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upgrading my 2.0 TDI SE 5 door. poor handling and brakes!

Discussion in 'A3/S3/Sportback (8P Chassis)' started by plasma, Jun 18, 2014.

  1. plasma
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    plasma Member

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    [Jun 18, 2014]
    Hi, thanks for viewing.I have a 2006 2.0 TDI SE 5 door A3. It comes with the standard 16 inch alloys with 205 tyres all round. I have noticed the handling and body roll is absolutely terrible! especially in the wet! My tyres all have good thread (they are less than a year old) and when the road is even slightly damp it just oversteers so easily. It really makes me feel unsafe when I travelling at higher speeds on the motorway and switch lanes.

    As for the brakes, they are equally as bad as the cars handling/body roll. My pads and discs are all in good condition but they don't have enough stopping power. I can feel this especially on the motorway, the brakes seemed overwhelmed by the weight of the car.

    I'm considering the following and wanted some opinions on whether it will be effective and worth to spend the money on, to solve the above issues. I don't want to spend too much money on the car as it's pretty old now and isn't really worth much.

    1. Change my tyres to size 225 all round. This would obviously involve getting new 17 inch alloys. So hopefully the wider tyres will provide more traction/grip on the road, especially when wet. And the 17 inch alloys would improve visual looks.

    2. Eibach lower springs. Pro-kit or Sportline? I just want to have a noticible improvement on bodyroll and handling without compromising much on ride quality.

    3. Buy bigger diameter brakes or big brake kits? The big brakes kits seem too expensive so I guess thats out of the question. Would I just be better off buying a slightly bigger (280mm or more) brake discs?I plan on sourcing the lowering springs and 17 inch alloys/225 tyres used.

    My budget is around £400-£500 for all. Thanks
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2014
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  3. plasma
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    plasma Member

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  4. manor13
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    manor13 Active Member

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    [Jun 19, 2014]
    If your setup is the 280mm you could cheaply upgrade to the MK5 GTI setup. its slightly bigger at 312mm and there's plenty about or step up to the R32/S3 setup but then your looking at £350 for a decent set. Springs you want to look at dampers as well, but should be do-able on £500
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  5. plasma
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    plasma Member

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    [Jun 19, 2014]
    I've checked out eurocarparts and I can get Pagid brake discs, either 312 mm diameter or 345 mm so I'll definitely upgrade to them in the near future.
    As for the springs would I have to get the dampers as well? Can't I just get the lowering springs by themselves or are my SE spec dampers not good enough for them?
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  6. fangio
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    fangio Well-Known Member

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    [Jun 20, 2014]
    If you upsize the discs, you'll need the calipers too!

    Though I'd check what's fitted first. I have Michelins on 16s and bog-standard everything and it'll stop on a sixpence!
    And straight as a die at mega speeds...:undwech:
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  7. JohnE
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    JohnE 2005 A3 Sport 1.6 FSI

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    [Jun 20, 2014]
    Is your oversteer corrected by ESP? When I had cheapo tyres on the back (225/45 17s on when I bought the car) the rear let go once (in the wet) but the ESP caught it - that was the only incident of oversteer, understeer was far more common.
    I changed to 205/55 16 on standard size wheels and ride, grip and fuel economy are all better - decent tyres now too. Going wider might improve grip in the dry, but it can make it worse in wet.
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2014
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