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Re: potential new S4 owner

At 3:38 PM -0500 11/14/99, Patrick Sanger wrote:
>hello quattro list,
>I'm new to the list and I've never owned an audi. I have a couple (dozen)
>questions regarding the new S4 and audis in general.
>-I'm sure it is asked alot, but is the preferred pronunciation "o-di" or

Au-di, or Audi, just like it's spelled.  Regional accents of course 
influence this.  There are various jokes about how to pronounce 
it(example: one of the Sport Quattros, a coupe with extremely limited 
production and used mostly for rallying, was painted with letters on 
the front, backwards(aka ambulance-style), that spelled "IDUAH" or 

>-before I ask too many stupid questions, is there a good faq somewhere with
>info that someone new to audis in general would find helpful?

hmm, no, not really :)

>-are there any abbreviations or naming schemes I should know about?

87 5KCSTQ= 1987 5000 CS Turbo Quattro.
91 200q20v= 1991 200 Quattro 20 Valve
90 Cq20v= 1990 Coupe Quattro 20v
90 90q20v= 1990 90 series Quattro 20v
"w" is almost always used to designate an avant(wagon.)  you will not see:
87 5kcstqa
you will see:
87 5kcstqw

you'll also see "my Q" or "my q" used in a sentence.  Q=Quattro of course :)

there are various body types, the most well-known being the type 44, 
which includes the 5000 series, 89-92 100 series, and 89-1991 200 
series.  European 5000's were called 100's before they were called 
100's in the US(it was a naming change to avoid bad press about the 
unintended accel bullshit.)

>-is there any protocol for posting to the list i.e. for mail filters etc.?

nope.  Most of us just found a header in the message like "Sender:" 
and use that for filtering.

>-are there any taboos on the list?

Yes.  Do NOT mention a certain kind of limited-slip differential 
technology(begins with T.)  You will be promptly beaten into 
submission by half the list, if Dan hasn't set up the filter for this 
word already.  NEVER send attachments to the list or you will be 
transformed into a human torch faster than you can say 

>-what is the list's opinion on the new biturbo S4?

Nice looking, pretty damn fast but nothing special, great highway 
handling, and lousy brakes(many an S4 owner is bitter about this.)

>-how do the audi turbo engines take to mods?

Very nicely, for the older cars.  Newer cars aren't designed with 
quite as much extra bulk as the older cars.  The A4 1.8t engine was 
an immediate favorite for tuners, but it can't reliably run more than 
200hp(with just a chip) without needing to change turbos($1500) and 
other fun things.  The "no more than 200hp" is an almost direct quote 
from someone at Audi Sport.  Many an 1.8t owner has blew his engine 
to bits already by pushing it too hard(actually, many failures are 
turbo related; the chips just push them too hard.)

>  I come from experience with
>turbo rotaries, which, to say the least, take much thought and money to get
>reliable power from. can you just turn up the boost (ie reprog ecu) without
>ill effects?

There are a bunch of ECU mods already out for the new S4.  I think 
the first level chip jumps the hp from 250 to 310 or so.

>-what is the reliability like on late model audis?

After 1991, Audi's reliability "scores" soared through the roof.

>-is traction control really not needed w/ awd? I don't think it is offered
>on the S4.

Yes, it is offered(it's part of the quattro system now), and yes, it 
is necessary.  AWD does not equal "will not slip", especially in 
cornering.  Many a Quattro owner has slid off a curve or similar 
because he was deceived into thinking he/she had more grip than they 
did.  Whereas SUVs give you confidence, Quattros give you confidence 
-and- better straight-line traction :)  You don't get more stopping 
power, either...you DO get more GO power :)

>-are audis good track cars? ie are there any underengineered parts on the
>car, that fail when stressed under track conditions?

Yep, they're fun cars for the track.  Many an A4 owner has tracked 
his/her car with little modification for driver training events and 
such(nothing serious.)

>  my rx7 will overheat
>under prolonged track conditions, how is the S4's cooling system?

No idea.  I doubt there's enough data on that yet.  Most turbos do 
have problems with heat soak; at a track event, you'll see hoods open 
esp. on the turbos, and many a turbo owner has hard-wired a switch to 
run the after-run circuit(pump and fan.)

>  but I want to commend you all on the lack of crap and nonsense
>on the list.

Heh. Wait a week :-)

>  I'm also a member of the rx7 (rx7@world.std.com) list, and on
>some days, my mailbox will be filled up with nothing but flame. and on most
>days its filled up with off-topic crap. on that list, I'm glad for the
>language filters, because if /that/ makes it through, I can't imagine what

>-how is the aftermarket? what are prices like for typical mods (price for
>ecu reprogram? price for cat-back exhaust?)

Quite pricy.  There are 50 billion honda civics on the road and about 
1 millionth as many Audis, and even fewer audi turbos :)  That means 
that mods are more expensive, to a degree.

>-what are the first typical mods? are there recognized mod stages?

Hmm.  Depends on the car.  For 200q20v's, many people just get a chip 
and leave it at that; that jumps you up to 265 from 217 stock.  Same 
for many A4, S4 20v and S6 owners.  The older cars(5000's) generally 
need more tweeking; wastegate springs, single-pass 
intercoolers(stolen from the 200q20v :), etc.

>-how is the fuel system? does it have high reserves?
Yes.  It's generally WAY overbuilt.

>-what is the drivetrain efficiency? ie what percentage drivetrain loss?

No idea, but not much.  The mileage figures are usually identical or 
very close assuming engine+tranny are the same.

>-how do you dyno a 4wd car?

Not easily, that's for damn sure.  You usually have to anchor the car 
with straps at all 4 corners etc.  I'd love to see how MA state plans 
to dyno-emissions test my Q.

>-what are the dealers like?

Varies from "super duper" to "super shitty".

>  are they competent enough to work on the cars?

For the most part, no.  Take the car in for dealer servicing while 
under warantee, but I would go to an independent shop that 
specializes or exclusively does Audi.

>for example, it is known in the rx7 community that dealers should be avoided
>like the plague. in the early days (early 93), a hose would pop off an
>engine, and the dealer would replace the entire engine+turbo assembly
>because they didn't know what else to do. the car was too unique and rare
>for dealers to know how to work on them. do certain audi suffer the same

Sort of.  Older Audis, esp. turbos, had lots of hard-to-track-down 
engine problems, so admittedly, the job was tough to begin with. 
Your average SAE mechanic hired off the street wouldn't know where to 

>-are there many audi vs. ferrari,viper,porsche,<cough>rx7<cough hehe>
>threads on the list?

Nope.   But there are comments about mostly WMB's and dorFs.  Lots of 
stories about surprising the pants off a suxeL luxury boat owner or 
similar(I personally surprised a A8 owner :-)

>-are there "list events" where people go driving together etc.

YES! :)   I joined the NE A4 group for an awesome BBQ and fall 
foliage tour.  Oh, and there were 4 S4's there; 2 that were 2 weeks 
"old", one 2 days old, and one 1 day old :-)

>-I noticed a thread about putting a mazda rotary in an audi and then some
>talk about the disadvantages:
>"Fuel consumption however was never addressed, which is why (despite the
>fact that it's a great engine) no-one really seriously gets into rotary
>engines anymore." well, I guess audi-guys can't be expected to follow the
>happenings in the rotary world

More like the fact that more-than-less listers are talking from their 
tailpipes(myself included:)

>, but in the near future, mazda will be
>introducing a couple rotary powered cars, powered by an engine code-named
>renesis (rotary engine genesis) which is rumored to produce 280 hp (NA from
>1.3L 2-rotor) and get better gas mileage than any past rotary to boot. all
>that in the size of a beer-keg.

Impressive, but rumors are rumors.  You won't believe some of the 
Audi rumors(like the AVUS prototype going into production :-)

>I'd like to thank everybody in advance for any insight they can give me. I
>hope to dive in to the world of audi and get to know as much about the cars,
>company and people as possible.
Certainly.  Welcome aboard!

91 200q20v a la TAP chip

Brett Dikeman
Artel Software				617-451-9900
381 Congress Street			617-451-9916(fax)
Boston, MA 02210				http://www.borisfx.com