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It’s safe to say I’m hard on my cars. In fact, the handful of people that are brave/mad/unlucky enough to have worked on my vehicles would probably call that an understatement. I remember once taking one of my old Mk1 GTIs to a mechanic friend so he could attempt to diagnose why it had become temperamental at starting. Let’s just say it didn’t take him long: I’d driven it so hard that the starter motor had pretty much shaken itself free and was practically hanging out of the engine.

Anyway, it’s safe to say any car I drive daily needs to be pretty tough and my trusty B7 Audi A4 TDI Avant has been incredible in terms of reliability and taking abuse. Well, right up until it cracked the 100k mark and things started to show signs of wear and tear. Now, while I drive them hard, I’m pretty good at keeping on top of servicing, too, and honestly, the Audi hadn’t missed a beat in the five or so years I’d owned it. It all seemed to start the moment it reached 100,000 miles, though.

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