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Looing at S3 - advice needed

Discussion in 'A3/S3 Forum (8L Chassis)' started by stuiesav, Mar 5, 2008.

  1. stuiesav
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    stuiesav New Member

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    [Mar 5, 2008]
    Hi all,

    Hope this note finds you well.. So i wonder if you can help. Finally it is time to part with my TVR Cerbera - and i find myself looking at Audi S3's

    I have a limited budget - £7k and am seeing what look (at least on paper) nice cars from 1999 - 2001 but i have a few questions...

    (1) Am i kidding myself if I think i can get a decent S3 for this money
    (2) Is High mileage something to be worried about? I am not going to put a massive amount of mileage on the car, i have seen cars on sale from 64,000 to 120,000 for this price range - however i want something that is a little fun, but also a bit more reliable that said TVR
    (3) What are the normal gotcha's that i should look for on a S3 at the age I am looking?
    (4) What sort of costs can i expect at service time?
    (5) What are they like to work on yourself (I have happily done most the work on my TVR - just wondered if its the same deal with the Audi)

    So thats it i guess - any comments greatfully recieved.

    Many thanks,

    Stuart.
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  3. DaveMK^
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    DaveMK^ Member

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    [Mar 5, 2008]
    I would say you would be extremely lucky to find an S3 for 7k, There was a case of an S3 for sale recently, looked immaculate advertised as done 45k but after a hpi check it had done over a 100k. That was up for 7k.

    You will be looking at probably 8.5/9k for what I would call "decent"
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  4. danotto
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    danotto VAG HUNTER

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    [Mar 5, 2008]
    agree you may be lucky ive seen s3's go on ebay for £6800ish will roughly 70k on the clock but hpi check would have to be done first.
    the s3 engine isnt the easiest of engines to work on its all pretty cramped,for most jobs you will have to remove parts which you didnt want to just to gain access etc,

    as for things to look for paint work for corrosion audi have a 12yr warranty but still check.
    Clutch as this can cost anything to £900 to replace, cambelt and water pump should be done at 60k i think.
    cant really think of any other things to check some one else will fil in the blanks soon im sure
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  5. S3 Jock
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    S3 Jock Member

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    [Mar 5, 2008]
    For 7k you are prob looking at a high miles 1999/2000 car.

    All the usual checks apply for any car, check for damage/repair, HPI, authenticity, mileage etc.

    Check history carefully. A meticolous owner will keep receipts for every service down to nut/bolts they have bought themselves.

    They are a pretty durable cars but will suffer if neglected. Suspension needs maintenance (sloppy handling, creaks groans, knocks, thumps, clunks) are all sign of neglect and work required. Look for evidence of HALDEX oil & filter being replaced, aswell as the timign belt and waterpump.

    Clutches can go in re-mapped cars so try pullign away in 3rd gear from standstill. If the car stalls / really struggles your clutch is on it's way.

    As far as workign on yourself, well it depends what you want to do. I am an experienced DIY mechanic and capable of engine rebuilds etc. I would say the S3 is a difficult car for a novice mechanic who may not have a good selection of tools. Your £90 set from Halfords is nowhere near versatile enough for this beast! SImple things like brakes etc are easy but access is often a pain.

    Many users on here report runnign problems / ECU probs after they have re-mapped their cars. Every owner I know who has left their ECU standard have not had any 'electrical' faults.

    Be choosey, there are lots of these cars out there so look at as many as you can and be prepared to walk away.

    Good Luck with the purchase.
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  6. ash_s3
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    ash_s3 Active Member

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    [Mar 5, 2008]
    Hi mate, as above really some good advice there.

    Cant stress how important it is to check HPi, accident and theft reports etc...
    Well documented service history is essential on a high-miler
    Dont be too put off tho, remember is an audi your looking at not a ford! These cars will do the miles with ease alsong at theyre looked after properly.
    Go and look at a few, if you local to a member on here im sure they wouldnt mind meeting up with you so you can have a good look at one at your own pace.

    Great cars, loved both of mine.
    Good luck
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  7. gavins3
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    gavins3 New Member

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    [Mar 5, 2008]
    Stuart,

    I've just sent you a PM as mine is up for sale now. 2000 pre-facelift, 86k up for £7495. There are some out there!

    Cheers,

    Gav
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