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Audi S4 and S4 Cabriolet



  • Unlike you I know of bit about cars.
    Perhaps I can help in your decision process:

    In my opinion, I would not mortgage the future to get the car now. I have a good job which supports my family and myself (no kids, wife in school). I can afford the S4 with a little to spare and still have money for savings and trips. Remember it is only a car. Get it only if it will NOT be a financial burder on yourself or your family. A car is nothing to be selfish about. It is a very expensive item.

    If I could not afford it, I would have gotten the Grand Prix (which I had before the Audi). It has great power, a practical part (4 doors with a good truck), and it is only 3 years into this body style. In the 20-25K price range it has no peer.

    One year earlier with my good fortune, I would be driving a M3.

    In my opinion, the S4 is the best car, by far, in the 35-40K range of small sport sedans. It gives outstanding performance (maybe not as good as the M3, perhaps a bit better), practicality (4-door which the new M3 will not have for at least 3 years, large truck with fold down rear seats), luxury (far more options and features then the M3, with an easier ride then the M3), and adaptability (with a $600 chip you can get up to 310hp).

    I use the M3 since it was the benchmark for the sport sedans in this price range. The new M3 will be over 50k, with a minimal increase in performance from the old M3, out of my price range.

    Good luck with whatever car you decide to get!
  • Thanks to both "einster" and "soxylu for the input. I guess it all boils down to a fundamental lifestyle question.

    I've always admired people who sacrafice personal comfort/material wants for family finanial strength.

    It's not that the car isn't affordable (virtually everything is affordable in today's world), it's that the S4 would deliver purely personal benefits.

    I guess I've heard too many stories about our ancestors treks to school (up hill both ways)and am oriented to financial management for family hapiness versus individual pleasure.

    Oh well. I'll keep an envious eye on this board and hope a Santorim Blue (with onyx leather and all the fixings minus nav.)falls into my lap.

    Thanks and have fun!
  • Inlove,
    If you are still interested in the S4, check out:

    It has a message board for all the Audi autos and you can ask as many question as you need. Also, dealers frequently post cars they have available on the site. You will likely have to pay close to MSRP (I got mine for 1500 off MSRP, but got very lucky).
  • Just dropped by the dealer on Sat. Test drove the S4 for the second time. Now I've gotta have it. Dealer says wait time is 6 months.

    Willing to travel if it's not more than a few states away.

    Looking for:
    Every option but NAV.

    Anyone aware of one that exists? I live in Chicago.

  • Go to, and then to the S4 forum. They should be able to help you either locate it, or steer you in the right direction.

    Good luck. I have an A4 and love it!
  • Has anyone implemented the navigation system in the s4? I am wondering if it is worth the extra money. I know what it looks like...please provide all types of information....does it talk to you...what can you do with it..etc.
  • The new M3 is going to bump power from 240 to 340. If that's minimal, you need to drive a space shuttle to work.
  • What I was referring to is the fact that the 0-60 will go from 5.5 to 5.0. The problem is the lower torque then expected. That is about 270 or so. Yes, it is going to be an outstanding auto but my S4 is a better value for the money.
  • Remember, the same car that now has 343 used to have 320 in Europe. BMW reduced the performance in the US to save money. They saved money by having simpler valving (and induction I think).

    Thus an M3 cost something like a $8K premium over a 328i in the US, while it was far more in Europe.

    I would guess BMW either has to cut down the engine again on the new M3 or raise the price somewhat when it comes to the US. If I were BMW, I would cut the power. The M3 was an enormous seller in the US, I think largely because people could afford it. If they raise the price, it will be more prestiguous, but they'd actually make less money due to far lower sales.

    Also, as mentioned, the torque figures are low on the new M3. Thus you can assume it is an RPM engine (my calculations put the redline at 7K or higher). BMW's mention of a "dynamic redline" that raises as the engine oil warms up also points to this.

    If this is the case, then the M3 will be fast like the Honda S2000 is fast. That is, it will be fast when hammered all the way, and must less so under normal driving. Great for racing, less spectacular for the street.

    Given that the S4 starts blowing out 258ft-lbs of torque at 1850RPM (and has AWD), it may actually feel faster even if it isn't.
  • For the driving I do, I don't rev the engine all the way. I usually shift at 3500-4000 rpm. Having driven a S2000, I can safely say having an engine going at 7500 rpm takes some getting used to. Not something I would do on a daily commute in the city.

    The new BMW is going to be an outstanding auto, with most estimates showing a base price of 45k with options up to about 52k.

    It should have 343 hp (slightly less for America), with 269 ft-lbs torque at 4900 rpm (kind of high to get peak torque) with a redline of 8000. It should weigh in at ~3200 lbs.

    But back to my intial statement, the new M3 will shave only about .5 sec off the 0-60, due to the minimal increase in torque of 236 to 269.

    That is why a Mercedes E55 with 51 less HP and an automatic transmission can keep up with a 400 hp M5 with a manual. The E55 has 391 torque while the M5 has 369. True the Mercedes is lighter (~250 lbs) but it has an automatic vs a manual for the M5.

    A S4 with a decent chip will give ~310hp and ~360 ft-lbs of torque at 1850 rpm. It will be interesting to see which car is faster then. Some people have chipped their S4 already and are quoting 0-60 times of 5.0-5.2. For only 40k + $595 for the chip.
  • drewrdrewr Posts: 7
    You are in-love....With yourself!
  • genes555genes555 Posts: 10
    has anyone gotten any S4's at a discount?
    I would appreciate any info on prices and options.
  • bobsc400bobsc400 Posts: 9
    Discounts on S4's are extremely difficult to come by.

    Every dealer in Chicago was MSRP or above. On top of that I couldn't find the exact color and interior I wanted. Same thing in MI and IN.

    So last week I started looking in states much further away (When spending this much $ I refuse to buy anything but exactly what I want! I went to the Audi website and started blind calling dealers all over the nation. Found exactly the car I wanted...Silver with Onyx/Silver Alcantara and all the goodies except NAV and phone...$1,450 below MSRP. It does have 80 miles on it but they promise me it's perfect.

    I'm buying the car site-unseen and having it shipped here. A leap of faith I know. Can't wait till it gets here on Saturday of next week.

    Good luck on finding a discount. If you look for dealerships in smaller cities you just might luck out like I did.
  • roys2roys2 Posts: 5
    See posts #112 re an Alabama dealer who was offering 5% below MSRP and #144 who felt he had gotten a loaded S4 for about $2K below MSRP. I test drove an S4 at Leith in Cary,NC and would have placed a deposit on ordering one, but they wanted MSRP. When I said no sale, they asked if a discount of $500-600 would make a difference. I walked away. They can do better, but it may take the next M3 to soften them up. I saw in Roundel that there may be an AWD variant of the next M3 (but maybe only in Europe?). Good hunting.
  • bobsc400bobsc400 Posts: 9
    I found the S4 I wanted in Pennsylvania. I live in Chicago. It's being picked up by an auto deliverer on Thurs. My concern is that it has 80 miles already on it and that it may have been abused.

    Is there anything I should have the deliverer look for when picking it up? I remember my first test drive in the S4. I drove it hard. If the same thing was done for a 80 miles in this one I'm worried. They tell me thats not the case but 80 miles?
  • eussmdeussmd Posts: 2
    I stopped by my local Audi dealer (Commonwealth Audi in Southern California) to check out a Nogaro Blue S4 they had. The car was already pre-sold but I wanted to see the color since I am considering the same. The interior had the silver leather. Not my first choice but other than that the car looked great. After some gazing at the exterior, (because it was pre-sold I was not able to get in) I asked the salesman this question. "If I order an S4 how long will it take to get it?" His response was this. "8 months!" I said, "Are you kidding?" He said, "No." So, is this guy pullin' my chain or what? Also, I would like to know if anyone has seen a Nogaro blue S4 with the blue Alcantara inserts.

    BTW, the Nogaro blue S4 looked like it was doing 100mph standing still. What a terrific looking car. I hope my order can be placed soon however, 8 months is not acceptable especially when there is a BMW dealership that has a fully loaded 328i with my name on it less than 200 yards away from Audi's.
  • s4givens4given Posts: 11
    Don't fool yourself. A 328i isn't nearly the car the S4 is. I went through a similar search. I looked at heavily at BMW's '00 328i and '99 M3.

    The 328 is nice looking but way underpowered compared to the S4 and BMW M3. The M3 has plenty of power and a much stiffer suspension than it's 328 sister, on par with the S4.

    To me, the Audi was better than the M3. More power plus Quattro sealed the deal on my end. 0-60 in the S4 is incredible. You wouldn't think an AWD car would be this quick but it really is. The twin turbos accelerate the car faster than a stock Porsche 911. Unbelievable torque band! This car is truly amazing.

    However, since you are from SoCal, status might be more important to you. I don't mean that as a slam. 2 people I know from CA, 1 from SoCal and 1 from NoCal, chose the M3 over the S4. One because of the same reason you claim above, availability, and the other simply because "it's an Audi - BMW's are better cars". Then again he only chose the BMW because Mercedes wouldn't finance him on what he really wanted!

    For whatever reason here in the US the BMW's are held in higher regard from a status standpoint than Audi's. Certainly not true throughout most of Europe. It's probably due to that whole bogus "sudden acceleration syndrome" even though it was disproved by experts time and time again.

    As far as availability they are rare everywhere, but even more rare in CA. If you don't mind travelling a bit and driving the car back (I highly suggest this - it's fun) you should have no problem finding one. Go to and do a search on dealers within 500 or 600 miles from you. I did just that and found exactly the S4 I was looking for.

    Good luck on your quest. You can't go wrong with either the S4 or the 328i, but they are apples and oranges.
  • eussmdeussmd Posts: 2
    s4given - Thanks for your comparison response between the S4 and 328i. I don't have to be sold on the S4, I already am. Believe me I think this car is the finest sports sedan in this price range that I've ever seen. The combination of power, luxury, and refinement is hard to beat. The M3 is a fine car as well but from posts I've seen in the BMW newsgroups the 2001 will be very difficult to get your hands on and it's priced itself into a totally different category.
    I'm just really dissapointed in the time it will take to get an S4. My wife likes the 328i but I keep holding my ground.
    Thanks for your pointers on tracking one down.
  • s4givens4given Posts: 11
    No problem. Good luck finding the car of your (or your wife's) dreams.

    I now this is off topic, but you SHOULD have fun in the buying process. Test driving many cars, looking at all the options, comparing and contrasting benefits and price! Don't let any high-pressure salespeople kill the experience.

    I suggest doing what I did when looking to test drive - call the manager and let him know you want to drive a xxxx and not have any sales pressure. 80% of the time they have no problem with that and it's a breeze. Avoid the dealerships that don't like the idea.
  • gba1gba1 Posts: 1
    Thanks to everyone for all of the useful information. I've rationalized the sea of data and realized that it really did make sense. I took the plunge today and bought a S4 - Brilliant Black, Onyx Leather with Silver Alcantara, all options. Beautiful car.

    Availability in MA seems to be marginally better than other places (except for the two blue colors). This one had just arrived the day before from port.

    Despite the salesmen protests "we don't discount S4s" I did manage to get $1500 off MSRP. I searched all of the dealers in the area for color combinations and had 4 dealers all willing to discount more than a $1000. Helps to pay for the insurance.

    But as spring arrives, the 'need for speed' will likely dry up the discounting. The factory is apparently flipping over to 2001 production for all new orders, which may have an additional price impact.

    Go and get one if you can. See you over on with the other S4 owners.
  • s4givens4given Posts: 11
    Congrats on the new S4. I've had mine a week and a half now. It only gets better.
  • donato26donato26 Posts: 1
    I've heard of the chip for the S4 raising horsepower to about 310. I was wondering if anyone knew where I could get a hold of this chip, if anyone knows of any web site that sells it. Please let me know.
  • bill42bill42 Posts: 29
    eussmd asked:
    >Also, I would like to know if anyone has seen
    >a Nogaro blue S4 with the blue Alcantara inserts.

    As of about 10 days ago there was one in the showroom at International Autos in Milwaukee, WI. As of that time it was unsold.
  • s4givens4given Posts: 11
    You need to go to the AudiWorld Website. Go to Forums, click on the S4 forum. There are a few options for chips:

    Garrett and APR seem to be considered the best on the AudiWorld S4 forum, but they all have had great reviews. There is a Links section also. You can follow the links to their websites.
  • mahall75mahall75 Posts: 3
    The Giac chip is pretty impressive, and so is the Wett. The cool thing about the wett is that its can be replaced with the stock without solder. The only question I have is are any of these chips going to hurt the engine? For reliability, and longevity? Respond if you know.
  • mgreene1mgreene1 Posts: 116

    Chips raise the turbo boost to obtain more power, and they all produce a lot more power than stock.

    The real meaningful differences in power will be produced by more boost (GIAC used 1.1 bar versus 1.0 bar with most other aftermarket chips).

    Different brands vary in smoothness, when extra boost kicks in, quality of development, reliability, and customer support.

    Horsepower gains can be 50 bhp or more and torque can increase by 100 ft lbs or more.


    If there is an existing problem or "weak link" then the chip can make it worse or bring it to light sooner.

    You may find yourself paying for that problem instead of your warranty.

    Simply put, these chips can void warranty claims if that's what your dealer or Audi decide to do. You're at the mercy of their customer goodwill.

    To avoid detection, some people swap chips back to stock before going to the dealer for service, but I'd rather not do this.

    If Audi denies warranty, you can sue and "force" them to "prove" the chip "caused" the problem.

    Of course, you will incur time and legal costs.

    Audi shows the court all those impressive graphs from the chip maker and makes a simple argument:

    "The car was powered beyond normal tolerances."

    If your door handle fell off, you probably win. If your transmission failed, you probably lose.

    If your a real masochist, here's a helpful link explaining your "rights" and all the things you can try to "protect" them:

    Despite knowing all the above I purchased a chip.

    Unfortunately, problems were posted in Audiworld regarding throttle boot failures, exhaust noise, and drivetrain rubbing.

    These problems were not limited to just one brand of chip versus another.

    I returned the chip without ever installing and was given a prompt refund.

    Maybe I'll reconsider after the warranty expires and would probably go with MTM, distributed in the U.S. by Hoppen Motorsports.

    Hoppen has extremely strong ties to Audi and MTM is run by a former Audi engine designer.

    Some consider MTM to be back door factory stuff.
  • I've had my S4 for about 3 months and have noticed a few quirks w/performance.

    First, has anyone felt a "dip" in power around 3000 RPM's when accelerating?

    Second, at times it seems like the car's turbos do not want to kick in. Sometimes I'll get on it in second with little to no reaction from the engine. Other times it takes off. Anyone experiencing similar difficulties?

    I'd appreciate any feedback to determine whether I should bring it in to the shop.
  • In response to post 189: I've had mine for about 5 months and the turbo lag, according to reports I've read is relatively normal. You might want to ask the folks at the dealer for a better piece of mind. I haven't experienced the "dip" you were refering to around 3000.
  • My American Spec has 250hp. The German models have 265hp. Where does the extra 15hp come from? Someone told me it's the higher octane in the German fuel. No, I didn't go for that!
  • I just purchased an S4 with 6-speed on Tuesday.
    It was a demo with 1,500 miles.
    Wednesday I noticed a noise that I thought might be the left front CV joint. The dealer diagnosed it as a bad transmission and plans to replace it.
    I am obviously shocked.

    Has anyone else had transmission problems or noise?
This discussion has been closed.