Replacing Rear Beam Bushes On A 2001 Audi A3 (8L)
First, jack the car up and place it onto axle stands. Remove both rear wheels for ease of access. It’s possible to replace the bushes with the rear beam still attached to the car, though more tricky - removing the (probably original) bushes can be a pain. Make sure the handbrake cable is disconnected on both sides and disconnect the rear brake lines and ABS sensors. Once everything has been removed, make sure to support the rear beam and then begin removing the bolts from each side situated just in front of the rear arch liners. If removing the entire beam, unbolt it from where it attaches to the rear shocks on both sides and it should now be free.
You should now be able to access the old bushes. The original bushes are metal-cased, which means they’re likely now rusted into place, so expect them to be a pain to remove! In this instance, they were removed via the help of a blowtorch to burn away the rubber inner, remove the metal sleeve with tongs, then hacksaw at the metal outer and use a chisel to chip it away. Once you’ve got a section removed, the rest should follow much easier. Expect this bit to be nasty!
Now you can replace the bushes themselves. With standard replacement bushes, this is an absolute pig of a job - the new bushes tend to be plastic-cased with an overall diameter that’s larger than the original, meaning that the bushes need to be compressed hugely to be put in. There’s an official tool to do this - but it’s not cheap, and without it, it’s a horrible job. Having struggled and failed at doing this for many hours, with the result being a half-fitted bush that would not budge any further, the SuperPro bushes are a pleasure in comparison!
The SuperPro bushes come in two parts along with the metal inner sleeve. In comparison to the nasty job of fitting standard bushes, the SuperPro ones can be fitted by hand. Make sure you’ve got them the right way round, with the tapered end facing towards the outside (the inner bush is handily marked as such to help!) and gently tap them in with a hammer/mallet to ensure a tight fit. Easy!
Use some of the supplied grease to lube up the metal sleeve and insert this into the bush. Do this on both sides of the beam
Now the bushes are fitted to the beam, it’s a case of getting it back onto the car. If you removed the entire beam, it’s helpful to connect up the bolts on the shocks first to aid with positioning and taking some of the weight off. Make sure you support the weight of the beam with a jack, line everything up and replace the bolt through the bush on both sides. Make sure both bolts are tightly done up, then replace the handbrake cable, brake lines and ABS sensors. Job done!
The result was actually quite surprising - the amount of difference those two bushes have made is huge!
The same also applies to the Audi TT Mk1, SEAT Ibiza Mk2, 3 and 4, SEAT Leon and Toledo 1M, Skoda Fabia (up to 2014), Skoda Octavia, Skoda Roomster, VW Beetle 9C1 / 1C1, VW Bora, VW Fox, VW Golf Mk4 and Polo Mk4 9N.