RS4 vs S3 Sedan

verttigo

Registered User
This is my first post here so hi to you all. Long story short the thing is I'm thinking of selling my 2014 A5 3.0 T Coupe to get something a little bit cheaper and more practical. But I don't want to give up driving something exciting. It has to be a 4 door. After looking for all brands and analyzing the options I ended up with some names: Volvo S60, BMW 130i 5 door, Mercedes C55 AMG, Audi RS4 and finally, if i can stretch the budget a bit, a S3 Sedan.

The two most exciting propositions are the S3 and RS4 and after some thinking i can say i am pretty divided. The S3 being the most rational one and the RS4 is the one to go to fulfill my old dreams.
Now some positive points of each car i believe are pertinent but i wish to know what is the general opinion about those 2 beasts.

S3 pros:
- Much newer car, less risk
- More modern cabin
- More features
- Automatic transmition

RS4 pros:
- Cheaper
- Engine Sound
- Cool factor
- Maybe a little faster

Both cars are praised for driving dynamics, both have more or less the same size and interior space.
Of course, since they have similar performance and the S3 being the much more modern machine naturally its the default choice. But there is something about the RS4 stance, those bulging wheel arches and the 8.000 rpm naturally aspirated v8 engine that keeps making me go back and think about it, lusting for it.
I don't know, it would be too crazy to choose an 2008 Audi RS4 over a new Audi S3 sedan?
 

veeeight

I am a very pretty girl
VCDS Map User
Sorry to say this, but the S3 is not an exciting drive. The RS4 wins this hands down.

If it were me I'd take the '08 RS4, run it for 2 years while waiting for the new model to be released.
 

CraigI

Registered User
I had a S3 and now have a 2014 RS5.
RS5 wins hands down on the excitement factor. Every time you fire up the engine it has a sense of occassion about it. Never got that with the S3. you can also feel that the suspension has been designed around getting the most out of the car (which you get in a RS), the S3 just felt like a A3 with a big engine, nothing special about it.

You also won't have to deal with Haldex.
Torsen makes for a much better driving experience.

Won't be much in it in straight line performance, but they'll go round corners in a similar fashion, with the feel from the Torsen system installing more confidence to drive it as it should be driven.

My friend had a 2008 RS4 and very much regrets letting it go. He now has a Golf R (like the S3, but better to drive (tin hat on)) and it isn't a patch on his RS4.

With the low oil price and subsequent fuel cost reductions, now is the the to have a V8.
I'd say scratch that itch.

The S3 isn't a bad car, suits many on here's requirements and I'm sure you'll get many on here that would claim it as the best out of the two, but it will never be as good as a RS.
 

Vertigo1

Registered User
Yep, as V8 says, the S3 is not a driver's car compared to the RS4 (assuming you're on about the B7). The latter will also be significantly faster.

The tech in the RS4 will be significantly older than the S3. I'm not sure if the later, higher-res and faster-performing RNS-E nav unit was ever available in the RS4 (introduced in 2010) but can be retrofitted easily enough if you want.

Also check the running costs of each - servicing and parts for an RS model won't be cheap.
 

mfl

Registered User
I wouldn't even bring the R into this discussion, it's a boring looking car with a cheap interior, if you want to be rational get the S3, but if the RS4 and AMG C55 are on your list, go with the one you enjoy the most and won't send you bankrupt in servicing and spares costs. Always prefer a good V8, to a turbo 4.
 
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Bristle Hound

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Hi & :welcome!: to ASN!

My tuppence worth ...

7 year old Rs4 is going to be expensive to run in the Uk, with low mpg and high road tax costs. & lets not forget its a seven year old car, so if anything goes wrong its gonna be expensive BUT the noise and the occasion, well just wow! :jump:

I have a feeling your a non-Uk resident, so some of my points may be invalid! lol

I keep hearing this statement 'drivers car' :think: TBH I think its more about the 'driver' than the actual 'car' being driven

As always, just my opinion of course ... :hi:
 

veeeight

I am a very pretty girl
VCDS Map User
If you are in the UK though, because the RS4 is an outgoing model, you could be in a 2014 RS4 for as little as £500 per month - there are vast dealer and manufacturer contributions to be had ......

Get your negotiating hat on and you can get better than this example:
https://www.audi.co.uk/explore-models/latest-offers.html
 

lozzermo

Registered User
I moved from an S4 to the S3 and to an extent regret it because it's just a little bland in comparison. I almost went for a new RS4 but knowing the B8 was being phased out decided to go for something that would remain current. At the end of the day it comes down to head or heart! My head won in the end (newer, cheaper to run and own).
 

verttigo

Registered User
I am in a A3/S3 forum and everybody is telling me to go for the RS4. I've have never driven an RS4 so... but at the same time all i read in the magazines about the S3 is praise, especially US magazines who seem to love the S3 sedan...
 

AudiBoy1976

Registered User
The RS4 has always been one of my Favourite Cars.
I had an RS4 B7 Saloon in 2006, an RS4 B7 Avant in 2007 & then an RS4 B8 Avant last year. All 3 looked looked great, were amazing to Drive & the Engine was just awesome.......they have a real Presence on the road.
I currently have a New S3 Saloon & find it a fantastic Car............great Interior & very Quick, but I would agree with the others, it doesn't give me the Buzz to Drive, like the RS4's did!
The Negatives I would say about the RS4 B7 now, obviously its age, as if anything goes wrong with it , it'll cost a small Fortune to Repair(Carbon build up & Suspension are usually key Faults), Road Tax is £450(unless u Buy an early 2006 Model), very Dated Interior & standing next to an S3 Saloon, the Exterior looks abit Dated too!
Personally, I did'nt think the Fuel Consumption was too bad on those V8's & with the Price of Fuel coming right down now, that helps as well!
 

A3_Rider

Registered User
The S3 would keep up with an RS4 performance wise; you wouldn't be left for dust, but how often would you come across such a situation, or even care.

That bit of artificial sound in the S3 makes you feel a small V like rumble, though on the RS the rumble inside is just as good outside!

With either you won't go wrong, having driven both the best input I could give is if you go for the RS just be sure to have a good warranty, or at least save some money each year for problems (not maintenance - thats seperate).
 

Rogier140

Registered User
You could always give a S3 a decent tune. My collague drives a S8 with the 5.2 V10 ( same as in the Lamborgini). I am faster 0-100 and i am faster 100-200+ ....
If i could turn back the time a few moths i probably buy a used S4 and give that a tune. At stage 5 it goes well over 500 bhp and is a v6.

I have driven a RS5 and that car did not have the excitment when you push the throttle than my tuned S3. I get a push from the turbo, the V8 just seems slow.
Put a Armytrix exhaust on a S3 and outside and inside you will have some fun.

I still get the thumbs up once a day from stangers who see my 2015 S3.
 

veeeight

I am a very pretty girl
VCDS Map User
There's a strong case for going with a B7 .....


 

Pulp84

Registered User
I can tell you a B8 is very viable at the current time!

At a recent Audi event I drove the RS4. Fell in love with it regardless that it's soon to be replaced. I was probably a bit too "impressed" on the day and salesman rang me the following week and I stupidly asked him to do a finance quote on a in stock car in Sazuka (yes!!), privacy glass and heated seats. Standard otherwise (it actually has a good spec).

£4k Audi contribution, £4k dealer discount and £5k from me could have got one on my drive for £525 a month over 36 months! 5k miles P.A.

About £100 a month more than my S3 BUT it's another £5k cash in and I really couldn't justify it. I had only my S3 five months at the time which I had sunk £2k in to.

I had a sleepness night deciding to call my dealer back and say no :(
 
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veeeight

I am a very pretty girl
VCDS Map User
^ I think you mean B8, the current model from 2012 ;)

Yes, driving it is an event in itself, I always book a B8 RS4 during the Audi Sport Showcase events. It's just that little bit more "chuck able around" than a RS6 around roundabouts and back roads ;)

The finance offers are indeed very tempting, I'm sure you could have done even better than those figures if you push harder, but understand completely that you had just bought your S3! I'm kinda in the same situation, don't really want to lose too much by getting rid of the S3 so soon.
 

Pulp84

Registered User
^ I think you mean B8, the current model from 2012 ;)

Yes, driving it is an event in itself, I always book a B8 RS4 during the Audi Sport Showcase events.

The finance offers are indeed very tempting, I'm sure you could have done even better than those figures if you push harder, but understand completely that you had just bought your S3! I'm kinda in the same situation, don't really want to lose too much by getting rid of the S3 so soon.

Yep current model - I always get these codes mixed up!

They are a little bit crafty at these Audi Showcase events because although there was no sales pressure they did "service call" me the following week to thank me for attending and to say "How great is that RS4? - and do you know they have £10k off at the moment?". It worked.

I was topsy turvy for a few days going through all the numbers in my head again and again, trying to justify it. In the end decided it was too much - I'm sad about it tell the truth but sometimes you just have to say no :(
 

veeeight

I am a very pretty girl
VCDS Map User
It must be your bad luck :p

I've been on 3 Audi Sport Showcase events in the last 2 years, never had any follow up ;)
 

Pulp84

Registered User
It must be your bad luck :p

I've been on 3 Audi Sport Showcase events in the last 2 years, never had any follow up ;)

Yeah, think I over did it when I went to that Audi event. Put my best clobber on and wore a rather expensive Omega. I think I might have given the impression I have more £££ than is actually the case! Easy target.

I guess the trick veeeight is to turn up in an old t-shirt and tatty jeans ? :)
 

veeeight

I am a very pretty girl
VCDS Map User
I looked like the "Man at C&A" :)

Come to think of it, maybe more "Man at Millets" :lmfao:
 

Pulp84

Registered User
How did you even get an invite ?

I thought they didn't let rift raft in to these high class events??? :sadlike:

Bit of badge snobbery there! Haha
 

veeeight

I am a very pretty girl
VCDS Map User
3 invites, from 2 different dealership groups ;)

I think your Omega shouted too loudly ;)

I am just a whore :)


Anyway - we will get told off soon :p

76d31508_c851d40e_Derail_1.jpeg
 

Pulp84

Registered User
Wow - they really want you to buy an RS car!

I was told at the event the whole point is to get people in standard and S models "aspirational" about getting in to an RS car in future years.

It works........;)
 

Pulp84

Registered User
No veeeight - BH won't tell us off.......we are discussing the RS4 that with current deals available on it is worth a look! ;)

Being off topic would have been suggesting the Golf R to the OP. But we haven't done that so we are safe.

Go for the RS car OP !!!
 
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Bristle Hound

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
I can tell you a B8 is very viable at the current time!

At a recent Audi event I drove the RS4. Fell in love with it regardless that it's soon to be replaced. I was probably a bit too "impressed" on the day and salesman rang me the following week and I stupidly asked him to do a finance quote on a in stock car in Sazuka (yes!!), privacy glass and heated seats. Standard otherwise (it actually has a good spec).

£4k Audi contribution, £4k dealer discount and £5k from me could have got one on my drive for £525 a month over 36 months! 5k miles P.A.

About £100 a month more than my S3 BUT it's another £5k cash in and I really couldn't justify it. I had only my S3 five months at the time which I had sunk £2k in to.

I had a sleepness night deciding to call my dealer back and say no :(
Bearing in mind I haven't collected my S3 saloon yet, those figures for the B8 RS4 are mightily interesting ... :eyebrows:
 

mfl

Registered User
My friend had a 2008 RS4 and very much regrets letting it go. He now has a Golf R (like the S3, but better to drive (tin hat on)) and it isn't a patch on his RS4.

No veeeight - BH won't tell us off.......we are discussing the RS4 that with current deals available on it is worth a look! ;)

Being off topic would have been suggesting the Golf R to the OP. But we haven't done that so we are safe.

Go for the RS car OP !!!

but it was already suggested the R is better the S3
 

Bristle Hound

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
No veeeight - BH won't tell us off.......we are discussing the RS4 that with current deals available on it is worth a look! ;)

Being off topic would have been suggesting the Golf R to the OP. But we haven't done that so we are safe.

Go for the RS car OP !!!
No :asskicking: needed in this thread. All relevant and on topic and no naughtyness going on that I can see :D

BUT I have seen you have mentioned the G word pulp ... :no: :p :D

Am I really that bad? :angrymod:
:laugh::laugh::laugh:
 

veeeight

I am a very pretty girl
VCDS Map User
Bearing in mind I haven't collected my S3 saloon yet, those figures for the B8 RS4 are mightily interesting ... :eyebrows:


The figures are very tempting ;)
Especially with the price of fuel the way it is :)
 

Pulp84

Registered User
The figures are very tempting ;)
Especially with the price of fuel the way it is :)

Went to watch Taken 3 tonight at the cinema and was totally distracted throughout daydreaming about that darn RS4 because of this thread. Says a lot about the film I guess.....

All was forgotten when I got in my S3 to come home though :) Seems even nippier with this cold air tonight and quite enjoyed the drive home :racer:
 

CraigI

Registered User
Went to watch Taken 3 tonight at the cinema and was totally distracted throughout daydreaming about that darn RS4 because of this thread. Says a lot about the film I guess.....

All was forgotten when I got in my S3 to come home though :) Seems even nippier with this cold air tonight and quite enjoyed the drive home :racer:


Go for it. Life is too short!
 

ndk83

Registered User
refreshing to see that the s3 subforum is not one giant circle jerk. However i am slightly disappointed. I guess i must have had delusions of grandeur.

What do you guys think of Stage 2 S3 vs RS4 then(thats my end goal anyway)? surely a modified S3 would inject alot more fun into the drive.
 

veeeight

I am a very pretty girl
VCDS Map User
refreshing to see that the s3 subforum is not one giant circle jerk.


Oh, it's had its moments, don't worry ;)


Re S3 Stage 2 - in terms of pure power and straight line performance, yes, the Stg2 will nail it. As a point and squirt fast small car, the S3 is a great package.

However, as an exciting prospect to drive, then perhaps the S3 isn't the place to start. There are a few compromised issues, such as Haldex, Steering setup, suspension setup, ride quality etc. which the RS4 trumps out of the box.

You can of course throw money at the S3 and replace many components to improve it - but it will not match the sheer sense of occasion and buzz when driving the RS4 - in addition of course to the sublime styling right down to the muscular haunches of the RS4.

If anyone has a V8 itch to scratch - these next few years is the time to do it, I suspect in this Eco friendly world, we wIll see less and less of these cars around.
 
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veeeight

I am a very pretty girl
VCDS Map User
@Pulp84 listen to the soundtrack ;)

Better than Viagra ;)

 

Garreth64

Registered User
I'm excited about picking up my new S3 next week, and I've chosen it for a combination of reasons including its performance, but also it is modern car with a great interior, good gadgets and technology, and relatively inexpensive to run.

I would have an RS4 in a heartbeat if money was no object, as you can't compare the occasion of driving a V8 to a turbo 4, but I wouldn't want to live with the running costs and potential costs if something went wrong on an older car out of warranty. Having said that, if you want it and can afford it, go for it, you only live once :)
 

Pulp84

Registered User
Beautiful isn't it?

Going to chat about this with Mrs Pulp later. Think a little dealer trip / test drive is on the cards.
 

mfl

Registered User
refreshing to see that the s3 subforum is not one giant circle jerk. However i am slightly disappointed. I guess i must have had delusions of grandeur.

What do you guys think of Stage 2 S3 vs RS4 then(thats my end goal anyway)? surely a modified S3 would inject alot more fun into the drive.

of course it would and if you find the suspension not to your liking, then nothing a set of good coilovers (or springs & dampers) plus ARBs wouldn't fix. I hope a C55 or RS4 would be 'better', I don't know about the Uk, but in Aus. a new C55 or RS4 is more than double the cost of a fully optioned S3.
 

veeeight

I am a very pretty girl
VCDS Map User
of course it would and if you find the suspension not to your liking, then nothing a set of good coilovers (or springs & dampers) plus ARBs wouldn't fix. I hope a C55 or RS4 would be 'better', I don't know about the Uk, but in Aus. a new C55 or RS4 is more than double the cost of a fully optioned S3.


And steering components and geometry, wishbones, Haldex, oh the list goes on ........
Then there's the turbo lag compared to the NA.

It's a bit telling, that during the recent snow episode in the UK, both the 8L and 8P sections had reports of how much fun the drivers had in their cars, but nothing on the 8V section. Of course this could be the owner demographics etc., but still. Cue a rash of reports now ;)


Sorry, my opinion obviously, but the S3 is not an exciting car to drive. Competent, yes, exciting, no.
 
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veeeight

I am a very pretty girl
VCDS Map User
Beautiful isn't it?

Going to chat about this with Mrs Pulp later. Think a little dealer trip / test drive is on the cards.


Don't do it, don't do it, think of the depreciation you'll lose on the S3 !!
Oh gawd, I should never have posted the second video!

BH, on the other hand, has yet to collect his S3 !!!
 
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verttigo

Registered User
I am not comparing the S3 with the B8 RS4 but with the B7 RS4 in sedan(saloon) form. And I am grateful for all responses and I am glad to see people here are unbiased which makes the discussion useful and pleasant to read.
 
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