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new A4 2.8q 30V owner's report

Well, I finally broke down and bought a 98 A4 2.8 quattro. This
represents a substantial upgrade for me (previous car: 1988 Honda CRX
Si, stock.)

After my previous post (and some interesting discussion) about the sport
package, it turns out that the availability of same in this area is
spotty. So I ended up getting a car fairly loaded, but without the sport
package. Now I have to go back through the list archives and pay closer
attention to discussion of aftermarket wheels/tires and stiffer springs.

My initial impressions in the first 100 or so miles of driving: Lots of
torque, even with babying the throttle during break-in. The engine likes
to rev; keeping it under 4000 RPM on acceleration is an exercise in
restraint. Over the weekend it's been hard to put the finger on the
difference between this engine and the 12V I've had a few hours driving
time in, probably due to my lack of experience with the 12V. The engine
note at idle is different than I expected, more mechanical sounding -
almost reminiscent of the valvey sound of an inline-4 600cc or 750cc
motorcycle. The clutch and tranny are better than I remembered.
Cornering is nimble, but not as nimble as I'd like; I get boaty feelings
in hard cornering at around 30mph. (Note this is with the normal wheels
and Conti tires.) Road feel and bump absorption at 60-70mph is excellent
with the stock suspension.

I was waffling about whether to get the ttrip computer, and the sunroof
package. I ended up getting them both, again due to stock/availability.
The trip computer seems only vaguely useful for daily driving ("Look
honey, I'm making 70mpg on this downhill!"), but it should come in very
handy on road trips. The sunroof package is great: I am already in love
with the keyless entry. Owners of cars without keyless entry, consider
going aftermarket and getting it! Too bad Audi doesn't offer them

One nit I'd like to pick with the interior: There's no good place to put
a radar detector! The traditional placement for my cordless is above the
central rear-view mirror. But this gap in the A4 is very small - a
little too small to have the detector level. Anywhere else seems to
obstruct either the driver's view or the operation of the sun visors.
Any tips on where to put this? I feel a little naked without it.

  '98 A4q