This is what my wife found in our 2011 Q5 3.2 Premium Plus today. Following an all night and all morning soaking rain, the entire passenger side floor is covered in rainwater. It's leaking in behind the center stack, coming out as a small rivulet in the upper left corner of the passenger footwell area.



Beautiful, isn't it?

What's even more awesome is that this is now the fourth time this has been spotted in our Q5 in the last two months.

Rewind to the beginning of the ordeal and we discovered water under the passenger side floor mat on a few occasions and then the AC died in the car. Putting the two things together, we assumed (wrongly, it turns out) that this was AC condensation leaking on to the floor and that the system had a clogged drain. Since we also noticed water coming in on that fateful morning when we moved the vehicle after it had sat out in the rain, we thought perhaps a drain was clogged that did dual duty. We talked to Audi Customer Care to get a case started and then made a service appointment.

The first trip to the Audi dealer in Annapolis turned up the usual: no loaner car, no parts available and it would have to come back in. Since it was over 100º, the service manager did get his team to get some very basic cooling working for my wife.

A week later, parts were in and my wife took the car back for repair and got a loaner. We both let the dealership and Customer Care know that the car could stay as long as needed to truly assess the problem and had our blessing to fully soak the vehicle to double check. The dealership took a few days, replaced the AC motor and blower fan unit (we were told) and said all was well.

Until the next rain storm, when the floor was soaked yet again.

Since the AC was still working, we knew that this could not be condensation. Customer Care got another call and another appointment was made, this time with a driver to get the vehicle and drop off a loaner. A few days went by and the determination that the cowl cover for the rain water drainage under hood was not adhered properly and would be replaced with a new part. The car was returned again with the promise that all was well.

And this was what we found this morning:



Throughout this process, we have made very clear to Audi Customer Care that we are not comfortable with the fact that standing water has been in the vehicle off and on for over two months (that we've noticed) and that this could lead to a) problems with all center stack components plus mold, mildew and corrosion in the footwell and b) that this would make for a resale nightmare. We find this entire experience to be completely unacceptable for a $50K+ vehicle that's been well cared for and is only 1 and a half years old.

So now my question is: beyond Customer Care, what can I do to escalate this case and get a conversation started about vehicle replacement? What would you long-time Audi folks recommend?