Original Owner: 1971 Audi 100LS

It’s rare to see the words “I am the original owner” in a listing for a car last sold in the 1970s. This 1971 Audi 100 is a rarely seen sedan from the company’s early days in the U.S. Although a far cry from the all-wheel drive performance machines the brand represents today, these boxy sedans certainly demonstrated the company’s panache for building stately, restrained vehicles. Find this survivor-grade example here on craigslist for $3,000 or best offer. 

As an LS model, this 100 boasts the most powerful engine available in the sedan, which churned out a healthy 99 b.h.p. across most markets – but in the U.S., this meant 115 b.h.p. from a 1.8L engine. A 1971 model year vehicle is one to own, as power dipped to 91 b.h.p. in subsequent years. As the badge on the trunk denotes, this one is equipped with a 3-speed automatic sourced from Volkswagen.

It’s amazing to think of a time when it was considered a badge of honor to tell the world your German sports sedan had an automatic transmission between the seats. This car shows plenty of evidence of age, from the sunburnt paint to the weathered chrome trim and dirt and debris hiding between the letters of the badge. Despite being the original owner, the seller doesn’t offer much detail on what sort of maintenance the 100 has received over the years.

I will say, this early Audi sedan looks straight and true. Panel shut lines are tight and the paint, though faded, is consistent. The four matching hubcaps are another bonus, along with the fact that the earlier cars sport far prettier slim, chrome bumpers, which were allowed before safety regulations necessitated the addition of huge, “park-bench”-like bumpers that seriously marred many European vehicles’ appearances. Is the original owner Audi worth saving at $3K OBO?


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  1. Scotty Gilbertson Staff

    Ha, badge of honor, excellent. I love these cars, nice find.

  2. Mike

    Looks like it’s been sitting in the front yard for ages. The neighbors are probably popping the cork on the champagne.

  3. Wagon master Member

    I’m sorry but a rare find? In those days they were basically VWs. With an automatic no less? I like the older Audis but don’t see this as a collectible worth anywhere near the ask and sitting outside in Portland saturating rains for years …. ppppplease …. IMHO

  4. edh

    As goofy looking in the ’70s as they cars are today.

  5. boxdin

    I worked at the Porsche Audi dealer when these came out. Nice cars pretty fast but absolutely chewed up inboard mounted front brakes, especially the AT versions. The 100ls was a much better car than the Stupid…er Super 90.

  6. AF

    Smile and then slowly back away. Once at a safe distance…RUN!!!!!!! DO NOT LOOK BACK!!!!!

  7. Mark Hoffman

    There were several running around the town I grew up in back when they were new. All Audi 100 LS

    my jr high principal had a green one. The assistant principal had a blue one. Side by side on the teachers parking area.

    My eye doctor had a white one. He traded it for a first year red Audi Fox. He had driven Cadillacs prior.

  8. Jubjub

    Cool. Way too much bread. These were all over the place back in the ‘70s-80s. Haven’t seen one in a long time. Actually heard a noisy Civic the other night and its sound made me think of one of these.

  9. redwagon

    $3,000 and the ad cannot even tell us if it runs? No photos of the interior, no knowledge of how long it has been in storage, why it was put in storage, no idea what the mileage is …….

    Someone should have made a better advertisement.

    This is going to be a best offer deal.

  10. Leon

    That roofline side profile. Is the car coming or going ??

  11. grant

    I had one of these back in the 90s. My first “restoration” project. The inboard disk brakes were a bear but I thought they were cool. I had the surface rust treated, the car in primer and in driving condition, but it needed a master cylinder. My 16 year old self had to save for it, and before I could my dad got tired of it sitting outside and scrapped it! When I explained how close it was he felt bad enough to buy me the 80 Capri my sister was selling, but still…. I wanted to see how nice I could make it!

  12. Tom Justice

    I had a green 73 with a stick in college (1979). Took it to a service station to get an oil change and the old man running the place had never seen a front wheel drive. His young helper came in and he asked him to check the rear end grease; he and his friends that were hanging around had a big laugh at that. When it ran it was great but it was a pain a lot of the times as well. These cars would not run with all the slop in the system that Detroit iron would. It liked to overheat a lot as well. I would think 300.00 is more like what it is worth unless you find a real lover of that model. It does bring back some memories.

    • Mountainwoodie

      My roommate in college had one circa 1973…..luckily not a slushbox. I thought it was a pretty good little ride. Roomy enough to carry 4 heavily sedated college intellectuals.

  13. Gregory J Mason

    My brother Carl had one tan color. All the time there were problems. Front brake pads, wiring problems, fuel injection problems. It just didn’t end. Finally he got rid of that P.O.S. I thought thank God. Until he showed up with a new Yugo. Actually he had less problems with that damn Yugo.

  14. Maestro1

    i agree with redwagon. People need to be more specific about what they are trying to sell. I think the price is where the seller is fishing. Let’s have some interior pictures and a look at the cars bones.

  15. Booya

    My dad had a friend with the uniquely bad luck to own two of these things. My dad’s friend usually hitched rides with us in our ’70 Oldsmobile.

  16. Nsuracer

    Back in the day, all the Techs referred to them as a 100 Loose Screw

  17. AirBoss

    We had a 1972 100LS that was a rust victim within 36 months, let alone 36+ years. Tread carefully.

  18. David Miraglia

    Haven’t seen one of these since the early 1990’s. Always liked these.

  19. Richard V

    The rear brake calipers also included the emergency brake linkage which made pad replacement and adjustment a real chore!

  20. DRV

    Maybe the worst car ever.

  21. chad

    Friend mechanic had one of this era but wagon.
    Was it a 200? Seemed longer too. He loved it.

  22. James M

    From the side, the front and rear windows appear to be identical, just reversed?

  23. Z1rider

    My experience with an 83 Audi 5000, and a friends experience with a 70’s era Audi Fox did not give me confidence with this brand. My friend makes his living servicing 50’s and 60’s era Mercedes products so he does love German iron, but he has nothing good to say about Audi’s.

  24. DweezilAZ

    I still love the styling of these.

    But it did make that Lemons: “The World’s Worst Cars” book.

    And rare in that a surviving one is a “rare” thing.So yes, this is a rare car.

    • DweezilAZ

      My mistake: Not in the Lemon book. Many apologies.

  25. Tom Justice

    I forgot to say in my previous post that these have cast aluminum window cranks that break very easily. I used to go to the junkyard and buy them by the half dozen; good luck finding them today. Also, on the way back to school the battery shorted out and filled the car with acid fumes (battery under the back seat). These have a “capacitive discharge box” that was basically a hybrid electronic ignition to help the points work better and last longer; the box went bad and the battery did as well. You should have seen the blood I coughed up that night from the fumes.

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