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Petrol or Diesel....Your opinions

Discussion in 'A3/S3/Sportback (8P Chassis)' started by csanchez1978, May 29, 2009.

  1. csanchez1978
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    csanchez1978 New Member

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    Hi All,

    Looking to purchase to my first A3 within the next month. My current 2000 A4 1.9TDI (110) is starting to show its age and I fancy a change especially as I have just changed jobs and only do around 10K miles a year now.

    However here is my dilemma. Would i be best off getting a 1.8 or going for a 2.0 TDI 170!? I am after a nice balance between performance and mpg but at the same time having a sporty feel hence the S Line

    I have seen a really nice 08 1.8T FSI S Line with a reasonable spec (GSM, Heated seats, symphony, multi-function steering wheel, manual) at a good price.

    The equivalent diesel age wise , spec etc would cost me around a 1K/1.5K extra however it will take a few years to recoup the extra premium for the diesel engine considering the mileage i am doing.

    Performance wise they seem to be identical except for (after some searching) the diesel providing more torque mid range on the gears. Useful in motorways but 80% of my driving now is on roundabouts, traffic lights and dual carriage ways.

    I test drove the 1.8 petrol and really liked it. It did bring a smile to my face but thats not hard after driving a slow diesel for the past 8 years. :laugh:

    Again, I am after a nice balance between performance and mpg so i have already ruled out the slower diesels and the 2 litre petrol.

    Does it just boil down to how long i will be keeping the car for!?

    Can anyone offer any advise or thoughts on the two engines bearing in mind my circumstances!!? Maybe there is something i have missed or overlooked. - Its proving to be a tough call to make. :unsure:
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  2. jb111s
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    jb111s Member

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    We've got a 2.0FSI & a new MK6 Golf GT 2.0 Diesel. For town driving I still prefer the A3 as there's just no turbo lag & nice linear torque. Of course, once the turbo kicks in on the oil burner then it shifts much faster but I do get frustrated putting the foot down waiting for the kick from the diesel when driving round town.

    Not sure if there's as much lag with a petrol turbo or if you get better torque before the turbo kicks in than the equivalent diesel but find it really disappointing.
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  3. bingobongo123
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    bingobongo123 Member

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    i have a 1.9TDI - what a pile of poo - and have order the 2.0TDI 170ps "black edition"
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  4. Matt
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    Matt Active Member

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    I think the best thing for you to do is test drive the 170 then you can decide if you prefer it to the 1.8T that you have driven or not.

    All that will happen in this thread is people that haven't driven either will spout a load of ***** one way or the other and you'll be no further forward! Its what happens every time there is a petrol or diesel type thread.
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  5. Ash B
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    Ash B Well-Known Member

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    Me i'd go for petrol...Always i dont drive far normaly just around where i live. Town and local area's so petrol fine for me. If i was driving on the motor way then i'd go for a diesel. Really depends how much you want to spend on the car, tax, fuel, servicing and also depends on your life style and driving. But every time petrol would win for me:) But 1.8T FSI and 2.0TDI 170 are both great cars, and both suit different people with different needs. Test drive a 2.0tdi 170 and see how you feel. I'm sure after a few test drives you know which ones best for you. No one can really say go for petrol or diesel as its down to your life style and how much your willing to spend on every thing i said above.
    Hope i was able to help a little....If not sure some of the lads be here soon to help you out anyway. Hope it doesnt start another Petrol V Diesel thread:undwech: lol

    S-line spec is always a good choice though, and a nice place to be in once driving and also looks better than SE etc....You able to get a good deal on teh 08 1.8T fsi you saw?


    Thanks

    Ashley
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  6. csanchez1978
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    csanchez1978 New Member

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    Totally agree with the S Line spec. The 1.8 TFSI i saw is about 17K (10K miles, decent spec - see original post). decent price IMO for an S Line only a year old.

    When looking at the 170 diesels (spec a age wise) they seem to be 1K/2K dearer - Around 18-19K.

    I agree that I should test drive the 170 diesel and see whats it like. The diesel will certainly pay for itself if i keep it longer than three or four years so I have that to consider as well.

    I will let you all know how I get on and I fully appreciate the comments.
    #6
  7. ned.c
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    ned.c Member

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    Personally I have a 2.0 tdi and my last car was a vag 1.9tdi so I guess you can see where my preference is. That aside i currently do little milage and car share to work. My car does around 50mpg and my colleagues does maybe 30-35mpg. I personally don't think i'd want to go back to the higher running costs of the petrol in terms of tax and fuel though i appreciate you have to pay more to start with.

    If you've plenty of cash then go with what you prefer but if you notice every time you're filling up and how much it's costing go with the diesel imho.
    #7
  8. Damo S
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    Damo S New Member

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    Ive just sold my deisel (focus 2.0 tdci, remapped to 170bhp) and gone back to a petrol (audi 3.2 quattro). Surprisingly, the focus felt quicker at certain points due to the massive amounts of torque (about 280lbs foot), but take the 3.2 through the gears properly and it would leave the focus for dead. totally different power delivery.

    To be honest the main reason for going back to petrol is I was sick of the tractor noise and wanted a nice V6 sound track, otherwise I would have gone for a 170 tdi quattro and got it remapped (to 210 ish).

    If you dont mind the sound of the deisel I would stick with them. They feel faster than they are. The turbo shunt always brings a smile (to me anyway). Its also great getting 50+ mpg whether you do many miles or not. Im getting just under 30 out of the 3.2 which isnt bad really but it does feel like im forever filling it up. cant imagine youll get much better from the 1.8T.

    Yes the deisels cost more to buy, but they also hold their value better when it comes to selling them.

    The only thing I found dissappointing about a deisel is after initial torque shunt they fizzle out which is a bit dull, unlike a petrol which just keeps pulling.

    If I was you I would get the 170 TDI quattro, so plenty of grip, get it chipped, plenty of grunt, good mpg, all round winner.
    #8
  9. Boydie
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    Boydie Boycie

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    200+ miles a week ...... derv!

    sub 200 - petrol

    my view anyway! unless you are very well off!
    #9
  10. jb0o
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    jb0o North East Forum Moderator Site Sponsor

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    Ive got a 1.9TDI (105) due to insurance purposes. I was a bit gutted at first as I wanted the 140 2.0 TDI.

    Its not fast, but its nippy and I cant help smiling when I see I'm getting 60mpg in town :)
    #10
  11. APL TDi
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    APL TDi Member

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    10k miles a year I would go for the 1.8tfsi. Would be much more fun and with that milage would probably work out cheaper in the long run.

    Happy hunting!
    #11
  12. dmal
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    dmal Member

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    Beware the DPF on the 170 if you aren't doing lots of motorway miles. I had nothing but trouble from it.
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  13. Flibble
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    Flibble Member

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    Pleased with the turbo petrol engine in mine TBH. It has a lot of torque (check the specs, they're not that much below the diesels) - you really notice it once the turbo spools. The turbo also spools pretty low on the 2.0T (I'd assume to 1.8T is similar), so basically once you pull away it's always spooled when needed so there's little lag.

    Also being able to hit 6k rpm is always nice. :D
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  14. 10blazin
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    10blazin HYPERDRIVE NEEDED

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    petrol .........
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  15. warren_S5
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    warren_S5 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    I love the diesel / petrol threads!

    My wife had a SEAT Ibiza 1.9TDi 130PS about 4 years ago. The engine in that was astonishing. Torquey, pretty quick to pick up, and although it ran out of breath a little at the top end for general driving purposes it was a good car.

    She then ran the 2.0TDi in a Golf as a company pool car and found that this engine was laggier, and less conducive to point and squirt driving than the 1.9TDi 130. Whilst the Golf was a bigger, heavier car it just didn't feel as fun or urgent (think they run a slightly larger turbo with slower spool up). It was however better on motorways at top end.

    Despite all the economy related debate, we never got over the fact that it sounded like a tractor, and we never warmed to the very short rev range of the diesel. For both of us, part of what gave driving a sense of enjoyment was letting the car open up and rev, with longer between each gear change. Also getting off the line, the diesels just can't get the power down as effectively as a petrol (look at the 0-60 times to confirm this). The only other slight disadvantage of the diesel was if you took it to somewhere like N.YorKS, N.Wales and ran it on the mountain back roads, the heavy front end makes them slightly too understeery for my liking. Yes this could be resolved in some part with better suspension / ARB's etc, but this wasn't ultimately the bigger issue.

    To me it was about buying the car which matched MY driving style preference and my BUDGET. The attitudes on petrol / diesel are SO polarized, and all of the opinions are personally biased in some way. The S3 when tuned has a great engine, but its hungry, tappety, and in standard tune is actually fairly weak. Go and test drive the cars where they are most likely to get used, then:

    1) do some annual running costs sums based on mileage vs. cost to purchase (to see lifetime costs based on savings on diesel fuel against extra cost of how much the diesel will cost to buy) - can you recoup the cost with your mileage? (Diesel will be cheaper than petrol on a mile per mile basis until diesel is about £1.80 a litre, assuming U/L was about £1!). Include likely residuals too if you can.

    2) Which car suits the kind of driving you do best / your driving style?

    That said, diesels are still amazing based on where they were 10-15 yrs ago. It's a tough choice, but remember a car isn't just about making a decision with your head, it should be about considering the decision with your heart too, particularly when it is a decision that will impact you every day, for years to come. Take the opinions on face value, then make YOUR OWN decision!
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  16. Damo S
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    Damo S New Member

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    This ^^^ exactly why I scrapped the oil burner and brought a V6 petrol :wub:
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  17. Flibble
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    Flibble Member

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    Every so often I think "hmm, petrol cars use lots of fuel, I should have bought a diesel", then I boot it up to the redline and remember why I bought a petrol. :racer:
    #17
  18. N8
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    N8 Kowalski Details

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    Mikey's (Forum Member) A3 is a 2.0 TDI (140) manual and he has a Milltek turboback exhaust and custom code phase 2 map. I imagine he's running around 190bhp-310ft-lb. He has had several races with his mates' standard Mk5 GTI golf and beat him!!!! His tax is £115 a year and he still gets 500 miles to a tank.

    That is good enough reason for me to say diesel:racer:
    #18
  19. OldAndGray
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    OldAndGray New Member

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    After much thought and pondering about how I should drive something more sedate in my old age, I opted for my first ever diesel, an A3 2.0 TDI 170 S Line to replace my 110000 mile 206 GTi Pug.

    I haven't enjoyed a car as much since I bought a 205 1.9 Pug when it was introduced..the older ones amongst you may recall how stunningly quick that was for its time!

    Wouldn't go back to petrol now, 500+ per tank and startling torque.... marvellous.

    (As you get older even 100 seems quick)
    #19
  20. SteveTDCi
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    SteveTDCi Active Member

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    i've always been in favour of diesel but at the moment i'm looking at going back to petrol, whilst a remapped 140 dsg is reasonably quick I miss the sound and smoothness of a petrol. So i'm still looking at both the Golf GTi and the Focus ST, in fact I just missed out getting a golf last week. Its best to try both and see what you think. Oh and I get around 35mpg out of my A3 so 28 out of a Golf is fine by me, possibly 26 out of the ST
    #20

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