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Is the A3 a noisy car?

Discussion in 'New A3/S3 (8V Chassis)' started by Harwilk, Sep 12, 2013.

  1. Harwilk
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    Harwilk New Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    I am considering buying a A3 Sportback Sport 1.4 COD with 17" wheels, but with the SE suspension. I have not been able to test drive one, but did take a test drive on a S line 2.0 TDI, with 18" wheels. I was disturbed by it`s intrusive road noise. Interestingly, in a recent group test by What Car, whilst the A3 (2.0 TDI Sport S tronic) was considered overall to be the best, it was criticised for "the amount of road roar it generates - it`s particularly bad on the motorway", tending to confirm my impression.

    Both my drive and that of What Car were on cars with 18" wheels and lowered sports suspension. Is anyone able to say whether or not the size of wheel, and the SE or lowered suspension, makes any difference to the amount of road noise entering the car?
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  3. cemerson
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    cemerson Well-Known Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    I've not really experienced that, but then my old car was very noisy so maybe I'm just comparing to that. I don't imagine the suspension and 18" wheels would help the situation!
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  4. snakehips
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    snakehips Well-Known Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    Yes, it's mainly the 18" wheels that increase the road noise. Your SE suspension with 17" will definitely cause less road noise but hard to say if quiet enough for your tastes.
    #3
  5. Dylock
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    Dylock Active Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    I've not really noticed it either to be honest. I'm in an s3 so you would have thought that would be the worst if wheels and suspension are to blame.
    The only time there is road noise is on the concrete motorways but I've not been in a car that doesn't have road noise on them.
    I'm sure I read something about the types of tyres being to blame. I'm on continentals, not sure if the same type the a3 uses.
    #4
  6. AJB
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    AJB Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    Can't comment on different size wheels etc, but mine's a Sport 1.4 CoD Sportback with 17" wheels and SE suspension. I'm only a week and a half in, but I haven't particularly noticed it being noisy and it certainly doesn't annoy me. My previous car may have been slightly quieter, but that was a 15 year old 5-series with 15" wheels.
    #5
  7. snakehips
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    snakehips Well-Known Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    The A3 S-Line I test drove had Continentals.
    #6
  8. Little Red Monster
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    Little Red Monster Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    I have 18" wheels on my A3 Quattro. Yes you do get some road 'roar' but only on certain roads/road finishes. Overall have not found the noise too disturbing and the B&O drowns out most of the noise anyway! You certainly will hear less on 17" wheels.
    #7
  9. Daveotto
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    Daveotto Well-Known Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    Yes I do notice road noise (18' wheels and sports suspension) more than I did on my 8p with 16" wheels but its not overly intrusive espcially when you consider the wind noise is reduced and the engine is quieter so overall is better than my previous Audi.

    If I try to compare to the Vauxhall Astra (1.6 petrol, 17" wheels) I had the mis pleasure of driving for nearly 500 miles earlier this week then the whole "do I get road noise discussion looses all credibility".

    Some poeple would only be happy in a silent elctric car running on spongy balloon tyres......alternatively just turn the stereo up a notch and enjoy the drive quality, which i don't hear anyone complaining about unlike they have with previous incarnations of the A3.
    #8
  10. BigD289
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    BigD289 Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    We've got the 18" on SE suspension and you do get a lot of tyre noise. Its about the only noise you do hear though!

    Its on Contis, presumably there are other tyres out there that would be quieter.
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  11. mjcourtney
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    mjcourtney Well-Known Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    I'm on 18" Continentals with SE, and the road noise is definitely less than my previous 8P Sport on 17s. I will be honest and admit you do start to notice the road noise at about 70mph, but I wouldn't say it's intrusive.
    #10
  12. Harwilk
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    Harwilk New Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    I probably should have said that on my test drive I was comparing the A3 with my current Jaguar XF 3.0D, with which I am happy, except for the dreaded diesel "DPF full". I do not drive enough miles for a diesel car, hence I am looking for a suitable petrol replacement.
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  13. TreborA4
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    TreborA4 Active Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    I changed from an A4 Avant running on Bridgestone and Perelli tyres over the three years I had it.

    The new A3 on Continentals does have more road noise!

    I have just spent a week in France and noticed that the road surfaces were better than the UK and the road noise on some of the roads was non-existent!

    I think the combination of wheel and tyre size, tyre brand and road surface has significant effects on the level of road noise experienced!
    #12
  14. paullowther
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    paullowther Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    Speaking of noise. On the comfort pack it mentions about the inclusion of acoustic glass. Does this mean that the windows are double glazed, or do you get a thicker windscreen?
    #13
  15. mjcourtney
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    mjcourtney Well-Known Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    Just a thicker windscreen - the other windows are standard. Makes a big difference though as it cuts down on wind noise.
    #14
  16. driver_tim
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    driver_tim Active Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    I have 18 inch wheels and Sport suspension. Every 8V with 18" wheels I've seen so far has Continental Sport Contact 5s. My view is overall my car is reasonably quiet (engine and wind noise are very low), but I would concur that the road noise is a touch on the high side. My suspicion is that the tyres are probably a lot to do with it; my previous car was a Mk 6 Golf with exactly the same size wheels as my A3. The road noise in that noticeably reduced once I swapped the factory Bridgestone Potenza RE050As for Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric IIs. It will be interesting to see what happens when people get their A3s to higher mileages and maybe start experimenting with different tyres.

    That said, overall I think the interior ambience is very good. Did a long motorway trip yesterday and felt very comfortable throughout.
    #15
  17. snakehips
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    snakehips Well-Known Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    I have a Golf GTi and did a lot of research a couple of years ago for new 18" tyres and the Conti's were noted for their road noise so I avoided them. Shame I'll have them in a few months but I'd bet there's not THAT much difference between tyres though.
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  18. Daveotto
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    Daveotto Well-Known Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    You might be surprised on how much difference tyres can make, on my last tyre change I swapped the standard bridgestones to a new Eco version which according to the spec was 2db lower (and were cheaper by a couple of £) and I swear I could notice the difference.
    #17
  19. paullowther
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    paullowther Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    Does anybody know the best 'all round' low profile tyre brand?
    #18
  20. Little Red Monster
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    Little Red Monster Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    Like you I had a Jaguar XF Diesel, but only had 3 x 'DPF Full' incidents in three years. I loved the Jaguar and in particular peaceful cruising on the motorway and plenty of comfort too. However, the Audi gives me the same performance and is much easier to park!! Just wish the Audi came with more features included in the price, as I only needed two extras with the jag, reversing camera a small spare tyre.
    #19
  21. Vertigo1
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    Vertigo1 Well-Known Member

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    [Sep 12, 2013]
    In absolute terms, yes it can be quite noisy at times, especially on some poorer road surfaces. That said, it is quieter than my 8Ps were.

    As for tyres, I think every 8V on 18" wheels has come with Contis which, reading the tyre test in the latest issue of EVO today, didn't fare too well for road noise or rolling resistance. That said, they were stellar performers in the wet, which is the most important aspect of tyres for me personally.
    #20
  22. Richyboyp
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    Richyboyp Member

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    [Sep 13, 2013]
    I agree, car does have quite a lot of road noise but road surface is the big factor. Also once tyres are worn then the choice is your to get quiet running ones. I prefer as vertigo says the current are high class for wet. I can deal with the road noise. Also the noise is something that is quite easily forgotten about, not invasive at all. A new passenger may notice on 1st drive and mention but you as the driver will soon overlook it.
    #21
  23. Grahamb
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    Grahamb Member

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    [Sep 13, 2013]
    This road noise will be a matter with all small cars, it is to appeal to the get up and feel the bumps hear the noise and enjoy the ride.

    Well for some that is.

    As with 'harwilk and little red, i to came from a Jaguar, mine was a XJ 3.0 (350 class) petrol, i think trying to compare a jaguar to a A3 is little long on the imagination, as for road noise, i understand about the miles and the dpf, but most peps to day want the diesels, why can you not give the girl a run every few weeks just to burn the dpf.

    We now have the A6 2.0 tdi, like above we would of went with the petrol as we do not do any milage like we used too do. We just give her a good 30 min run and take the gears to 3-3500 and this gives her what see needs.

    Most peps i have came across with a diesel claim they have to change gear at 2000 as this is good for all living things. Not good for the engine.

    Any way the noise, we had 17 - 18 - 20s, and i would say with out a doubt the smaller the wheel the more the rubber the better for our creature comforts.
    #22
  24. dieseldoug
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    dieseldoug Member

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    [Sep 13, 2013]
    Road noise is down to the tar grade or concrete, I don't notice it on our local roads but find the noise when traveling south with different road surfaces, but this doesn't bother me at all.
    The cars are built too quiet nowadays so you will hear more noises, try a series 3 land rover then you will hear road noise, engine noise...
    #23
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  25. Chelmersteve
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    Chelmersteve Member

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    [Sep 13, 2013]
    My A3 Sport came with Pirellis and road noise is less than with the Contis I had on an A1 (both are on 17 wheels) but some road surfaces really make the Pirellis 'rumble.' It's never what you would call intrusive though.
    #24
  26. mfspen
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    mfspen Member

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    [Sep 13, 2013]
    Not by much.
    Mine is an SE with 17" Pirelli tyres, and the road noise is very high on almost all surfaces. It's poor, considering the market segment that the A3 purports to be in. I wouldn't buy another one for that reason alone.
    #25
  27. B7000
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    B7000 Member

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    [Sep 13, 2013]
    I find my new 8v quieter than my previous 8p---------but no where near as quiet as my wifes 1.4 SE VW Polo which is super quite and half the price:think:
    #26
  28. driver_tim
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    driver_tim Active Member

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    [Sep 13, 2013]
    The Conti Sport Contact 5s seem to generally get pretty good reviews. I think noise may be their weak point...
    #27
  29. dzankizakon
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    dzankizakon Member

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    [Sep 14, 2013]
    For what it's worth, I have both an 8P (5 years old, with 16" alloys, Conti SportContact 3) and the 8V (a month old, 17", Pirellis, standard suspension), and in ALL situations the 8V is drastically quieter car. I sometimes drive the 8P after/before driving the 8V and the difference is huge, it's so much quieter in the city and on the motorway. I'm not saying it's a particularly quiet car, there is some tyre noise and also the mirrors, but it's only noticable when you drive over ≈160km/h.
    #28
  30. dieseldoug
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    dieseldoug Member

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    [Sep 14, 2013]
    A new range of Continental car tyres can significantly reduce road noise, says the company.The new "ContiSilent" technology consists of a coating that it bonded to the inside of the tread area after the production process. Continental claims that the special layer of foam has a strong damping effect on the sound waves caused by the rolling tyre, reducing the level of road noise that reaches the cabin.Standard tread patterns mean that braking and handling characteristics are unchanged, it says, while the tyres are compatible with standard wheel rims and fitting processes.The first production cars to use the new tyres are Audi's RS6 Avant and RS7 Sportback models, while the A8 will also be fitted with them in the near future.Tyres with ContiSilent technology will gain an additional RO1 mark on their sidewalls.Check out the new tyre should be good not sure when it will be in the A3 sizes
    #29
  31. Richyboyp
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    Richyboyp Member

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    [Sep 14, 2013]
    Sounds good, lets just hope the foam doesn't start coming off. This would be a nightmare for wheel vibration I guess.
    #30
  32. AJB
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    AJB Member

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    [Sep 15, 2013]
    After a couple of longer journeys over the weekend, I think mine seems noisy on some road surfaces (mine is Sport, with SE suspension on 17" wheels), but not at all noisy on most surfaces. The noise on the noisy surfaces isn't enough to annoy me too much, but it is noisier than my previous car. Most surfaces it really isn't noisy at all though. Mine's on Pirellis so it might be that, as Chelmersteve said, Pirellis "rumble" on some surfaces.
    #31
  33. manor13
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    manor13 Active Member

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    [Sep 17, 2013]
    i just picked up a TDI 8v today and did think it had road noise issues which surprised me. going to compare it to the 8p i still have, both are sportbacks one diesel and one petrol.
    #32
  34. Little Red Monster
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    Little Red Monster Member

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    [Sep 17, 2013]
    I put my foot down leaving a T Junction this afternoon, in the pouring rain, the grip was staggering, I was half way down the road before I realized it!! Very impressed with the road holding in the wet, lots of confidence in this respect.
    #33
  35. Itguy
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    Itguy Active Member

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    [Nov 3, 2013]
    Have just seen this thread and read it with interest.

    We're waiting for an S3 at the moment and when we have undertaken our test drives (1x 2hr and 2x1hr) my wife and I both immediately commented on how quiet we thought the car is.

    The current comparison in our household is a MINI Clubman (16" wheels, non runflat), a new diesel Fiesta, a Mk5 Golf GTi and a 2003 Z4 3.0 on runflats. Bearing this in mind I'm not that surprised that we think it's quiet but even so, we used to have a 330d touring, range rover vogue td6, a4 avant, v70 t5 etc etc.

    The S3 on it's 18" wheels and sports suspension is the most quiet car we've driven and the lack of wind noise is staggering!
    #34
  36. arad85
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    arad85 Active Member

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    [Nov 3, 2013]
    The 184 s-line we test drove is definitely noisier on the road than our Skoda Superb (2l 170ps diesel and also a very nice car). Didn't stop us ordering it though :)
    #35
  37. Richyboyp
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    Richyboyp Member

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    [Nov 3, 2013]
    Upon more driving in the car (only just clocked 1k since sept) I've noticed the road noise more. My conclusion: the car is so dam quiet overall that you can now actually hear tyre noise!
    As we all know the obvious, road surface is a very big part.
    I even hear the fan heaters when they are only set a1/4 on. Although with this I've noticed if it's windy then you hear the wind through the heaters, I assume this is due to the location of the intake for them? If the wind is blowing the right direction it must just be in line. I almost thought it was wind noise that a few people have commented about on other threads. So was very happy when turning off it was silent!
    Overall real quiet! Oh and I'm on 18's with lower suspension :)
    #36
  38. Itguy
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    Itguy Active Member

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    [Nov 3, 2013]
    I think we really noticed how quiet the cabin was when going reasonably slowly in town and having the radio on very low volume but it still being highly audible (b&o). It's the sound deadening of potholes, speed humps and general city stuff that impressed us so much.
    #37
  39. cuke2u
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    cuke2u Well-Known Member

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    [Nov 3, 2013]
    I'll be interest to compare the difference between my present car, a focus with 18" wheels but with a 235 width and Michelin ps3's, with the 18" Conti's. My previous experience with the 18" Conti's' were that they badly tramlined. I assume everyone has checked their tire pressures?
    #38

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