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Re: Audi Kool-Aid, Pt. II (long)

Matt you are a brave man!!!!!!!!!!!!
As a fellow lister who regularly got flamed (less lately, with the exception
of 1 or 2 very UNDISGUISED listers), I can relate to your bravery making
this point.
I do remember Scott (of Q ship) making a similar statement a while back (yes
as far as I know, Scott is still alive).

Now comes my point:
in the hands of an average +- every day driver, a Q will perform BETTER than
a car not equipped with AWD.....(most of us fit in this category)....
in a racing condition (none stock, high power) the article agrees that the
AWD is superior due it its ability to deliver power via 4 wheels.....

Your thoughts.....

-----Original Message-----
From: Matt & Jenai <matjen@xsite.net>
To: Quattro List <quattro@coimbra.ans.net>
Date: Saturday, January 24, 1998 7:07 PM
Subject: Audi Kool-Aid, Pt. II (long)

>Well I finally picked up the February 98 issue of Performance Car which
>everyone has been raving about.  Frankly, unless you own an
>ur-quattro(20valve), the issue is a tad harsh from the Audi quattro (street
>car) perspective.
>1)There is an article charting the rise and fall of AWD in performance
>oriented sedans.  The article believes the fall was a result of
>made in the handling of front and rear drivers, tire technology and
>electronics narrowing the gap without the added expense and weight of AWD.
>2)The article comparing great AWD performance cars of the past was very
>complimentary towards the ur-quattro.  However, the article claims that
>of its attributes have turned into "glaring weaknesses with the current
>range of quattro models..."
>3)A long term test of the A4 2.8Q was not glowing.  Not negative but the
>bottom line seemed to be that the car was a little boring and expensive.
>4)Last but not least (and the reason for my subject line), they did a
>comparison between an A6q and a fwd A6.  The results were very surprising.
>Hell, in the original Kool-Aid posts I was arguing that a well designed rwd
>car with a lsd (bmw) will handle better than our quattros.  Needless to say
>I was flamed (expected ;-))  Sargent even brought out the buzzer on me!
>Lots of talk about apples to oranges and other such stuff.  Well here is
>bad news.  In every single test the two cars were almost exactly even (1 or
>2 tenths of a second apart).  On wet asphalt the q was .6 faster 0-30.  On
>ice it was 4.5 faster.  Those were the big differences.  The disturbing
>parts are the results in the dry handling, wet handling, and slalom tests.
>    The dry handling course "combines an 80mph lane change, two tight
>hairpins - one first gear, one second - and a tightening radius
>left-hander."  In the dry the q did this in 69.5 sec. while the fwd did it
>in 69.6.  The wet handling course was comprised of two tight left-handers,
>longer right-hander and three quarters of a lap of a large diameter circle
>that is at the hub of the testing ground's wet grip facility.  The WET
>times:  q 39.9, fwd 40.1.  Wet lateral G was .70 for the q and .69 for fwd.
>    The slalom results were 8.33 for the q and 8.29 for the fwd.  The two
>drivers remarked that the cars felt very different.  "The quattro felt much
>stiffer and dartier, but its tail broke away less progressively, making it
>harder to keep on the edge." The q killed a lot more cones when pushed.
>    "Verdict:  The advantage of 4wd in regular driving is clearly marginal
>in a 193hp car.  In the dry the fwd A6 was virtually the equal of the q,
>even in the wet the q's measurable advantage was very slim.
>    The q system doesn't increase the cornering grip on offer; it merely
>allows more torque to be used accelerating out of the corners, which isn't
>the same thing."
>1)  Any increase in ability to come out of the turn is offset by added
>weight hurting both braking and acceleration (if it did this poorly against
>a fwd car imagine how it would do against a rwd car when the weight has
>shifted to the rear wheels coming out of the hole);
>2)  The quattro system only reaps big benefits for dry handling in a high
>environment - BTCC, IMSA, etc.
>3)  Brakes, balance, lack of weight shift, etc. are much more important
>awd when it comes to handling in street hp set ups.
>4)  The quattros are more stable at 7 or 8/10s they are not more stable at
>the limit.  A competent driver can hang the tail out on a rwd car and hold
>it.  In my experience, a quattro does not have a gray area. The car is rock
>solid and then, if pushed really hard, it snaps.
>Nomex suit on :-)
>Matt Pfeffer - 89 tqw - stage II