boring drive

FamilymanS310

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im really frustrated with my S3, its a facelift 7 speed dsg 310 ps, its quick enough, sounds good, looks good but its just so dull to drive, I came from a clio 220 trophy and the clio was just in another league for smiles per mile and tbh it was almost as quick once rolling. Theres just no fun factor to the S3, driving is all about corners to me and the S3 is just completely numb, so im wondering, are there any subtle tweeks to bring it to life a bit ?
Cheers
David
 

SuperKid

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Apparently a stage 1 tune brings it more to life for those who find it "dull" in stock. I personally love my S3 in stock, and I like the fact I can't spin the rear end out easily because I am not a racing driver. I love just putting my foot down, pulled back into my seat and off it goes with little/no wheel spin.
 

GSB

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Apparently a stage 1 tune brings it more to life for those who find it "dull" in stock. I personally love my S3 in stock, and I like the fact I can't spin the rear end out easily because I am not a racing driver. I love just putting my foot down, pulled back into my seat and off it goes with little/no wheel spin.

Does nothing to address the OP’s concerns though, just adds more power to a chassis that’s already got more than enough. What it needs is feel, delicacy and fun.

The short answer is no, there is no way on earth you are going to get an S3 to come anywhere even close to matching anything from RenaultSport for feel, fun, fizz and driver involvement. You can try different suspension, but it’s really only a sticking plaster on a chassis that was never designed with such things in mind, and comes with even more compromises than you’d probably be willing to make.

I had the same thing coming from my last car to the S3. In comparison it was heavy, numb, uncommunicative and leaden in its responses. I came from an MX5 though so this was to be expected. It’s a very different car, so I accepted it as part and parcel of the more ‘grown-up’ car I was buying, a compromise I was just going to have to live with. It was after all much more practical, quieter, more comfortable, more sure-footed and an awful lot quicker (and no-one accused me of styling hair for a living anymore).

The same would be true of your Clio, only vastly more apparent as they are in most respects the same type of car.
 

Chris4410

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As said above, completely different cars to compare. Did you not test drive the S3 before you bought it and realise it is nothing like a front wheel drive french hot hatch, and never will be. And to be honest they are not meant to be comparable.
 

RS03_SEN

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Does nothing to address the OP’s concerns though, just adds more power to a chassis that’s already got more than enough. What it needs is feel, delicacy and fun.

The short answer is no, there is no way on earth you are going to get an S3 to come anywhere even close to matching anything from RenaultSport for feel, fun, fizz and driver involvement. You can try different suspension, but it’s really only a sticking plaster on a chassis that was never designed with such things in mind, and comes with even more compromises than you’d probably be willing to make.

I had the same thing coming from my last car to the S3. In comparison it was heavy, numb, uncommunicative and leaden in its responses. I came from an MX5 though so this was to be expected. It’s a very different car, so I accepted it as part and parcel of the more ‘grown-up’ car I was buying, a compromise I was just going to have to live with. It was after all much more practical, quieter, more comfortable, more sure-footed and an awful lot quicker (and no-one accused me of styling hair for a living anymore).

The same would be true of your Clio, only vastly more apparent as they are in most respects the same type of car.
2 of the best handling cars in one post! Mx5s and any renaultsport are wicked to drive.
I had a 350bhp Mégane 250 but was having issues with the boost pipes from the intercooler. Bought the RS3, got the Mégane fixed properly and regretted buying the RS3.
While the quality of the car etc was poverty stricken compared to the Audi, I just loved driving it. I'd blast round a few bends and sit there laughing.

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SaraS3

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im really frustrated with my S3, its a facelift 7 speed dsg 310 ps, its quick enough, sounds good, looks good but its just so dull to drive, I came from a clio 220 trophy and the clio was just in another league for smiles per mile and tbh it was almost as quick once rolling. Theres just no fun factor to the S3, driving is all about corners to me and the S3 is just completely numb, so im wondering, are there any subtle tweeks to bring it to life a bit ?
Cheers
David

How long have you had it? Have you given it time to grow on you? I thought mine was dull to drive (actually preferred a 330d I had 3 cars before) and didn't like the interior (thought the engine would make up for it) and I got rid at less than 3k miles. Looking back, I didn't give it time to make it grow on me but I love what I have now. I smile every time I start it up. The s3 just never grabbed me.

Hopefully it will grow on you.
There are some pre reg rs3 on autotrader for under £40k. They might tickle your fancy
 

FamilymanS310

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yeah as said its nothing to do with power, the cars already plenty quick enough, I just really miss the involvement and fun of a quality hot hatch and at the minute im wondering why im paying a lot more money a month for a car that just doesnt make me smile. I drove a fiesta st a couple of times and its just such brilliant fun, you might not ultimately be going very quickly but that doesnt matter, because the cars just alive in your hands and communicating absolutely everything to you through the steering wheel and through your butt, on your very first drive you can push the car right to its limits because its telling you everything.
Ive had the S3 about 8 months and rather than growing on me, im just growing tired of it. It has some good points or course, for the traffic light g.p its incredible, but ive just come to think that the S3 is a better car to admire than to own, because the reality doesnt live up to the expectation.
 

Gazwould

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Weight is an issue here , plus the quattro might be 'Evo' safe ?
 

FamilymanS310

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yeah the fact you cant turn off the traction control is another gripe, even when its supposedly turned off, it isnt, it will allow you a brief moment of slip before it over rides you, its the wrong way around the driver should be the one in command.

I understand the rarb makes the car feel more neutral as opposed to just an understeer biased set up, that would be a start i suppose, but it won't bring any feel or communication will it.
 

MikeParkin

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I’ve got the Super Pro front and rear sway bars. What a difference it makes also lowering it as well will help.
 

MikeParkin

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Maybe one of these would help haha
0BD4F258 3ACA 41DC 9709 A2ECDEAB108E
 

Ron240

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The S3 for me has a dual personality.....boring and predictable in normal driving, but a complete hooligan when you put your foot down.
I came to this car from a totally in your face Civic FK8, but as an all rounder the S3 is superior.
Whenever the words Renault Sport are mentioned I just switch off.
 

mfl

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Does nothing to address the OP’s concerns though, just adds more power to a chassis that’s already got more than enough. What it needs is feel, delicacy and fun.

The short answer is no, there is no way on earth you are going to get an S3 to come anywhere even close to matching anything from RenaultSport for feel, fun, fizz and driver involvement. You can try different suspension, but it’s really only a sticking plaster on a chassis that was never designed with such things in mind, and comes with even more compromises than you’d probably be willing to make.

Well said as always - spot on - and yes, stage 1 doesn't increase the fun, my next car due soonish (after I recover from all the repair bills) won't be an S3
 

Peto

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yeah as said its nothing to do with power, the cars already plenty quick enough, I just really miss the involvement and fun of a quality hot hatch and at the minute im wondering why im paying a lot more money a month for a car that just doesnt make me smile. I drove a fiesta st a couple of times and its just such brilliant fun, you might not ultimately be going very quickly but that doesnt matter, because the cars just alive in your hands and communicating absolutely everything to you through the steering wheel and through your butt, on your very first drive you can push the car right to its limits because its telling you everything.
Ive had the S3 about 8 months and rather than growing on me, im just growing tired of it. It has some good points or course, for the traffic light g.p its incredible, but ive just come to think that the S3 is a better car to admire than to own, because the reality doesn't live up to the expectation.
Well u need to sell it and get your megan back .. if u want smile .. u can't do anything .. tuning it up isn't going to put smile on your face..
 

wab172uk

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im really frustrated with my S3, its a facelift 7 speed dsg 310 ps, its quick enough, sounds good, looks good but its just so dull to drive, I came from a clio 220 trophy and the clio was just in another league for smiles per mile and tbh it was almost as quick once rolling. Theres just no fun factor to the S3, driving is all about corners to me and the S3 is just completely numb, so im wondering, are there any subtle tweeks to bring it to life a bit ?
Cheers
David

Did you not test drive the car before you bought it? An extended drive. Not just round the block?

No one buys an S3 thinking it's going to be some brilliant balls out fun car to drive. That's not what the S3 is about. It's a very fast, good looking, well made, comfortable mid-sized hatch / Saloon. One that as an all round ownership proposition, is one of the best, if not the best in class.

Want something more fun, you should have bought a Civic Type R, Focus RS, Megane RS, or a Golf R.

My little Twingo 133 RS is far more fun to drive than my S3 was. But when I wanted to drive over the lakes at speed, and in perfect comfort, that could also overtake most things I needed to, the S3 was perfect.
 

GSB

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The s3 is not meant to be a hot hatch.it's more grown up than that.
It’s a hatch, it’s sold under Audi’s own sports banner, it’s equipped with Audi’s most ‘sporting’ power train, and with in excess of 300 HP under the bonnet and a price tag knocking on (and in many cases over) £40k, it better be scorching, toilet-paper-in-the-freezer, vindaloo with extra naga chillies hot.

Let’s be honest, the only thing ‘grown-up’ when comparing the S3 to other hot hatches, including it’s stablemate the Golf R, is the size of the wallet buying it, and the fashion choices and the breadth of the waistlines of the people sitting in it. The grown up element is a figment of PR, advertising and brand positioning. The S3 is the answer to the question “how do we sell Golf R’s and GTi’s to people who think they’re tainted a little to much with the odour of boy-racers, boom-boxes and backwards baseball caps?” The changes made make for a more sober, subtle and visually restrained car, which is mirrored in the choices made by the chassis dynamics team. It’s been designed to appeal to middle agers who like to pretend they’re still young, but prefer the labels on their designer t-shirts to be postage stamp sized, find the jiggly ride induced by properly sorted suspension to annoying, the noise generated by proper light-weighting irritating, and the hip hugging bolsters of proper sports seats to tight. People in fact, who are just like me...

The S3 goes like a rocket ship, and is a bit classier than the other cars that also go like rocket ships. The fact that it might not take the corners with as much panache is irrelevant, since to do so would needlessly shake up that nice bottle of 2015 Montrachet Picard I have in the boot, and bruise the fair-trade organic avocados in passenger footwell...
 

Joxh

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Isn't there an option in VCDS to tweak the haldex to make the car more fun?
 

SaraS3

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Agree with most of that. I bought one because I wanted something nippy that must not look boy racer, it did seem to attract the idiots though. Pushing me to go when I don't race about. I'm 48. I don't race around but it's nice to have a bit of power to overtake on the lanes I drive on (tractors etc). I thought it looked fine on the outside but I had part exd a year old mercedes and sat in it and missed the interior. I thought the s3 was very plain inside but I know that's a plus for some. The thing that I didn't like with it was it had a lag in comfort mode so if I wanted to pass anything, I had to change modes (I don't use the paddles on any car so I suppose that didn't help). It perhaps just didn't suit my non paddle driving.
The one I have now only has about 90bhp more but I never need to change from comfort mode, the power is there straight away and it sounds nice.
The furthest I drove in the s3 was down to Tamworth to collect the c43 and I found it a lovely motorway car. I'm afraid to say I preferred the engine and gearbox of my 15 330d I had 3 cars back though. I thought one of the best things about the s3 was how safe and surefooted around bends it was. I like that about a car, it felt safe to me. I would go rs3 if I ever got another though
 

GSB

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Isn't there an option in VCDS to tweak the haldex to make the car more fun?
There is, on facelift models, and yes, it does inject a bit more liveliness into the chassis, but it’s not going to gain what the OP is after.

What the OP needs is a car that’s taken a crash diet, primarily in the form of the smaller, lighter chrome “H” badge on the front of a Civic Type R. It is a tad less subtle than an S3 though.
 

RS03_SEN

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Agree with most of that. I bought one because I wanted something nippy that must not look boy racer, it did seem to attract the idiots though. Pushing me to go when I don't race about. I'm 48. I don't race around but it's nice to have a bit of power to overtake on the lanes I drive on (tractors etc). I thought it looked fine on the outside but I had part exd a year old mercedes and sat in it and missed the interior. I thought the s3 was very plain inside but I know that's a plus for some. The thing that I didn't like with it was it had a lag in comfort mode so if I wanted to pass anything, I had to change modes (I don't use the paddles on any car so I suppose that didn't help). It perhaps just didn't suit my non paddle driving.
The one I have now only has about 90bhp more but I never need to change from comfort mode, the power is there straight away and it sounds nice.
The furthest I drove in the s3 was down to Tamworth to collect the c43 and I found it a lovely motorway car. I'm afraid to say I preferred the engine and gearbox of my 15 330d I had 3 cars back though. I thought one of the best things about the s3 was how safe and surefooted around bends it was. I like that about a car, it felt safe to me. I would go rs3 if I ever got another though
Did your S3 not have d/s on the gear box? If I'm in comfort in my RS3 I just flick the box to S and put foot down, rather than cycle through drive modes.

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SaraS3

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Did your S3 not have d/s on the gear box? If I'm in comfort in my RS3 I just flick the box to S and put foot down, rather than cycle through drive modes.

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Yes it had that. I just didn't gel with the car I suppose.
Nice rs3 you have
 

S32B

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Did your S3 not have d/s on the gear box? If I'm in comfort in my RS3 I just flick the box to S and put foot down, rather than cycle through drive modes.

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Just about to say that, nudge down goes into S mode. I often do that if coming out of a busy junction to get away quicker, then nudge down again to go back to normal.
 

RS03_SEN

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Just about to say that, nudge down goes into S mode. I often do that if coming out of a busy junction to get away quicker, then nudge down again to go back to normal.
I always do this mate. Some times there's a bit of a dangerous delay when in D and you need to nip out quickly. Took me a few months to figure it out though!

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Mr Freeze

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I had a Renault sport clio 200 cup in alien green back in 2017 as a weekend car it was one of the best handling cars I've owned along with my Evo 6 TME
really high revving to get the power it was a good car but I felt it was more of a a track car and I wouldn't of liked to use it day to day . I couldn't compare it to the S3 as they are light years apart . The S3 doesn't give you the feel a clio sport does but it is a better car in every other aspect .
 

keenu

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The S3 is only good on a straight line I'm afraid. The bouncy suspension around corners and understeer doesn't fill me with confidence. It just a fast standard A3.
 

........

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The S3 is only good on a straight line I'm afraid. The bouncy suspension around corners and understeer doesn't fill me with confidence. It just a fast standard A3.

The S3 Saloon handles better than the S3 sportback with a slightly wider track,235 tyres,magnetic dampers all round help a good bit,my S3 sportback nicknamed The bouncy castle
 

bakedcorn

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Before climbing aboard the S3 I had an Acura TSX 6sp and my wife a Subaru BRZ Aozora Edition.
I was constantly trying to Scrape more power out of the TSX by revving the **** out of it and frankly got annoying after a few runs. The BRZ on the hand was loads of fun for such a smaller car. Plus add rear wheel drive (from a Subaru???) and the fun factor went way up. However the car was seriously under powered and the granny systems were difficult to disable. I believe most of the manufacturers are going this route.
I truly believe that you should trade in your vehicle or sell it and get yourself a rear wheel drive car like a Mustang 350 or some other vehicle with rear drive. I sold the TSX for the S3 as I was sold on the interior and the motor and it’s good looks - it’s a 2015 model and still get compliments on its looks. Given the **** road conditions in my neck of the woods and other ****** *** drivers, my fun is had on the highway on ramps, freeway driving and most of all in the snow. My wife traded in her BRZ for an Audi A3 and loves it.
Finding that HALO car is elusive and is relative to each person. Good luck and I truly hope you find what you are looking for.


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Damo S

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yeah the fact you cant turn off the traction control is another gripe, even when its supposedly turned off, it isnt, it will allow you a brief moment of slip before it over rides you, its the wrong way around the driver should be the one in command.

I understand the rarb makes the car feel more neutral as opposed to just an understeer biased set up, that would be a start i suppose, but it won't bring any feel or communication will it.

Actually I think you can. If you press and hold the TC button for 10 seconds it goes of completely and on come on again until you restart the car.
 

Damo S

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I understand what you mean about the S3. Having a stage 2 tune done has really woken it up. To me it was fast but not fast enough in stock form, partly due to the reduced boost in the lower gears which takes the sting out of the acceleration in 1st and 2nd. With stage 2 it is a completely different car, and has enough torque to really unsettle it, if that's what you want. But no it will never have the same feel as a car more designed for tracking. The S3 is designed to be safe but fairly fast car which is exactly what it does.
Id be quite keen to try putting on an uprated ARB at some point. The tendency to understeer is a touch dull but is probably safer than it trying to stick the back end out like previous 4wd rally bred cars Ive had. A car suddenly going sideways out of nowhere at 70mph on full throttle is quite disconcerting.
 
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tighten up the springs with Eibachs and put 235's on- regular 4 wheel alignments have been recommended but I go every 6 months for a check and they are almost pot on every time.
For a little more feel and rasp get the rear dog bone gearbox insert and res delete to make it feel a little more alive.
Agree standard it isn't a drivers car but these mods deffo wake it up, Oh and I went for the R600 and inlet pipework Plus muffler delete on the turbo to hear the boost sounds a little more. The small things make a big difference. the car feels more alive and I haven't gone for my stage 1 yet
 

cuke2u

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Quite simply Audi set their cars up to be as inert as possible, with understeer that fails to warn you is taking place. The golf, with the same chassis, is better, the Ford Focus even more so. Whilst power can mask some of this, for a while, unfortunately until Audi set the cars up with some sense of feeling through all the controls the car will be less exciting to drive than many underpowered cars, even a lowly fiesta with a 1.0l engine is more interesting....
 

Nige Smith

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Quite simply Audi set their cars up to be as inert as possible, with understeer that fails to warn you is taking place. The golf, with the same chassis, is better, the Ford Focus even more so. Whilst power can mask some of this, for a while, unfortunately until Audi set the cars up with some sense of feeling through all the controls the car will be less exciting to drive than many underpowered cars, even a lowly fiesta with a 1.0l engine is more interesting....

Why did you buy one then?
 
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This is an odd thread. Basically you buy a £40K thereabouts car and say you don't like it..... think there should have been some more research into that impulse buy... I do agree with the reasons you don't like it but I discovered these issues before I got mine but the Positives outweighed the negatives so I went for it anyway, could have got the Golf but they aren't as posh., plus I like to mod my cars slightly and knew I could dial out the negatives at the same time as making the car look a little more unique without spending crazy loads of extra money.
You can sort most of the issues out with mods if you wanted to but remember Germans are very clever, they dumb down the S3 to further justify the RS3.
 

cuke2u

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Why did you buy one then?
Not really my point, I didn't state that I dislike my car? Audi's are setup to be long distance cruisers, not fun cars so I have no problem with that...
 

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It’s a hatch, it’s sold under Audi’s own sports banner, it’s equipped with Audi’s most ‘sporting’ power train, and with in excess of 300 HP under the bonnet and a price tag knocking on (and in many cases over) £40k, it better be scorching, toilet-paper-in-the-freezer, vindaloo with extra naga chillies hot.

Let’s be honest, the only thing ‘grown-up’ when comparing the S3 to other hot hatches, including it’s stablemate the Golf R, is the size of the wallet buying it, and the fashion choices and the breadth of the waistlines of the people sitting in it. The grown up element is a figment of PR, advertising and brand positioning. The S3 is the answer to the question “how do we sell Golf R’s and GTi’s to people who think they’re tainted a little to much with the odour of boy-racers, boom-boxes and backwards baseball caps?” The changes made make for a more sober, subtle and visually restrained car, which is mirrored in the choices made by the chassis dynamics team. It’s been designed to appeal to middle agers who like to pretend they’re still young, but prefer the labels on their designer t-shirts to be postage stamp sized, find the jiggly ride induced by properly sorted suspension to annoying, the noise generated by proper light-weighting irritating, and the hip hugging bolsters of proper sports seats to tight. People in fact, who are just like me...

The S3 goes like a rocket ship, and is a bit classier than the other cars that also go like rocket ships. The fact that it might not take the corners with as much panache is irrelevant, since to do so would needlessly shake up that nice bottle of 2015 Montrachet Picard I have in the boot, and bruise the fair-trade organic avocados in passenger footwell...

PMSL.....................Grant.....Now when are ye getting shot of that Tesla Ye need te get a another S3......YER SADLY missed lol
 
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