Mods or R32?

The Cardinal

For the love of cars
I've had my mapped 2.0T quattro S-Line for 2 years now (late '06 model). It's a great spec and in fab condition, but it just seems to lack that last 10% to make it into something really special - a bit like a 335 is to an M3 if you get what I mean.

An S3 Sportback would suit me perfectly, but doesn't seem worth the £10k more it would cost for even the cheapest '08 plater, given that it's not that much different to my current car. Otherwise, the obvious choice would be to upgrade my current car (e.g. coilovers, engine). It's strange that I wouldn't think twice about mod'ing a Golf GTi, but it seems a bit less tasteful on a 2.0Tq!!!?

Most of all though, I'm tempted by a 5-door Golf R32. I do about 6-7k miles a year, so the running costs aren't such a big issue for me - and the cost to change to a main dealer-supplied R32 would be quite reasonable. I doubt it would be any faster than my 2.0Tq, but the noise and sense of occasion would be worth it.

What do you think - mods or R32?
 

paddy

Registered User
Only you can decide that one mate. You just have to try both. I have said for years the 3.2 V6 experience is worth the loss of a few BHP over a S3 and unless you are looking for a second or two on lap times then you arnt really going to notice. The A3 is a bit better inside but its very dated now. There is a huge R32 mod/enthusiast following if you are into that sort of thing. dont listen to the old front end heavy ********. I dont know where that came from but all the figures i have seen put the weight distribution better on the 3.2 cars. As i say, go drive a R32 and see what you think. It will not have that turbo punch because the power is much more linier but the bottom line is the actual acceleration speeds are better than the 20T
 

Farhan

Registered User
I say go for the R32 youll love it trust me
 

sub39h

Registered User
hmm that's a really tough call... if it were my money i'd contemplate a Mk VI GTI but that's not the question you were asking.

i love the noise and feel you get from the VR6. i very nearly purchased one instead of my 2.0T FWD but it boiled down to running costs and cars that were available on the market plus all that fear regarding timing chains etc.

i agree with you that switching to an S3 is perhaps a bit pointless from your car as it's basically the same machine. i recall you asking a similar question recently? you were thinking of going for an S3 but i said that going big turbo would perhaps be better if modding was what you wanted.

for the sake of having something different i'd say swap to the R32. in terms of build quality, the MK V Golf loses a tiny bit to the 8P, but the layout, colours and things like RNS-510 make it overall a much nicer place to be. for me that would be my choice, but as Paddy said test them both and see what you think.

ultimately tho, with no offence intended Garnet Red was never one of my favourite colours. if it was Misano red i'd be telling you to stick with your current car
 

brough74

Registered User
Ive had a MK4 R32, and a 2004 A3 3.2, and i now have an S3. The 3.2 V6 has a great sound and is good at the bottom end with loads of torque, it losses a bit at the top end but if your not driving flat out everywhere is great.

My R32 got chipped at AMD and with the induction kit and miltek it was fantastic, very stable in bad weather with the 4wd.

At the end of the day its your decision but you wont regret it.
 

slade777

Registered User
hmm that's a really tough call... if it were my money i'd contemplate a Mk VI GTI but that's not the question you were asking.

i love the noise and feel you get from the VR6. i very nearly purchased one instead of my 2.0T FWD but it boiled down to running costs and cars that were available on the market plus all that fear regarding timing chains etc.

i agree with you that switching to an S3 is perhaps a bit pointless from your car as it's basically the same machine. i recall you asking a similar question recently? you were thinking of going for an S3 but i said that going big turbo would perhaps be better if modding was what you wanted.

for the sake of having something different i'd say swap to the R32. in terms of build quality, the MK V Golf loses a tiny bit to the 8P, but the layout, colours and things like RNS-510 make it overall a much nicer place to be. for me that would be my choice, but as Paddy said test them both and see what you think.

ultimately tho, with no offence intended Garnet Red was never one of my favourite colours. if it was Misano red i'd be telling you to stick with your current car

Nail on the head!!!!!!
 

The Cardinal

For the love of cars
Interesting food for thought - thanks - and, yes, it is difficult to decide!

I would just hang on while S3's devalue a bit more, but I should explain that I'm due a cambelt, quattro oil and tyres later in the year. It's not a sackable offence, but it always pushes the issue when big(ish) money needs spending on servicing. :3sadwalk:

The most obvious disadvantage of a Mk5 Golf GTi is that I'd sacrifice 4WD and it would be hard to find xenons, leather and some of the other creature comforts of my A3 (which the R32 usually has).

With 21k on the clock, perfect bodywork, good spec and a known history, I couldn't wish for a better starting point for mods. I could go as far as a full-on conversion to a 325+bhp family "sleeper", which would involve a K04 conversion and a £5-6k bill. The downside would be that it would commit me to the car for a long time, owing to re-sale implications (depending on how far I went).

Simply buying an R32 is quite appealing in that context!
 

Farhan

Registered User
Mhmmm R32
IMG_0558.jpg
 

audicruiser

Audi Heaven
I went through the same sinario when I bought mine, but the tax cost for the R32 put me off. I know it's only a one off payment a year but I pay enough tax as it is!

The R32 engine is nice, I test drove one but I think for me I would of got bored with the noise in the end. The dash and interior of the Golf is not a patch on the Audi A3 either. VERY plasticy look and feel to it.

R32's at the moment seem to be holding their money though but this maybe due to the fact the new R is still near £30k on the second hand market.

As said , it your choice but even with the low mileage you do, the R32 will be doing low 20's to the gallon so over time you would notice the difference in fuel costs...
 

S3 BUH

Registered User
I have a S3 an my dad has a R32 and everytime we go out anywhere it's in the R32 it has that presents on the road and every time that VR6 roars up it just puts a smile on your face you can never get with a S3 if I wouldn't of had to buy a new car I would have had a R32 in a heartbeat it might not be as quick on a track but overall it's beats the S3 hands down.
 

Sparkie

Registered User
If you have a little money to play I would get an R32 and make it forced induction. For say, £10k extra, you could have 450 ponies at your disposal as well as an engine that will provide many smiles. Not cheap moding admittedly.

erggggggg Toyota :ninja::puke2:

Although you do have a silver S3 with purple wheels? :yes: ;)
 

paddy

Registered User
As said , it your choice but even with the low mileage you do, the R32 will be doing low 20's to the gallon so over time you would notice the difference in fuel costs...

this is another myth with the 3.2....it dosent go round corners and it will drink fuel. I get high 20s normally. I did a 7 hour drive on Wednesday inc Portsmouth and Southampton and Salisbury town centre's and a final blast up the M3 and got 31mpg for the day. Normally i get about 28 running about. 99RON is a waste of money in them and MPG will improve a lot in warm weather.
 
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Ash B

Registered User
With 21k on the clock, perfect bodywork, good spec and a known history, I couldn't wish for a better starting point for mods. I could go as far as a full-on conversion to a 325+bhp family "sleeper", which would involve a K04 conversion and a £5-6k bill. The downside would be that it would commit me to the car for a long time, owing to re-sale implications (depending on how far I went).

Simply buying an R32 is quite appealing in that context!

Do it :)
 

sub39h

Registered User
hmm that's a really tough call... if it were my money i'd contemplate a Mk VI GTI...

The most obvious disadvantage of a Mk5 Golf GTi...

i wouldn't consider the Mk V GTI. if you're gonna have a Mk V then it has to be the R32.

however the Mk VIs can have quite a high spec. they all come with auto lights/wipers as standard, there are a few with Xenons and leather and RNS-510 can be retrofitted just as easily as RNS-E can.

you're right that you'll lose out on quattro, but with the small mileage you claim to do does that really matter?
 

Denty

Registered User
R32 = understeer if u drive quite hard, end of. Its wayyy nose heavy, thats a fact. And they do drink more fuel under normal driving. Get an S3. More potential tuning.:happy:
 

jungleman

Registered User
thing is have you actually priced properly a turbo conversion, as i hate to say it, i dont think £5-6k will cover it and if you are going turbo conversion why stop at KO4, do it properly and go full big turbo and it wont be that much more over all
even at a base KO4 conversion youll be looking at changes to the clutch, suspension, brakes, exhaust, induction, fuel pump, all the ancillaries relating to turbo, manifold etc possibly injectors and a lot of mapping costs... its a massive undertaking... not that im trying to put you off as i love forced induction, but there are a lots of costs to consider and you should talk to someone like AMD Essex as they have done this work a fair few times as well as big power conversions and they will be able to give you the real cost (but you may want to be sitting down when you talk to them)
 

jungleman

Registered User
R32 = understeer if u drive quite hard, end of. Its wayyy nose heavy, thats a fact. And they do drink more fuel under normal driving. Get an S3. More potential tuning.:happy:

haha the S3 understeers as well tho when driven hard

was just thinking after i just posted, has anyone ever just bought an S3 engine with all the bits and dropped that in as a way of doing a KO4 conversion and tunned from there as the S3's are running a lot of upgraded engine parts over the 2.0T anyway
 

paddy

Registered User
The A3 20T you have at the moment has a weight distribution of 62.3 / 37.7, the R32 has a spec of 59/41 so dont believe all the crap about them not going round corners.lol Incidently the A3 3.2 is 57.9 / 42.1 so better than both :)

S3 owners love to think they are light at the front but the 3.2 has two more cylinders...Basically holes that weigh nowt where as the S3 has a turbo, inter-cooler all the gubins that goes with that and ****** great battery as well :lmfao:
 
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Farhan

Registered User
I've got an Akoya Silver A3 with purple wheels yes, funnily enough is better than a toyota :laugh:

lol that toyota was rapid you would be hard pressed to fault it as from being on this forum it had an 8250RPM redline and more reliability than an audi for sure!
 

Sparkie

Registered User
Happy to stand corrected but isn't a heavier front end (hypothetically) going to create oversteer problems rather than understeer?
 

jungleman

Registered User
S3 owners love to think they are light at the front but the 3.2 has two more cylinders...Basically holes that weigh nowt where as the S3 has a turbo, inter-cooler all the gubins that goes with that and ****** great battery as well :lmfao:

true, but you also have a bigger block, more pistons, bigger crank etc and the S3's have lightened suspension components, all in all tho there prob isnt half as much difference as people think, either way audis understeer, its the way they are set up... nothing a few suspension tweaks cant fix tho
 

jungleman

Registered User
Happy to stand corrected but isn't a heavier front end (hypothetically) going to create oversteer problems rather than understeer?

total opposite mate, the extra weight at the front makes the front less responsive, so when you turn the wheels, the front wants to push on in a straight line... why you think car with the engine in the front like to understeer, where as for example the 911 of the 80's with the engine hanging out the back would happily swap ends
 

paddy

Registered User
true, but you also have a bigger block, more pistons, bigger crank etc and the S3's have lightened suspension components, all in all tho there prob isnt half as much difference as people think, either way audis understeer, its the way they are set up... nothing a few suspension tweaks cant fix tho

Yea just my opinion :) It is annoying though this idea that you will die at your first attempt at cornering in a 3.2/R32 :) Its almost become written in stone now and yet i have had mine for 4 years now and never once come across this "chronic" under-steer. I can only think its a track day thing in which case its pretty irrelevant. that said non of the 8P's are brilliant so its difficult to see why the poor old 3.2 gets singled out... especially by those that haven't lived with one for a few years :)
I had this chat the other day on VAGOC and was basically told that i was so wrong i was obviously on a wind up !! some guy got round Nurburgring 4 or5 seconds quicker in his S3 so basically the 3.2 is crap....LOL :) i think its about a 8.5 minute lap so even 10 seconds is only 1.5% and jeeez, its a road car not even set up for a track !!!...
Oh well ! all good fun :)
 

N8

Kowalski Details
VCDS Map User
lol that toyota was rapid you would be hard pressed to fault it as from being on this forum it had an 8250RPM redline and more reliability than an audi for sure!

Lets sell the A3s and buy Toyotas?
 

jungleman

Registered User
Yea just my opinion :) It is annoying though this idea that you will die at your first attempt at cornering in a 3.2/R32 :) Its almost become written in stone now and yet i have had mine for 4 years now and never once come across this "chronic" under-steer. I can only think its a track day thing in which case its pretty irrelevant. that said non of the 8P's are brilliant so its difficult to see why the poor old 3.2 gets singled out... especially by those that haven't lived with one for a few years :)
I had this chat the other day on VAGOC and was basically told that i was so wrong i was obviously on a wind up !! some guy got round Nurburgring 4 or5 seconds quicker in his S3 so basically the 3.2 is crap....LOL :) i think its about a 8.5 minute lap so even 10 seconds is only 1.5% and jeeez, its a road car not even set up for a track !!!...
Oh well ! all good fun :)

at the end of the day none of them are that bad or we woulnt buy them and most of us arnt good enough to get the most out of the chassis, i would have it a guess that 80% of the understeer issues are more then likely driver caused rather then car caused, just because people just dont know how to position a car properly, what sort of entry speed they should be doing or getting the car balanced on entry

i think the 3.2s are picked on because by its nature it will be a little more nose heavy then the 4 pot engines, in the same way they will be slated for economy even tho by the sounds of it, its pretty much the same as an S3, even tho i did manage a shockingly impressive 35mpg ave on my trip back from guildford yesterday... dont know how i managed that!

haha yea the S3 lot can sometimes get a little blinkered and think that there is nothing better then an S3 and although i do love mine massively im well aware of its 'issues'... seriously 4-5 seconds, thats nothing on that track, thats a couple of badly taken corners, or just being in the wrong gear a couple of times on a long straight, or maybe something like what tyre they are running, some people need to get a little perspective!
 

Sparkie

Registered User
To be fair I'm sure there are a fair few that will have rightly chosen a T-sport over various A3 models on performance grounds.
 

paddy

Registered User
In actual fact the difference is even less than i thought.

Tsukuba Lap Time/Bedford West Circuit Lap Time/Serres Circuit Lap Time/Hockenheim/Nordshleife /Nurburgring

S3 MK2 Drive Magazine Greece........69.29/91.57/97.10/77.50/514.41
A3 3.2 quattro (8P) Best Motoring.......... 70.40/93.04/98.86/78.90/518.53

Yea ..Guildford back to SW London is all up hill as well :lmfao:..must have been one of those odd days the A3 was working !

This was my Source for the above times.
Lap Times - Nurburgring, Bedford, Hockenheim, Serres Lap Times - Predicted Lap Times
 
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N8

Kowalski Details
VCDS Map User
I would love to drive the 3.2! I'm addicted to the sound of the big turbo delivery and sound of my cousins TT. Never been a great lover of the V6 sound....
 

jungleman

Registered User
thing is even with track times, i still take them with a pinch of salt, because unless its the same driver on the same day, there are still too many variables to make it a fair test, tho on a normal circuit it seems to be around the 1.5 seconds a lap, which isnt too bad
 

Farhan

Registered User
Lets sell the A3s and buy Toyotas?

No one said lets sell A3s and buy toyotas slightly uncalled for to slate something you know pretty much nothing about!
 

N8

Kowalski Details
VCDS Map User
No one said lets sell A3s and buy toyotas slightly uncalled for to slate something you know pretty much nothing about!

You were banging on about how fast the Toyota was, if it was all about speed I'd be driving a Norris tuned Evo! Its not all about speed though is it? :wub:
 

audicruiser

Audi Heaven
What an in depth thread!! :ohmy:
 

paddy

Registered User
100% agree with Nat. There is a real tendency to judge cars by the 0-60 and standing 1/4 on these sorts of forums.... Strangely those are probably the most irrelevant points in what makes a good car.
 

Sarah's A3

MODERATOR V6 S3 Hybrid
Moderator
Back to the original Ops Question.... Dont mod, you will never be satisfied, not totally anyway. Drive the R32 and a 3.2 and even compare with a spin in an S3, then decide!!!!
 

LWNY

Registered User
The 2.0T's engine weight is 335LB, while the VR6's weight is indicated somewhere as 374LB. The RS3's 2.5T is 403LB. VR6's additional weight on the front wheel is more than offset by the rear battery placement and all the addition AWD components by the rear wheel.

Anyway, if Audi wants to bring the weight of the VR6 down, they could just make the block out of aluminum instead of steel. But I assume given this is a VW engine, nobody was going to put the effort to do that. All of Audi only engines has aluminum block.
 
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