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  1. #26
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by nbrigdan Click here to enlarge
    I live about an hour from the mountains, it snows ~9 months of the year here typically. For example, last year we had ~50 cm (19.7") of snowfall in October, and this is in a string of years with far less snowfall than usual. In my opinion, driving here for around 10 years, AWD is a must have unless you're OK with just not making it to work some days.
    Yeah for you it sounds like AWD is worth it.
    If I were you I would get an S4/S5 or a used RS3 for sure...
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  2. #27
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by subaru335i Click here to enlarge
    Yeah for you it sounds like AWD is worth it.
    If I were you I would get an S4/S5 or a used RS3 for sure...
    The only problem with the S4 is weight. If you don’t need the extra 11”, the S3 is 400lbs lighter. And definitely agree on the RS3. No brainer if it fits your budget.

    -Rich

  3. #28
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by nbrigdan Click here to enlarge
    Yeah...but you live in California...Glass houses and all, you know the deal. Click here to enlarge

    No laws against mods, fully catless exhausts, laser interceptors and radar detectors, so we win some and we lose some.
    True.

    I suppose we do have awesome weather and really hot chicks. Sucks the state is insane with lib policies but hey you take the good with the bad.

  4. #29
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    Not sure if you’ve purchased anything yet, but I got a run in this morning at a reasonable (for me Click here to enlarge) DA. Super pleased with the S3:

    https://www.audiboost.com/showthread...098#post828098

    -Rich

  5. #30
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by richpike Click here to enlarge
    Not sure if you’ve purchased anything yet, but I got a run in this morning at a reasonable (for me Click here to enlarge) DA. Super pleased with the S3:

    https://www.audiboost.com/showthread...098#post828098

    -Rich
    I've decided on the S3! Just waiting to find the right one. Hoping one in nano grey comes up...

    Great numbers, 4.7 0-60 completely stock is pretty stout. I plan on probably doing APR Stage I (93 octane) and then after the warranty is up going to TTE535 or 475.

  6. #31
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    Sweet! And TTE Click here to enlarge

    -Rich

  7. #32
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by nbrigdan Click here to enlarge
    I've decided on the S3! Just waiting to find the right one. Hoping one in nano grey comes up...

    Great numbers, 4.7 0-60 completely stock is pretty stout. I plan on probably doing APR Stage I (93 octane) and then after the warranty is up going to TTE535 or 475.
    I feel like S3 I would rather save the money and get the Golf R.
    RS3 is for sure worth the extra money.

    What does the S3 have that the golf R doesn’t? Personally I think the R looks better because hatch. I just really don’t like the S3 sedan look.
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  8. #33
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by subaru335i Click here to enlarge
    I feel like S3 I would rather save the money and get the Golf R.
    RS3 is for sure worth the extra money.

    What does the S3 have that the golf R doesn’t? Personally I think the R looks better because hatch. I just really don’t like the S3 sedan look.
    To each their own. I liked the R, but felt the S3 was significantly better looking. I think the 8V is the best application of Audi’s latest design style - proportions are spot-on. Gorgeous from about every angle. In general, I also prefer the lines of a sedan versus a hatch. The R looks great, but the S3 is more elegant IMO. I also prefer the Audi’s interior. In the end though, can’t got wrong with either!

    -Rich

  9. #34
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by subaru335i Click here to enlarge
    I feel like S3 I would rather save the money and get the Golf R.
    RS3 is for sure worth the extra money.

    What does the S3 have that the golf R doesn’t? Personally I think the R looks better because hatch. I just really don’t like the S3 sedan look.
    Essentially I would say I agree with Rich's view on the matter. I wouldn't mind saving ~6k by getting the Golf R but my better half disavows it as a child's car so S3 it is Click here to enlarge

    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by richpike Click here to enlarge
    To each their own. I liked the R, but felt the S3 was significantly better looking. I think the 8V is the best application of Audi’s latest design style - proportions are spot-on. Gorgeous from about every angle. In general, I also prefer the lines of a sedan versus a hatch. The R looks great, but the S3 is more elegant IMO. I also prefer the Audi’s interior. In the end though, can’t got wrong with either!

    -Rich
    The only thing I have left to decide is 6 speed vs 7 speed DSG. Not sure if there's much of a difference or if it's worth paying the premium for a 2018 to get the 7 speed box. Any input?

  10. #35
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by nbrigdan Click here to enlarge
    The only thing I have left to decide is 6 speed vs 7 speed DSG. Not sure if there's much of a difference or if it's worth paying the premium for a 2018 to get the 7 speed box. Any input?
    I looked at both and if you’ll be doing any highway driving the 7-speed’s lower RPM is worth it. It’s also faster. And the DQ381 holds more torque for when you go TTE.

    -Rich

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    1 out of 1 members liked this post. Yes Reputation No
    Just for due diligence purposes I test a few more cars last night and today:

    2016 Mini Cooper S 6-speed manual

    2019 Mini Cooper S 7-speed DCT

    2019 Alfa Giulia Ti Sport AWD

    ---

    Some notes on each:

    6-speed Cooper S was quite used (~60,000 miles), super fun, total cliche "go-kart" experience, transmission felt a little sloppy and the gears (especially reverse) were somewhat hard to find. Clutch was really easy and uptake was immediate. I still really enjoyed it and preferred it to the DCT car just because the stick is the right transmission for this type of car. Awesome burbles and crackles from the exhaust on lift off.

    7-speed DCT Cooper S felt very new, transmission was always in the right gear and changed very quickly. Looked brilliant also. Seemed better built, felt just as fast if not faster, some torque steer when going full beans. Very fun also, but again would go for the manual. After testing these cars, I think in a few years I might just pick one up for a fun car for the summer. 20k for a fast, fun, beater, is good value IMO.

    Alfa Giulia Ti Sport AWD was a bit of a let down. It was just slow, I don't know how else to put it. Full throttle and it felt about the same speed as my GF's tuned 2012 A4 manual. The chassis balance, braking, steering all felt awesome though. It was probably the best handling mid size sedan I tested, put the C43, S4 and 340i/440 GC to shame. It felt very chuckable. I would say it was a tie between it, and the S3 in terms of nimbleness. The kicker was the price, 72k CAD or ~55k USD. For that price it was just so incredibly slow, I don't know how they would sell any. Plus I looked and barely used ones are for sale for 30-40k less.

    Next up: Jaguar XE, Mustang PP2, Lexus IS350 AWD...

  12. #37
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    Nice. Car shopping is fun. I loved a Mustang GT I drive with the 10-sp auto. But my wife wouldn’t let me get it LOL. Just wasn’t practical enough with kids. And for where I live, down a ton of HP due to the thin air. Fun car though.

    -Rich

  13. #38
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    I'm in a similar situation as you, however, i have my eyes on a LCI F10 M5. Too large to make your list? Probably one of the most reliable M cars in recent years. Actually has appropriately sized rod bearings and a crank hub that doesnt spin...
    2011 E90 M3 \ Melbourne Rot Metallic

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  14. #39
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by lulz_m3 Click here to enlarge
    I'm in a similar situation as you, however, i have my eyes on a LCI F10 M5. Too large to make your list? Probably one of the most reliable M cars in recent years. Actually has appropriately sized rod bearings and a crank hub that doesnt spin...
    I had this on my list too, along with a S6. But when I drove the S6, I loved the engine, but the car was ginormous. I imagine the M5 would be similar. I donít understand why cars continue to just get bigger and bigger Click here to enlarge

    -Rich

  15. #40
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by richpike Click here to enlarge
    I had this on my list too, along with a S6. But when I drove the S6, I loved the engine, but the car was ginormous. I imagine the M5 would be similar. I don’t understand why cars continue to just get bigger and bigger Click here to enlarge

    -Rich
    Probably to keep up with American waistelines, unfortunately...
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  16. #41
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by nbrigdan Click here to enlarge
    7-speed DCT Cooper S felt very new, transmission was always in the right gear and changed very quickly. Looked brilliant also. Seemed better built, felt just as fast if not faster, some torque steer when going full beans. Very fun also, but again would go for the manual. After testing these cars, I think in a few years I might just pick one up for a fun car for the summer. 20k for a fast, fun, beater, is good value IMO.
    These sound like quite a bit of fun...

  17. #42
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    If it's a DD i assume you already have another fun car or cars...

    So why not get something that's fun around town and will actually save you money like an EV?

    For my yearly driving I estimate that an EV would save me $200/month or $2,400/yr

    Which is great mod money for your fun car or cars!

    If you had a 991.2 Carrera just two years driving the EV could save you enough for hybrid turbos! Free Turbos!

  18. #43
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    These sound like quite a bit of fun...
    I imagine these would be awesome on the mountain/hill roads in California, and not too bad for traffic either. Seeing as the engine is the B38 there's also massive tuning potential, a simple JB4 can increase power by ~25% on pump gas. For a man with a lot of 500+ RWHP cars I was surprised this was the car that stood out to you Click here to enlarge

  19. #44
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by nbrigdan Click here to enlarge
    For a man with a lot of 500+ RWHP cars I was surprised this was the car that stood out to you
    Power is fun and all but sometimes people forget an amazing driving experience can be with a light car with great suspension and an empty canyon road.

    The 911 and M3 are getting so powerful they are quite a handful.

    I've always liked the Mini.

  20. #45
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by richpike Click here to enlarge
    Nice. Car shopping is fun. I loved a Mustang GT I drive with the 10-sp auto. But my wife wouldn’t let me get it LOL. Just wasn’t practical enough with kids. And for where I live, down a ton of HP due to the thin air. Fun car though.

    -Rich
    Absolutely. Haha. I'm up at ~3500 ft as well so I know that feeling! No chance I would actually buy the Mustang, but damn has it been fun catching up with what the automotive world has to offer. It has been so long since I actually have been testing new cars. Probably since 2015 to this year....

  21. #46
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by nbrigdan Click here to enlarge
    Seeing as the engine is the B38 there's also massive tuning potential
    Isn't it a B48?

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    Isn't it a B48?
    You're correct, sorry for some reason I mix those ones up. Yeah I would avoid the B38 when the 48 is so much better.

    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    Power is fun and all but sometimes people forget an amazing driving experience can be with a light car with great suspension and an empty canyon road.

    The 911 and M3 are getting so powerful they are quite a handful.

    I've always liked the Mini.
    I imagine you could do an awesome manual or DCT build. I'm yet to try a Fiesta ST but I feel as though the Mini would definitely be a more premium driving experience, and mostly similar. The only thing I really think would need an upgrade would be the wheels/tires on the Mini, which are very cheap at the small size. $1700 for 17" RPF-1s and PSSs.

    The auto mall with the Mini dealer was in a small tight loop and I was driving it around at ~50 mph no problem, laughing practically the entire time.

  23. #48
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by nbrigdan Click here to enlarge
    I imagine you could do an awesome manual or DCT build.
    You could make a pretty fun/cheap track car with a DCT build and a bigger turbo on the B48.

    Strip out a little weight and it would be a riot.

  24. #49
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by lulz_m3 Click here to enlarge
    I'm in a similar situation as you, however, i have my eyes on a LCI F10 M5. Too large to make your list? Probably one of the most reliable M cars in recent years. Actually has appropriately sized rod bearings and a crank hub that doesnt spin...
    There was a brilliant, orange 2014 one with low miles on the BMW lot when I tested the 340/440 but I think again it was just a bit big, and 600+ HP to the rear wheels is just a recipe for disaster with the winters here sadly. Would make an awesome summer sedan for a bit older of a gentleman though... I appreciate the suggestion!

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    Might be a dark path but I'm actually considering going for the A3 2.0T Quattro. Based on the mods I'm thinking of doing anyways, I think it might make sense to save 12.5k up front and still get a newer model. Are there any real drawbacks of going down this route that I'm not aware of? Trick differential or something in the S3 that the A3 doesn't get? I've been watching a few videos of modded A3s and they absolutely tear it up.

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