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Could’ve Used a V-8? Nah.
MotorTrend
October 14 2014
By: Ron Kiino


Around the time my predecessors at Motor Trend were testing the 2004 Audi S4 – pitting it against the Mercedes-Benz C32 AMG in a head-to-battle battle in which the Audi handily triumphed – I was driving it for another car mag, in a comparison against the Benz as well as the BMW M3. While both the C32 and M3 came with high-output six-cylinder engines, the S4 boasted a rip-roaring, naturally aspirated 4.2-liter, 340-horsepower V-8 – unheard of for the day in a compact luxury sedan, certainly one paired with a six-speed manual and all-wheel drive.

Full article available at link.
 

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Maybe it is just the images but does the HVAC portion of the center stack overhang the cup holders? If it does, I wonder if that overhang will become an obstruction when trying to remove drinks (especially American-sized ones)?
 

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I have had 2 A4's before I bought my 2011 Chevy Cruze LTZ. The first was a 1998 A4 2.8 Quatrro & the second was 2002 A4 3.0 Quattro. I loved those cars dearly I liked the clean understated look and the interiors were the best in my opinion of any other entry level luxury car at the time. I am seriosly considering this new S3 sedan for my next car. I do not like the current generation A4 as it has grew and lost its identitiy somewhere. This A3 reminds me of a mix of styling features from my 1998 A4 and the 2002 A4. Very Nice! If you are going to do a smaller than ATS Caddy GM, follow audi's strategy and do not compromise with FWD only make it FWD/AWD or RWD/AWD. Loaded example for under 40k.
 

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S3 is a killer. Price and performance are phenomenal.

A3/A4 and CLA/C are two interesting approaches to the entry-level segment.

I wonder how BMW will treat the 1-series? A RWD-only sub-ATS would totally murder in this segment, performance-wise... it leaves me to wonder how Cadillac will approach the segment, too.

I think BMW will follow Audi's strategy.

I think if the sub-ATS is FWD, it will follow the same strategy. If it's RWD, I think it might bifurcate the segment like CLA/C.

I can't see Alpha being very successful as a 175" car...

I really like the S3. I'm not an Audi person, but this is on the short list for my next car...
Where is it compared to the Denali, S-Class, CT6, MKC, AWD C63, and ATS-V? Did I miss anything?

Or are the Cadillacs off the list because they're moving 30 jobs to New York? ;)
 

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Maybe it is just the images but does the HVAC portion of the center stack overhang the cup holders? If it does, I wonder if that overhang will become an obstruction when trying to remove drinks (especially American-sized ones)?
Audi's button layout by the shifter in the A4 at least is ridiculous. When it's in park, you have zero access to the bottom portion of the center stack.

I want to see how their new Virtual ****pit layout in the TT plays out in the rest of their lineup...

I suspect it'll be very interesting. It looks cool but spartan.
 

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Where is it compared to the Denali, S-Class, CT6, MKC, AWD C63, and ATS-V? Did I miss anything?
Well, since you asked and genuinely seem to care:

1.) M235i xDrive
2.) S3
3.) C400 4MATIC
4.) 335i xDrive
5.) GLA45 AMG
6.) MKC 2.3 Black Label
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7.) Future LaCrosse, depending on how it looks.

Denali and S are too big. Cadillac is off my list

What's replacing the Honda?
 

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Launch control is doing wonders for this thing. Along with the DSG, of course.

Any way, I like what I see here, but I can't help but wonder if it's worth the premium over a Golf R. Also, I'm curious to see BMW's foray into this segment. With it being FWD based, it's sure to be AWD, and if gets an M model, I could see it being quite lethal.
 

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Maybe it is just the images but does the HVAC portion of the center stack overhang the cup holders? If it does, I wonder if that overhang will become an obstruction when trying to remove drinks (especially American-sized ones)?
If this is a concern, perhaps you should be shopping for a vehicle other than an S3. I suggest checking out the Town and Country.
 

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I wonder how BMW will treat the 1-series? A RWD-only sub-ATS would totally murder in this segment, performance-wise... it leaves me to wonder how Cadillac will approach the segment, too.
BMW will give the 1-Series the MINI platform treatment, i.e. it will be FWD as shown in some spy pics tjhat were on Autoblog a while ago. I do agree with you that a RWD Cadillac on this size class would be killer; hope GM/Cadillac have the balls to do it and take the heat from the somewhat less efficient packaging a RWD car would suffer compared to its FWD rivals.
 

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Maybe it is just the images but does the HVAC portion of the center stack overhang the cup holders? If it does, I wonder if that overhang will become an obstruction when trying to remove drinks (especially American-sized ones)?
Such and American thing to worry about, LOL. We love our Big Gulps!!!

I have had 2 A4's before I bought my 2011 Chevy Cruze LTZ. The first was a 1998 A4 2.8 Quatrro & the second was 2002 A4 3.0 Quattro. I loved those cars dearly I liked the clean understated look and the interiors were the best in my opinion of any other entry level luxury car at the time. I am seriosly considering this new S3 sedan for my next car. I do not like the current generation A4 as it has grew and lost its identitiy somewhere. This A3 reminds me of a mix of styling features from my 1998 A4 and the 2002 A4. Very Nice!
We loved our old S4, put 185k on it before we traded it in. Great interior, great balance of power/handling, and the AWD was worked wonders on the snow and ice. Audi's S line is to me the perfect compromise between Sport and drive-ability on a daily basis.

I want to see how their new Virtual ****pit layout in the TT plays out in the rest of their lineup...

I suspect it'll be very interesting. It looks cool but spartan.
Me too, the next step in evolution.

What a terrible interior. I can not believe that CUE gets trashed and this gets praised.
I prefer the older centerstack layouts, the newer ones don't do it for me. Of course if you go up a step or two they are still extremely nice.

If this is a concern, perhaps you should be shopping for a vehicle other than an S3. I suggest checking out the Town and Country.
LOL! Big drink in a little car......
 

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While is an impressive machine, Playing at over $40,000.00 is rather steep for such a small car based on a FWD proposition, there is a lot of very great cars one can have for that sort of dough.
One simply has to love it to buy it, its definitely not a rational purchase.
 

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Explain.

I've lived with CUE for a year and a half. I have had zero problems or complaints with it. In fact, I love it.
Explanation- Both cars I've experienced it in- an ATS and XTS were absolutely dreadful. Poor layout, overwrought styling of the system itself, laggy response, complicated and unintuitive controls. I really can't put into words how bad I think it is. It's a deal breaker for me. Even though the ATS drove fantastic, I wouldn't own as long it has CUE in it's current state. Nor with the current powertrains for that matter, but that's a different subject.

Elegant minimalism sounds a lot like fanboi justification. I get that Audi, BMW, etc. might have better brand image but call it like it is.
Well, calling elegant minimalism fanboi justification sounds like fanboi justification. And for what's it worth, I'm not an Audi fanboi. I simply give credit where credit is due. Their interiors for the last several model years have been knockouts. In both design and materials, they are right up there with the best in business, and there's LOTS of automotive press praise that agrees. Mercedes has nice materials, but their interior designs are generally stark. Their new ones are great, however. BMW has nice interiors, nothing amazing, but nice.

Most American attempts at a luxury or premium interior result in a cornucopia of cheap finishes and overwrought design. See Impala, Lincolns, Cadillac to a lesser extent.

While is an impressive machine, Playing at over $40,000.00 is rather steep for such a small car based on a FWD proposition, there is a lot of very great cars one can have for that sort of dough.
One simply has to love it to buy it, its definitely not a rational purchase.
It starts 7K cheaper than the CLA45 AMG and puts up similar numbers to the similarly priced Chevy SS while offering AWD. I think it has plenty of merit to justify the pricing.
 

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Explanation- Both cars I've experienced it in- an ATS and XTS were absolutely dreadful. Poor layout, overwrought styling of the system itself, laggy response, complicated and unintuitive controls. I really can't put into words how bad I think it is. It's a deal breaker for me. Even though the ATS drove fantastic, I wouldn't own as long it has CUE in it's current state. Nor with the current powertrains for that matter, but that's a different subject.
That is your opinion, he lives with it every day.

Well, calling elegant minimalism fanboi justification sounds like fanboi justification. And for what's it worth, I'm not an Audi fanboi. I simply give credit where credit is due. Their interiors for the last several model years have been knockouts. In both design and materials, they are right up there with the best in business, and there's LOTS of automotive press praise that agrees. Mercedes has nice materials, but their interior designs are generally stark. Their new ones are great, however. BMW has nice interiors, nothing amazing, but nice.
Really, you are going to pull that here? Calling people fanboi's?
Most American attempts at a luxury or premium interior result in a cornucopia of cheap finishes and overwrought design. See Impala, Lincolns, Cadillac to a lesser extent.



It starts 7K cheaper than the CLA45 AMG and puts up similar numbers to the similarly priced Chevy SS while offering AWD. I think it has plenty of merit to justify the pricing.
Impala has no pretensions of being a Luxury car, and calling something that probably competes with the WRX STi a Chevrolet SS alternative simply means you are grappling at the straws to find things to say.
 
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