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  1. #1
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    TDi 170 vs TDi 140 remapped

    I am changing my car in the new year so thought I would test drive an A3 2.0 TDI 170 S Line to see if it is much better than my A3 2.0 TDI 140 (remapped) sport. The tdi 170 I tested was an 06 plate with 3.5k on the clock.

    My initial thought of the 170 was that the engine sounded much the same as my 140, no quieter and no smoother. It certainly didnt feel as quick as my remapped 140 and revved to almost exactly the same point. The fuel consumption was also lower than I would have expected. I came away thinking its a lot more money for not much more of a car, I was disappointed.

    The next day I went to my BMW dealer to test a 320d M Sport, although this was not quite as quick, it was so much quieter, smoother and revved well above 4500rpm. Overall a superior engine, not to mention the handling and feel of the car. (and returned 45mpg on the test drive!!) I am now seriously considering the BMW even though its bit more expensive.

    Has anyone one else got any comments or feedback on the tdi 170 to help me with my decision? Did I try out a duff one?

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  3. #2
    meatychi's Avatar
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    Hi dan!

    I recently converted from 320 CD M SPORT to Audi. As much as I loved the E46 for performance, economy and aesthetics I found that the 18" MV2's were far too prone to tramlining and the clutch was quite heavy.

    The feel I used to get driving around it was second to none and the acceleration was so smooth.

    I am not sure what your daily hack is like but I now commute a lot further distance than before and as much as the bimmer would eat them miles away, It wasn't as relaxed driving. I felt constantly aware that the back end could slide out ( which was fun at times ).

    The car was like a rollerskate in the snow, even with only a light dusting.

    Was it the E46 or the new shape 320 you were looking at? If it was the new shape then I would go for the Audi! The interior of the new shape is all wrong - cheap feel and japantastic.

    Audi Audi Audi!
    1998 A6 Avant 2.5tdi Quattro Tiptronic Sport

  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by danjones
    I am now seriously considering the BMW even though its bit more expensive.
    Actually, it's a LOT more expensive.

    I just costed up a 320D M Sport on their site, and it came to well over 29k, with the same options I have on my car !

    If you want a diesel, I would wait until next year, when the new VAG common rail diesels should start to appear.
    A3 Sportback 8V 1.4 TFSI SE

  5. #4
    Boydie
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    dan - who remapped your car?

    ive a 140 sport and shortly getting a Revo map - should be in and around 185/190 with a miltek turbo back exhaust system

    have you had yours rolling roaded?

    did MPG go up at all?

  6. #5
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    I was quoted 24.5k on the road, at the spec i want for the BMW quite a good saving i thought. My Audi dealer wouldn't even negotatiate on the 170. Found some brokers offering up to 2.5k off, but will still will cost 22k.

    My car was done by superchips - Rolling roaded @ 186bhp - 300ft/lbs - mpg's improved over standard. No regrets, get it done. Superchips service is A1.

  7. #6
    Boydie
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    how much is superchips? similar performance to the Revo

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    Quote Originally Posted by danjones
    I was quoted 24.5k on the road, at the spec i want for the BMW quite a good saving i thought.
    That's a remarkably good price ! Does it include things like leather seats, metallic paint, CD changer, etc ?

    Presumably, that's not for P/X though ?
    A3 Sportback 8V 1.4 TFSI SE

  9. #8
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    That price includes: - metallic paint and 18" wheel upgrade.
    The M sport spec includes half leather, cruise, armrest, reverse sensors, interior light pack, ipod connectivity, DIS, etc..

    I am tempted by the BMW, but am worried about residuals.
    I really like Audis and have been happy with the ones I have owned, but I feel they are lacking in the diesel engine department.

    Boydie - My superchips remap was 450 at superchips HQ.

  10. #9
    Amchlolor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by danjones
    I am tempted by the BMW, but am worried about residuals.
    EH ?!?!?

    Surely BMW residuals are among the best there are.

    Bloke in here just paid 9000 for a 51 plate 318i coupe.
    That's around 40% of it's new value,for a 5 year old motor.
    That's seemingly quite a good price for a 51 plate one too.

    Even the pot ugly little compact things seem to hold their value.
    I was surprised what 4 or 5 year old models of those were going for.

    Surely you're safe enough with BMW,as you would be with Audi ???
    '02 to '05 - Black Audi A4 1.9tdi sport
    '05 to '08 - Akoya Silver A3 sportback S-line DSG
    '08 to ? - Black Alpina D3

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    Bowfer - I hope your right, it's just I've been using the What Car Depreciation Index for reference and it scares me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by danjones
    Bowfer - I hope your right, it's just I've been using the What Car Depreciation Index for reference and it scares me.
    Check the figures on the AA site.
    They use the Glass's guide database, so should be accurate.
    A3 Sportback 8V 1.4 TFSI SE

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    What new VAG diesel engines are coming?

    Dont think the Msport spec has half leather seats.

    It will be more refined in the way an A4 would be over an A3.

    Residuals wont be any worse they will both loose money, you should get a better deal on the BMW so they will probably work out the same to own.

    Oh and the BMW will drive circles round the audi.

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    according to the audi website the 170 is common rail - its going to be another 2 years at least before any changes are made ot this engine now im sure - 140 came out in 03 with the new shape and thats been going for over 3 years

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    Quote Originally Posted by steve184
    according to the audi website the 170 is common rail...
    I'm pretty sure they are wrong, because all the reports which appeared at the end of 2005 said VAG would switch to CR in 2007/8.

    Supporting evidence is that VAG will stop exporting the 1.9 and 2.0 diesels into USA/Canada in 2007, because of new emissions regs.
    A3 Sportback 8V 1.4 TFSI SE

  16. #15
    I know the Audi UK website describes the 2.0TDI-170 engine as common rail but I also think someone has got it wrong.

    The following is a description of the engine issued by the Audi Press Office:

    "The range of diesel engines for the Audi A3 has been expanded to include the 125 kW (170 bhp) 2.0-litre TDI. Audi has combined piezo technology and pump-injector fuel injection for the first time on this engine. Two balancing shafts ensure excellent smooth-running properties.

    This four-cylinder power unit puts up an impressive performance: it propels the A3 2.0 TDI with 125 kW from 0 to 100 km/h in 7.8 seconds and on up to a top speed of 222 km/h. Its average fuel consumption is just 5.8 litres of diesel per 100 kilometres. The maximum torque of 350 Nm is available at between
    1,750 and 2,500 rpm. A diesel particulate filter is standard.

    Audi is offering the A3 2.0 TDI with 125 kW engine in both three-door and Sportback versions. Customers can choose from three engine/transmission combinations: models with front-wheel or quattro drive are both available with a manual gearbox, while front-wheel-drive models can also be ordered with a dual-clutch gearbox which changes gear without interrupting the power flow".

    Also the Audi Germany website describes it as follows:

    "Reihen-4-Zylinder-Dieselmotor mit Piezo-Pumpe-Dse-Direkteinspritzung und Abgasturboaufladung"

    Even with my very limited knowledge of German I don't think there is any mention of 'common-rail'
    Last edited by h5djr; 22nd December 2006 at 16:39.
    Dave R (h5djr)
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    A3 8V 2.0 TDI-184 Sportback Sport s-tronic quattro - Silver + lots of options - my 9th A3

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    Whether the 170 is CR or not is rather irrelevant - it is still lumpy, slow revving and incredibly noisy. My advice would be to go for the BMW. I couldn't stretch to the M-Sport, so have a normal 320D SE and its fantastic. Not only is it more refined than my old A3, its also more refined than the A4 S-Line alternative, quicker and loads better to drive.
    And personally I don't care about the image issue that seems to terrify so many Audi owners... the BMW is (IMO) quantifiably the better car for little more than a specced up A3 making it a total no-brainer for me.

  18. #17
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    "quantifiably the better car"? According to what criteria? If you hate the exterior and interior design of the BMW, which I do, then nothing else matters.

    The point I'm making is that every car is different but so are the people who buy them. Whilst the quality of the engine might be a major deciding factor for yourself (amongst other things, no doubt), it won't be so for everyone.

    For example, whilst I'd concede that the BMW diesel is more refined than the VAG 170, that alone is not enough to make me put up with the utter hideousness of the 3 series, inside and out.

    For the list price of my A3 I could have a 320d M Sport but, apart from the aesthetics, I'd still be lacking the satnav, phone kit, mp3 player, automatic lights & wipers, lumbar support, armrest, sound system, dimming mirrors and metallic paint I have on mine.

    The above things may not be important to you (or anyone else) and you might happily sacrifice such features for the undoubted advantages the BMW offers, such as a more refined engine, more space and better handling. That's fair enough but please don't assume everyone has the same priorities. Personally, I'm not prepared to sacrifice these things to have an uglier car with a slightly more refined engine.

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    Audi = Form over Function

    BMW = Function over Form

    Armrest is standard on BMW

    The dimming mirrors or anti dazzle are a pain in the butt, cant see if its the boys in blue behind you!!
    Last edited by Irnbrukid; 26th December 2006 at 19:37.

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    Vertigo1's Avatar
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    The anti-dazzle mirrors are a godsend. If you need to check for boys in blue all the time then you need to slow down.

  21. #20
    I agree. A manual dipping inside mirror is OK but the anit-dazzle door mirrors are extremely useful, especially with more and more cars having better and better headlights. Having got them on my existing A3 I would not want a car without them.

    As far as an A3 or a BMW is concerned, I recently had a test drive in a 3-series 320D and whilst I agree the engine is quieter than the A3 quite a few items of the interior seem quite primative compared to the A3 and don't seem to have moved on at all is the last few years. The seat adjustments for example are where the Audi was years ago. No fine adjustment on the backrest and the old type height adjustment where you have to take your weight off the seat to get it go up. As my wife drives my A3 quite often and needs the drivers seat in a totally different position a height to me the BMW controls would be a real pain. The radio also looked primative when compared with the Symphony II, let alone the new Symphont III. I personally did not like the interior at all and I'm not over keen on the exterior either. The car I drove also had the BMWs version of Audi's S-Tronic(DSG) and it did not seem anywhere near as good. The steering also felt very heavy at low speeds.

    All in all, for me personally, the A3 is by far the better car. I suppose it boils down to what is important to each individual and to me, the interior design is one of the most important aspects of a car. After all I do have to sit and look at it and use it whenever I am in the car. Even a couple of friends who have BMWs say they prefer the Audi interiors.
    Last edited by h5djr; 27th December 2006 at 11:25.
    Dave R (h5djr)
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    Yes Audi interiors are bettter but an interior doesnt make a car its the whole experience, I liked the e46 comapred to the e90 interior.

    If good seats are what that matters to you then buy a volvo.

    Eh i dont speed everywhere but any time i'm maybe a little over i'd like to know whose behind me.

  23. #22
    I agree that an interior alone does make a car. But most of the other parts of a car are so close these days that only certain thinks stand out. And somethings stand out more to one person than another.

    To me BMW and Audi are close in very many things but a poor interior would annoy me personally every time I sat in the car. I agree with you that the older BMW interiors were better looking that the current ones but they still had some primative controls.

    Still we're all different and what's important to one person is less so to another. It's good that we have a free choice.
    Dave R (h5djr)
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    A3 8V 2.0 TDI-184 Sportback Sport s-tronic quattro - Silver + lots of options - my 9th A3

  24. #23
    Vertigo1's Avatar
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    Obviously no single thing makes the car but, just as the interior doesn't, nor does the engine, which is the point I was making.

    I've just been out for a spin down to Banbury for a few hours this afternoon and I have to say I'm amazed how much more refined the 170 is compared to my old 140. It's also surprisingly more spritely, much more than a mere 30bhp extra would suggest. Overtaking is positively comical

  25. #24
    sat1983's Avatar
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    The A3 is defo the better car.
    Ex 2006 A3 2.0 TDI owner

    2010 Polo GTI 6R

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    Last edited by mitch78; 28th February 2009 at 23:17.
    Ex 8L S3 driver

    also A3, 320, Golf, Clio, Astra, Focus, Mondeo, Laguna, Escort, Calibra, 220, others and now back to a Focus...

  27. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by h5djr
    "Reihen-4-Zylinder-Dieselmotor mit Piezo-Pumpe-Dse-Direkteinspritzung und Abgasturboaufladung"

    4 cylinder diesel engine with peizo pump injector, direct injection and exhaust gas turbocharger
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  28. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitch78
    "Piezo-Pumpe-Dse" is an even higher pressure version of common rail systems.
    Pumpe Duse isn't common rail.
    Daytona Grey Audi A3 2.0TDI 150 S-Line with Tech Pack, Comfort Pack, Interior Light Pack, Alcantara/Leather seats, B&O sound, DAB radio, Folding/dimming mirrors

  29. #28
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    if you can live with how ugly the Beemer looks then go for it...

  30. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vertigo1
    Pumpe Duse isn't common rail.
    That's not strictly true:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turbo_Direct_Injection

    It's VWs attempt at common rail.
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  31. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by staz1000

    It's VWs attempt at common rail.
    No it isn't. PD is different technology to common rail. Wiki just states that it is VAGs answer to common rail (which may or may not be true) but it is not their attempt at common rail. In many ways it's better.

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    Apparently it does use exactly the same principals as common rail - which is why its referred to a 'equivalent' even though technically it is different. PD does allow for much higher fuel injection pressures than common rail apparently.

  33. #32
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    Common rail (as the name implies) has a single pressurised fuel supply rail and the fuel is injected into each cylinder by opening a valve or solenoid.

    PD has no single pressurised rail, each cylinder has it's own high pressure pump injector (hence Pumpe Duse). PD uses a much higher pressure than early common rail technology, although the latest CR engines are now higher pressure

    The only real similarity between CR an PD is that they both use diesel !

  34. #33
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    To me BMW and Audi are close in very many things but a poor interior would annoy me personally every time I sat in the car. I agree with you that the older BMW interiors were better looking than the current ones but they still had some primative controls.
    Me too, I've had 2 A3's and 1 BMW (olderer 3 series - a company car) and honestly think Audi are the new BMW - the quality of the new BMW's I looked at were shocking. The interior finish was like a Ford Ka

    There's a lot of catching up to do before I'll go back to a Beemer!

  35. #34
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    So what technology does BMW use on there Diesel engines? What makes them much more refined and quieter?
    Audi A3 (8P) 2.0TDI SE .:. Ebony Black, Sports Suspension, Vienna Beige Sports Leather Seats, Concert II & BOSE, 6 CD-Changer, Xenons, Acoustic Parking Sensors & All The Packs .:.



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  36. #35
    GeoffT's Avatar
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    As far as I know, and I'm no BMW expert, they use common rail in their diesels.

    Whether this makes them more refined or quieter it is difficult to say, as that can be determined by many other aspects of engine design , not just the injection system.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GeoffT
    The only real similarity between CR an PD is that they both use diesel !

    errrrm no because the end result is the same - you have 4 injectors supplied with very high pressure fuel, whether it be by one system or 4 seperate systems!!!

  38. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve184
    errrrm no because the end result is the same - you have 4 injectors supplied with very high pressure fuel, whether it be by one system or 4 seperate systems!!!
    That is like saying petrol and diesel engines are the same because the result is the same

    The fact that the result is the same does not mean that PD is equivalent to, or is VAGs version of, common rail which was the point I was making.

    Anyway, I'm boring myself now, and the thread is getting off topic, so I'll shut up

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    I loved the 120d Msport.... Until I got my A3.

    The standard features on get on the BMW is excellent. My only problem was space, it has none especially for rear passengers.

    My therory is: if you can fit in a 1'er with room then go for it otherwsie go for the A3. Simple??.

    BTW, I drove up to Cumbria in a Peugeot 407sw on Tuesday and quite honestly, pants!! It had a good spec, panoramic roof, sat nav, leather and xenons even so I would take my A3 anyday. I do love the Ger-man design!
    Phantom Black Sportback 2.0 TDi 140 S-line.
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  40. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by GeoffT
    That is like saying petrol and diesel engines are the same because the result is the same

    The fact that the result is the same does not mean that PD is equivalent to, or is VAGs version of, common rail which was the point I was making.

    Anyway, I'm boring myself now, and the thread is getting off topic, so I'll shut up
    No it's not!

    The most important part of the "new" diesel technology is the direct injection. That's the past that saves fuel and generally makes it a better engine. And CR and PD both use that technology. And both moved on together to start using piezo electrics. So they're very similar engines in principle.
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