When should I replace the cam belt on my Audi A3?

My Audi A3 1.4 TFSi is now five years old and has covered 50,000 miles. I took it in for its cam belt change today and my local dealer has now advised me that the technical guidance has now changed and the cam belt is good for another 75,000 miles or 10 years. I’m assuming the new guidance is based on reviews of belts and their condition on an ongoing basis. But I was a little concerned when the dealer said some customers had still proceeded with the cam belt change, despite the new guidance. I think the idea of leaving it for another 75K miles seems extreme but would be grateful for your view about its replacement. I usually take an Audi annual warranty out and presume if the technical guidance has changed this would still cover me if it failed?
Most cam belt failures we hear about happened after 60,000 miles or five years (which is why we recommend this as a replacement interval).

Your Audi dealer may recommend a belt change at 125,000 miles or ten years, but who will be responsible for paying for the wrecked engine if the belt, tensioner or pulley fails before then?

If the dealer is so confident about their new technical guidance then ask them to provide a written guarantee that confirms they will cover all repair costs if the belt fails before then (they'll refuse, which means you'll be required to pick up the considerable cost if the worst happens).

It's possible the extended warranty may cover a cam belt failure, but cover levels tend to vary from policy to policy. I would urge you to check this with the warranty company before taking out the policy.
Answered by Dan Powell on

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