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Really want an RS3 or do I??

Discussion in 'RS3 Forum' started by iambaz, Mar 28, 2013.

  1. iambaz
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    iambaz New Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    I drove a mates TTRS Plus the other week and it has to be one of the best cars I've ever driven. I loved how it was to drive and although it looks good from the front, I just couldn't bring myself to buy one as it just looks too ostentatious for my taste.

    I started looking into an RS3 instead. It seems to offer similar power/speed and great drive to the TTRS (from what I've read on the RS3). One thing putting me off was the sportback shape. IMO the two door is so much better looking, but I thought I could overlook that. Now I find out I can't get it as a manual?! WTF? I've only ever driven on or two automatics in my life and hated them. The idea of only two pedals wrecks my head!

    Can someone explain to me a bit more how the auto system works on the RS3? Is there any kind of manual mode? I have googled it, but can't find any answer to this really basic question!

    I always said I've never buy an auto, but I'm struggling to find anything else I like. An S5 being my only other serious option, but have had S models before and really fancied an RS this time.

    Feel a bit annoyed over it all, even if I did buy the RS3 I can't help but think I will probably spend the time saying "great car, if only it was manual".

    Nice one!
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  3. CarrG
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    CarrG Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    You can have manual with paddles or shift with stick! Just no clutch.

    No way you could change as quick manual v s-tronic.

    I'd suggest you go try one...
    #2
  4. Macdaddy
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    Macdaddy Active Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    If you learn to use the box properly then you'll not look back !

    In sport it hits every gear on a spirited drive before you even think about it, same on down changes, Power is on tap so easily.

    You can set overtakes up with the paddles easily enough. I'm a manual guy through and through but im totally sold on this box!

    And when your stuck in traffic there's no notchy horrible jerky clutch that you get with the VAG performance cars.

    Oh and a stage 1 RS3 would be as quick as a stage 2 manual car purely as the box is so slick.
    #3
  5. iambaz
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    iambaz New Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    The main thing was being sure that I could take control of my gears properly when I wanted to give it some, I suspected this had to be the case, but seeing the words Transmission: Automatic instills fear! The missing clutch pedal I'm sure I'll get over!

    I think I need to give one a drive!
    #4
  6. CarrG
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    CarrG Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    Where abouts are you located Mate?
    #5
  7. 45bvtc
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    45bvtc Well-Known Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    You really have no understanding of how good this engine and gearbox combo is! :kissmyrings:

    Use 'sport' in sub-40mph areas and 'D' everywhere else unless pressing on, and then leave it in 'sport'.

    I don't care what you drive or have driven but the RS3 takes some beating on UK roads; and in sportback form it's far more discrete than the TT (and I've both).

    My guess is that you don't really want one, and that's ok…
    #6
  8. MBK
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    MBK Well-Known Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    I'd say drive one and see, I agree with Macdaddy, for commuting and traffic the S-tronic makes driving easy and enjoyable.

    On the great sweeping A&B roads here in Wales the S-tronic box really comes alive and you can make the post of hanging on to every gear in Sport and Manual mode. Launch control is laugh out loud fun, you'd struggle to match that in a manual.

    On track is where this gearbox becomes incredible. I've driven both the RS3 and new RS4 on track with S-tronic and it's just perfect. Leaving the box to make the changes itself the laps were much quicker than me using the paddles (something evo magazine also found in this months issue 182 in a manual v's PDK test). I could focus on every apex and I do like the feeling of perfectly clipping every apex, quattro working hard and tyres howling on the limit of grip. Passengers were astounded by the way the car delivered it's seamless and relentless power even in the very wet conditions and much of the credit for that goes to the (engine) and gearbox.

    As for the looks well as one fellow track day enthusiast said "I don't mean to be rude but it doesn't look much, just like an A3 on really big wheels, for a car that goes that fast". I wasn't offended, on the contrary I think that is one of the joys of the RS3.

    I'm glad Audi make the RS3 for dad levels of practicality. If I didn't need the rear seats/space I would have the TT no question, that bit lighter and looks great too (I've also owned two in the past).

    As a final comment I will say I wouldn't go back to a manual by choice.
    #7
  9. iambaz
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    iambaz New Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    In Liverpool. Got Liverpool, Warrington and Crewe Audi relatively close so think I'll try and arrange a drive of one.

    I know my initial post seemed quite negative, I've had an S3 before and loved it, my concern is more the unknown. I know how good it feels in a manual to drop a gear and blast it, and as I had no idea what to expect from the driving experience. I still associate auto's with being slow and clunky and boring to drive, though it's probably 10 years since I drove one.

    Thanks for the opinions, I think you're basically telling me what I hoped you would
    #8
  10. iambaz
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    iambaz New Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    This is probably the main reason I'm preferring the RS3 to TTRS. Have you driven the TTRS? How does it compare to RS3?
    #9
  11. MBK
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    MBK Well-Known Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    Yes I've driven the TTRS a couple of times (manual and S-tronic) and in my opinion they are remarkably similar to drive (the new RS4 is also quite similar as you might expect from related cars). Totally subjectively the TTRS turn in is slightly sharper on standard Conti 5P tyres, but the RS3 on Michelin Pilot Super Sports is much improved. I haven't spent enough time in the TTRS to make a more detailed comparison but I think I can say that as you liked the TTRS you're probably going to like the RS3 in just the same way, much the same DNA.

    If it's stealth you want a debadged RS3 would certainly fit the bill.
    #10
  12. 45bvtc
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    45bvtc Well-Known Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    For me Iambaz the RS3 was a total impulse. I'd been keeping an eye on this machine for sometime in magazine articles, etc., but never thought I'd buy one.

    However, Wednesday 12th October 2011: We (wife and I) went to Stafford Audi to collect our S3 (Custom Code modified, and then clutch slip, slip, slip); I'd had that car for 6-years, it was totally mint, low mileage, fully loaded with sunshine roof, etc., and in Misano red; I/we was totally in love with it...

    BUT Stafford Audi had an RS3 demonstrator, oh sh*t! and in Misano red too.

    After much sales persuasion (and I actually refused a number of times) I agreed to take a road test. Less than a mile into a 10-mile run I was totally sold: the engine, brakes and gearbox were amazingly brilliant, and I was shaking with excitement. Except for the five doors this machine really had ticked all the boxes! And the drive home with the S3 demonstrated the inadequacies of that car over the RS3 - no comparison at all, really.

    Thursday 13th October 2011: Tel' to Stafford Audi: "can we order a new one?" "No, all sold!" "We can do you a deal on our demonstrator..." "Err no; it's Misano with bucket seats and silver flashes everywhere, thank you." "All you can do, said Stafford Audi, is find one as close to your spec' you can."

    So, onto Piston Heads where we found a brand new blue RS3 (blue?), but with the sort of spec we would have ordered anyway.

    Friday 14th October 2011: Telephoned vendor (DK Engineering). Car was sold. But they hadn't received a deposit? So it's NOT sold?

    Saturday 15th October 2011: Sitting outside the vendors at 8.00, having already sold the S3 subject to the RS3, we made sure the vendor had a deposit, ours! Hadn't bothered to drive it! I'll take it as it is… We owned an RS3!

    Saturday 22nd October 2011: Bluey was at home in the garage.

    Iambaz: Just do it, you'll not be disappointed!

    Mines a keeper….

    RS3 #11.jpg

    And without badges, it's so discreet, a proper Q-car....


    PS: call me if your in Staffordshire....
    #11
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  13. MBK
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    MBK Well-Known Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    Ka-chow, did it remind you of this, mine does! :yes:
    [​IMG]

    Silver flashes indeed, all the bling and buckets, I love it, if only the Mrs would let me add the stickers too...
    [​IMG]
    #12
  14. Kohaku
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    Kohaku Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    What a lovely story John.

    But did you forgot to say about wetting yourself with all that excitement..

    Iambaz.......... All the above very very true.
    Bought mine just from the picture,and had never wanted an Auto.
    But would now never consider going back to a conventional manual......This car ROCKS.

    Go and buy one...NOW.
    #13
  15. 45bvtc
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    45bvtc Well-Known Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    RE: "Ka-chow, did it remind you of this, mine does!"

    I do understand 'bling' MBK, I ran this for 37-years...


    image004MA29663740-0004.jpg

    But I'm older now, and the RS3 is 'quicker' anyway!

    However, I'm sure, from your recent (excellent) post, you'll recognise the location...

    And the car, it's a Lotus Elan Type 45 with a BVTC (Big Valve Twin Cam)
    #14
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  16. CatnipRS3
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    CatnipRS3 Active Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]


    :thumbsup:

    Attached Files:

    #15
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  17. MBK
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    MBK Well-Known Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    That is a gorgeous car and on the perfect road for it's svelte proportions. I think you write some very wise words on ASN too, I liked your turn of phrase about the demonstrator so couldn't resist a tongue in cheek pictorial response!
    #16
  18. MBK
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    MBK Well-Known Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    Thanks Catnip, that's brilliant, the 3 year old is running around shouting "daaaddies car is liteeniiiin McQweeeenn....

    Can't wait to show the Mrs the next mod, she's gonna love that...
    #17
  19. CatnipRS3
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    CatnipRS3 Active Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    Ya'Welcome Sir....and notice the make of tyres on the original cartoon ya posted?, not of that Meeeshlaan' ****! hehehe!
    #18
  20. Vito
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    Vito Active Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    You can use the paddles or use the gear stick (back and forward) in manual , in my honest opinion the RS3 tip-tronic gearbox is the best thing you can have alongside that wonderful engine, and can't tell you enough about the enjoyment you get with those paddles, especially when you are in a bit of a racing mood, it's all F1 style driving:yes:.
    #19
  21. Vito
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    Vito Active Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    I have always wondered what 45 bvtc meant....
    #20
  22. MBK
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    MBK Well-Known Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    Lightyear's - tyres that will take you to infinity and beyond.

    Francesco Bernoulli seems a little confused and wears Rotelli Tires Pasta Potenza which is mixing your tyre metaphors somewhat.

    Which must mean Raoul Caroule sensibly keeps all Michelin's for himself!
    #21
  23. CatnipRS3
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    CatnipRS3 Active Member

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  24. Macdaddy
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    Macdaddy Active Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    Same tbh, I needed the back seats with a new born so the TTRS went out the window.

    Oh and stop mentioning the track....... You've got me looking at track days now..... again :jump: lol
    #23
  25. MBK
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    MBK Well-Known Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    True, TT's in general are close to child cruelty levels of leg room if you're honest with yourself! I just couldn't bring myself to be that selfish for a few KG's of extra weight.

    He he he, get it out on track you know you want to, it's the only place to really experience the RS3, even better if it's a wet day.
    #24
  26. L1ARR
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    L1ARR Active Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    I have not yet had the opportunity to drive a RS3, always thought they used the same technology to S models. Does anyone know why the S3 has the clunk to engage gear at lights and the TTRS / RS3 doesn't. I know the RS cars have a 7 speed DSG box and the S3 has a 6 speed box.
    #25
  27. Macdaddy
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    Macdaddy Active Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    Cant help with that but ive heard theres also a slight delay in launching on the S3 that isnt there on the RS3, Perhaps is a totally different system?
    #26
  28. JonnyG
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    JonnyG Active Member

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    [Mar 28, 2013]
    In a few years I doubt they'll be many new performance cars that come with a manual box. The DSG / S-tronic has two clutches so it's not really an automatic at all. In manual mode you have full control of gear changes apart from downshifts if you forget (which are needed to prevent stalling anyway). Best bet is to go and test drive one ... as some people just don't get on with them.
    #27
  29. dbm
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    dbm Active Member

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    [Apr 8, 2013]
    My RS3 is the third S-Tronic that I've owned, and I've even convinced the Missus to change over too. I'll never have a manual again. Incredibly smooth when in D, super-fast changing with the paddles. It really is the best of both worlds.

    The RS version is a completely different box to the one in other A3s/TTs. My other S-Tronic / DSG cars would change up automatically in manual, so you didn't have absolute control over the gear. The RS3 won't do that.

    To me, the RS3 hits the sweet spot of room for 4 or 2 with plenty of luggage whilst being as quick as a 911 and still affordable to run and maintain. Truely a car for all seasons.

    Also, Audi have said that they are unlikely to make saloon or 3-door RS cars in future. If you want coupe styling you take the TTRS or RS5. If you need more practicality then it's the RS3 Sportback or RS4 Avant. Having a car between the two just fragments an already small segment.
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2013
    #28
  30. Ben S3 8P3
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    Ben S3 8P3 Member

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    [Apr 8, 2013]
    I even wish that I had gone S-Tronic myself now. I deliberately sourced a manual S3, but ever time I am sat in traffic, especially on a hill with the rough biting clutch I just wish I had the ease of S-Tronic. Even more so in that the DSG can handle more power than the manual clutch.

    Although on the other hand, I would miss the physical act of grabbing the next gear, and heel-toe down shifting. Im just always conscious of wear on the clutch, making sure I never slip it or hold it on the biting point etc
    #29
  31. 45bvtc
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    45bvtc Well-Known Member

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    [Apr 11, 2013]
    You're wish was not granted, Ben; you should have sourced the DSG gearbox, no question.

    Very soon you'd not be missing the physical act, though it does remain a feature of the DSG should you want it.

    You would however smile as the guy next to you was well into the left-leg and arm physical act, and your DSG gearbox was effortlessly engaging the next gear, allowing you to increase pace and distance while he was in falling evermore behind wondering what the **** is/was that!

    You've just got to try it out Ben, and go DSG next time, lesson learned…

    Oh, and as some say that no vehicle manufacturer will be offering a manual gearbox 10-years hence, all going DSG, you'd best enjoy the physical act of grabbing the next gear, and heel-toe down shifting while you can, and quickly move to a DSG - before we all go electric!
    #30

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