Think about getting a 3.2 v6, should I?

S3 Johnny

The grass isn't always greener
Hi all.

I'm thinking about changing my car and I keep looking at the facelift A3 3.2 V6 (2005/2006).

I've had a 2003 S3 which I really liked but don't want another, I want something to take the wife and kids out in but have some fun when I want.

This will be our 2nd car and I only do around 4-5k miles a year so fuel isn't a problem.

Could anyone help me a bit with what to look out for and if they are any good or not?? Lol.

Thanks for your time
Johnny
 

prt57

Registered User
We have the same engine in a VW golf R32. The engine is very flexible with lots of low down pulling power. You could get away with only 3 gears as you can block shift easily!
The power delivery is totally different to our S3 8p. With the S3 you have to wait for the turbo to spool up and then it really goes all the way to the red line. With the V6 there is no waiting and it pulls well and very smooth too.
Insist on a totally cold start up and listen for timing chain rattle. If it needs changing it is an engine out job and about 20 hours labour!!
Regarding fuel, they are not as bad as people say. My son can achieve 35 mpg on a 15 mile drive to work. Probably 32 mpg is realistic if you are having a bit of right foot action. It will go lower if you are booting it everywhere. Check for a full service history and I would prefer an annual service rather than long life. The latest software has eliminated any of the flat spots seen on early cars.
Finally, the exhaust note through a tunnel is addictive!!

Peter
 

Jason-3.2

Registered User
I've had both , 2 8l s3's and now an a3 3.2. If you can be happy with the power you get out of the box the A3 3.2 is fantastic. I use mine for a 70mile round trip everyday for work and it has been faultless! Just turned 100,000 miles and only had to service it.
As said above , I can manage 35mpg on the commute to work and 18mpg coming home. I'm never in a hurry to get to work!!!!
Handling it is far better than the old 8l.
I went for the dsg, best decision ever and the main reason I still have the car nearly 3 years later. No one can change gear as quick as that thing can, no need to lift when changing up.
As for the timing chain issue some go on about, I've only heard of a few with issues and considering how many cars are out there, I don't think its much to worry about. You never hear about the thousands of powers of r32s or as that say their timing chains are perfect.
If in doubt get the car checked by a professional.
Its a fantastic car!
 

S3 Johnny

The grass isn't always greener
Thanks for the replies guys, I've taken it all on board.
Anybody else's input is more then welcome,
Haven't really seen many on the roads and don't know anyone with one.
 

S3 Johnny

The grass isn't always greener
I see that most of them are just sports and only a few are s-lines, is there differents between them?
Look the same to me :)
 

Ron burgundy

Registered User
I see that most of them are just sports and only a few are s-lines, is there differents between them?
Look the same to me :)

I don't think the S line body kit came out until 2006 so anything before that the sport and s line are the same on the outside barring the s line being a little lower I think.

Interior I've seen a few sport 3.2 with half leather/alcantara And I think some s lines come like that but they have s line stitched in to the seats whereas the sport models doesn't ..

May of missed some things but pretty sure about the exterior .....I think , ha
 
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discostu49

Registered User
I have a 3.2 sportback s line with a few mods, before I bought this I was away to buy a mk5 r32 but saved 4k and bought this, never looked back, great car and ticks all the boxes and is fast enough out the box, I've played with a few cars and the new focus st can't take me if you compare power to new hatches of today the best cars to play with tho are r32's the look on there's face when the pull up at the lights ans start revving, I rev mine and they are like 😱?????? Then when on motorways it's like we have stopped in time I can't take them and they cant take me I just laugh, sorry of topic a bit there as I was saying the a3 3.2 is a great car where u based ?
 

S3 AEX

Registered User
I find the 3.2 very boring as if your waiting for something to come an grab you an say here I am. Then there's the road tax, fuel!! But people should choose what they want not what any one thinks..
 

S3 Johnny

The grass isn't always greener
Thanks again guys, love hearing what people think about these cars, and thank you S3 AEX I wanted to hear what people say good or bad.
I'm south Somerset near Chard, you?
 

Jason-3.2

Registered User
Had a play with many cars including 2 s3s, nothing in it standard for standard apart from me being 5k better off.
If you go for an early 3.2 tax is 280 per year.

If you were local I'd say come have a drive.
I've had an escort cosworth(300 bhp) focus st 225(300bhp) loads of old school fords and 2 s3 8ls and for an all round everyday day car this is by far the best.
 

S3 Johnny

The grass isn't always greener
Thanks Jason,
I'll only be looking for a facelift one up to an 06 cause the price goes up from 56 onwards.
Think I'll be testing a few till I find the right one 👍
 

ordi

Registered User
I've had my 55reg 3.2 Sportback for nearly 9 months now, and love it. Before this, I had a Golf V6 4motion, and before that a Golf VR6. I was originally looking for a Mk5 Golf R32, but could not find a good one, then stumbled across cheaper Sportbacks.
I needed the versatility of five doors and a decent boot, the 4wd is a bonus when it snows, and I prefer its understated looks. Being a 55reg, the tax is £280 like Jason-3.2 says. The DSG box is great. Quick and super smooth shifts. It can be found slightly wanting in a few situations, but the flappy paddles get round that.
The only day to day thing that is slightly irritating is the RNSE default volume that is a bit loud on startup that you can't change. So for me, it's always start the car, turn the volume down, then set off. Maybe I'm getting old <sigh>
The front seats are a bit unsupportive, a bit flat and don't really hug round the sides (compared to the Recaros I had in the Golf). Oh and the annoying beeps it makes when the seatbelts are not used and it senses a weight on the passenger and back seats. Bit annoying if you've got a rucksack with a laptop and files in it, a sportsbag full of kit, or go down to the tip and dump stuff on the seats instead of folding them down. Have to remember to click the seatbelts in, and then dump the stuff on the seats otherwise it just beeps and beeps.
But these are minor irritations. It's a great car. It might not handle like a proper hat hatch, but when you've got the folks and kids in the car and a boot full of shopping, that doesn't really matter.
 

discostu49

Registered User
I find the 3.2 very boring as if your waiting for something to come an grab you an say here I am. Then there's the road tax, fuel!! But people should choose what they want not what any one thinks..

I'm shocked you find them very boring
 
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discostu49

Registered User
I'm shocked you find them boring I can cruise along in 6th about 2.5 revs and floor it the dsg drops to 3rd and the car pulls and pulls very well then there is the sound , yes the s3 has a few more ponies but the figures in terms if speed and performance are not night and day. I've had s3 and rs3 and ttrs owners drive my cars and al comments have been they were surprised how good a car it actually was, and the s3 owner stated it sounded way better than his s3 so to say you find them boring I'm genuinely shocked, you must of drove a shed, ive owned many a turbo car and vtec and n/a and faster cars than my 3.2 and I've never ever once thought in the 3.2 when is the speed going to happen to be honest not had time as I'm already over the speed limit, however I have experienced turbo lag in the s3 just saying .if your near Perth anytime drop me a pm I would like you to have another chance to drive one and maybe change your view, the only down to the 3.2 when I raced a s3 was top end speed the s3 pulled away at 120 I kind of settled at 125 for longer than I wanted to but then it gets its second wind and it pulled easy to 150 by that time the s3 gained an fair bit distance .....
 

Mike X

Registered User
I have had my A3 , 3 door , 3.2 sport for a couple of years now and love it , it's on a 55 plate so comes under the expensive tax bracket , it has 52k under its wheels and has never missed a beat ( touch wood )
Ok , it can be thirsty round town but on longer trips , as mentioned , it returns about 35mpg .
I just love the old style grunt , I hate revving the nuts off things , and the sound is addictive , even on standard pipes .
I looked into having a re-map etc but for the gains it doesn't really seem worth it , to be honest I am happy with the way she is .
I am just starting to add a few styling bits n bobs , just for the hell of it .
The sales man described her as a Q car when I bought her , I think he was spot on .
 

kanecullen89

Registered User
I think they're a lovely engine. If you're happy with staying with the standard power, go for a 3.2 because they can't be easily tuned (cheaply).
If you're the type that gets bored of the standard power of a car (let's be fair, they're not like a GTR, they don't have huge power) then get an S3 or turbo charged car that can be tuned fairly easily and cheaply :)
 

Jason-3.2

Registered User
I've had my 55reg 3.2 Sportback for nearly 9 months now, and love it. Before this, I had a Golf V6 4motion, and before that a Golf VR6. I was originally looking for a Mk5 Golf R32, but could not find a good one, then stumbled across cheaper Sportbacks.
I needed the versatility of five doors and a decent boot, the 4wd is a bonus when it snows, and I prefer its understated looks. Being a 55reg, the tax is £280 like Jason-3.2 says. The DSG box is great. Quick and super smooth shifts. It can be found slightly wanting in a few situations, but the flappy paddles get round that.
The only day to day thing that is slightly irritating is the RNSE default volume that is a bit loud on startup that you can't change. So for me, it's always start the car, turn the volume down, then set off. Maybe I'm getting old <sigh>
The front seats are a bit unsupportive, a bit flat and don't really hug round the sides (compared to the Recaros I had in the Golf). Oh and the annoying beeps it makes when the seatbelts are not used and it senses a weight on the passenger and back seats. Bit annoying if you've got a rucksack with a laptop and files in it, a sportsbag full of kit, or go down to the tip and dump stuff on the seats instead of folding them down. Have to remember to click the seatbelts in, and then dump the stuff on the seats otherwise it just beeps and beeps.
But these are minor irritations. It's a great car. It might not handle like a proper hat hatch, but when you've got the folks and kids in the car and a boot full of shopping, that doesn't really matter.

I don't have this issue with volume on the rinse or the beeps on the seat belts. I remember on my st having the beeps and deactivated it by holding down the release button for a certain time or something along those lines. Maybe something like that has been done on mine, might be worth researching.
 

S3 Johnny

The grass isn't always greener
Its great to hear so many good things about a car,
And I've never thought about the DSG till now which sounds good.
What mods you thinking about Jason?

Keep them coming if you can :)
 

-Ju-

Well-Known Member
VCDS Map User
You can code the seat beeps out with VCDS.
A3 3.2's are great cars. I had 2, both with dsg and almost went for another before getting my current S3.
You will struggle to get mid 20's average depending on the type of driving but the flexibility in the engine and the instant throttle response makes it a very addictive car to use, especially with the engine/exhaust note you get as standard.
Make sure you if you get one its no later than very early 06 and that it doesn't have chain rattle.
They can be temperamental cars and do suffer from issues namely,

Timing chains and vvt's
Hesitation at 2k (software fix available)
Random cutting out at tickover, although rare
Mechatronic unit on dsg gearbox

These issues are not common but do crop up and are a result of it being a complicated car.
Buy wisely, get a warranty and enjoy what is a great car and unlikely to be seen again!
 

discostu49

Registered User
6yga6ysu.jpg
can be understated and oem people will still be looking past you looking to see what's making that lovely v6 growl
 

S3 Johnny

The grass isn't always greener
Well it looks like this is the car for me :)
Probably go for the 3 door and with the DSG, just need to get the funds together and pick the right colour and wait for the right one to come along.

Thanks for all the input keep them coming if you like
Johnny
 

Jason-3.2

Registered User
I tried a custom exhaust which certainly made it feel tons better, it was free flowing ( straight through boxes) sounded amazing buy for a 70mile commute it got on my nerves, old age I think! Then I fitted a milltek which felt in between standard and custom but the car didn't perform any better and eventually I put the standard back on, god I'm getting old"!!!

Panel filter did nothing, but the remap did. A lot of people say don't bother and normally I'd agree, on n/a cars its just not worth it but wak on the TT forum(very highly spoke of on there) promised good gains with a VVT tweaked map. He didn't disappoint. A guy posted that at about 120 the s3 pulls ahead , I have no such issues, it pulls all the way to , well this is a public forum and I'll say no more.
There's a certain 07 plate grey s3 on the a404 that would have a good word or three about how it now performs and as said" driving like a granny 35mpg is possible.
 

205 boy

Registered User
Owned my 04 A3 3.2 since 2005........Great Q car as mine has no A3 or 3.2 badge on it either.I still enjoy it after all these years.Main issue down the years is the intermittent ESP yellow light on dashboard and the car won't idle and cuts out when you come to a stop.But a quick motorway or a fast road run eliminates that problem for me.Other than that replaced the radiator a few years back,and also front brake discs......Great car and it's nickname in our household is the Beast :)

Love this review of it from some years back.

Audi A3 3.2 quattro - review and opinion - Public School Hooligan
 
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Jason-3.2

Registered User
You can code the seat beeps out with VCDS.
A3 3.2's are great cars. I had 2, both with dsg and almost went for another before getting my current S3.
You will struggle to get mid 20's average depending on the type of driving but the flexibility in the engine and the instant throttle response makes it a very addictive car to use, especially with the engine/exhaust note you get as standard.
Make sure you if you get one its no later than very early 06 and that it doesn't have chain rattle.
They can be temperamental cars and do suffer from issues namely,

Timing chains and vvt's
Hesitation at 2k (software fix available)
Random cutting out at tickover, although rare
Mechatronic unit on dsg gearbox

These issues are not common but do crop up and are a result of it being a complicated car.
Buy wisely, get a warranty and enjoy what is a great car and unlikely to be seen again!

This post reminded me!

I had the cutting out issue which I believe I resolved by cleaning all the engine bay earths. Fingers crossed it hasn't happened for over a year and it used to happen monthly. Oh and mines an 04.
 

-Ju-

Well-Known Member
VCDS Map User
This post reminded me!

I had the cutting out issue which I believe I resolved by cleaning all the engine bay earths. Fingers crossed it hasn't happened for over a year and it used to happen monthly. Oh and mines an 04.
That's what caused the issue on my first 3.2
 

Jason-3.2

Registered User
Owned my 04 A3 3.2 since 2005........Great Q car as mine has no A3 or 3.2 badge on it either.I still enjoy it after all these years.Main issue down the years is the intermittent ESP yellow light on dashboard and the car won't idle and cuts out when you come to a stop.But a quick motorway or a fast road run eliminates that problem for me.Other than that replaced the radiator a few years back,and also front brake discs......Great car and it's nickname in our household is the Beast :)

Love this review of it from some years back.

Audi A3 3.2 quattro - review and opinion - Public School Hooligan

Try cleaning the engine bay earths, yours was the same as nine, hasn't done it in over a year.
 

S3 Johnny

The grass isn't always greener
205 boy:2188729 said:
Owned my 04 A3 3.2 since 2005........Great Q car as mine has no A3 or 3.2 badge on it either.I still enjoy it after all these years.Main issue down the years is the intermittent ESP yellow light on dashboard and the car won't idle and cuts out when you come to a stop.But a quick motorway or a fast road run eliminates that problem for me.Other than that replaced the radiator a few years back,and also front brake discs......Great car and it's nickname in our household is the Beast :)

Love this review of it from some years back.

Audi A3 3.2 quattro - review and opinion - Public School Hooligan


That was a great read thanks
 

tcardio

Registered User
3.2 engine is bullet proof
2.0 engine is just a carbon collector
I've had both and to be honest, I'm tired of playing the HP game. I just like the corners now and racing on the streets is for morons
 

discostu49

Registered User
Sometimes the biggest downfall of the 3.2 is s3 owners 😉😉😉😉😉
 

S3 Johnny

The grass isn't always greener
So, how much would I be looking for a nice 2005/2006 (05/55/06) with good miles and good history? 3 door with DSG.
Prices are all over the place on auto trader
 

Jason-3.2

Registered User
Prices are all over the place! I brought my sline with full service history and loads of factory extras 2 years ago from a dealer for 6995, I thought I'd see what we buy any car would offer and.............2695! Cheeky buggers.
It had 60,000 on it 2 years ago and has just turned 100000.
Still drives like it did back then.

I'd say budget for 6k .
 

Taroni

Registered User
My 3.2 is one of my favourite cars I have ever had and I've had a lot skyline,2 impreza's ,saff cosworth ,m3 list goes on .
Its never going to compete with a s3 that's on a stage1 map and if you want some that you will see 300+ bhp easy its the wrong car for you . If you want a quick stock car with nice power and a lovely sound then go for a 3.2 it will easy pull right up to 150mph if you really wanted .
I looked at a s3 before I got my 3.2 and tbh I could not be bothered to have another turbo car (must be getting old ) I just loved the way the 3.2 felt and sound

At the end of the day you will be the one living with it and using it day to day take a few out and see what you think
 

Sarah's A3

MODERATOR V6 S3 Hybrid
Moderator
Love my 3.2. So much we brought it out here to Oz. Mines had a few things done to it. As yours will be the second car fuel shouldn't be a problem. The fun in driving it makes up for it. Mine had the hesitation which got sorted but as others have said check the chains.
Take a few out for a test drive. You will soon decide then. Happy hunting
 

Sevv

Pushing the limits..
if you want to mod the car i wouldn't go for a 3.2 V6 as with the other drawback members have spoken off; namely if you did want to chase more power say 400+ it would be very expensive.. not sure what you could do to the 3.2 other then a cat back CAI and a remap but thats about it anything after that becomes expensive.. and BEWARE that mechatronics unit its £1,900... so not cheap at all to replace... for me DSG is bad on the audi and it isn't reliable maybe the later ones will be but the current ones are a different story; and when they go wrong they go wrong bad.. into a bottomless pit of spending. hence why a 2.0 TFSI quattro 6sp manual is what i went for though i am having a gtx3076r build... get a sportback S3 or the latter an a3 2.0tfsi they are quite different aesthetically than an 8L so you wont be bored besides a K04 will give you boost from 1800 rpm peaking at 2.5k rpm which isn't much lag remember...

putting a supercharger or a turbo onto that car will cost you at least 15k compared with an S3 you could be a gtx2867r on standard rods getting mid to high 400's.. you have to weight it up and yes the 3.2 sounds lovely but DSG and NA isnt my personal cup of tea
 

Jason-3.2

Registered User
if you want to mod the car i wouldn't go for a 3.2 V6 as with the other drawback members have spoken off; namely if you did want to chase more power say 400+ it would be very expensive.. not sure what you could do to the 3.2 other then a cat back CAI and a remap but thats about it anything after that becomes expensive.. and BEWARE that mechatronics unit its £1,900... so not cheap at all to replace... for me DSG is bad on the audi and it isn't reliable maybe the later ones will be but the current ones are a different story; and when they go wrong they go wrong bad.. into a bottomless pit of spending. hence why a 2.0 TFSI quattro 6sp manual is what i went for though i am having a gtx3076r build... get a sportback S3 or the latter an a3 2.0tfsi they are quite different aesthetically than an 8L so you wont be bored besides a K04 will give you boost from 1800 rpm peaking at 2.5k rpm which isn't much lag remember...

putting a supercharger or a turbo onto that car will cost you at least 15k compared with an S3 you could be a gtx2867r on standard rods getting mid to high 400's.. you have to weight it up and yes the 3.2 sounds lovely but DSG and NA isnt my personal cup of tea


Once again someone has heard of a few megatronic units that have gone wrong out of 10s of thousands of cars with dsg and got put off! You can not change gear faster in a manual than the dsg.
You can pick up a good 3.2 for 5k, drive to TRD for a charger conversion and for 8k drive away with a Charged 3.2 with 350bhp 13k in total . Same price as a good s3, how much is it to get the s3 to 350bhp? So as for modding that's no real argument if you want big power out of any of the cars mentioned. They will all need a new exhaust system,manifolds,turbo, plumbing,clutch etc....
 

Ron burgundy

Registered User
Resale will be a lot better on the s3 though, wouldn't bother spending all that on the 3.2..

There a nice car out the factory , they're a cruiser, and just really nice to drive especially on long journeys , just buy one as said for 5 grand and enjoy it..
 

Sevv

Pushing the limits..
Once again someone has heard of a few megatronic units that have gone wrong out of 10s of thousands of cars with dsg and got put off! You can not change gear faster in a manual than the dsg.
You can pick up a good 3.2 for 5k, drive to TRD for a charger conversion and for 8k drive away with a Charged 3.2 with 350bhp 13k in total . Same price as a good s3, how much is it to get the s3 to 350bhp? So as for modding that's no real argument if you want big power out of any of the cars mentioned. They will all need a new exhaust system,manifolds,turbo, plumbing,clutch etc....


thank you for PROVING my argument... 8K for 350hp.. why not 4K 380HP ;) bud; not heard but seen...the workshop building the audi has DSG's always coming in.. im NOT saying DSG is slow ; but unreliable and one has to factor that in you aren't buying it new another friend bought a Mk7 GTI and 3,000kms later the DSG **** itself so no thank you ill stand clear manual is safer option even if it is SLOWER by 3 1/4's of a second big **** deal.. wait a few year maybe then mercedes put Audi in their back pocket as for the moment with their 8speed boxes.. only one i would trust BMWs' boxes are also ****
 
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