Golf R


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Jan 6, 2012
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I'm now just over two years into ownership of the S4 and I'm starting to get itchy feet. But I'm torn about what to do. Important to say the S4 has been a great car, couple of issues sorted under warranty as you might reasonably expect. This car, and the previous S4 avant were bought when our two boys were quite young and going away meant we had to take quite a lot of kit. At age 7 and 5 now they need much less, so the need for a 'big' car has reduced. But I'm struggling to see what alternatives there are - another new S4 is pointless and as far as I know are not available anyway? I'm really not keen on the prospect of ~500 a year road tax (my current S4 was registered just before this change came into effect).

I've always had a soft spot for golfs, my first car was a mk4 1.8T GTI, and to this day I would say the 'best' car I owned was a mk5 GTI - a fantastic car and owned in a period of time when I was young and commitment free, might be a bit of rose tinted nostalgia going on there... also my daily driver is a mk7 GTD which is great for what it is.

My wife is actually the main driver of the S4, and its fair to say its a bit 'wasted' on her. I drive it about once a week or long haul journeys so I'm not exactly benefiting from the ownership.

So I'm thinking about a Golf R (maybe a GTI) as the successor for the S4. Seems to offer a good balance of performance and practicality. Also being about £200 a month cheaper is an attractive proposition.

Anyone made a similar move? Or have any alternative suggestions? I suppose I might get a completely different answer in a golf forum...
That would be the most practical solution but I don't really like the golf as an estate version. Unlike the S4 which IMO looks best as an Avant I think the golf looks better as a hatch. Maybe I need to have a proper look at one in the flesh.
My 50 cents worth.
Two years ago I briefly headed towards an R - Golf R Wolfsburg edition waggon when driving an SQ5 TDi.
One drive was all it took and I handed the keys to the R back to the VW folk saying i must have been mad.
The difference in quality and HMI engineering was significant and the R felt like a harsh, noisy under engineered roller skate .
Perhaps as a motorist I had grown up and no longer understood the need for snap, crackle and pop synthetic exhaust music.
Note that I had previously had a few Golfs, a GTi un-modded and very modded GTi MkV but life had moved on and I now wore my baseball cap the right way round.
I believe that the new S4 I have is a far more sophisticated driver's car than the SQ5; again noting that it has come with all the options bar the sports diff and sports seats. In turn, the RSQ3 was more focussed and more agile than the SQ5 and the new S4 supersedes them both in terms of class, quality and drivability.
Therein I would see the gap in competency, finish and quality between my S4 and a VW product like the GTi would present an insurmountable case to lay down while and think again.
Please consider.
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Interior quality is a big difference between the my GTD and S4, the S4 cabin is in a totally different league. But I don't think the golf interior is 'bad' per say, its just not in the luxury segment like the S4. I would miss the little things like illuminated vent controls and the like. But then, to be fair, the golf interior is well built and probably a bit more forgiving to minor scuffs etc that transporting kids tends to attract. It always scrubs up well.
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I had a Golf R for about 6 months. Mine was a 5 door. More room in the back of it than the M6 that I replaced it with and the RS5. I have 2 young kids and they loved that car. It is a great car. Excellent value for money and great to drive. Better screwed together than my RS5 is with no rattles or squeaks of any kind. I often think I should have hung on to it.

With some tweaks it can look even better. Mk7.5 loses the factory side skirts that the Mk7 had which I find disappointing.

Ultimately, I got rid of it as I just felt it wasn’t me and I wanted some with a bit more exclusivity. A downside is that they are ubiquitous on the roads.

Here’s a pic of mine with upgraded wheels and a Maxton Design splitter kit.
I'm now just over two years into ownership of the S4 and I'm starting to get itchy feet...
At age 7 and 5 now they need much less, so the need for a 'big' car has reduced...
What you really need to do to assist your decision is drive the S4 a lot, lot more to really appreciate it.
Really, 500 road tax is justification for the real cost of transferring to a new vehicle and the fun factor of a near new pleasure machine.

Ok, so when the boys go to high school/college and you have to taxi them, their mates & a tonne of baggage (imagine packing all that and a tuba in the Golf!!!), what then? Also your S4 will still look classy in the pick-up line @ Snob School. We have 2 daughters and when they went to college we changed from a Mazda 323 Hatch to a Subaru Liberty/Legacy wagon. Had another 3 Subie wagons since then & now the Avant. The fact they look 1000% better than the sedan is a bonus. Even though the kids are adults, a wagon, to us, is still a no-brainer.

G'day Dingah, we're in Brissy....and you?

My 50 cents worth.....Please consider.
Zachary what he said & formerly a Golf owner!!

.....Better screwed together than my RS5 is with no rattles or squeaks of any kind.....

What you really need to do to assist your decision is drive the S4 a lot, lot more to really appreciate it.

Ha ha, you've got something there. Monday to Friday I can easily convince myself I don't need an S4 on the driveway. Last weekend I took it on a proper blast in 'M' mode and I remembered why I got it.

The kudos of the badge doesn't do very much for me personally, in general I prefer high quality but understated which for me both VW and Audi delivery albeit to different levels. For example I wouldn't consider an S3 (again) because really you are just paying for the badge and also through the nose for options.

I'm doing a 300 mile round trip across the Scottish highlands in a couple of weeks, that usually restores the faith!
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Never been a golf fan myself.. it’s just a golf in my humble opinion never anything special ..

A couple of years ago (2016)they were soooooo cheap to lease hire and pcp deals literally every man woman and child had one in the road (mainly blue)

I went against the grain and bought a 3door S3 in 2016 and they stood out massively on the road compared to to traffic line of golf R’s.. bought a S4 on 2017 and loved it, but ultimately didn’t need the practicality now recently bought a fully loaded RS3 which is much more me.. just need to hurry up and run it in fully.. (yes I have issues:))

Going from an S4 to golf R I think you would regret to be honest.. Audi in a different class

As I say I all in my humble opinion and no offence to any golf owners out there!
In Aberdeen and shire whilst R's are pretty common I would say they are probably out numbered by S3's which are also pretty cheap on the never never. The oil price crash didn't do too much to slow them down. Either way it doesn't bother me, an S4 is 'just' an A4 except it has a big engine and fancier wheels.
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Ive gone the "other" way. I came from a Golf R (Mk7 5 door) to an S4.
Yes interior + tech on the S4 is in a different league, but my R was a REVO stage 1. It flew. Had it for 4 years, loved every minute of it. But after 4 Golf platform cars in a row I wanted something different. RS3 was too similar, didn't want an estate, hate the Victorian plumbing look on Mercs, so ended up with S4.
I really don't like the stuck on iPad though - and I wish I could use touch screen for Android Auto, or have a 2 finger gesture on the click wheel for swiping through menus.
£450 a year road tax is a bit steep.
MPG can be worse, especially round town. But on the commute I do to work, S4 and R are very similar.
But S4 with DTUK box feels just as quick.
And here's a controversial statement....
I much prefer the ZF "slush" box to the Golf's DSG.
Granted ZF can be slow to pull away but only if you're in Wife mode trying to be gentle. Floor it and its a totally different experience. DSG was great as long as it knew where you were going. 1st to 6th full bore acceleration, great. But it was too easy confuse sometimes, kick down could take an age to engage. Think its close to 1sec to reset if the clutches are out of sync with you. Never had that with the ZF. It might be a gnats **** slower to change, but at least its always the same timing and just flies.
And the sound of the S4 vs the fakery in Golf (cold start in the S4 make a 5:30am start something to smile about - not sure the neighbours do though!!!).
But I also agree, its not the Golf is a "bad" car in anyway, it's very different to the S4.
And I think I'll also be in trouble of where I go next - but thats at least 3 years away, so for now I'll just have to grin and bare the road tax + servicing costs and enjoy the rest of it.
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Interesting thread, as i've had my S4 Avant for 2 years now (2010 model) and thinking of moving on and the Golf R estate does appeal, although not driven one yet. However, I think the hatchback has the looks, but the estate just looks like somethings been added, not as attractive.

They look good value at £20K, 3yrs old with 20k miles.

Should really get out and drive one.

Also temped on a BMW 340i estate as well, very similar to the S4, although BMW dash looks dated to me in comparison.

Late to this thread but anyway here goes.
We have a 2017 Golf R we purchased new and we both really-really like it and still feel the same exact way and this is now April 2019.
The Golf R is actually my wife's car and she has no intention of wanting to trade it on anything else.
It's quick, Quattro, tons of Safety Additions, great gas economy if driven in a normal manner.
Tons of storage and either or both rear seats can be dropped for more storage.
It's a hatchback and she loves that plus it being a 4-door.
For the money it's a great vehicle and I can add we have (Not) had even one thing happen with it period in a (Negative-Way).

Oh, for what it's worth of course it's not an Audi but then again it doesn't cost like an Audi.

Here it is below ..........

Terry USA

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