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7 weeks and 3200 miles into S4 ownership

Discussion in 'Audi S4/A4/A4 Cab (B8 Chassis)' started by mylo911, Feb 7, 2014.

  1. mylo911
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    mylo911 New Member

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    [Feb 7, 2014]
    I thought it prudent to share the experience thus far for any potential S4 purchasers or likeminded petrol heads that are interested.

    Collection day seems such a long time ago now, but those first few hours of driving are still very much in the forefront of my mind. The decision was made to run the engine in with care, but not be afraid to wind the revs on every now and then. A 'softer' run-in if you will. The pros & cons of thrashing the pants off it from the word go, were outweighed by my head talking to me about mechanical sympathy and long term ownership.

    No red line, but 2/3rd's of the maximum rev range to start, then a gradual increase up the rpm counter after 500miles, and full beans after a 1000. This was done in a variety of conditions, (road/load) using both the full manual mode and D/S. Conscious of the fact a trip to the continent was due, I had set a target of achieving 1200 miles before it would be loaded up with people and gear for an endless 130 km/h cruise through France.

    First impressions: the torque I suppose was the stand out to start, especially coming out of a stock S3 which peak (350nm) arrived in one big turbocharged shove at 2500rpm, with very little go below that. The S4 has a lot more linear power delivery, and made the running in period an easy exercise. Low speed overtakes without kick down were a doddle, with the exhaust providing a pleasant, albeit subtle, boomy note.

    The torque still feels good, but it is not as near as impressive as using all of the rev range, which builds in no time at all before the full bore up change and 'thhrmmwpphh' from the exhaust makes itself heard. Truth be told, the engine feels like a bigger lump than it actually is, and not at all supercharged. There is absolutely no whine form the charger either.

    However, the strange thing is, that sometimes it does not feel particularly quick: that is until you glance at the speedo, or realise the traffic that was in the distance is now quickly approaching.

    Actually, much of the time it doesn't feel as quick as the S3, whether that be in kickdown or using the torque in top gear. In reality, it is a quicker car, but that linear torque and low down grunt seems to hide the pace. On the go, at 'ahem' motorway speeds, the pull is impressive, but the sensation of speed is hidden by refinement, and the low 2000rpm at 80mph means you are 900rpm away from peak torque. Don't get me wrong, it really rips along, it just does it so easily without you noticing.

    B-road bashing brings out a very different side to the V6, with a heap more eagerness after 4500rpm and strong finish before it changes cogs. It's no rev hungry 6 pot like an e46 M3 for example, but nevertheless still loves to rev and sounds good too.

    In terms of dynamics & drivability: There could be more feel coming through the wheel, but I reckon some of that is down to it being electromechanical, and just something to get used to. The trick with this car is the sport diff as it really brings that rear into play, aiding with direction change and eagerness to go around a corner. You can feel the offside rear wheel physically push you around a bend, which is a strange sensation at first, but one I now absolutely love. There is no feeling of the car being 'nose heavy', just nimble, light on its feet and eager to turn in. Most unlike the traditional 'Audi' feel, yet still the underlying 4 wheel grip keeping you pointed in the right direction.

    I feel Audi have really moved their game on with this car, with its playfulness and engaging drive. Some B7 RS4 magic is definitely present.
    Ok, so it is no M3 for outright driving dynamics, but for an 1800kg estate car, it's fantastic.

    Other great attributes; the 7 speed twin-clutcher works especially well with this engine, and being somebody that loves a manual box, with the feel and enjoyment of nailing a perfect change up or heel'n' toe on the way down, I could not go back using a clutch!
    Driving the S4 in manual gives me all the engine breaking and control I could ever want, and ultimately allows me to focus on everything else.

    Super sport seats, B&O, and the pan roof are the other stand out features for me personally, other than that, the rest of the car does everything exactly as it should. Ergonomics are spot on, the boot space is great, rear seats can accommodate adults, the ride is compliant, and good visibility all round make this a great everyday car. Insurance is less the the S3 too!

    Niggles: stock exhaust could do with being a little louder, even in dynamic mode. Steering feel in auto sometimes feels like it has a mind of its own, but much better in dynamic.

    Cost wise: after 600 miles I had to put in about 250ml of oil, but nothing since. Fuel consumption has been good too, with 27mpg average over a 1500 mile jaunt, 4 up with a boot full of luggage (mainly motor way with cruise set at 130km/h). My short commute to work covers 8 miles, most of which is A road stop/start, followed by a small dual carriageway run, gives me around 20-21mpg. Highest seen was 34mpg, which consisted of 50 motorway miles at 70mph-ish.

    Overall it's averaged 25.7mpg

    I have a road trip around Wales planned in a couple of months, which should provide some great A & B roads to get to know the car a bit better.

    Admittedly, I have found myself taking the long way home after work, and going for a drive just for the hell of it. It was a big decision buying the car, but I have absolutely no regrets, and am struggling to think of any car that would suit my needs better. The other half shares my passion for motors, and after difficulty letting go of the S3, she has now completely fallen for this one too.

    A few motors were put into the pot for consideration, but the S4 had too many ticks in the boxes for us not to order one. The list was initially quite varied, but final ones considered were:997 C4S, 8V S3 sportback, BMW 335i touring. Deep down I knew it would be the S4!

    No plans for any mods now, but will definitely happen in the future.

    If you are thinking of purchasing an S4, I hope this has helped paint a picture of what it is like to live with one. Obviously, this is just my view, but welcome anybody's opinion or own ownership experience for comparison.

    Thanks for reading
    #1
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  3. kanecullen89
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    kanecullen89 Active Member

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    [Feb 7, 2014]
    Great write up. Absolutely love the S4. I have the 3.0 tdi B8, it's no S4 but love it for the exact same reason
    #2
  4. benjie
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    benjie Active Member

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    [Feb 7, 2014]
    I hope to buy one of these in the next year, though a 2011ish model, so not the facelift. Reviews like this are incredibly unhelpful as I want one NOW!
    Seriously though, great write-up with lots of little nuggets of info to remember!
    #3
  5. Tay
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    Tay Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Feb 8, 2014]
    Great write up, I'm also planning to make the move from S3 to S4 so I'm glad to hear someone has made the switch and is enjoying the S4.
    #4
  6. Keef
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    Keef Active Member

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    [Feb 8, 2014]
    Mylo

    Many thanks for the write-up its brilliant and, as I've just ordered an S4 Avant so its just what I needed to hear!
    I've gone with dynamic steering, damper control & sports diff - wasn't sure if i would actually need them, but didn't want to take a chance and not have them. The only downside for me is i want my car now! But dealer has confirmed it wont get built until wc 12 may! My dilemma know is the 2015 model year changes kick in towards the end of May, so I would prefer my car to be a 2015.

    Cheers
    Keef
    #5
  7. ub7rm
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    ub7rm Member

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    [Feb 8, 2014]
    Great write up, considering the same change myself so very helpful, MPG sounds good as well considering its barely run in. Looking forward to the updates.
    #6
  8. Audi Dynamik
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    Audi Dynamik Well-Known Member

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    [Feb 9, 2014]
    Fantastic write up. Are you a salesman for Audi by any chance :icon_thumright:
    An S4 is also on my shortlist in the near future, but seeing reviews like this just makes we want to have one.
    #7
  9. scotty76
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    scotty76 Well-Known Member

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    [Feb 9, 2014]
    Anyone know how much worse the economy on the pre facelift ones is? Obviously I've read the official figures but real world is different. Local dealer has just got a 2010 model in.
    #8
  10. Liquidfusion-S3
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    Liquidfusion-S3 Active Member

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    [Feb 9, 2014]
    Official figures are always a joke, I would suggest around 25% less than what they state for real world mpg
    #9
  11. rabhrab
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    rabhrab Member

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    [Feb 10, 2014]
    I get around 23mpg on a daily basis and average 27mpg on runs (fully loaded) from home (central Scotland) down to central France.
    The car is a 2009 manual S4 Avant, and I use V Power or Momentum fuel.
    #10
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  12. rum4mo
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    rum4mo Active Member

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    [Feb 10, 2014]
    I've only run a couple of tanks of V Power etc through it but I've noticed no different in performance, also, I thought unless it was mapped for higher octane fuels, then there was no real gains to be made using them, except for the better cleaning powers of V Power etc.

    Personally, I get better MPG than I used to get in my 2000 B5 Passat 2.8V6 4Motion, especially on a long run, though if I'm being stupid/happy, it is a lot worse than the old Passat was.
    #11
  13. warren_S5
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    warren_S5 Moderator Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    [Feb 10, 2014]
    Brilliant review; and largely ushers exactly how I feel about the S5.

    I'm going to have to do something to coax out a bit more tune from the exhaust, but I'm hoping to get a bit more of a characterful sound from the engine / charger once I replace the stock airbox.

    Power-wise its astonishing how quickly it makes 3 figures, but its so linear you don't feel the surge of urgency you get from a Stg2 S3. Bizarre, so a bit of fairy dust will need to be added to the mix as well.

    Mine should arrive in early April, but the wait is killing me. Glad to hear you are enjoying yours and encouraging to know whats coming!
    #12
  14. Derbz
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    Derbz Member

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    [Feb 10, 2014]
    Nice review,ive had mine nearly 2 years now and im still very happy with it, ok so its not the quickest car ive owned but its such a great alrounder and its been trouble free motoring which is always a big bonus :sm4:

    Looking at getting stage 1 map very soon as these things make big power from just a remap, 450bhp from the likes of MRC will turn the s4 into a serious car. some owners are getting upto 500bhp from a stage 2 map with the pulley changed and different filter!
    #13
  15. Spr0cket
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    Spr0cket Member

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    [Feb 10, 2014]
    In regards consumption... mines a 2009 DSG with MRC stg 2 and always run on 95 ron fuel.

    I see an average of about 21 mpg on mixed usage. Most of those are shortish journey, mixed roads. Seldom get's on the motorway, though a run there typically sees upper 20's. In stop start traffic it's horrid, I reckon it drips unburnt fuel and teeters in low to mid teens.
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  16. Keef
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    Keef Active Member

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    [Feb 10, 2014]
    Ha ha nice! I wouldn't be getting an S4 if you're worried bout fuel economy!
    I use to have a B6 S4, 4.2 V8 - use to average 17-19 mpg, 24 was best ever on a long run!
    Can't wait to get mine. Roll on June!
    #15
  17. scotty76
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    scotty76 Well-Known Member

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    [Feb 10, 2014]
    Yeah I skipped over the B7 S4 as it seemed just too thirsty. And I have a B7 now so be good to move on.
    #16
  18. rum4mo
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    rum4mo Active Member

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    [Feb 10, 2014]
    Mine came from Audi dealer at 2.5 years old and one owner, fitted with a Milltek exhaust with these "nice" big single oval outlets - so I suppose in the future it should really be passed to MRC for something good!

    Fuel economy, I still like to think that while I have a car that can use a tank of fuel quickly, I can still be boring at times and get "enough" MPG, it is something that I like to boast about when lesser cars can hopefully not get much more but have a lot less potential! This boring trait goes back a very long way, I used to get some amazing MPG figures for my MK2 Escort 1600 Ghias on long runs and a light throttle, same for my Orion Ghia Injections and maybe almost the same with my very good Cav GSI 4X4 2000 and lastly when commuting to work with my previous B5 Passat 2.8V6 4Motion. I once thought that a Renault Scenic 4X4 with a DERV engine would be good for my wife - I seem to remember they could get as much as 30MPG in a very good day, luckily she ended up buying a 1.6i Fiesta with the Zetec engine - more fun and better MPG, but a bit less so in snow and ice.
    #17
  19. Keef
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    Keef Active Member

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    [Feb 11, 2014]
    #18
  20. rum4mo
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    rum4mo Active Member

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    [Feb 12, 2014]
    DSCF0960.jpg



    Here's one I took on its first outing to Durham!
    #19
  21. Keef
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    Keef Active Member

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    [Feb 13, 2014]
    Hi rum4mo

    Thanks for the pic - Looks great! exactly what I'm after - just need to get my car first! :)

    what's the sound like??
    #20
  22. Anthony566
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    Anthony566 Active Member

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    [Feb 14, 2014]
    Hi Mylo911, what foot rest and pedals did your S4 come with ? are they black rubber or aluminium ??
    #21
  23. mylo911
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    mylo911 New Member

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    [Feb 15, 2014]
    Anthony566, The 14 model year pedals are slightly different, as are the gear change paddles
    #22
  24. mylo911
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    mylo911 New Member

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  25. Cyprio
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    Cyprio Member

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    [Feb 18, 2014]
    Nice review mylo!

    Also like to add that any potential S4 owners check-out the B8 S4 forum over on Audizine - lots of ex M3 owners (including E90 M3's) giving their opinions on both cars, with the S4 being favoured in many areas. :)
    #24
  26. trick971
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    trick971 Tricky

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    [Feb 19, 2014]
    I've done approx 5k miles in the S4 saloon which is a pre-facelift 2009 model. Over that period I have averaged 22.4 MPG.
    My work drive is 25 miles and is a mix between cross country A and B roads. If i drive "Miss Daisy" using cruise control and a light throttle I can get 27-8 mpg on that journey. But usually its 23/22 due to preferring to drive hard (not necessarily fast but harder).
    On an M1 run I can do around 28-29mpg at cruise, never seen above 30 yet.

    I totally agree with the author of this thread regarding the smooth acceleration and no real feeling of speed until you hit the brakes.
    I suspect this is due to the supercharger and smooth V6, and the lack of noise which is my only criticism. Dont get me wrong, I dont want a car that drones nor do i want to sound like a boy racer. But it does need something more acoustically (for me).

    Mine too is the s-tronic, and I have tried to drive in manual mode, but because I love my music from the B&O system, I can hardly hear the engine - which is a good thing too, but doesnt help when im trying to hear when to change gear, so I stick to s-tronic for now.

    My previous car was a Carrera S, that was a 3.8 litre normally aspirated - sounded awesome, handled amazing. Even with good music i could hear the engine note. In comparison, the MPG on that was 24/5 on my daily drive, and 29 on a run. But then my golf clubs sat in the drivers seat :) and not in the boot like they do now!

    I recently had the revo remap on the S4, and initially I cant really tell much difference, it does feel a little smoother but not overly different. Makes me wonder if my car was already re-mapped prior the revo (eek).
    I did a 0-60 and timed it using a free iphone GPS app, and it said I did the 60 in 4.3 secs...and I know i could do it harder so thats not bad. Never did a stock one to compare to however... maybe i should flip the remap back to stock to see what it does....

    I have been looking at an exhaust change... Ive seen all the vids online re sound, but need to actually drive one to hear what they sound like, i.e. i dont want it to wind me up by droning all the time....but want a bit more of a rasp when accelerating...

    Just thought id add my random thoughts!
    #25
  27. rum4mo
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    rum4mo Active Member

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    [Feb 19, 2014]
    Since I've been asked the question already, but have not answered yet, I'll give my views on a "sports" exhaust. First, my motoring background, I had a VX Cav GSI 4X4 from roughly late 1991 until middle 2000, that car had factory fitted exhaust and it sounded good through out the rev range, but never intrusive - I then had a VW Passat 2.8 V6 4Motion from middle 2000 until middle 2013, that car had factory fitted exhaust and it sounded very subdued through the rev range though you could appreciate the V6 quietly working away, in fact at times when not concentrating it was the quiet "higher revs" sound from the engine that made you wake up and change up a couple of gears - never ever rough though, just nice V6 at work - I then bought a 2.5 years old B8 S4 with manual trans and a Milltek exhaust, so I can't compare the sound an S4 makes with factory fit exhaust with what it makes with a Milltek resonated (road use) exhaust, anyway it does sound okay with a bit of a drone at 2000 RPM - so if you avoid holding at 2000 RPM then it is okay, also I appreciate that it will be slightly louder than factory fit and my only other V6 I've owned was almost silent on the move. Finally the S4 is more of a sports orientated car than the Passat 2.8 V6 4Motion was ever trying to be (although that car was a brilliant motorway muncher), so being a bit more vocal is to be expected/accepted. I was very concerned at first, but as wife does not seem to notice it if/when she is lucky enough to be in it, my original concerns have gone - and, having a single big oval on each side, in my eyes makes more sense that a V6 than having smaller twin pipes on each side, in the case of the older V8, yes, twin pipes on both sides is okay.
    #26
  28. trick971
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    trick971 Tricky

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    [Feb 20, 2014]
    Thanks rum4mo - I appreciate the info.

    I could do with finding someone with the same exhaust nearby such that I can hear it for myself!

    I meant to add to my original post - the thing I like the most with my S4 is the stealth, more people are suprised when you leave them standing, and more people are prone to have a "go". I dont think changing the exhaust would alter this either.... :)
    #27
  29. Keef
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    Keef Active Member

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    [Feb 20, 2014]
    Guys,

    This is great stuff - keep it coming!
    Helping me pass the time till I get mine (June ughh!)

    Rum4mo – if you get a chance could you do a quick video or sounds clip on your phone?
    Doesn’t have to be anything too classy, just the idle, revving sound

    or even get the wife to open the windows when you’re cruising?? :racer:

    No worries if you cant or don’t want to.

    For me the oval looks perfect for the S4 - just need to save-up (miltek is about £1800 I think) and I assume you gota tell the old insurance...:whistle2:

    Cheers
    Keef
    #28
  30. trick971
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    trick971 Tricky

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    [Feb 20, 2014]
    I think you can pick it up for a smidge under 1600, and fit it yourself....(easy enough)

    I am tempted....so defo would be interested in that sound clip too
    #29
  31. Cyprio
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    Cyprio Member

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    [Feb 20, 2014]
    I'm very very tempted to keep the oem exhaust, but have the quad tips cut-off and replaced with something similar to 'rum4mo's tips - or even the rs4 tips if poss.
    #30
  32. AFN1980
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    AFN1980 Active Member

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    [Feb 21, 2014]
    Hey Guys, So I have had my 2010 S4 Avant now for about 8 months. Loving every minute of it. Lol Thought i would chime in on the MPG side. I have done various long journeys and the best i ever got was on curise at 71MPH i covered 110 miles and got 31.3mpg!!!! i was amazed.

    IMG-20130723-00003.jpg

    On the way back I wasn't being so nice to the car and got about 25-26mpg as i was driving in indivdual mode and enjoying it a bit more. I had only had the car about 2 months at this point.

    On the day to day basis now I get anywhere from 12mpg in terrible stop/start traffic on the A13 (I drive to work) covering 9 miles to 26mgp on a good day when there is very little traffic at 6am!

    If i do long run I normally get anywhere from 25-30mpg dependent on driving style. A full tank when commuting daily gets me about 19-22mpg. I have always run optimax. No tried on normal 95 RON.

    As for the exhaust I would actually love to change mine to a milltek with oval either side. However i have to justify the £1800 to the wife and 2 kids. I know the response will be a simple one Child Care!

    Am also looking at a remap to really unleash the power. All in good time.

    I do agree with the OP that when driving in Auto the steering does on occasions have a mind of its own in. Dynamic the steering feels great. I have the steering set to Dynamic when I drive in Individual mode. Gives the car a much nicer feel to drive especially when cornering. Comfort is great for when i have the family in the car and also when the wife is driving.

    Anyway that's my 2 pence worth. Hope it helps :)
    #31
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  33. Keef
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    Keef Active Member

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    [Feb 21, 2014]
    Great info on the dynamic steering - saves me asking the question later!
    I've gone for the full pack - dynamic steering, Damper control and sports diff.
    Not sure if I really need them but didn't want to feel like I'd missing something afterwards.

    Think its time to see who we can tap-up for a miltek group buy!...anyone??
    #32
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  34. Rich M
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    Rich M Member

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    [Feb 26, 2014]
    Really great writeup mylo.

    I had read your post and the next day I ended up at my local Audi dealership to test drive and fell in love with it.

    Ended up putting my order in for a new S4 B8.5 black edition, in ibis white, with:
    -Tech pack high
    -Drive select with sports diff and damper control
    -Heated front/rear seats
    -Convenience package
    -Parking system advanced
    -A few other bits and bobs

    I'm coming from a 370HP Focus RS to an Audi S4, both opposite ends of performance in the sense that the RS was a shouty car and the S4 is the wolf in sheep clothing.

    I haven't got a build date yet but I have been told a 12 to 14 week wait and it is already hurting me. I keep having to look at the brochure to remind myself what I have to look forward to.

    Regards
    Rich
    #33
  35. Cyprio
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    Cyprio Member

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    [Feb 26, 2014]
    Yup, the 12 to 14 week wait sounds about right - just in time for summer! :).
    #34
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  36. Keef
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    Keef Active Member

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    [Feb 26, 2014]
    Hi Rich

    I placed my order on the 31st Jan and have been advised of a provisional build week of 20 (wc 12th May) which equates to a mid-June delivery. However I know from previous experience that this can change and based on my current car, the dates were not confirmed until literally a week before the build.

    I'm slightly frustrated as the 2015 model year changes start from build week 22 and I'm not sure how significant the changes are likely to be at this stage. I have seen a list of 2015MY omissions, but as yet there is no info on additions (if any) - there is a price increase (1.5%) on the A4 range due to be implemented the 1st March and this would usually suggest a change in some of the standard options.
    However as my car is well spec'd I'm hoping this wont be an issue - plus as there is a entirely new B9 model next year, I can't see Audi drastically changing too much (fingers crossed).

    If you ordered 2 weeks ago you may end up with a 2015MY car!
    I assume you have taken the finance contribution and hopefully negotiated a good discount?

    I've gone with a similar spec but couldn't risk not having the sport diff - as to weather I'll ever need it is a different mater!

    Avant, Daytona grey Black edition
    Sport seats, heated
    Parking advance
    Tech pack
    Drive select with Dynamic steering, Damper control & sports diff
    Phone prep connect

    Didn't bother with Convenience pack this time - I have it on my current car, and never really use it!

    Carbon trims & Supercharged badges are already on order!

    Like you, the wait is killing me, but this forum is keeping me sane, well for now anyways!
    #35
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  37. Rich M
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    Rich M Member

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    [Feb 26, 2014]
    Hi Keef,

    Interesting you mention the B9 coming out next year (i guess it was only inevitable), but could explain why I managed to get a massive 8k off the price, plus £800 GAP insurance thrown in and £450 paint and fabric thrown in for free. I did take out the finance option so the contribution from them helped with getting a good deal.

    The Daytona Grey is an awesome colour and will work well with the black edition kit.

    Regards
    Rich
    #36
  38. Keef
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    Keef Active Member

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    [Feb 26, 2014]
    Hi Rich

    Yes discounts a plenty at the mo! I got my dealer to match a price I got from Carwow - they weren't happy about it but they did it!

    I guess we just need to wait now then!


    Cheers
    Keef
    #37
  39. Rich M
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    Rich M Member

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    [Feb 26, 2014]
    Hi Keef,

    I used carwow too! I was amazed at the deals I was getting. Was almost going to go to Leicester (I'm in Halifax, West Yorkshire) as they had the best deal but thought I would try my luck at the local dealer and they took a look at the quote and bettered it

    Rich
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2014
    #38
  40. Keef
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    Keef Active Member

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    [Feb 26, 2014]
    Snap! My best offer from carwow was sytner in Leicester, a guy called Kam. The list price for my spec was just over £48k, his offer was £39k couldn't belive it! I was all set to go and order but my local caved in and matched, so saved me an hours drive!
    #39
    Rich M likes this.
  41. Rich M
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    Rich M Member

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    [Mar 4, 2014]
    Well just got the date for mine - 26th June for production :-( too long to wait :-(
    #40

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