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I drove A4 1.8 Turbo Quattro 5 SPEED, "Son of S6"!!!!!

Yesterday, Dec 12, I drove one of Audi's 5 speed 1.8T press cars...
I won't reveal the dealer...but here are my impressions:

	Let me preface this driving experience with a little of my  
	Audi ownership background.  I have owned 13 Audis in the last
	10 years, many of them quattros, most memorable were 2 V8 
	quattros, and most recently an S4 followed by an S6.  The S6 
	was the greatest car I had ever owned.  This last fall I broke
	down and sprung for a 1996 A6 Quattro Wagon for my growing 		
        family(2 little ones, and one in the oven).  With this purchase
	I was no longer willing to pay the price for TWO cars of this 
	financial magnitude.  My mistake was not buying an S6 AVAMT in
	the first place...oh well...history now...

	Over the last 18 months I have been closely monitoring the 
	acceptance of the A4 to Europe and then America.  Everything has
	been positive...overwhelmingly positive.  The most noteworthy 
	editorial piece was done by CAR magazine, a british publication		
        in the March 1995 issue.  In that issue the A4 2.8 and the 
	A4 1.8T were tested vs. the BMW 328 vs two Range Rovers...the 
	results...the A41.8T beats 328! I was impressed.  They raved 
	about this 5 valve turbo 4 and the balance of the car(I still 
	have this issue if anyone wants a fax of it)...

	I bought the wagon and sold the S6 with a plan.  I leased a 2.8
	A4 and ordered the 1.8T 5 speed, which we all know won't be here
	until Jan-Mar time frame.  

	I have been disappointed with the 2.8...of course this is all in
	comparo with an S6 ownership experience...but driveline shudder, 
	weak power at the low end, and front seats with no upper back 
	support had really discouraged me.  So much that, I had resigned
	myself to finding another S4 or S6...

	Then, yesterday, as I was leaving the dealership I spotted a 
	yellow A4 behind the maintenance building.  Could this be the 
	Audi press car with the 5 speed that I read in a recent thread 
	here on the list?

	Yes indeed!!! I scampererd into the dealership and begged for 
	the keys...30 minutes of hard driving later, here is what I 

	All you guys out there with A4 2.8's can stop reading now...

	because if you are stuck in your 2.8 for the next 36 or 60 months
	you are going to live a remorseful existence.  At least don't drive
	it and depress yourself!

	The 1.8 was fantastic...first thing I did after starting the motor
	was to roll down the windows and listen to the engine note.  It was
	extremely smooth I thought.  This was my first drive ever in a 4 cylinder
	car.  There was a wooshh sound similar to my S6.  As I drove off, I 
	immediately noticed the low end torque.  It was amazing for 150 bhp.
	The car lept off in 1st gear.  1st gear will be the best in this car.
	In fact it will smoke the 2.8 in the first 50 feet.  The throttle was
	very responsive.  I loved the sounds that the engine made.  Then as I 
	was driving out of the parking lot and onto the street, upshifting 
	and moving through the gears...it hit me...the greatest strength of
	this car was the handling!!!  It's a lighter car, and most notable,
	lighter in the front end.  The car was so balanced I couldn't believe
	it.  There is no way any sedan can match the handling feel and prowess
	of this car.  It makes the 2.8 feel like a dog if you can believe that?
	The car has an edge...it's difficult to describe...this car has that "all
	the little parts equal harmonious synergy" feel.  There is no hood insulation
	on this car.  When I heard this before, I moaned...don't, because with the
	windows up you can hear just enough of the engine all the time to be happy
	with tactile sensations...it's sort of like the difference between the S4
	and the S6...the S4 has an edge about it...the S6 is more "Lexus like".
	2nd, 3rd, 4th gears at high revs are fantastic.  The torque is max at idle
	rpm and flat and strong to the red line.  This car is a bite size version
	of the S6!!!  The engine characteristics seem so similar...Audi has gone
	out and made an inexpensive S6 for the masses!!!  There is just no compar
	ison to the 2.8.  Two different animals all together.  This car is the "son
	of S6".

	The sport seats are a huge improvement over the standard 2.8 seats...I have
	solved my aching back problem with my 2.8.  The trip computer is really cool.
	Just like on the A8.

	Our perfomance guru at the dearlership says that 200 hp is a snap for around
	$700.  260-280 hp is avail for $2-3k.  I can't even imagine how this car will
	perform with this much power.  No question the suspension NEEDS it.  Okay, on
	the downside, no wood trim and fewer amenities like power seats and an arm
	rest and chrome trim on the exterior...you'll forget this in about the first
	5 minutes of putting your foot into the floor...the car provides less crash
	protection than the A6...but that's okay it is so agile...it lacks serious
	luxury features of the S6...but the cost savings are enormous...rear seat
	room is terrible...but it's the closest I'll ever be to a Porche 911 turbo
	Carrerra...I want this car...I want this car...I want this car...Silver and
	about $5k worth of mods...now can I wait till Feburary?  That will be a task.
	Maybe I can find a calander and mark t..........

	Steve Pitts
	96 A6Q Wgn
	96 A4Q