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First Impressions on 3.2 Quattro for a day

jungle Feb 23, 2005

  1. jungle

    jungle Member

    Took my Sportback 2.0TDi for its 20,000 mile service today and was given a 3.2 Quattro.

    For a flagship model I expected all the usual SE trimmings and was disappointed to find non-dimming mirrors, non-auto wipers and non-auto lights. I missed having cruise control more than anything else. Given that most 3.2s will get these options added by the buyers, maybe Audi are having the last laugh, but I expected more.

    Confusing - low profile tyres and sport suspension = better ride quality?? The ride is more supple than my SE. If anyone can explain this, I'm all ears.

    Fantastic motor. Sounds brilliant (especially when you are used to diesels) and has a great top end. I was surprised at the comparative lack of midrange, and the engine felt a bit gutless below 4k, but this is more than compensated by the kick from 4,500 to just below 7,000. Especially noticeable above 100mph (I saw 155mph on a private road... and it was snowing). Injection felt a bit snatchy from a closed throttle - perhaps Audi could take a leaf from the bike world and try a double butterfly system above the injectors to modulate initial power?

    Faultless - excellent body control and unbelievably composed on the brakes - hardly any nose dive or rear "wiggle" - and the brakes are so much better than the 2.0TDi's that it took me a while to use them without risking a pile-up behind me.

    Best 'til last. I have whinged on several occasions about Audi handling traits. Well Quattro has just restored my faith. Weight distribution felt so much better (again, can anyone explain why?) and the car felt less nose heavy. I was able to drive like I would ride a bike, brake up to entry and balance the throttle through the first part of the bend, and nail it from the apex on. Awesome - great traction, no flashing lights on the dash, and hardly any lift-off oversteer unless you really ask for it.

    Overall, I loved this car. I drove 380 miles today and managed to average 19.8mpg, and that plus the initial cost would rule it out as a real world option for me. But give me the handling, grip, and ride of this car plus the torque and gadgets of my car and I would be a very happy bunny.

    You lot with 3.2Qs are a bunch of jammy bas*ards.

  2. Jungle,
    You've done 20k in your Sportback already??

    When did you get it?
  3. Japper

    Japper Ibis S3 Fan Club

    [ QUOTE ]
    Sorry but I thought the Sportback was launched on Sept 1st or am I wrong?

    [/ QUOTE ]

    jungle, you've done 20k miles in less than 6 months ?.

    Respect /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif

    Please let us know how much the dealers charged you.
  4. JaminBen

    JaminBen Member

    Great writeup, Jungle! I had the exact same impressions when I drove 3.2 Qs.

    Re: your question about stiffer shocks/springs yielding a "better ride", the answer could be quite simple. Stiffer springs will keep the suspension off its rubber bump stops (think classic Mini suspension, which is ONLY rubber cones). Stiffer shocks will effectively control those springs' oscillations, negating any "bounce". I drove a civic type R with coilovers that rode 1000 times better than stock for those reasons.

    Add to the mix less body roll, dive and squat (which you've mentioned) and you have a recipe for a "better ride". Was your test car a Sport or S-line? Did it have 17" or 18" wheels? Do you remember the make of tyres?

    Re: your question about better weight distribution, well the Q option adds 90 kilos down low and to the rear (most of that weight is in the Haldex coupling, rear diff, subframe and axles). So that does make an impact.

    Also, If you are used to driving a DSG and then test a manual, then the 30kgs off the front will be (slightly) noticeable as well. It must be said that these slight differences are just that: slight. Not many people will notice them. But for those who are in tune with their rides (be that a bike, a car, or a trycicle) then beauty is in those details... But you already know that ;-)

    [ QUOTE ]
    (I saw 155mph on a private road... and it was snowing).

    [/ QUOTE ] Holy jeepers Batman!!! So how was it? /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cool.gif

    Anyway, thanks for a great review, and thanks for making my nights even more sleepless (my 3.2Q manual S-Line chassis is still "in transit").

    -Ben, soon to be a jammy bast*rd /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif
  5. jungle

    jungle Member

    [ QUOTE ]
    Blimey, that is some serious mileage.

    Have you felt any difference in the engine.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    I collected the car on the 16th November 2004. Current mileage is 20,044! Don't ask..

    Sorry I don't know what the charges for the 1st service are as its all on a company account.
    What I can say is the service was very impressive - as good as BMW. My courtesy car was ready and waiting, the valet inside and out was very good, no mention or fuss was made of the fact that I had overfilled with oil and activated the "knackered cat converter" symbol on the dash, and when I rang them to say I would not get back by 6pm they said no probs, bring the quattro back tomorrow. Best of all, their diagnostics did not spot the fact that the car has been running with a tuning box for the last 2 months.

    Yes the engine did loosen up dramatically. If like me you are used to TDi style engines, the engine feels less torquey than it really is. Some of this is just tightness, but it is also down to the broader spread of power and willingness (for a diesel) to rev. There is no longer the all-at-once delivery of the old engines, rather a longer spread of power which actually makes for speedier progress. You need to check the speedo to appreciate the acceleration.

    I noticed the engine loosening up on a fast run to the alps, with a slicker gearchange action and quicker spin up when matching downchanges.

    I should say I made a point of thrashing this car from day one. This has been mentioned elsewhere, but it is common knowledge with bike engines that thrashed ones are quickest. Ideally you should use mineral oil for the first 500-1,000 miles, hammer it everywhere, and then change oil and filter to the usual synthetic or whatever you prefer.

    The car averages 500 miles on a tamk now. The first tank lasted 360 miles, so you can see how much it has loosened up.

    Finally, fit a tuning box. I got mine from ebay for £30 and it makes a huge difference, and as mentioned, Audi cannot detect them. See "tuning boxes" thread for more info.

    Cheers guys

  6. Jungle,

    7000 miles a month!!!! /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/crazy.gif

    Do you drive in your sleep??

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