Why has the timing chain snapped on my 2011 Audi A3 after only 45,000 miles?

I have a 2011 Audi A3 1.8 TFSI, which has done less than 45,000 miles. It went into limp mode and I've just been informed by the Audi garage that the timing chain has snapped. As a result, I need to pay for a new timing belt, tensioner and cylinder plus associated parts. This will cost me £4900 and the local dealership will give me 30 per cent as a goodwill gesture. Please could you provide any clarity as to why this would happen on such a low mileage car?

Asked on 9 February 2018 by Sarah Bell

Answered by Honest John
The quality of the timing chains in EA211 1.2 TSI and 1.4 TSI engines was variable. The reason was that Volkswagen Group cut the price it was prepared to pay the manufacturer of the chains. So the chain manufacturer extended the working life of its link stamping tools. The result was that if you got a chain with links stamped out late in the life of the stamping tool it could be prone to early failure. Since it's completely unpredictable whether you get a good chain or a bad one these engine are a lottery. Volkswagen Group then abandoned chains and switched the engines over to belts, which happened gradually between 2012 and 2015.
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