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  1. #1
    MikeA3's Avatar
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    Are good S3's really hard to find?

    As per the title,

    I've been looking for an S3 for about two months and seen about ten so far, some are well kept with the interior in good condition and the exterior also very clean but are then let down by the service history (or lack of)

    Others have a good service history but are let down by the condition of the car.

    and some are just plain cr@p IMO

    As an example, I looked at a 2001 (y) plate the other week, the website photos showed that externally, it was in good condition & had a good spec & and when the dealer told me it had been modified (mapped, porsche brakes & suspension) I was keen to see it.

    BUT.. when i arrived, the dealer explained that he didn't have any record of who did any of the mods. When inside the car most of the switches were so scratched the white primer underneath was showing and in the service history there was a bill for 2500 for a new head gasket -

    - I just walked away laughing when he asked for 10k for it

    So, am i asking the impossible here? - are good S3's really that hard to find? - Just out of interest how long did other S3 owners take to find your car and what was the selling point when you found it?

    Mike

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  3. #2
    mk1chopper's Avatar
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    service history isnt everything as i found out, mine appeared to have a full audi service history but it turned out the last stamp had some how been faked, i.e. when i called audi about it they had no record of the car ever being worked on. I bought my S3 becuase it was well priced for the milage age and options. After finding out about the fake stamp i've since had my cam belt, aux belt and water pump changed at jabba sport and its going in for its longlife service on saturday. I havnt had any problems with my S3, its not perfect, its got the odd stone ship on the bonnet and there is slight bubbling coming up on the roof drainage channels, its a w reg (2000) which had 78k on the clock when i got it 12 months mot, heated seats and arm rest. I paid 8250 for it. I'd viewed 2 others and some a3 1.8t before i got this one. At the end of the day your buying a second hand car so you cant exspect it to be perfect, but you still want to get the most for your money.

  4. #3
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    IMO, yes they are, there's some real **** out there.

    and then when you do try and sell a good one for a reasonable price, people ***** about it being overpriced, quoting xx from the autotrader.

    To get a really tidy 2002 low milage example, well maintained and loved, expect to pay about 14k.

    Its after looking at some private S3's that i decided to raid the piggy bank and buy an audi-approved from a dealership. The warranty was then used to rectify almost £2000 of niggles without question.


  5. #4
    [Dave B]'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by madvw
    To get a really tidy 2002 low milage example, well maintained and loved, expect to pay about 14k.
    Completely agree with this, I spent three months looking for my current car which I bought in January. It was a very tidy example and I only ended up paying 13.5 because the 40k service was due, so all in all it cost me about 14k.
    > S3 225 (03) - OEM+
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  6. #5
    Blunteh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mk1chopper
    I havnt had any problems with my S3, its not perfect, its got the odd stone ship on the bonnet and there is slight bubbling coming up on the roof drainage channels
    Audi are paying for this to be fixed on mine.... if I haven't said it before... get down to an Audi dealer and get them to fix it under the corrosion warrenty !

    I paid 14k for my S3 a year ago and it's a 2001, I paid over the odds as it was pretty mint. You never know though, I've ended up having to replace all the tires, an airbag unit, the ECU, both headlight motors, ARBs, wishbones, etc. etc. etc.
    Nogaro Blue 2001 S3 - Revo Remap (Stage1) - Hyperboost DV - Neuspeed 22mm + 19mm ARBs

  7. #6
    Aky
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    I got mine quite cheap. The paintwork is a little scabby on the rear quarter & both bumpers. The garage gave me £350 to get it sorted so I'm happy. 2002 S3 - £12700 minus £350. At least it will be mint when it comes to selling it.

  8. #7
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    I totally agree too. I spent 7 months finding mine and saw god knows how many and covered god knows how many miles. Finally bought 2 weeks ago off an independant - Mid 2002, multi function steering wheel, sunroof, sat nav, bose etc half alcantara blue, 2 owners, 52k full Audi history £12,500 with 3 yrs full warranty (well as close as you can get to Audi). I have a couple of concerns with her though for e.g. its pulling to the right so either needs 4 wheel alignment (quote £100 for Audi yesterday, discounted £25) or track rods ends, they resprayed the front and rear bumpers but didnt flat it back properly and they didnt get the water pump changed with cambelt. Also discovered yesterday something else but i am waiting to get legal advice before posting it up on here...

  9. #8
    jamiekip
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    I spent about 4 months looking for mine, right condition, right sepc etc. I set myself a checklist of the 'must haves' and bought the on closest to that list!
    I guess the toughest thing buying used is triking the balance between what options you'd liek and the mechanical/physical state of the car. I had to make a few compromises on mine, but fealt good knowing the car was mint!

    My view would always be to buy a standard car - even if you want to mod it in the future.

    Agree with one of the comments above - i'm selling mine at the moment (feel greedy having 2 S3's!!!) and I'm getting quite frustrated at having to drop the price for what I consider to be a loved example. It has had every piece of work done (by Audi!) to it when or before required, it's had the interior and paint looked after - it's in really good condition - but people keep offering silly low prices!

    It's in my sig if you're interested!!!

    JK

  10. #9
    MikeA3's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the advice guys - keep it coming

    To be honest it is somewhat disheartening looking at all these poor examples - i know everyones different when it comes to keeping their car but even so i'd have hoped for a little more TLC to be visible on a car like this.

    Jamie - your S3 looks very nice - fairly close to me too, the only problem is i need to sell my A3 TDI to fund the new car (unless you want a TDI 130? - according to one member here there faster than S3's anyway )

    Mike

  11. #10
    jamiekip
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    Thanks Mike - When you're in a position to buy check to see if mines still around - worth a look at least eh!

    Good luck with your ongoing search - good one's are out there!!!

  12. #11
    S3QuattroDrift's Avatar
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    I bought mine on an impulse. Passing Bexley Audi on way home from work at 06:30, stopped to have a quick look and by 10:00am it was to be mine. I'm sure i paid over the odds but in 12 months it has only cost me super unleaded and cleaning. The only things to fail were a heated mirror (replaced under warranty) and the aircon needed a service as it wasn't very cold which they did for £50 after i had it for 9 months (didn't realise it didn't get that cold over the winter months).
    The only car i have ever kept a whole year!!!!!!!!!!!!

  13. #12
    silver75's Avatar
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    IMO spend under 10k and your bound to get some dodgy ones

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  14. #13
    james0808's Avatar
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    Ive been looking at S3's for a couple of months too and all the ones ive seen have have been poor examples.
    The only good one ive seen wasnt for sale,cheers broomes3.

  15. #14
    jamiekip
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    Hmmm, just cause it's under £10k does not mean it will be a rough car!
    Mine is under £10k is in mint condition, is well looked after but I'm finding it hard to shift. I think it's at that age/price. I know it'll make a great car for someone - think I just need to work a little harder at moving it on!

    I think the other thing is people compare prices on autotrader.co.uk and immediately assume that they should all be the same price - hence those priced a bit higher get little interest - when you're spending that much money on a 2nd hand car though surely people want piece of mind????

  16. #15
    james0808's Avatar
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    True,I was surprised how many had virtually no history.

  17. #16
    jamiekip
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    The used car market is a mine field - before I bit the bullet and bought mine brand new, I was looking at late 'old' S3's on a 53 plate. These at the time (last Ocotber) we're still up at the best part of £17,500 and some of the private one's I looked at were knackered. I couldn't help but look at mine, then the 3 year younger one and laugh! The sad fact is that a lot of people really don't care about their wheels - they want the image and 'pose' factor, but aren't prepared to spend an hour at the weekend keeping it clean or a day every 3 months to really keep it looking special and protected!
    It's sad, but just means that as time goes on finding a good 'un get's ahrder and harder.
    That's what's frustrating me with selling mine - the rubbish one's on sale a re actually driving the price of mine down - how much does that suck!!!

    Anwyay, if anyone knows of anyone looking for a nice S3 send them the links out of my sig!

    Interesting thread this one!

    JK

  18. #17
    RussUK's Avatar
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    I looked at few at dealers and some were tatty. You get that with all cars.

    My car has been garaged most of it's life and well looked after, proud to say it is a mint condition one.
    REVO remap - Porsche 993 TT front brakes - Koni shocks/MTM springs - Neuspeed front and rear ARBs - Revised Haldex ECU - Updated Dirvertor valve

  19. #18
    ADP
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    Its like any car, finding a good one (in your budget) always takes time. You sometimes have to make a compromise - in my case I bought a 210, but it was a great price, very tidy and was loaded on the options front. The 225s of the same age were 2k or more on top, and at a dealer the same car was 4k more, couldnt see the point.

    I paid 9500 for a 51 210bhp, needed tyres and tax. 60k miles, fsh, bose, heated seats, dip mirror, sunroof, 6 CD, full leather, black, cam done. the same car was 13.5k at Audi
    Last edited by ADP; 25th April 2007 at 17:24.

  20. #19
    RD350YPVS - Loves 2 stroke oil

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    I've recently bought my S3, its a 52 reg, 1 owner from new, full audi service history all at the same dealer, michelin tyres all round, paid 9000 for it.

    It had a new cylinder head 9 months ago due to a snapped cambelt at a cost of 2120.

    Quite high mileage at 93k but high mileage does not mean bad car just like low mileage is not always a good car.

  21. #20
    joe6886's Avatar
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    I bought the first one I viewed. Got it for a good price, its low mileage, good condition, everything up to date. Depends on the budget, you can't expect to get into the S3 market for peanuts, or expect a decent example for peanuts.

  22. #21
    StaffsS3's Avatar
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    I always buy privately. After looking at one from an independant, 52 plate with 90k (11,995), I then found mine a late 2001 51 plate with 51k and FASH. The guy was asking 11,750. He did however come down to 10,700 as I pointed out that it was a 210 BHP model (wasn't really bothered as it's now chipped to 265) and not a later 225 BHP. It also needed a copule of small parking dints done which I got sorted for 70.00. Apart from that I was happy as I got a 1 owner well specced car that had just had a 900.00 cambelt service. He even let me have a new set of discs!! The car now looks mint. They are out there, you just need to look hard and haggle!!
    "We don't do these things to escape life, but to stop life escaping us"

  23. #22
    edward_harris's Avatar
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    i looked at two the first one was really crap, then the second one was mint! been looked after so well! it was so good infact that adam from Amd said it was one of the best he had seen!

  24. #23
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    Go for a late import model, all the toys, sunroofs too!

    I have seen mint 53 plate imports with full history for less than £13k!

  25. #24
    Audi S3 (2000)

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    FSH dont mean much IMO,

    though i have an audi history - i recently found out it had been resprayed to the rear (not in the history)

    theres nothing stoping people picking over the bad history and removing it etc.

    I think next time i would but from audi for the warrenty. though i have to say i have had no major issues whatsoever with mine which was a private sale

    clean inside and out - 2000 model 73k on clock. 8.5k

    all i could push to at the time

  26. #25
    silver75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jamiekip
    Hmmm, just cause it's under 10k does not mean it will be a rough car!
    Didnt say that.
    Im saying with 10 grand you will be looking at older higher millage examples and there will be more dodgy examples kicking about.
    I personally would only buy from a dealer with the warranty.
    The amount of warranty work I have had done to my A3 since I bought it would have sent me under if I had to pay for it myself.
    Thats just me though...

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  27. #26
    Blunteh's Avatar
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    Fair point... although I've had to pay out for around 1500 worth of work that would have been covered by a warrenty.... But at the time S3s of the same age/milage/options were about 3 grand more expensive from an Audi dealer and 2 grand more from non Audi dealers.

    So I've saved by paying myself.
    Nogaro Blue 2001 S3 - Revo Remap (Stage1) - Hyperboost DV - Neuspeed 22mm + 19mm ARBs

  28. #27
    jamiekip
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    Or you can just use warranty direct - £35 a month and has covered anything my car has needed doing!!!
    Incidentally mine comes with a warrenty - any takers :-)

  29. #28
    silver75's Avatar
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    the guy who started this thread lives in epson as is looking for an S3

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  30. #29
    MikeA3's Avatar
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    Interesting reading the posts on here - seems quite a few members have picked up their cars for under 10k - i'm presuming these are private sales?

    Personally i was looking at buying from a dealers (either audi & non-audi) as i'd have more comeback if things go wrong but they only offer a cr@p trade in price for my current car which i'm not willing to do.

    I suppose one way around it would be to buy privately and then get a warranty added for 6 months to sort out any issues that crop up - not sure if thats possible though?

    Quote Originally Posted by S3-ROB
    I've recently bought my S3, its a 52 reg, 1 owner from new, full audi service history all at the same dealer, michelin tyres all round, paid 9000 for it.

    It had a new cylinder head 9 months ago due to a snapped cambelt at a cost of 2120.

    Quite high mileage at 93k but high mileage does not mean bad car just like low mileage is not always a good car.
    - S3-Rob, you didn't get this from merton park motor company did you? - I really hope it's not as that was the shocker i looked at 2 weeks ago

    Mike

  31. #30
    RD350YPVS - Loves 2 stroke oil

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    S3-Rob, you didn't get this from merton park motor company did you? - I really hope it's not as that was the shocker i looked at 2 weeks ago
    No mate, it was a private sale from an american guy in Nottingham

    P.S. i've had the car a month now

  32. #31
    Dave B's Avatar
    REALITY?.... WHERE AM I AGAIN?.... WHO AM I AGAIN?

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    I looked for mine for approximately 2 days came across a good one and snaped it up 03 35k "F£££ASH" bought it at trade saved me £2.5k which i have now spenf on a service £508 and a new window GGRRRRRRr £200 4 tyres etc etc how ever the cars mint ! Costs are ll service and scum related
    Silver S3 OE03, PH sticker in Rear Window,

  33. #32
    MikeA3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by S3-ROB
    No mate, it was a private sale from an american guy in Nottingham

    P.S. i've had the car a month now
    Thank FCUK for that - thought i'd been slagging off your new pride and jot there for a second

  34. #33
    Prawn's Avatar
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    when you guys say there are lots of rough S3's out there?

    what exactly do you mean.....

    on a car between 4 and 7 years old your going to expect stone chips and the odd parking ding right? whats sets them out as rough cars? stupidly worn seats and primer showing on the switches? or is just a general feeling of bad condition?

    when i come to buy one in a year or so's time, are there going to be any good ones out there!
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  35. #34
    james0808's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by S3-ROB
    No mate, it was a private sale from an american guy in Nottingham
    Was he a bodybuilder???

  36. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prawn
    on a car between 4 and 7 years old your going to expect stone chips and the odd parking ding right? whats sets them out as rough cars? stupidly worn seats and primer showing on the switches? or is just a general feeling of bad condition?
    Mostly just mis-represented in their descriptions. People saying that they are mint, then finding out half the side is filler, no history, gutless engine, "bad-boy" mods, 120k on original cambelt and waterpump.....

    A loved car will not have parking dings, they will be repaired, and the stone chips will be filled in every once in a while. Seats will still show the cars age and milage though.

    The switches are a funny one. They have a sort of rubberised clear coating that sends to degrade and look rubbish after a while.


  37. #36
    MikeA3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prawn
    when you guys say there are lots of rough S3's out there?

    what exactly do you mean.....

    on a car between 4 and 7 years old your going to expect stone chips and the odd parking ding right? whats sets them out as rough cars? stupidly worn seats and primer showing on the switches? or is just a general feeling of bad condition?

    when i come to buy one in a year or so's time, are there going to be any good ones out there!
    Prawn - from the ones i've looked at it's quite varied - I accept that it's a used car and therefore will have stonechips and the odd scuff here and there - thats normal.

    But, things like major services being missed for over 10,000 miles and missing paperwork in the service history make me wonder what's happened to the car previously?

    I've mainly been looking at dealer cars so far and i suppose you also have to factor in their mark up - i.e a 10,000 car at a dealer probably cost them about 8,000 and the fact that most S3 sellers would want to sell pivately to get a better price so some of the cars offered by dealers will be s3's that wouln't sell for one reason or another.

  38. #37
    RD350YPVS - Loves 2 stroke oil

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    Was he a bodybuilder???
    Not sure but he was a big bloke, looks like he spends a bit of time down the gym?

    Do you think you might know him?

  39. #38
    thinking about stuff

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    Here's my S3 story.

    Started looking in january last year and setout looking for a Black S3 with Silver leather in the 10k price bracket. First car i looked at was T-reg for £10k and 67,000miles from a prestige dealer which was very expensive. On inspecting the car the silver leather was worn out and the car had see lots of paint with overspray in all the shuts. Trader dropped to £9K but i'm a perfectionist and knew i couldn't live with it in that condition.

    The next car was £9k T-reg with 55,000mile and a private sale. The car was much better than the previous one, the silver leather was again heavily worn but not as bad as the other car. Owner seemed genuine and an enthusiast so gave him a cheque and HPI'd the car the next day. Stolen! Cheque cancelled straight away, thank god i didn't give him a deposit.

    Then the car i now own. I'd see it in the trader for a few weeks and not really looked at it because it had blue/black interior and seemed to good to be true at £10,995 with 48k and being a dec 2000 facelift model from a trader. I'd see similar cars going for £12.5-£13k. Went and had a look and it was totally original bar a dump valve. The was a dent in the rear bumper but it was all totally original paint and the service history and mileage tied up. HPI was spot on to. The really clincher was the MOT, the car had previous had a private plate C8HUA. I knew the guy so gave him a ring and everything check out to i got the car for £10,600 but needing a service and rear bumper.

    The car hasn't been without its problems, MAF, turbo, N249 but with the repairs i've got a much better car cheaper than the Audi dealer price. Bit of elbow grease and heres how it looks now. Mint, and i have a string of people wanting first refusal when i sell it.



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  40. #39
    S3Andy's Avatar
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    Mine was a good car

    It was also brought by another forum member

  41. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by S3-ROB
    Not sure but he was a big bloke, looks like he spends a bit of time down the gym?

    Do you think you might know him?
    Might do,he's a right dodgy git.Always got loads of shifty looking people round him and always has a different car,mostly accident repairs,nah not really if its the guy im thinking of hes sound and the car will be also.

 

 
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