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Discussion Starter #1
How do, newbie here.

I'm looking for an update/current position regarding having a retro fitted tow bar fitted to a 2013 Q3. I know this was covered before, but I'm interested to know if anyone has found an Audi dealer who doesn't wear a mask when it comes to their tow bar prices? The wife called our local dealership and was quoted £1500 and told it would take 7 hours! Looking around the Internet, there appear to be kits available and companies who will fit them, including 13 pin Audi wiring, for circa £600/£700 whose fitters/mechanics won't serve their time doing it.
What are others' experiences and have any Q3 owners in the Glasgow area had a tow bar fitted by a company they would recommend?

Cheers.
 

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Paul, check out the prices of the bars on PF Jones' website and then see what they charge for a mobile fitter (depending on the style of bar you want), you then have a benchmark to judge local companies by...
If none of the local companies are competitive you can always use the mobile service from PF Jones.

We had a westfalia removable bar fitted with dedicated Audi 13 pin wiring loom for a very reasonable price (£490) and it works flawlessly. Just make sure the fitter has a diagnostic machine to code the car afterwards. Our chap was done in about 3 hours...
 

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The Audi £1500 tow bar is significantly different to the removable tow bar.

It folds away, completely out of sight under the bumper. Even if you look under the car for it, you cannot see it - very neat.
It is operated by a hidden lever in the boot with an associated light.
RED = unlocked
GREEN = locked (either in the stowed away position, or the towing position)

I didn't want my Q3 'ruined' by an unsightly tow bar, so went for this option.
My pal at work has the removable version on his A4, and he won't be getting one again after seeing the more expensive option.

I paid Audi £1000 to retro fit mine.
To me it is money well spent on a £30k vehicle, but at the end of the day the removable version tows whatever you want equally well.
 

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To be fair BP. the £490 westfalia option is completely invisible when not installed. You do have a bit of metal in the boot to click into place when you want to tow something which is not as near as the Audi option with a lever to deploy the bar, however I have another £510 to spend in what I choose and as you say, they both tow equally as well.
 

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Can I just add my 2 bobs worth ( showing my age there)

I had the factory installed retractable towbar fitted when I ordered my Q3 and I must say its worth every penny, the mechanics of it are superb, If I can find a way of uploading a video of it I will post here on this thread.

Be warned though, the wiring is slightly different from the UK 13 pin wiring, I think Audi only wire 11 of their pins, they wanted to charge me and extra £125 or so for the relevant UK wiring loom, obviously after threatening to cancel the order they fitted it for nothing.
 

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Forgot to add, if you factory order its about £600-£700, check the brochure for thecorrect price, it works exactly how Black pudding has explained.
 

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Hi Gary

I agree. If you add it as an option it is worth the money for a factory fit. I usually go with a factory solution but we bought the q3 as a dealer ordered model so did not have this option.

Regarding the 13 pin wiring, Audi provide the EU standard which is one permanent live for the socket. In the UK we use 2, 1 permanent live and then a second switched live for the fridge etc. you need a relay and a bit of knowledge then you an add this in less than 10 minutes at a cost of the relay (approx £2.50). My installer did this for me free of charge :)
 

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Hi,
I have a 2013 Q3, and because we bought the model in the showroom, it was too late to get the tow bar fitted. Our dealer recommended a local guy, and we got a detachable tow bar fitted with all the electrics, that complies with and maintains our Audi warranty, for just under the £500. it's only for bike racks etc so the 13 pin may be more expensive on the electrics front. Has your dealer recommended anyone locally? They may not say they do 'officially', but unofficially they must know the right guy to go to locally.
And the whole thing was fitted in under 3 hours.
good luck!
 

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Hi, I too am having murders with my local dealership concerning the extra 2 pins to function in tow bar electrics.
I know the Germans won't allow it but I notice one or two here on the forum saying that the dealership can in fact add that second bit of loom to make it fully functional on my Q3, does anyone have any further info on this so I can take it to my selling dealer?

Thank you.
 

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I had my towbar fitted after market, but talking to my local dealer technician. He said that they fit the 2 cables required at no costas part of the service. Hope that helps

 

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Thanks, can you tell me who you spoke to at what dealership? Audi Nottingham seem clueless in this respect and I need to get them to speak with someone who is familiar with the issue.

Cheers.
 

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Had all this grief with my A3 as the extra wiring was also missing on the factory fitted tow bar. My local dealers never made it work correctly and after 1 year of struggle I gave up. Now i am fitting the Audi bar and electrics i need to understand what has to be done to make the leisure battery charging work correctly, is there an extra loom or do you just add a big cable and a relay?
 

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Hi, from current experience you need to be careful with after fit as
the cars ecu needs to recognise the wiring, my local dealer is ordering
the relay and wiring now and fitting FOC, the normal 13 pin plug is not
wired for split charger and battery.

I am having mine done on monday so will let you know.

P.S. mine is a factory fit t/bar.
 

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Hi. Most good private towbar fitting companies will sort out your wiring issues at a small charge. I had mine fitted by local company, only took a couple of hours. Westfavia kit was used which what Audi use, they programmed it with no issues. The issue I had is when Audi updated the software on my car it didn't see my towbar, so I had to take it back to towbar man to reinstall it again. Bit of a faf but no problems really.
 

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Bazza D said:
<div ="msg"="">
Hi, from current experience you need to be careful with after fit as
the cars ecu needs to recognise the wiring, my local dealer is ordering
the relay and wiring now and fitting FOC, the normal 13 pin plug is not
wired for split charger and battery.

I am having mine done on monday so will let you know.

P.S. mine is a factory fit t/bar.
Yes I already know they need to reprogram the ECU to see the tow bar electrics, but we have organised that with the company who are also doing our folding mirrors
Be really good to know if this is an Audi approved loom they are fitting, please let me know
 

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So the fitting of the tow bar went well, it took me about 3 hours to do. You don't need to follow the instructions and remove the rear seats just make sure you remove the fixings from the inner rear quarter trims.
Toughest part was getting the arch trims unclipped from the rear bumper cover. Now that I know what I am doing I could fit the tow bar in under 2 hours.
Interestingly Audi and the dealers told me i needed a bracket and fixings for the electronic controller unit which I didn't. If you do want to check you can easily look as it is above the OSR wheel arch just in front of the jack.
Next steps are to get the electronics codded which I hope to get done soon.
As for the tow bar itself, it is the most wonderful bit of engineering and the way it swings out with no effort is quite incredible. Is it worth the money? **** yes.....

As for the reprogramming for the folding door mirrors, the company said £40+VAT
 
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