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A3 1.8T or S3?

Discussion in 'A3/S3 Forum (8L Chassis)' started by sam4191, Jan 14, 2010.

  1. sam4191
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    sam4191 If In doubt, Flat out!

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    [Jan 14, 2010]
    Hi guys,

    I come in peace... from the B5 section...

    I have decided, after some insurance quotes that I am saving up for an S3. (a few months away yet)

    Since reading some threads on here, and a £300 difference in quotes, I have thought that even an A3 1.8T would maybe be a good choice. basically, I have (will have) +/- £4000 for the car. Ideally I'd much rather an S3... more tunability (from what I hear), but am really wondering (appart from the driving wheels, and power) what the real differences are. I see that 1.8TQS's are quite few and far between. Also, have realised that £4k is the bottom end of an S3.... but could i pick up a half decent one for that money?

    cheers

    Sam
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  3. Terrier QTS
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    Terrier QTS Member

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    [Jan 14, 2010]
    I think you'll be pushing it to get a decent S3 for 4K, but as you say you could get a decent TQS. The S3 is far more capable for tuning, you'd have to invest a fair bit in a TQS to keep up. However, a £300 remap to a TQS will easily see you keeping up with a stock S3.

    All depends on what you really want. I went for the TQS partly due to the insurance, partly the cheaper purchase price and partly because I didn't want a car that was a Saxo attention seeker
    #2
  4. jdas03
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    jdas03 Member

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    [Jan 14, 2010]
    I think the S3 is a massive hike in insurance but i took the dive and dont regret it. Mine is only stock but for me modified car insurance was more than the S3 so i went for it.
    S3 is a great car even in standard form IMO.
    It does everything and having the S3 seems a bit more special than any of the other hatches.
    Depends how bothered you are i guess, as terrier QTS states you can get standard S3 power for a little cash,but for that money you could turn an S3 into a beast! guess you'd have to add up how faster car you want vs how much you want to pay! 4K for a S3 will be hard... seem to be on the up price wise, least since i got mine!
    #3
  5. s3 Hoggy
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    s3 Hoggy Whats going on???

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    [Jan 14, 2010]
    I'd be a bit worried about spending £4000 on an s3, if that's your top budget then I'd go for the A3. Chances are a s3 at that price will be a pig, very high milage or will need work, where as you would get a pretty decent A3 for that money just my opinion though mate.

    Cheers Matt
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  6. Welly
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    Welly VX220 SC Driver :)

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    [Jan 14, 2010]
    I bought one for £4800 which was a bargain. But it's had it's problems to be fair, but it was always gonna have for that money....

    So, at £4000 it's the choice between a top end A3 with a K03S, or a bottom end, high miler S3 which will no doubt cause you some grief.... As all cars do to be fair....

    It's ultimately your choice, I bought an A3 and then moved up to the S3.
    #5
  7. s3dave
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    s3dave TFSI Hybrid

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    [Jan 14, 2010]
    4k will get you an high miler s3 ........if you are good at working on your own car and buy vag com you should be fine they are very strong engines...
    i bought mine for 5k and is a minter (guy was emigrating) and he was getting desperate he spent 4k on it in mods in 1998 with reciepts so i am in a win win situation , just watch out for the usual probs and you will be fine, if you are a spanner hater i would go for an a3 as labour costs are high....
    hth dave
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  8. Lemon S3
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    Lemon S3 Alex

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    I only paid £2900 for mine :rockwoot: The only things wrong with it was it had a small dent in the rear quarter and part of the grey side trim had broken off the clips which I just glued back on. I did buy it off my sister though as she couldn't afford to run it.
    #7
  9. Matt82
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    Matt82 Active Member

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    drive them both and see what you think, but 4wd in something with so little power could be a complete yawn fest for you.

    main downside with the a3 is the tiny turbo limiting how much money you can get out of it
    #8
  10. Essflee
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    Essflee Well-Known Member

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    With £4000 I'd also go for a decent A3 1.8T, still a lovely car though not quite as special...
    #9
  11. Matt82
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    Matt82 Active Member

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    and theyre plenty of fun being only fwd, cheaper to look after too
    #10
  12. 1animal1
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    1animal1 The Clar!! it mouves!!! VCDS Map User

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    yup, no haldex to mess about with, easier to work on..... and for 4k you'll get a ko3s equipped facelift which when mapped wouldnt be far off a mapped S3 from what we hear...... the A3 2wd i'm talking
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  13. S3 Rav
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    S3 Rav Well-Known Member

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    is there no way you could waut and save an extra grand or 2 and get the s3. depends how badly and quickly you want the car. personally i'd say the s3 each time but thats me, ( not for that price bracket though)
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  14. jojo
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    jojo S3 Drift King! Staff Member Moderator

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    1.8TQS is the compromise between the two and in your budget.
    #13
  15. Matt82
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    Matt82 Active Member

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    £6k though is mental for an 8L, a car they stopped making it 7 years ago!
    #14
  16. Matt82
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    Matt82 Active Member

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    so youre still paying out a fair wedge and in the bargain having the downsides of both cars. pass
    #15
  17. JS1500
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    JS1500 Howdy

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    Was £28K new though!

    I paid A LOT more than £6K for my 2003 S3 in October, don't regret it.
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  18. 1animal1
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    1animal1 The Clar!! it mouves!!! VCDS Map User

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    it is Matt but you get what you pay for...and that is cheap for an S3 given last years figures.....
    #17
  19. jojo
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    jojo S3 Drift King! Staff Member Moderator

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    If you look in the past, Audi 'S' cars tend to hold their value, wether they are good or not, you are buying into the 'S' heritage, wether the 8L has much of it is a divided opinion of course. How much are S2's picking up these days? Mental for a car they last built in 1995 or there abouts right?
    #18
  20. JS1500
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    JS1500 Howdy

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    What about £5,000,000+ for a Ferrari 250 GTO? Not made them since the early 60s, they should be giving them away!
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  21. Matt82
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    Matt82 Active Member

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    it was a £28k car when new and as such has high running costs now that they are old, look at all the threads, youd be paying £6k for whats effectively a massive liability.

    my S4 was less than £4k. it was a £47k car less than 10 years ago, because now its old but it still wants "£47k levels of looking after". its a liability, hence its cheap. £6k for an 8L is mental

    buying into S heritage? pull the other one (i need an ROFL smilie)

    S heritage is jumped up reps in diesel rep mobiles with silly bodykits to make them feel better about not having a hot model from the range
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  22. ianysm
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    ianysm Active Member

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    I too would always want the S3 of the two cars but thats because i know if i was in a 1.8T and saw an S3, i'd wish i bought that instead. I've never settled for anything but the top model of each range!

    I once bought an Escort RS Turbo that was a complete nail, but i didn't want an XR3i while ever there was an RS about. I was only 18!
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  23. Matt82
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    Matt82 Active Member

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    no. the 250gt is rare, its something special. the 8L is an old mass produced family hatch back. slight difference between the two
    #22
  24. ianysm
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    ianysm Active Member

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    The S3 was the best Audi driver's car in its time though (according to journalists!)
    #23
  25. JS1500
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    JS1500 Howdy

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    You're right, there is a difference, the 250 is slower, worse on fuel and much less practical!

    Cars, like anything else, are worth what someone is willing to pay for them. I know i'm not the only person to have bought an S3 for more than £6K...etc...

    I don't really appreciate someone telling me how little my car is worth and that I am mental. Cheers anyway though.
    #24
  26. DionBullock
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    DionBullock Dion

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    i just bought a 2000 x reg, facelift A3 1.8T sport (not quattro) for £3700!! there were plenty of bangers around with 120-130k miles on the clock with all sorts of niggly problems going for between £1500 - £3000... its a case of you get what u pay for! i thought mine was a bit steep untill i saw how well the car had been looked after and how good the drive was! thats why i decided to pay that little bit extra. owning an S3 for £4k would be tempting, but after all the spending youd be doing to it to make it half as good as it should be, youd be at a loss, So to be honest, ur better off getting a top spec A3 1.8T than go for a banger S3 if theres only a few hundered quid between them! But if i had £6k+, id go for an S3 anytime, because i bet it is worth the extra £3k! :)
    #25
  27. sam4191
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    sam4191 If In doubt, Flat out!

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    lol! Thanks alot for all the replies!

    So basically, don't bother being skint with a cheap S3.

    To be honest though, as ianysm mentioned, if i saw an S3 in an A3 1.8T, then I would be gutted. They do seem to be holding their value, so they don't seem a bad car to "invest" in. I think I'll end up just saving up for a little while longer and get a nice S3. Trouble is, I don't earn much and don't want to be totally in the red. lol. there are a couple of FWD 1.8t's in the area at decent prices, so may give one a try.

    Thanks again for the help! much appreciated!
    #26
  28. 1animal1
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    1animal1 The Clar!! it mouves!!! VCDS Map User

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    Sam...another thing to consider and this from someones whos owned pre facelift and post....the facelift cars are much nicer and more refined inside, they changed loads of stuff from the roof handles right down to the brake pedal switch..... id be more tempted with a facelift 2wd than a pre S3....just personal preference and will prob be contested...its only like the 8P boys sitting in a facelift 8L and it feeling dated

    Matt...... you really know nothing about cars at all let alone valuing one, compare the 'mass production' of the S3 with that of another car of the same era...... same quality, same pace, same type of vehicle...then you'll understand...if you dont, then go buy yourself a nice focus, obviously similar to an S3 and should hold their price the same (highest mass production figures in the last decade and residuals that reflect that FACT)
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  29. sam4191
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    sam4191 If In doubt, Flat out!

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    Aah... That is a very interesting and useful bit of information. As you may have seen, I have a Facelift car, and love the build quality. Oh well, I suppose I will just have to look at one and see. Am going looking for a car for my girlfriend tomorrow, so will stop off and have a look at one.... it's overpriced, but a look won't hurt!:) Thanks for the thought!!!
    #28
  30. A3Tom
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    A3Tom Smell my finger.

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    [Jan 15, 2010]
    I have a pre facelift A3 1.8T fwd and its spot on...plus...they're cheap as chips these days too. I paid current day good S3 money for mine 3 years ago. Sure its a minter with low miles but even so....I could have got an S3 for the money now!.

    They're nice cars though and by no means poverty spec at all. Full leather, bose, climate, loads of extras...lots of car for the money :) If I were you I'd either save some more money and get a nice well looked after S3 or get an A3 now with what you have. I dont think you have enough cash at the minute to get a sorted S3....because you will have to spend cash on it if you buy one for £4K (which will ruin you even more!).

    A3's are good fun though, sure mines not quattro and its no S3 but its still a good laugh to tool around in. Cheap servicing, good on fuel,...happy days. I've spent a few quid on it making it go faster, stop better and go round corners better but in standard form I still enjoyed it a lot.....£4K should see you in a facelift low miler and might leave you enough spare change for a remap :)
    #29
  31. 1animal1
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    1animal1 The Clar!! it mouves!!! VCDS Map User

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    [Jan 16, 2010]
    wasnt trying offend Tom...you know that dont ya fella :beerchug:

    just purely based on my experience, i bought my pre face A3 for £9500 and kept it for 6 years, i loved it, black leather, climate and a few other bits..... but i wouldnt go back to pre face now, not after having facelift....

    build quality will remain in all pre's and post cors....best making a decision once you've sat in both :racer:
    #30
  32. ianysm
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    ianysm Active Member

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    [Jan 16, 2010]
    So what if it puts you in the red, you only live once!
    #31
  33. sam4191
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    sam4191 If In doubt, Flat out!

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    [Jan 17, 2010]
    Lol!!! If only I could think like that!

    Well, after having a look around, I have seen a couple of Quattro's around, but most of them seem to be FWD, so looking more likely to be a FWD.

    To anyone who has, or had a FWD;

    What sort of power do they run and are they drivable in all conditions? Just I want about 250bhp. lol
    #32
  34. A3Tom
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    A3Tom Smell my finger.

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    [Jan 17, 2010]
    My car is an AGU engines FWD with a KO3 turbo, max power before going for a bigger turbo is between 190 and 200bhp with a remap. Mine seems quick enough to me, seem to piss enough people off with it anyway.
    A later KO3S turbo'd motor could see 230bhp which would be nice :)

    Mines fine in all conditions,...can light the tyres up if you just boot in all the power at once though...once its rolling its fine.

    T
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  35. sam4191
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    sam4191 If In doubt, Flat out!

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    [Jan 17, 2010]
    Thanks for that mate, I think I'd be looking to uprate the turbo though, that would all be looked into when I get a car (IF) lol.

    Cheers

    Sam
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  36. A3Tom
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    A3Tom Smell my finger.

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    [Jan 17, 2010]
    I was thinking about popping a KO3S on mine but to be honest its already raped my bank account so I think I'll stick with what I have :)
    #35
  37. sam4191
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    sam4191 If In doubt, Flat out!

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    [Jan 17, 2010]
    LOL! That sounds like what would happen to me! I was thinking of putting a K04 in ... but im talking out of my ar5e, don't really understand much about these turbo's.
    #36
  38. Welly
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    Welly VX220 SC Driver :)

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    [Jan 18, 2010]

    Do it..... fit it yourself, it can be done inside of £400....
    #37
  39. Welly
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    Welly VX220 SC Driver :)

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    [Jan 18, 2010]

    I resent that!! lol. :)

    I'm selling my A3 at the moment for £3400 (hopefully) and thats got 134,000 miles on it. She certainly isn't a banger.... People get too hung up on mileage. If a car has really been looked after, as this has, they're as good as gold.

    It's only recently has a belt & pump and a clutch. Bye bye a grand!
    #38
  40. MIKE GTR
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    MIKE GTR Member

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    [Jan 18, 2010]
    A ferrari Mondial is rare and is still something special compared to something like a mk5 golf, although they both sell for about the same now.

    I think you'll find depreciation is dependent on a number of factors, the main being desirability and running costs and as much as i'm not the biggest fan of the S3, there's not much else out there that is as well specced and still pretty upto date looking for circa £6-7k - furthermore, being the top model for the A3 range it is more than likely to have been looked after rather moreso than your run of the mill everyday A3.
    #39
  41. 1animal1
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    1animal1 The Clar!! it mouves!!! VCDS Map User

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    [Jan 18, 2010]
    im gonna be looking to spend 2-3k on the misus next car which is likely to be a post 2001 A3 with the KO3s fitted...far easier :)
    #40

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