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Why do I hate my S3 so much?

Discussion in 'A3/S3 Forum (8L Chassis)' started by MIKE GTR, Sep 24, 2010.

  1. Essflee
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    Essflee Active Member

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    This thread should have been called...

    'Why don't I "sell" my S3 if I hate it so much'
    #41
  2. jojo
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    jojo S3 Drift King! Staff Member Moderator

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    I don't think Mike hates his S3, he just never fell in love with it in the first place! :slapped:
    #42
  3. scoobyra
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    scoobyra It's not f@cking ORANGE!!!!!

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    This thread is starting to go off on a tangent. I think what Mike is trying to say, and I know exactly where he's coming from on this is:
    The S3 is highly over rated for what it is, and further more, expensive too! Having owned various high powered cars and bikes the S3 just doesn't make you feel excited when you push the loud pedal, unless you've parted with the wrong side of £7K (plus buying the car to start with). My Impreza is a 95 WRX and it's miles ahead of the S3...MILES! It gives you a big kick up the arse when you accelerate and the adrenaline rush is just....well that. My S3 can't compete with that. It doesn't go sideways when you floor it, you can't flick it from left to right and it doesn't go round corners! Modified or not!! But then you have to look at it like this - the Impreza was built as a rally car, it was meant to handle BEFORE it was modified, so absolutely NO comparison.

    It's the same with the Skyline, or, for anyone that's had a big bike, the adrenaline rush just can't be replicated.

    I've said this before - I wanted to find a car that was the best of both worlds, as fast as the Impreza and turbo charged, four wheel drive but also practical and didn't look like I should be driving round with my tracksuit bottoms tucked in my socks. So, I bought the S3 and after a few weeks it was clearly not the car I thought it was.

    Would I sell it? A month ago, I was contemplating an Evo, and, if I could've sold my car for £5,500 I would've bought one. Would it have been the right decision? Probably not. I could slag my S3 of for a month of sundays but it it was it is, a comfy, practical car that even after 13 years still looks ok, and has one of the nicest interiors I've come across. It's solid, and the 'birds' like it.......well, it always seems to be covered in bird sh!t. Seriously, people like it so I'd be hard pushed to change it. If money were no object.....then that's a different story!
    #43
  4. finesse
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    finesse Active Member

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    Comparing an S3 to a Scoby is ****

    Why not compare it to Megane, Focus ST and Alfa 147 etc

    S3 ticks many boxes;

    Comfort, luxury, speed, build quality, decent handling

    Running costs are higher than others in its class....

    If you hate the S3 but feel too snobby for the so called hot hatchs then stop moaning and keep it
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2010
    #44
  5. scoobyra
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    scoobyra It's not f@cking ORANGE!!!!!

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    I wasn't moaning about it at all, and as for being retarded, I'm far from it. None of the above cars are four wheel drive, where as the quattro can provide it when needed. The S3 is turbo charged and if going for a 225 isn't a million miles off a standard UK Turbo 2000 Impreza. From the outside, when you've never owned one, and don't know the pit falls the S3 sounds like a good compromise.

    FYI, the Impreza costs the same, if not less to run than my S3, it IS comfy and the handling is a million times better! End of!
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2010
    #45
  6. Dansmith
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    Dansmith Member

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    :)
    #46
  7. mo_s3
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    mo_s3 New Member

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    wow, iv only had mine 2 weeks and reading this threads making me think if iv made a mistake...


    the fact is, id have no other hatch in our price range and anything your considering costs alot more, as its a different level of car. if its Imprezas and Evos were talking, in my eyes its only worth a change if going for the newer shapes.

    p.s please tell me i did the right thing in selling my Civic Type R lol..
    #47
  8. finesse
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    finesse Active Member

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    yes u did right thing
    #48
  9. luke2702
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    luke2702 Member

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    I had mine up for sale the other week and was looking at getting a civic tyre r, but after having nice long drive in the S3 dont think that anything would beat it in confort, speed and economy for the price...
    #49
  10. badger5
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    badger5 RIP S3dave Site Sponsor

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    when does power output turn an s3 into something else??
    thats as daft a comment as this entire thread is..

    completely laughble the lot of it

    made me smile how its gone on this far..

    pointless post to begin with..

    lmao

    enjoy keeping it going.. you have more time on your hands than i do..
    #50
  11. <tuffty/>
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    <tuffty/> Badger 5 Edition Staff Member Moderator

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    Don't fall into the trap of comparing power across cars here... on paper the S3 and Impreza may well have similar peak power but the delivery will no doubt be totally different... putting the power graph of a std S3 against an std Impreza would be telling...

    I personally have not driven an Impreza so cannot comment with any authority but I have driven std, mapped and BT S3's and the difference between them is obvious... Impreza's (from what I understand) drive more like BT cars with plenty of top end power, the lowly K04 is designed for low down power delivery and runs out of breath fairly quickly... Impreza will feel much quicker on the road because of this...

    People are influenced far too much by peak power figures when they should really look at how that power is delivered...

    <tuffty/>
    #51
  12. Welly
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    Welly VX220 SC Driver :)

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    In my opinion, the S3 is best in class. It is a combination of all the things I want out of a car. It's quick enough at the end of the day. It handles with poise and delicacy for a heavy car. It's great in the winter months. It's comfy inside. It looks nice, from both inside and out.

    What else do you want? It's a rep mobile.

    OK, it doesn't make the world spin backwards off the line in standard form. Wow..... If you want that sort of power, either buy something with that power, or bang some money into the engine, or buy an RS4.

    If you bought one for immense power in the first place, it might of paid to do research.

    I love mine, despite all the problems I've had with it.

    Two words. Personal preference.
    #52
  13. mo_s3
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    mo_s3 New Member

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    your right mate, to be honest the civics a lot more fun, and feels faster even though its not. but no luxury (not even an armrest) means its a bit hardcore. both are great cars though..
    #53
  14. MintyS3
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    MintyS3 Works 60% the time, Everytime.

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    Yeh it basically has a bigger turbo giving a different power delivery. And being made from spit and tissues it sounds, feels and seems much more aggressive than the S3 with a K04.
    #54
  15. sportstractor
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    sportstractor Chugger

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    I think personal preference is the thing here. I decided mine wasnt as great as i thought it would be 3 weeks after buying. But its ok. Power is ok, handling is ok, comfort and pracically is ok. I just expected some alot nicer than golf and something with slighly more prestige than an a3, but it isnt alot better than either.

    Obviously posting about your dislike on a car to a forum of people who are mostly dedicated to their cars is going to get some unwanted reactions... Some would say biased.
    #55
  16. Prawn
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    Prawn My other car is a MINI!!!!

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    i know where you're comming from Mike, I was going to buy an S3 after my last A3, but having driven a few, the upgrade just wasnt worthwhile!
    #56
  17. voorhees
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    voorhees Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    lol
    #57
  18. finesse
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    finesse Active Member

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    [​IMG][​IMG]
    #58
  19. Essflee
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    Essflee Active Member

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    To be honest the only down fall I found with the S3 was the weight when you chucked it into a bend, however it wasn't enough for me to change the suspension because apart from the odd crazy throw it in a bend moment I love the way it drives and rides the roads on a day to day...

    It's hardly a surprise that the S3 feels slow compared to a Skyline, the 2 cars are in completely different markets,

    After 2 and a half years of owning my car regardless of it getting older in today's market, it still makes me feel special everytime I drive it and feel it has a presence on the road...

    The only car in my situation that I would replace it with would cost 15k+

    Ps I had a play with an E46 M3 the other day from standstill and without going to silly speeds he didn't have much more than me, so to say the S3 is gutless is not entirely accurate...
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2010
    #59
  20. Ash B
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    Ash B Well-Known Member

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    Cant comment on this subject as never owned an 8L S3 I will one day. But if I wasn't happy with an car after 3weeks I wouldn't of kept it. Good luck with the sale

    These S3's are perfect example on how a well looked after S3 should look like. Beautiful
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2010
    #60
  21. Mr.G
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    Mr.G Active Member

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    Mike I'll apologise now for being blunt :), here goes....

    You spent 3k on the engine in the first place, did it not cross your mind to have it remapped again to get the best out of it? I mean hybrid turbo (plus the FMIC you already had fitted) with no additional remap sounds backwards. Please don't shoot the messenger here, I'm only probably telling you what you already know.

    We ALL know that the S3 doesn't go around a corner that well in standard form. You add to that a little more power from stage 1, new hybrid turbo with your FMIC (possibly producing slightly more boost, with a nice new tight engine) and you'll end up going faster into corners using the standard brakes (even if new) and you have a clear recipe for a poor car. My car with just a stage 1 is poorly let down by the brakes, especially on repeated slowing.

    To get the best out of the S3 you really do need to sort the suspension out properly. You say you had bilsteins, if you are using standard springs and ARB's then your bound to dislike the handling, it's not set up properly. I can only speak for myself here, but it makes sense to me to get a car that isn't great on the corners sorted in that area, then concentrate with braking and finally remapping/engine. You already have a FMIC and hybrid but what that gives is an unstable car, too much speed and not enough control to use it, mine is the opposite, it handles like nobody's business, in fact it's too sensitive and at high three figure speeds it seems twitchy, will be revising the geometry I think.

    Hope you keep your car and get it sorted. Sounds like you have the makings of a really nice car.

    G
    #61
  22. Mr.G
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    Mr.G Active Member

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    Not sure If I'm loads quicker in the corners (more than likely) and with a stage 1 (+miltek/air filter etc) an E46 M3 is always behind me. Last one that thought I'd be in his rear view had a nasty shock. He gave a thumbs up though :). All on privately owned roads of course.

    Completely agree with you leggy on how the S3 makes you feel and about 15k+ for a car to better it. I've spent that amount buying mine and sorting it out with some new parts.

    G
    #62
  23. Mr.G
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    Mr.G Active Member

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    Well said.

    G
    #63
  24. MIKE GTR
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    MIKE GTR Member

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    I can't quote all the replies I want to reply to so I will reply to this one.

    I spent £3k on a car I was already underwealmed by and it wasnt £3k I wanted to spend, it was repair work for a failed cam belt tensioner, again my fault. While the car was in bits it seemed logical to get a Hybrid, especially at the price I could get them at, so I changed it - It was also cheeper to buy uprated parts for the engine rather than OE so I did that also. With the bits I've got (filter/recirc/frontmount/hybrid/exhaust) on a cossie (which also came with 204bhp std) I'd be looking at somewhere in the region of 350brake, with the Audi (albeit 200cc less) I'm lucky if i'm hitting 250/260brake, so straight away i'm pissed off that I dont get as much bang for my buck (I realise that I've now opened a can of worms with regard to everyone telloing me you cant compare a ford lol - but i'm comparing an engine, please bear with me). The handling issue i've already said I believe is due to the previous owner just fitting bildstein lowering springs (not inches, but millimetres), however audi built a reputation of grip and handling with their quattro system and again its left me underwealmed - it gioves no feedback and anyone who's driven a proper 4wd will confirm this. I won't even comment on the traction control issue as its laughable.

    To say that a E46 M3 always ends up behind you!!! well that must be down to the driver, as a RWD 319bhp car driven by a compitent driver will beat an S3 everytime - EVERYTIME - even in the wet.

    I'm sure my car could be better (i will be getting it remapped) and i will get some adjustable rear bars made, but will it dramstically alter my opinion of the S3? I doubt it.
    #64
  25. MIKE GTR
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    MIKE GTR Member

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    I like the look, thats why I bought it, if you read my post you'll see that its the drive that I say lets it down. However, I didnt buy a car just to look at it
    #65
  26. MIKE GTR
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    MIKE GTR Member

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    What is its class out of interest?
    #66
  27. voorhees
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    voorhees Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Sell the car mate,you have made your mind up already that its not quick without having the work done so just sell it.
    #67
  28. jdas03
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    jdas03 Member

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    Just want to add my 2p to this with regard to performance.

    I took the s3 to brands hatch for a track day.
    Being a hot hatch I saw some done up scoobs and cossie sierra and knew that wasn't my league of car.
    What we have is a hot hatch, compare performance to Clios hondas golfs and you won't be disappointed.

    On the track I found the car although a bit Rolly at times but had very good grip and as I did a few laps I was blasting it out of corners tires squealing!

    I found myslef following a number of cars people always mention on here, 182 Clio was the first, kept with it and eventually overtook it on the main straight due to the grip out of the ling right hander.
    S2000, it was slightly quicker down the straights but track was still slightly damp from night before and again managed to pass that!
    Same thing with an older boxster!

    What I'm trying to say is the s3 does make a good performance car!
    Firstly people compare it to silly machines!
    It's a hot hatch, so compare it to hot hatches!
    It maynot be as rewarding to drive but it's still very quick for what it is and in remapped for very quick! Not many other hatches are sub 6 seconds to 60 if you go down remapped route!

    You get all this knowing that you can easily out do the majority of most modern hatches in most situations!
    And you get this while listening to your Bose stereo and sitting in climate control and heated seats!
    Name me another hatch that can do that!

    As after all that's what it is!
    Want something to compare to a scooby in speed? Buy an s4 or rs4!
    Other wise face up that this is a great car for what it is - a luxury hot hatch!
    #68
  29. scoobyra
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    scoobyra It's not f@cking ORANGE!!!!!

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    I think that's a pretty fair way to describe it Paul :yes:

    I think everyone is missing the point of what Mike is trying to say here though. From the outside looking in, the S3 seems like a good car. rom the inside looking out, it's a bit dull. It's a good car for the average driver - some of us are a little bit above that in terms of what we'd like out of a car!
    #69
  30. Mr.G
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    Mr.G Active Member

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    Mike. Fair enough, you seem to have your mind set. Sell it as Voorhees has already said.

    As for the M3, I kid you not twice I've out run an M3, I used to own an E36 M3, Impreza RB5, and this is my third S3. I don't have a point to prove here, really couldn't care less who says what, I know what my car is capable of in its current form and i'll tell you now, an M3 while near me on the straights is nowhere to be seen on the twisties, period.

    FYI the E46 M3 is booked (BMW) giving 343Hp. E36 was 321Hp, you'll never actually get those figures and the majority of them are around 310/315Hp aparently mine was not 321Hp dispite BMW's claims even with a new spanking VANOS. Not a HUGE difference between a slightly modified S3 now is it!!

    Yes the S3 is laughable as an S model Audi, but it was never going to be an animal with 210/225Hp and 4WD (sometimes lol). Plain and simple, you have to spend money in the right areas to get the best out of the S3.

    G
    #70
  31. MIKE GTR
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    MIKE GTR Member

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    Its a very big difference - 4wd losses are approx 25%, rwd approx 15% so its further removed with that also.

    Listen, my comments have all been on how far removed I feel from the driving experiance, not what cars it can beat. The handling is BAD, anyone whos driven anything that remotely handles will confirm this, but yes it is also comfy! It gives no feedback, the driver is removed from the experiance and its not an immediate feeling of losing grip or feeling the surface and I believe this is down to the steering.

    Am I pissed off that the mods haven't made my car quick or even feel quick? yes I am! as already stated i've done quite a bit to get to 250/260 brake which is about a 10% increase in power - Having had experiance of other turbo'd cars, I feel that its a very poor result of what is ineffect a good £2k of performance goodies - afterall I could build a 2.0L N/A engine to that power from scratch for that money or infact buy a supercharger kit for the 306 and have 325 brake without any other mods - I hope this explains how I feel.

    People on here obviously aren't getting my point, in that my question was why do I hate my S3 so much and my reason for asking, is that it should tick every box and perhaps thats what the problem is, in that it does all the basics, but doesn't do any of them particually well, maybe if it were a std car i'd not expect as much from it as I do.
    #71
  32. MIKE GTR
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    MIKE GTR Member

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    First of all mine is far more than just remapped and i'll tell you now it ISN'T quick, let alone very quick - there are also plenty of STD hot hatches that are quicker, let alone modded ones. I had a MKII Astra GTE with a calibra turbo engine and also an RS Turbo back in the 90's that was quicker than this to 60.

    I do however, think you're description is correct, albeit we need to lose one word, which then makes it - a luxury hatch!
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2010
    #72
  33. scoobyra
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    scoobyra It's not f@cking ORANGE!!!!!

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    I do get your point!
    #73
  34. Mr.G
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    Mr.G Active Member

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    Mike,

    I do understand where you are coming from. Can I suggest you have a rolling road session, determine your actual HP and see if it's down at all on power. With a hybrid, FMIC and a remap i'd expect to see 275Hp?

    It would be a fairly quick car with that amount. But that does again depend on what the benchmark is.

    G
    #74
  35. scoobyra
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    scoobyra It's not f@cking ORANGE!!!!!

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    I'd be interested to see what a 275bhp S3 felt like. The down side for me is that you have to spend a small fortune on getting the S3 to handle and make big power and bearing in mind the cost of the car new, compared to my impreza is a bit of a joke. Ok, my S3 has quite a lot of nice bits (no heated seats though) and it's a nice place to be when driving. It's also pretty quiet which is nice. The Impreza is a nice place to be for totally different reasons and that's the bit I miss with my S3. I miss the raw power and the ability to throw it at a corner, unsettle it and then drift it out of the corner with my foot hard to the floor and may be this is what Mike misses too?

    I don't hate my car though, it's a good car, just over priced and expensive on bits and I think if you want to go balls out then there's a lot of other cars which are far better for the money, or even half of it at that!
    #75
  36. badger5
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    badger5 RIP S3dave Site Sponsor

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    ~You bought the wrong bits if they did'nt realise the gains possible, and you did'nt finish the mods if you did'nt map it afterwards, and now (as ever) moan..

    lol

    sell it and leave..
    simples
    #76
  37. badger5
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    badger5 RIP S3dave Site Sponsor

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    with the right hybrid and mods, mapping you can get over 300bhp
    #77
  38. MIKE GTR
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    MIKE GTR Member

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    Its got:
    front mount
    forge recirc with yellow spring?
    milltek catback
    forged pistons
    CR turbos K04 hybrid with cut back blades and 360 degree bearing
    N274 bypass
    Revo stg 1

    Ok so it needs a remap to maximise the effect of the hybrid, but lets cut to the chase, its ****!

    So Bill what would you recommend are the 'proper' bits I need, apart from a remap and a downpipe which I already know.

    Once again, my remarks regarding the feel of the car have been overlooked - My grievance is with the lack of feeling the car gives the driver, the lack of confidence that it inspires in the dry and especially in the wet. This is my daily drive, its not a weekend special, but its the car I drive the most and I do want the best of both worlds, I want comfort and I want handling ability with feedback to the driver, there are cars out there that combine these two well - the S3 is clearly not one of them.

    BTW if someone wants to buy it, then its on pistonheads lol, clearly you'd be doing me a favour ;)
    #78
  39. Mr.G
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    Mr.G Active Member

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    Mike, if what you want is more feel and response from the wheel then look at Suspension components. I've changed everything (where possible) on mine, and went for Compbrake top mounts, they do make the springs twang loads but they give a very very direct feel, totally different from what it was before.

    G
    #79
  40. MIKE GTR
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    MIKE GTR Member

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    You know what really irritates me, is that not one person has come and said "you know what Mike, you're right, what you need to do to sort the handling/etc is this........"

    In fact I'm not really sure what half the replies are saying - afterall i've never compared it to other hatches, i merely said I expected more yet people are telling me to stop comparing or to simply sell it, which I suppose must be an agreement to my remarks over the car?
    #80

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