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Thread: 2003 RS6 DRC question.

  1. #1
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    2003 RS6 DRC question.

    I am pretty sure that my DRC has never been touched. (: P) Unless it was a recall done by the first owner. I purchased the car in 2009, with 60k miles. It now has 134k. I have a very "stiff" front suspension, and it seems to bottom out to the bottom pan if I hit a speed "hump" not "bump" too quickly. RFront especially. I figured this could possibly be due to the DRC being low of pressure, and therefore lack of shock damping. I brought it into Audi, and they wanted $500 for a DRC fluid swap/refill/recharge. I was fine with this but then they said the upper control arm bushings were torn, this needed removal of the shock to replace, and needed to be done prior to recharge. All other suspension components looked perfect, including zero visually detectable DRC leaks. To replace the upper control arms, they wanted $1800. Roughly $250 per arm, and 4 hours to R & R. I have done upper control arms before and was a little taken aback by the number. However, I have not done uppers on an RS6 with DRC.

    Before I get scrap the DRC comments, can I get some feedback as to the following:

    - Is it is possible to R&R upper control arms without disconnecting the DRC?
    - If the DRC has to be disconnected, what is the safe method for doing so?

    The car would then be flat bedded back to the dealer for recharge.

    Comments?

    Thanks!

    PS - Audi said the very worn front control bushings could cause the bottoming out. Not sure how. I am sure that all of my suspension components are original. This car has not been driven hard. At all.
    Daytona/Ebony/Carbon/SEE/RNS-E/19X9 Speedline "Peelers"

  2. #2
    Registered User hahnmgh63's Avatar
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    Upper control Arms on the RS6 are no different than any other Audi, same exact arms as any facelift A6/S6 C5. You can get a complete Meyle HD or TRW upper control arm kit (4 arms) for under $200. Don't need to touch the DRC while doing the upper arms. The one pinch bolt on the outside and the inner bolts are supposed to be renewed as they are one time use stretch bolts. With that said I have reused the inner bolts at least once but I've always replaced the long outer pinch bolt.
    2003 White RS6 2013 Midnight Blue S5
    2013 Daytona RS5 2x944 Turbo's 1974 911 w/'91 3.6ltr motor
    Roy, WA

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by hahnmgh63 View Post
    Upper control Arms on the RS6 are no different than any other Audi, same exact arms as any facelift A6/S6 C5. You can get a complete Meyle HD or TRW upper control arm kit (4 arms) for under $200. Don't need to touch the DRC while doing the upper arms. The one pinch bolt on the outside and the inner bolts are supposed to be renewed as they are one time use stretch bolts. With that said I have reused the inner bolts at least once but I've always replaced the long outer pinch bolt.
    Agreed here...can be done without disconnecting DRC...I can't imagine Audi doing it without following the "book" to the letter, or at least what they tell you on the other side of the wall at the service center. You could probably find an Indy shop that works on Audis to do this for much less if you don't want to do it yourself. Four hours is more than fair on time, as it may take you longer at home working with jacks and taking your time, but I'm sure the hourly rate at Audi is through the roof.

    Now for your main issue of bottoming out, not sure what the cause there and I can't imagine that worn bushings would give you that much extra motion. Fluid wise on the DRC, I don't know enough about this...regular gas charged shocks or struts do wear out over time even without leaking, but not sure if there is a gas charge on these or not (doubt it though).

    I will say that my local dealership is a bunch of clowns...couldn't even come close to doing a wheel alignment correctly in 4 hours. Had to take it to NGP to get it perfect in 45 minutes.

    I will also say that I am extremely happy with my 2Bennett coilovers...I picked up a set from a forum member (Chase) that had been on the shelf for 7 years never installed, they are a joy to drive with...well balanced for the RS6 spec with their specifically valved Koni shocks and custom wound springs (plus trick spherical top mounts). Also height adjustable and a touch lower than stock is perfect.

    Lastly, my DRC was shot when I got my car, so I've never driven on a functional DRC suspension...maybe others will chime in if it's worth the effort to salvage?

  4. #4
    Registered User nistah's Avatar
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    I thought the DRC was a great system while it lasted for me, then, when DRC gave me issues I replaced all control arms, upgraded to Hotchkiss sways F&R, Upgraded to koni Yellow sports and the car drives better than before more responsive and less prone to failure & feature lifetime
    Warranty on Koni yellow sports , forget the DRC once it fails you are throwing good money after bad projects my .02
    Current: Black Pearl Metallic Effect/Ebony, RNS-E, Euro + pedals, oCarbon, Hotchkiss Front & Rear Sway Bars, Koni Yellow's

  5. #5
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    Thanks guys, I was able to replace the upper control arms (original to car) pretty easily. What a bunch of malarkey from the dealership that the strut had to be removed. And….I did this on jackstands. (Getting too old for that shit.) Biggest issue was buying two 16mm wrenches that were customized with a MAP gas torch to best hold the forward inboard nut for proper torque. Suspension compressed of course. Car does seem to drive better. Though the upper control arm in question by the dealer mechanic was torn, it didn’t seem to be so whack to cause the bottoming out symptoms I describe above. Now to get the DRC recharged and see what happens. Thanks again.
    Daytona/Ebony/Carbon/SEE/RNS-E/19X9 Speedline "Peelers"

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