my wife in the Audi, when traffic slowed down. Fortunately apart from my wife being sore for a day or two, there were no injuries and the other driver was found at fault and ticketed.

The Audi was totaled, because the cost of the repair plus the salvage value of it exceed the actual cash value. The (very reputable) shop tells me it is a good candidate for repair, but the adjuster’s estimate does include 5 labor hours for “subsequent pulls”, “unibody/full frame pull & square”, and “setup and measure”.


Since we live in Michigan, which is a no-fault state, which means your own insurance pays for your damage, no matter who is at fault, I am dealing with my insurance to get paid. They’ve been pretty great, apart from not offering me as much as I want for the Audi, but we’re negotiating.

I just bought a brand new set of rims and Pirelli Sottozero 3s for the Audi as well as a set of Michelin Pilot Sport A/S 3+s for next summer. I also bought about $500 of repair and upgrade parts for it that are at my parent’s house in Germany and I was planning to bring them back when we go there over the holidays.


Now we have two options: Keep the Audi with a clean title, because of Michigan title laws and have it repaired with $500-1000 extra in our pocket, or buy a 2011 E350 4matic wagon which will require about $1,500 - 2,000 out of pocket, but get a one generation newer vehicle with better safety and infotainment features. Link

The AutoCheck says it had two accidents, but I pulled a Carfax and it does not show any, but it does show a complete maintenance history with a Mercedes-Benz dealership.


The rims and tires I bought will fit on the Mercedes, but their load rating is 97 and the Merc requires 99. I checked it out and the tires are rated one half pound less than the maximum load per wheel on the rear axle. The front is within limits.

There is one other thing: the lady that rear-ended my wife was extremely aggressive towards my wife and accused her of it being her fault and the 911 dispatcher who overheard her talking to my wife asked my wife to stay in the car and lock her doors until the Sheriff gets there. My wife is now at least somewhat worried that if we get the Audi repaired and that lady sees her in it she may try something stupid. We do live in a smaller town and you do see a lot of the same people regularly.


So here is the question: what should we do?

Sorry for making this such a long post, but I figured the better I explain our situation, the better you guys can judge it. And thank you for being such a great community.


UPDATE: We decided to keep the Audi and have it repaired. My wife really likes it and so do I and after a PPI the Mercedes just turned out to have too many issues. Also, we will have a Mototec Touring exhaust installed for less money than it would cost to repair the original exhaust with Audi parts.

All in all we think the Audi will be in better shape than before. We are also considering engine tuning. Turns out the shop I had the Mercedes checked out at does tuning for the 3.0T Audi engine. So that is the plan for next year sometime.

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