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  1. #1
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    Smile Newbie - Audi A4 1.8T 190 Queries.

    Hi there,

    I've seen various bits and bobs on this forum for a while now and have just signed up as I'm after a bit of help if possible..

    I'm currently in the market for a new car and there's a strong likelihood that I could purchase a 54 plate Audi A4 1.8T 190 Saloon soon. I was just wondering if some of the resident experts on here could help with some of my queries...

    I presently own an MG ZS180 saloon and have done for just over 5 years. Despite the stick these cars generally get its been a very reliable and fun car to own, and since its been modded to around 200bhp it really does fly and the V6 engine sounds awesome. Anyway, its time for a new toy to give me a buzz and an Audi A4 with the apparently very highly tuneable VAG 1.8T engine seems like a good place to look

    My MG would blow the socks off a standard A4 190 in both speed and handling terms, but the Audi would obviously be streets ahead in terms of build quality and image The thing is, I just know it won't be long before the modding bug bites me and I'd want to tweak it to squeeze some extra performance and fun out of it

    I'm more interested in subtle mods to give better performance and don't drastically alter the superb standard looks of the car, so bean-can exhausts, 'slammed' suspension and neons are out.

    I am aware that there are various different versions of the 1.8T engine. Is the unit in the 2004 A4 190 the same one that's in the TT225/S3/Cupra R (i.e. the twin intercoolered one) ??

    According to the Superchips website, 500 will get you an extra 30+ bhp and 30+ lb/ft of torque on pretty much every other 1.8T engine, but on the A4 190 it just quotes a further 20bhp - is this correct ? Can't the 190 engine be 'chipped' to much more than standard?! If so, why not?

    Which parts of the standard exhaust system are most restrictive? Would something subtle like changing the cat to a stainless steel sport-cat help free up some horses or would it just cause probs (i.e. spiking) !?

    Who makes the best (but not too loud) stainless steel cat-back exhausts? How much would I be looking to pay ?

    Is it worth upgrading the OE suspension set up and/or the brakes?

    Is the Quattro version of the A4 190 much better than the FWD version? (i.e. is it worth the extra outlay and higher tax band??)

    I've heard some horror stories about oil and water pump failures being common. How much truth is there in this and what would be the best ways of checking before buying? Also, is oil/water pump replacement part of any of the routine services?

    How often do the cambelts needs changing?

    Do they run well on 95RON Unleaded or will it cause problems over time with repeated use? (98RON seems to be like rocking horse s*** around my neck of the woods).

    If super unleaded is the way to go, which is best, Optimax/BP Ultimate/Tesco 99 !?

    I've seen some gorgeous looking 1.8T A4s on here with nice subtle mods kicking out 240+ bhp and similar torque... perfect! What mods, other than basic breathing and remaps will get me there? ..and what sort of outlay am I looking at?

    Cheers in advance for your help guys. Sorry for the long post too...

    J

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  3. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Springer* View Post
    Hi there,

    I've seen various bits and bobs on this forum for a while now and have just signed up as I'm after a bit of help if possible.. Welcome!

    I'm currently in the market for a new car and there's a strong likelihood that I could purchase a 54 plate Audi A4 1.8T 190 Saloon soon. I was just wondering if some of the resident experts on here could help with some of my queries...

    I presently own an MG ZS180 saloon and have done for just over 5 years. Despite the stick these cars generally get its been a very reliable and fun car to own, and since its been modded to around 200bhp it really does fly and the V6 engine sounds awesome. Anyway, its time for a new toy to give me a buzz and an Audi A4 with the apparently very highly tuneable VAG 1.8T engine seems like a good place to look

    My MG would blow the socks off a standard A4 190 in both speed and handling terms, but the Audi would obviously be streets ahead in terms of build quality and image The thing is, I just know it won't be long before the modding bug bites me and I'd want to tweak it to squeeze some extra performance and fun out of it

    I'm more interested in subtle mods to give better performance and don't drastically alter the superb standard looks of the car, so bean-can exhausts, 'slammed' suspension and neons are out.

    I am aware that there are various different versions of the 1.8T engine. Is the unit in the 2004 A4 190 the same one that's in the TT225/S3/Cupra R (i.e. the twin intercoolered one) ?? Not quite, the 190 has twin intercoolers but a different turbo called a K03s which is slightly smaller than the K04 fitted to the 225bhp engine fitted to the cars you mention.

    According to the Superchips website, 500 will get you an extra 30+ bhp and 30+ lb/ft of torque on pretty much every other 1.8T engine, but on the A4 190 it just quotes a further 20bhp - is this correct ? Can't the 190 engine be 'chipped' to much more than standard?! If so, why not? The 190 has a slightly uprated map to a 163bhp engine anyway, plus there will be snesible limits for things like the turbo etc that pushing too far with the boost will start causing realiability issues.

    Which parts of the standard exhaust system are most restrictive? Would something subtle like changing the cat to a stainless steel sport-cat help free up some horses or would it just cause probs (i.e. spiking) !? Miltek is the most popular exhaust in the A4, although lots of people have custom exhausts made up too as there isnt as much choice of manufacturers as there is on a Vaux Corsa for example!!

    Who makes the best (but not too loud) stainless steel cat-back exhausts? How much would I be looking to pay ?

    Is it worth upgrading the OE suspension set up and/or the brakes? The s-line suspension is pretty good, low & stiff as it is, although upgrading to coilovers for instance will obviously give you better handling if you push really really hard! A lot of people change the RARB to a thicker one as fitted to the RS4, costs about 70 & fitted in 30mins it reduces body roll further.

    Is the Quattro version of the A4 190 much better than the FWD version? (i.e. is it worth the extra outlay and higher tax band??) The quattro gives you better grip, simple as that really! There's a limit to how much power you can put onto the road through a fwd car so a quattro will allow you to use more of the performance from a 200bhp+ car as opposed to just kicking in the traction control. On the negative side it take a few bhp to drive it, uses a little more fuel, weighs a little more, could be in a higher VED bracket, is rarer, often costs more to buy one, and you lose 3ltrs capacity from the petrol tank. I'd have one every time though!!!

    I've heard some horror stories about oil and water pump failures being common. How much truth is there in this and what would be the best ways of checking before buying? Also, is oil/water pump replacement part of any of the routine services? It can be a horror story indeed as the engine gets totally knackered! The thing to ensure though is that only top up with the same fully sythetic oil that is used for servicing, its the mixing of oils that causes the deadly sludge. Its simple enough though to have the sump of to change the oil pick up pipe & give the engine a flush to avoid having an oil pump failure. If I bought a 1.8T its something i'd just get done for the sake of it really! No the oil/water pump isnt part of a service cycle, but change the water pump when the cambelt is done, cost abot 40 I think for a pump and 5 mins extra time to change when the cambelt is being done!

    How often do the cambelts needs changing? Pass on this one, seems to be different on different engines, and Audi might say something different to what the service book says! Your safe with 60k though i'd say!

    Do they run well on 95RON Unleaded or will it cause problems over time with repeated use? (98RON seems to be like rocking horse s*** around my neck of the woods). It'll run ok on it but if you want to tune it the map will probably require super unleaded to be used.

    If super unleaded is the way to go, which is best, Optimax/BP Ultimate/Tesco 99 !? V-power & BP Ultimate also have detergents in them which help to keep your engine clean so recommended to be used frequently if not every fill up!! I know the Tesco 99 dosent have the detergents in them so likely most other supermarkets probably dont, I use Tesco 99 & V-power mix personally.

    I've seen some gorgeous looking 1.8T A4s on here with nice subtle mods kicking out 240+ bhp and similar torque... perfect! What mods, other than basic breathing and remaps will get me there? ..and what sort of outlay am I looking at? TIP is another pricey but good mod at a few hundred pounds, forget who it is on here but someones got a stainless steel one & reckons on 10bhp gain. Big turbos are the next step above remaps, exhaust & air filter, a few grand though for this!

    Cheers in advance for your help guys. Sorry for the long post too...

    J
    Few, that was a long answer!
    A4 3.0 Quattro Sport - Gone & missed everyday!

    Current road going missile.....

    ........Smart Roadster - arguably the most fun you can have in a car without using lube!!

  4. #3
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    Newbie - Audi A4 1.8T 190 Queries.

    Welcome J,

    I went from a Golf GTI 180 to my current S-Line 190 and it didn't quite have the same punch (same engine but heavier car). So I went to Midland VW who put the stage one Custom Code map on for a discounted price of 300 (I think the discount is still available) and it's made all the difference. The car is still smooth and the fuel consumption about the same as before so I'd definitely recommend the map and Midland VW. Not sure what the bhp is now bit it's the extra torque that gives the real shove.

    http://www.midlandvw.com/

    I run mainly V power fuel but can't say I've noticed much difference when I ran it on 95 for a month.
    Suspention wise it's pretty firm on the S-Line, personally I find it almost too much so at times so if you test drive one try and go down a mixture of roads to get a good overall feel for how it rides.

    Hope this helps,

    Stu

  5. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Springer* View Post

    I've seen some gorgeous looking 1.8T A4s on here with nice subtle mods kicking out 240+ bhp and similar torque... perfect! What mods, other than basic breathing and remaps will get me there? ..and what sort of outlay am I looking at?

    Cheers in advance for your help guys. Sorry for the long post too...

    J
    Welcome to Audi Sport.

    Just check my previous posts, there's plenty of answers there for you.

    BUB
    A4 Avant S-Line quattro - Avus Silver/Silver Half Leather *240ps*346nm* - a few choice mods. Now Stared up ;-)

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    Smile

    Thanks for the replies peeps. Very helpful :D

    s-line stu,

    I see you say you went from a 180bhp Golf 1.8T and said that the A4 1.8T 190 was somewhat slower. I can understand this due to the extra weight of the A4. Has the remap made your A4 now feel quicker than the Golf did or are they now similar?

    I guess what I'm getting at is that like most enthusiastic drivers, its very easy to get used to the speed of your car, and I could imagine that if I shell out for the A4 I've seen and its miles slower than my current MG, I'll always crave more performance.

    Obviously speed isn't everything, but I'd hope that I could modify the A4 subtly so that it was similar (if not a little quicker) than the MG by the time I'd done with it and had plenty of grin factor when I got my toe down, yet it still maintained sensible fuel economy and reliability... After all, whilst I'm sure an A4 would feel superb to drive, I'd hate my new purchase to feel lethargic and slow compared to what I was used to.

    The MG currently will do away with 60 in the mid-6s, and will crack the ton in under 16 secs... would a 220bhp+ A4 Quattro match this!?

    Nickynibbles,

    Thanks for your informative answers to my first post.. interesting that about the different sized turbos on the 1.8T unit. How much are the K04 turbos to buy and fit? Are they a straight swap or do various other parts need replacing also?

    Has anyone replaced the intercoolers with larger ones or is that silly expensive?

    What induction upgrades are recommended? Will a BMC CDA kit fit?

    How long does the climate control last before it needs re-gassing!? Is it expensive to fix?

    Don't think I'll tinker with the S-Line suspension then, though the RS4 RARB sounds interesting.

    Are they heavy on tyres? (present 2.5 V6 Mg eats fronts!).

    Does the standard S-Line spec include Xenons headlamps or are they available as an upgrade?

    Cheers,

    J

  7. #6
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    Lots of questions, but some easy answers:

    Xenons are an option, so best to get some HID lamps, via EBay, at c60 - not alot of difference in lighting levels. A good/cheap upgrade.

    Tyre wear is pretty good. Your MG had a heavier engine, therefore would expect heavier wear...

    Larger/extra intercooler wont give you any better performance unless you go with a larger turbo upgrade, so dont bother.

    You should (cheaply) therefore only really consider:

    a Remap - takes the car to c220bhp = 400ish
    An exhaust = +10bhp = 700ish
    a Turbo Inlet pipe = +5bhp = 200ish
    1998 S4 Widebody Saloon Track Car
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    Smile

    Cheers for that.

    Was also wondering (sorry..) - what is the difference between the 1.8T 163 and the 190 !? Is it mechanically identical but just has a different map, or is there more to it than that!?

    I've seen that the 163 models are much cheaper to buy than the 190 models - is it just worth buying the 163 and applying the same mods!? Would you achieve the same result!?

    Is the 'S-Line' suspension set up the same as the 'Sport' set up?

    Which has the most toys - S-Line or Sport!? (I've seen some sites show the S-Line spec as being top of the range, but others suggesting that the Sport spec was higher )

    What was the Limited Edition model?

    Done various amounts of homework via the Internet and can't determine much of a difference between these specs... any owners on here tell me any different?!

    Cheers,

    J

  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Springer* View Post
    Cheers for that.

    Was also wondering (sorry..) - what is the difference between the 1.8T 163 and the 190 !? Is it mechanically identical but just has a different map, or is there more to it than that!?

    I've seen that the 163 models are much cheaper to buy than the 190 models - is it just worth buying the 163 and applying the same mods!? Would you achieve the same result!?

    Is the 'S-Line' suspension set up the same as the 'Sport' set up?

    Which has the most toys - S-Line or Sport!? (I've seen some sites show the S-Line spec as being top of the range, but others suggesting that the Sport spec was higher )

    What was the Limited Edition model?

    Done various amounts of homework via the Internet and can't determine much of a difference between these specs... any owners on here tell me any different?!

    Cheers,

    J
    Blimey, keep them nooob questions coming!!!

    Read my posts, it's all in there!!!!

    The 190 has bigger k03 turbo, injectors and twin intercoolers. It's not worth getting the K04-15 turbo as it will only get you another 10bhp over a sorted 190 - about 250bhp.(worth it for the 163ps though) A hybrid k04 would be a much better plan as you wont end up with a laggy motor, like you'd get using on of the big Garret GT turbos.

    S-Line has a slightly different set up to the sports. It was tuned by Quattro GmbH (Audi's performance division). It's quite harsh on bad roads but comes into it's own in the lanes. I'm running KW V1 coilovers which have improved ride and handling.



    The LTD's were 163T's with 5 speed or 6 speed Quattro, slighty lower spec to a S-Line but you can find them with full leather (S-Line has only half leather - silver or black)




    Some of the last of the GmbH Sports (look like S-Lines) were quite loaded, you could even spec S4 Recaros!

    S-Lines came with quite a few extras but Xenons were 750 and even electric rear windows were a 300 option!!




    HTH

    BUB :Picwhore:
    A4 Avant S-Line quattro - Avus Silver/Silver Half Leather *240ps*346nm* - a few choice mods. Now Stared up ;-)

  10. #9
    s-line stu's Avatar
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    The Audi is certainly quicker than my old Golf now it's mapped, I would have thought that it would have similar performance to your MG maybe even slightly better mid range. For the official Audi Driver review of the S-Line 190 download the PDF that I posted at http://www.filemojo.com/019171037683....8T_S-Line.pdf and this will tell you the differences between the S-Line and the Sport.

    Stu

  11. #10
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    cmon mate, theres no comparison between a rover mg anything and an audi. The quality of the audi is superb, its in a different league to the mg full stop.

    End of. Your trying to compare a remapped & tuned mg to a standard a4, well chip & tune the audi and see what comes out best, it aint gonna be the rover.

    0 to 60 in mid 6's? Why then arent mg's more sought out than lotus then?


    Show me a dyno print first. Ive never been burst in a sprint against an mg or in fact any rover.
    Last edited by evilscotsman; 10th August 2008 at 01:05.
    B4 TDI - old skool project / daily driver...if it ain't broke, it's probably an Audi...


  12. #11
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    Smile

    Bub / Stu,

    Thanks for the informative and helpful info guys. Very useful and should help narrow things down a bit . Remapping turbo'd cars is so much more rewarding than NASP ones.

    Evilscot..

    Hmm, sounds like you're trying to stir something up here mate I think you have missed my point entirely. If you look back at my first post I think you'll see that in no way am I trying to suggest that an MG is any better than an Audi A4. After all, if I thought it was why on earth would I be considering changing to an A4!?

    I know I'm comparing a modded MG with a std A4, and that a similarly modded 1.8T A4 would probably be quicker... I think you'll find my questions were asking what sort of mods and outlay would achieve that

    0-60 in mid 6s. Yeah, easily achievable considering that the standard car will get to 60 in around 7 secs anyway. When modded to 200+ bhp, 190lb/ft and its only 1200kg its going to be much quicker than std. But as ever, there's only so far you can go with certain NASP engines before it gets silly expensive.

    Not rocket science, but hey ho..

    More sought out than Lotus!?

    J

  13. #12
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    ok point taken mate, wasn't stirring owt up I was just taken aback re the audi/mg thing and got on me soapbox. Ahem

    (There was a bit of alcohol involved lol, note to self: shouldnt answer posts when pissed)
    B4 TDI - old skool project / daily driver...if it ain't broke, it's probably an Audi...


  14. #13
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    Smile

    No worries mate

    You happy with yours? Post some pics up - some of the 163s look pretty cool !

    J

  15. #14
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    cheers mate, yeah I do like the car, but the manual gearbox is notchy, the dbw throttle is hard to get used to and its a very point and squirt car. I think i should have gotten the 3.0 or 3.2 v6 tiptronic...prolly much smoother!





    Me old car:



    The one before that:

    B4 TDI - old skool project / daily driver...if it ain't broke, it's probably an Audi...


  16. #15
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    Smile

    how come its a "point and squirt" car ? Is the suspension a little on the soft side?

    What's the FWD traction like out of corners?

    I think the 3.0 engine would feel a little nose heavy would it not !?

    Quattro sounds like the way to go then?

    Is the power delivery of the 1.8T a bit spiky then? Maybe a remap would smooth out the torque curve?!

    J

  17. #16
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    no the suspension is rock hard in fact as its the sport model. The boost comes on suddenly at 2k and harder at 2.5k then stays on all the way thru the revs, with the DBW throttle it can be difficult to drive it smoothly, fwd spins like a bugger in the wet, drifts out on roundabouts or bends in the rain (front understeer) under power that is, might be me tyres are a bit worn tho...

    I like the sound of the v6, and quattro is definately the one to have.

    Nose heavy?, probably but not too much more than the 1.8T cos its a cast iron block too so isnt that light in comparison to all-alloy engines - but a whole lot tougher. The whole car weighs only 1400 kilos tho and my MR2 was 1250kg...!
    B4 TDI - old skool project / daily driver...if it ain't broke, it's probably an Audi...


  18. #17
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    Just my tuppence worth, I couldnt justify calling the 163 as "point and squirt" As much as i like the Audi, its a barge, they have never sorted suspension out on the sport, the ride is choppy on bumpy roads and although I have the quattro and it does feel slightly planted compared a two wheel drive 2.0T I had as a courtesy car, it does not have anywhere near the sure-footed-ness that my old Subaru had. It suffers from body roll, (I have 18's on the car). I do however agree with what the guys have said, if you want anything above 200bhp I would tend to go for 4 wheel drive, its just a personal prefference, but i think anything more than that in a front wheel drive car and it doesnt feel right. Torque steer city!

    Would like to see the diference the RARB makes, I think that would be one of the most worthwhile mods you could do to start with.

    Dougie

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    the Quattro would be my choice to be honest as I've read one or two iffy reviews about the FWD handling of the A4. I'm sure it can all be sorted with after market suspension/damper mods though

    I find it surprising that the car torque steers and runs wide on corners under power.. maybe worth checking the inner edges of your front tyres!

    I wouldn't say all FWD cars with 200bhp+ are torque steery. Maybe in the old days, but not so much now. Proper damping, equal length drive shafts, diffs and so on have raised the bar somewhat... sure, they eat tyres but that's the only real downside.

    What's the torque split front/rear on the A4 Quattro models!? Is it rear biased!?

    J

  20. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Springer* View Post
    I wouldn't say all FWD cars with 200bhp+ are torque steery. Maybe in the old days, but not so much now. Proper damping, equal length drive shafts, diffs and so on have raised the bar somewhat... sure, they eat tyres but that's the only real downside.
    J
    The new Focus RS has close to 300hp through the front wheels but through the clever diff set up they reckon they have all but eliminated torque steer. sorry!
    Ingolstance Read about my A6 HERE.

  21. #20
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    dry cornering grip is quite excellent, its the wet thats drifty, but i think thats my worn falkens lol

    The most sublime steering handling and gripping car i ever had was the alfa 156 in the photo above, and the audi is a bit wooden after that, but still good.

    The tyres are worn evenly but almost to the wear indicators so they are very sketchy in the wet if pushed even slightly, time for new ones. Im considering Goodyear Eagle F1's next after reading many reviews, not the ultimate tyre in its class (thats the Eagle Assymetric) but its good and looks the dogs ******.

    83 a pop which isnt bad for a 235/45/17 - anyone else have / had these?
    B4 TDI - old skool project / daily driver...if it ain't broke, it's probably an Audi...


 

 

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