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The article below describes how I replaced the front wishbone bushes on my Audi S2 Coupe.

No responsisbilty is accepted for anyone attempting this procedure by following the steps contained in these pages. This is intended as a guide only and all usual precautions should be heeded when attempting work on a motor vehicle. I cannot be held responsible for any damage sustained as a result of using these pages.

There are two different types of wishbone bushes fitted to the Audi S2 and the type fitted depends on the type of wishbones fitted. Up to chassis 8B-R-005000, the wishbones were forged and use the larger 45mm wishbone bush 893 407 181. After this chassis, the wishbones reverted to the pressed type and used a 35mm diameter bush 8A0 407 181.

My car actually had mixed wishbones with a pressed on the drivers side and a forged on the other side. Taking the wishbones from my scrapped S2, I was able to fit two forged arms with new bushes. This procedure describes the replacement of the larger 45mm bushes. The method for replacing the smaller ones is the same, although different tools are needed. Replacement parts needed are as follows:

1. Replacement wishbone bushes x 4 893 407 181 or 8A0 407 181 (see notes above)
2. Replacement locknuts for wishbone bush bolts x 4 [N 021 195 5]
3. Replacement locknuts for ball joint pinchbolt x 2 [N 021 195 5]
4. Replacement wishbone bush bolts x 4 [N 904 893 01]
5. Replacement ball joint pinch bolts [N 034 778 4]

Tools needed are as follows:

1. 17 mm sockets / ratchets / spanners (several)
2. Ball joint separator
3. Wishbone bush removal tools (see later)

Remove the alloy centre cap, loosen the bolts on
the road wheel,and jack the car up.
Secure the car on an axle stand and remove the 5 bolts
securing the wheel. Remove the wheel and place to
one side.

Using a pair of 17mm sockets with ratchets / spanners,
loosen the pinch bolt (arrowed) and nut which holds
the ball joint in the base of the strut. With the
nut off, the bolt can be knocked out. The bolt can
be reused, providing the threads are not damaged.
The nut should NOT be reused and is to be discarded.

Use an angled 17mm spanner in conjunction with a 17mm
socket / ratchet to remove the bolts holding the wishbone
to the subframe. There are two bolts, front and rear
as arrowed. Removing the under engine cover helps to access
the rear bolt head. Once undone, the nuts and bolts should be discarded as they are not reusable.

Use a ball joint seperator to remove the
ball joint from the slot in the strut.
With the ball joint out, the wishbone and
ball joint should drop down and can be withdrawn.
The wishbone may need some gentle persuasion
before it drops.

Removing the old wishbone bushes is not straightforward
as they are pressed into the wishbones. The official Audi
tool requires a hydraulic press for removal and insertion.

With no access to one, I used the following setup to
press them out.

1. 32 mm socket. Important dimension for this is outside diameter of 45mm which matches the bush precisely
2. Subframe washers
3. 2.5" threaded pipe / cap
4. M10 threaded rod / M10 nuts

Before starting, drill a hole in the centre of the cap. The hole must be large enough for the M10 threaded rod to pass through.

Place an M10 nut and a subframe washer at one end of the rod and pass the rod through the cap. Place this over the wide end of the wishbone bush. On the other end of the bush place the 32mm socket with subframe washer and another M10 nut. Start tightening the nut at the socket end. The socket should line up exactly with the edge of the wishbone bush. As you tighten, ensure the threaded pipe is held against the small stop on the wishbone. The socket should gradually push the bush through the wishbone and out the other side into the pipe.

New bushes (2) can be refitted in a similar way but it is important not to damage the rubber on the new bushes. I therefore use an old top strut mount (3) which protects the new bush. In the picture here, the threaded pipe and cap (1) are 2". This setup lines up with the wishbone exactly and is easier to use.

With the new bushes installed, replace the wishbone and ball joint assembly using new nuts and bolts. The ball joint has a groove, which should line up with the hole for the pinch bolt pass through. The head of the pinch bolt points in the direction of travel of the vehicle. The nuts and bolts should only be partially tightened while the car is in the air. Full tightening torque is to be applied with the car on the ground. Failure to observe this instruction will result in damage to the new bushes and lead to premature failure.

After fitting the road wheel, the full torque can be applied to the nuts and bolts on the ball joint and wishbone. With one side complete, the same procedure can be followed for the other side of the car. Upon completion of this job a full 4 wheel alignment is strongly recommended, although the car should cover 1000km / 650 miles to allow the new parts to settle before getting the check done.

DescriptionTightening Torque
Ball joint pinch bolt / nut50 Nm
Wishbone bolt / nut40 Nm + 180 degrees
Wheel Bolt 110 Nm