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Thinking about an S4....

Discussion in 'Audi S4/A4/A4 Cab (B8 Chassis)' started by TMP-Audi, May 3, 2010.

  1. TMP-Audi
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    TMP-Audi Member

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    [May 3, 2010]
    Hello, been a while since I was on here. I ended up with my wife's 8P A3 a couple of years ago which I found was very nice place to sit and cruise, but a very average and unrewarding drive so quickly went back to a Beamer.

    Now thinking of changing it for one last petrol and the S4 is high on the list . I used to have a Scooby, and while I loved the all weather traction I hated the tendency to understeer (the 330d is at the other end, lol;) ).

    Particularly interested in thoughts on the quattro sports diff as from what I read, this gives the car a rwd bias like the RS4.

    oh, and what MPG is realistic when cruising on the mway?


    Cheers.
    Last edited: May 4, 2010
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  3. Necroscope
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    Necroscope Member

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    [May 3, 2010]
    The demo car i tested had the sports diff, i played with the settings and TBH i couldnt tell the difference. I would guess that you really need to be pushing on to feel it. Maybe some of the other faster drivers might be able to help you more ;)
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  4. Ultramagnus
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    Ultramagnus New Member

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    [May 4, 2010]
    Hi,

    I've had my S4 for about six months now - enough time to play with the sports diff.
    As Necroscope mentioned above, the sports diff initially doesn't seem to make a huge amount of difference to everyday driving, but when you become slightly more enthusiastic things change.

    Having driven plenty of RWD cars before, the diff in its 'dynamic' setting gives a greater tendency to oversteer than the normal setup. Perhaps not as much as true RWD car but definitely noticeable.

    Regarding economy, I find the DIS to be slightly optimistic. On my daily cruise to work (about 20 miles of free flowing A roads and a bit of mway) the DIS will show just under 30mpg, but working it out properly it is more like 26-27mpg.

    Hope that helps!
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  5. yargnat
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    yargnat A3 3.2 DSG

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    [May 4, 2010]
    Interestingly, I currently have n S4 with sports diff, and a BMW 3 series (E90) 330D.
    We sold the A3 (8P) when I bought the S4.

    Both are good cars, however, ultimatly, I prefer the BMW.
    Reason being, when I drive the S4 fast, I do feel removed from the action. Steering feel is poor. Sports-diff.....well, I don't really notice it - but that could be that I don't have the car in "dynamic" mode much. Thats something I really don't like about this car. To get sport mode, you need to press the mode switch - would much prefer just to move the selector lever like the beemer.

    Bottom line for me is this, when I drive the BMW fast, it feels like it is me driving fast. When I drive the S4 fast, I feel like it is the car going fast.
    Ultimatly a BMW 335i would be perfect I think, but as soon as there is rain or dare I say 1mm of snow it has to be the S4
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  6. bcampbell
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    bcampbell New Member

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    [May 6, 2010]
    and there lies the whole thing sumed up. For me the S4 had everything I am looking for in a car. If we compare it to the BMW, sorry but for me its very important that the car works well in all weather conditions likely in the UK on public roads. For that reason and that reason alone the BM was excluded from consideration.

    Had my S4 for just over a month now and have done a mixed range of driving. Some days all I do is 5miles of town driving and today I have just completed a 300mile round trip consisting of mostly dual carrage way / motorway use.

    As my annual mileage is really pretty low (8k) I am happy to take the poor mpg to be able to benifit from all the other features that make this car a great all rounder. I reckon my DIS was pretty accurate, but over the 300miles I averaged 29.4mpg. That is way lower that Audi claim and on this trip was trying pretty hard to see what I could get out of it. The max the DIS went up to was 30.0mpg (Average) Not good but all known before buying the car. I live 2 miles from the office and will only take the car if I know that I will need it to go somewhere during the day. When I do this 2m in heave traffic I average approx 11-12mpg.
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  7. oscar
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    oscar moo

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    [May 7, 2010]
    makes particular sense in Aberdeen!
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  8. TMP-Audi
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    TMP-Audi Member

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    [May 7, 2010]
    Thanks yeah good insight. So would you say the sports diff is a must have option?

    MPG not too bad for real world.......



    lol, good car history ;)

    Interesting comment about having to push a button to get in sports mode - yes the BM is always in sports mode, but equally I do miss a button to relax things a bit! I would say you don't see the sports diff as a must have?

    I am concerned about steering feel, but may compromise for all weather traction and better ride. Totally agree about driving the BM, they really are amazing cars that need to be driven to get the most of them - of course that can be quite scary as they do bite.

    The 330d is probably the best everyday car I have ever owned and I am going to find it hard to justify changing it for a 335i that isnt much faster. But I think an S4 would may me more all year fun.


    wow, lucky you 2 miles to work! That's pretty good mpg as well tbh.

    The BM can be made a more all year car if you fit winter tyres - I believe this transforms the RWD car for winter / light snow. Of course, you could fit the same tryes and benefit from 4wd in the S4...

    So my mapped auto 330d (290 bhp) did a brisk 140m cross country / dual carriage run way this week and did 46mpg! Why do I want a fast petrol again :tapedshut: ....oh yes the revs and noise

    So next question is what does the S4 rev too and does it make a nice noise?
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  9. bcampbell
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    bcampbell New Member

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    [May 7, 2010]
    I went for the S-Tronic and yep if you want her to rev she'll rev. In Dynamic mode, flooring the throttle will drop down as many gears as it feels ready for and then reving to 7K. Brilliant but scary.

    The sound. Yes this is certainlly an interesting one. It will never have that great V8 sound. If anything Audi have gone a bit overboard with the understatedness with this. Personally, I would have prefered a bit more throateness noise. For those wo can't live with factory componet, there are a few after market products such as;

    http://www.audizine.com/forum/showthread.php?359783-Imola-Yellow-fun-(aka-Lunch-with-Dr-Volkl)

    At approx £1500, the Miltex exhaust is pretty expensive and I am still having a serious think of weather its worth changing a brand new exhaust for another brand new one just to benifit from the noise that, as a driver, you won't hear as well as the guys queing for a bus! (who don't care)
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  10. Ultramagnus
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    Ultramagnus New Member

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    [May 8, 2010]


    Reading threads on the sports diff is really interesting as different people seem to have varying opinions on it.

    I guess a lot depends on the individual's past experience of driving RWD/sporty cars and their driving style.
    For me, during my daily gentle-ish cruise to and from work I only rarely push the car enough to notice the sports diff in action - but it is nice to have and makes things more 'interesting'
    So I guess, although I don't always make full use of it (and knew I wouldn't before getting it) , for me it was an essential option.
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  11. Necroscope
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    Necroscope Member

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    [May 10, 2010]
    One thing that i do find surprising about the thread (best in some time BTW) is that the S4 has so much mechanical grip that you really really do need to be making up some distance for it to break away, be it either under or over steer. Sports diff or not, the speed needed to loose the rear would make me loose my lunch way before the car let go ;)
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  12. Necroscope
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    Necroscope Member

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    [May 10, 2010]
    Regarding engine noise, what we loose from the pipes we gain from the super charger. I love knocking the B&O off and listening to the supercharger whine away :)
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  13. Ultramagnus
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    Ultramagnus New Member

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    [May 10, 2010]

    Good point!
    Not being able to really test what the car is capable of on the public road can be slightly frustrating.
    Has resulted in me considering going on one of the Audi Driving Experience days. Still looking into them but am hoping that it might make any differences between the set-ups very obvious (albeit in an S5, TTS and R8).
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  14. TMP-Audi
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    TMP-Audi Member

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    [May 18, 2010]
    Cool, would want an S-Tronic / DSG as well. As good as the ZF auto is in my 330d, it is still a slush box, and the slip does annoy me. The 335i can come with a DSG, but only on the coupe, which is a shame.
    Double kickdown then hitting 7k revs is where I need to be ;).

    Ouch, that is expensive for replacing a brand new exchaust :(

    I think you have a simialr approach to me - I know its there, so could use it when If I need to, but in everyday driving wont need it......
    Similar to my 330d - I drive it like a fwd golf tdi in the daily grind, but all that power, torque and rwd fun if I need it :D.

    THis is a good thread yeah - impressed that we all have constructive views with no Audi vs BMW fanboys :friends:

    Good point about general 4wd mechanical grip - I must admit on a public road my Scooby felt glued to corners and unless I really pushed it wouldnt break away. Only on a track did I readily find the break point (then it would just understeer :( )

    Suppose in the rain its more easy to push, yet more reassuring/safe.

    I do need to sort out a test drive, see what the ol' beast sounds like! Wife had a Cooper S conv, and I did like the scharger whine , although at lower revs it did sounds a bit milk-float!

    BTW, The 335i exhaust sounds like a whailing banshie when pushed hard, very nice. No idea why some people seem to want to make it louder....
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  15. Just Plain Old
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    Just Plain Old Active Member

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    [May 19, 2010]
    Fascinating stuff.......

    My experience with the sport diff is pretty much that most of the time you can't tell........ Get a bit more lively and you can tell there's something there. But my main concern is that I feel the whole car just 'feels' a bit 'skittish' when pushed, it just doesn't feel totally planted?? I'm actually wondering if the 19" rims and wider tyres are making things worse? Or maybe it's just the rear bias.........

    As for the noise,,, I guess I was spoiled with the 4.2 with AMD stage 3........ Sadly, other than a bit of gear change popping, it's almost embarrassingly noiseless...!!
    #14

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