A £31k bill to repair a gearbox – but not with us!

Firstly, do not worry. This is not our bill, we have never charged £31,000 to repair a gearbox or transmission.

Instead, we were alerted to this eye-watering story, a car owner who was hit with this huge bill when they took their beloved Audi in for a service.


Now, Audis are nice cars, but you would typically expect the car to be worth less than £31k, let alone the gearbox. Used A3 and A4s are very common on the roads, and these often in the 10k to 20k range.

However, this was a 2017 Audi R8 Spyder Quattro V10 – the car costing close to £90k.

What then happened is something of a tale of woe.

An initial service cost close to £5,000, this for some ‘minor repairs’ and four new tyres. They’re not cheap specialist Audi tyres…

However, the engine continued to make a noise and it went into the local Audi specialist.

They diagnosed that a new gearbox was required, and the bill was this £31,000 fee. The gearbox alone was £29,000 of this, so it’s not as if the money was going on labour or profits for the garage.

What makes this story particularly galling is that it is claimed that the fee comes because the engine had been modified – something the owner claims to be unaware of. Had it not been modified, the part would have been replaced for free.

Of course, it may be that had it not been modified, the issue would not have materialised. Not having seen the engine, car or gearbox in question it is impossible to say much with confidence.

Naturally we cannot comment on the bill itself – it is worth noting that Audi UK agrees with the diagnosis of the local Audi branch.

What can we learn from this? Well, it is perhaps unfair to suggest that buying rare versions of cars for huge amounts might lead to problems down the line.

We also can’t definitively say don’t use main dealers. However, we would like to have seen the gearbox in question to run our expert eye over it.

Could a repair have been undertaken more affordably? Would a quality refurbished unit have been a superb option at a fraction of the cost?

There are Audi experts and there are gearbox experts – we are very much the latter – focussing on gearboxes and so having knowledge across all makes. The car owner in question went the route of choosing the make specialist, when choosing the part specialist might perhaps have been better. It would certainly have been worth considering – 31 grand is a lot to be spending.

If you are ever faced with gearbox repair bills that make your eyes water, please do contact us.


At North West Transmissions we repair gearboxes or source replacement with guaranteed refurbished units.

A family-run business, we have a truly superb reputation, this shown by our 4.9 out of 5 average rating from dozens of reviews on Google.

All reconditioned gearboxes come with guarantees for 12 months or 12,000 miles while reconditioned automatic units come with a re-manufactured torque converter that has a lifetime guarantee.

Our technicians are all highly skilled with vast experience in reconditioning and repairing all units – importantly their efficiency helps cut down the price of repairs and so too the cost.

Gearbox problems are all-too common. If you find yourself in need of a repair or reconditioned unit, that often being the more economical option in the long term, please contact us.

Call us on 0151 933 0257 or use our Contact Form.