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      09-04-2010, 08:52 AM   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M3 Montreal View Post
Base S4 starts at 51k here in Canada and base M3 at 71k... Not even close here.
But you know the S4 options are ridiculous.
Base to Base isn't an even playing field.

Similarly equipped an M3 Sedan comes to $80k for me, and an S4 $67,- 68kish
Narrows the difference to the order of $12k (granted fuel surcharge doesn't help the M3)
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      09-06-2010, 01:22 AM   #68
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I agree that you cannot go wrong with either car but at the end of the day you do not want to be sitting in your new car....and thinking about the other one. You should get what your heart tells you, I was in the same situation but realized when I compared every car I looked to M3 and was never quite satisfied.

You can get a turbo charged 6 cylinder is loads of different cars so that is really not that special (even if there is more torque down low).

Also, at Audi dealerships I found myself having to travel to the back of the car to find out if it was an S4 or a A4 with a S-Line package...and if you have to travel to the back of the car to find out if you spent an extra $20k, then something is wrong there.

As far as transmissions go, I would say join the dying breed of manual drivers and truly experience a sports car.
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      09-06-2010, 03:01 AM   #69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SFPunjabi View Post
You can get a turbo charged 6 cylinder is loads of different cars so that is really not that special (even if there is more torque down low).
You can get a V8 in a lot of different cars too so I'm not sure what you're trying to get at. Exclusivity?



Quote:
Originally Posted by SFPunjabi View Post
Also, at Audi dealerships I found myself having to travel to the back of the car to find out if it was an S4 or a A4 with a S-Line package...and if you have to travel to the back of the car to find out if you spent an extra $20k, then something is wrong there.
Having experienced previous model A4s and S4s, its quite obvious just by sitting in the car and starting it up that its not an A4 S-line. When you start actually driving it the rest of the difference become much more apparent. To the non-car enthusiast, an M3 looks pretty much like a 335 too.

In the end, I think the M3 is a better drivers car while the S4 is probably more than enough for a fun daily driver. It all depends on the particular needs of the buyer.
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      09-07-2010, 08:23 PM   #70
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I've now owned my S4 for nearly 4 months and have just under 6K on it. I absolutely love the car. The styling, the power, and the electronics. Furthermore, I rarely see other S4s on the road. That being said if I did not need AWD, I would be driving an M3 instead. It simply is a more special car. The s4 will run circles around a 335 though.
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      09-07-2010, 11:32 PM   #71
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SFPunjabi View Post
I agree that you cannot go wrong with either car but at the end of the day you do not want to be sitting in your new car....and thinking about the other one. You should get what your heart tells you, I was in the same situation but realized when I compared every car I looked to M3 and was never quite satisfied.

You can get a turbo charged 6 cylinder is loads of different cars so that is really not that special (even if there is more torque down low).

Also, at Audi dealerships I found myself having to travel to the back of the car to find out if it was an S4 or a A4 with a S-Line package...and if you have to travel to the back of the car to find out if you spent an extra $20k, then something is wrong there.

As far as transmissions go, I would say join the dying breed of manual drivers and truly experience a sports car.

The S4 is a supercharged V6.
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      09-08-2010, 09:41 AM   #72
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nal13 View Post
The s4 will run circles around a 335 though.
How so?

If your answer has the word "AWD" in it, don't bother posting...
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      09-09-2010, 12:26 PM   #73
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adc View Post
How so?

If your answer has the word "AWD" in it, don't bother posting...
Faster in acceleration, faster on the track, more standard options, more exclusive, better interior, although I do think the exterior is a wash, and when you price out a similarly optioned S4 to a 335i coupe the prices are nearly identical.

The M3 on the other hand is a different beast and will out accelerate and beat the S4 on a track any day.

I really believe that S4 slots in between the M3 and 335i perfectly.
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      09-09-2010, 05:02 PM   #74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nal13 View Post
Faster in acceleration, faster on the track, more standard options, more exclusive, better interior, although I do think the exterior is a wash, and when you price out a similarly optioned S4 to a 335i coupe the prices are nearly identical.
There is a big difference between "running circles around a 335" and being slightly faster - which the S4 is, just.

You cannot compare prices between S4 sedan and 335i Coupe - the S4 is definitely more expensive than a similarly equipped 335i sedan. Interior is a wash as far as I am concerned, because I do like the aesthetics of the Audi interior better, I find that the principal interface (seats, controls, wheel) are better in the 335 (at least for me).

More exclusive? You mean, it sells less? Duh, since it costs more and doesn't have the same cachet as the BMW...

So apples to apples, the S4 is a direct competitor of the 335i - no ifs buts or maybes as far as I'm concerned - I haven't seen any evidence to the contrary so far. A darn well executed competitor - anybody looking at a 335i should give it serious consideration.
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      09-09-2010, 09:07 PM   #75
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adc View Post
There is a big difference between "running circles around a 335" and being slightly faster - which the S4 is, just.

You cannot compare prices between S4 sedan and 335i Coupe - the S4 is definitely more expensive than a similarly equipped 335i sedan. Interior is a wash as far as I am concerned, because I do like the aesthetics of the Audi interior better, I find that the principal interface (seats, controls, wheel) are better in the 335 (at least for me).

More exclusive? You mean, it sells less? Duh, since it costs more and doesn't have the same cachet as the BMW...

So apples to apples, the S4 is a direct competitor of the 335i - no ifs buts or maybes as far as I'm concerned - I haven't seen any evidence to the contrary so far. A darn well executed competitor - anybody looking at a 335i should give it serious consideration.
Exclusive. 3000 sent to the US a year. I waited 4 months for mine. As for the pricing a similarly optioned 335i coupe was actually more expensive!!

S4 (2011 mine was a 2010 pricing increased by about a grand)
Base: 46,600
Brillant Black Paint 0
Leather and Alcantara interior 0
19 in titanium wheels 1050
Navigation with parking sensors and camera 2550
B & O 850
Sports diff 1050
Std: ipod/cold weather package/alarm/satelite radio/ blue tooth
Service contract 735 (covers 4 years 50K service like BMW)
Total 52,910

335i coupe (2011)
Base 42,650
Jet Black paint 0
Cold weather 900
M package 3000 (tighter suspension and 19 in rims both of which the S4 has)
Premium Pkg 2650 (all things in this package are std on the S4)
H K stereo 875
Satelite radio 350
Park control 750
Anti theft 400
Nav 2100
BMW care 0
Total 55800

IDENTICAL OPTIONS. The 335i comes in nearly 3K more. The 335i is about to be replaced within a year and is slower in every single performance category. Guess your paying a lot for that cachet!

The 335i is competition is price only. Performance competition is the 335is. The 335is was made to slot in between the 335i and the M3. Thus my point is made, the 335is is competition for the S4 and the S4 slots nicely in between the 335i and the M3. Again I'm a true car guy and the M3 rocks!!!! If it was AWD i would have one. The only reason I don't is because I live in a snowy climate and I sometimes have to go to work for emergencies before the roads are plowed. Snow tires alone won't do it, I need AWD.
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      09-09-2010, 10:18 PM   #76
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nal13 View Post
Exclusive. 3000 sent to the US a year. I waited 4 months for mine. As for the pricing a similarly optioned 335i coupe was actually more expensive!!
But the S4 is a sedan - that's where the difference comes from. The 335i sedan starts $2k cheaper than the 335i coupe. So here is the math, again:

S4 Premium Plus $46,600
MMI/Nav $2550
Titanium Sport Pack $1050
B&O sound $850
Sport diff $1100
Leather $1000
Total $53,150

335i sedan $40,600
Premium $2,650
M Sport $3,750
Cold weather $1,150
Nav $2,100
Sat $350
iPod $400
Total $52,125

For 2011, a similarly equipped 335i sedan is $1k cheaper than an S4 - maybe it was the same price for 2010 but in any case it's not more expensive.

Quote:
The 335i is competition is price only. Performance competition is the 335is.
Dude, you're talking about minute differences in acceleration between the S4 and 335i - they are within the same performance category. You may believe otherwise, but you're wrong. The M3 by comparison is in a different class to both of them.

And since the 335is is coupe-only, you can only compare it to the S5, not the S4. (Besides, I personally think the 335is is the worst deal in the BMW line-up).


I'm not going to argue against you wanting or needing AWD - everyone makes their own choice. I only took exception to you declaring that the S4 runs circles around the 335i - which is patently not true.
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Last edited by adc; 09-09-2010 at 10:55 PM.
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      09-10-2010, 03:45 AM   #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adc View Post
Dude, you're talking about minute differences in acceleration between the S4 and 335i - they are within the same performance category. You may believe otherwise, but you're wrong. The M3 by comparison is in a different class to both of them.
And yet everyone here constantly compares the S4 and M3 and then brags about how much better the M3 is. Well, no shit! I am glad you put this out there because most people here can't grasp this.
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      09-10-2010, 07:24 AM   #78
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So i just did a search to find the best test numbers for a M3 sedan, S4, and 335i sedan.

M3
Car and Driver
0-60 in 4.1
1/4 12.6
Skid pad 0.95g

S4
Road and Track
0-60 in 4.5
1/4 12.9
Skid pad 0.96

335i M sport
Road and Track
0-60 in 4.7
1/4 13.3
skid 0.91

The best times for the 335i and S4 were in the same comparison test. It should be noted that the S4 beat the 335i by over a 1.5 seconds on the track which is an eternity. Based on these numbers (the best published numbers I could find for all three cars), you can not call the 335i direct competition to the s4. The s4 was actually closer to the M3 to the 1/4 then the 335i to the s4. Furthermore the S4 pulled the most g out of the bunch.

I still am not comparing the S4 to the m3 as I still believe that it is a better car. But come on! The 335i is not competition for the s4. The s4 slots nicely between the two. And the fact that it has been pointed out that a similarly optioned 335i sports sedan is more then a s4 really shows how BMW is starting to nickle and dime there consumers for everything. I guess your paying for that cachet.

All three cars are great. But the 335i is as much competition to the S4 as the S4 is to the M3.
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      09-10-2010, 07:30 AM   #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MERCSUk153 View Post
Sorry but your price comparison is not correct.
1. If you want to compare like cars than that is fine but then you have to not only compare 4 door sedan than you have to compare Xdrive also.
$42,600 base
Absolutely not - AWD is to be avoided at all costs.

No, I'm serious - I'm coming from the Audi side and for my performance fun car, AWD absolutely has no reason to be included. The S4 would be a much better proposition to me if it were RWD and 200 lbs lighter.

Quote:
2. Then you took out all the options like HK Sound,Satellite Radio, Park Control and Anti theft which is standard on the S4.
No, I didn't - M Sport automatically excludes Park Control (different bumpers). But since M sport is in fact a regular Sport Package with some pretty bits tacked on (suspension is the same), I'd advise anybody to go with Sport Package, PDC and perhaps the style 190 19" rims, and it'd still be cheaper than the M Sport pack.

Everything else was included - Anti-theft, Sat, HK. Why don't you build it yourself and see.

Quote:
Otherwise I think it would be wiser to compare the 335i coupe to the S4 as IMO if I am going to buy a coupe than I would buy the 335i or M3 and if I am going to buy a 4door sedan than I would buy the S4.
That's your prerogative of course, you can compare anything you like and buy anything you want.

But even in the M3 world, the sedan is by far the better deal.
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      09-10-2010, 07:58 AM   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nal13 View Post
So i just did a search to find the best test numbers for a M3 sedan, S4, and 335i sedan.

M3
Car and Driver
0-60 in 4.1
1/4 12.6
Skid pad 0.95g

S4
Road and Track
0-60 in 4.5
1/4 12.9
Skid pad 0.96

335i M sport
Road and Track
0-60 in 4.7
1/4 13.3
skid 0.91

The best times for the 335i and S4 were in the same comparison test. It should be noted that the S4 beat the 335i by over a 1.5 seconds on the track which is an eternity. Based on these numbers (the best published numbers I could find for all three cars), you can not call the 335i direct competition to the s4.
Or you can look at these track times: http://vir.ssmoparmuscle.com/
I bet you a good case of beer these are much closer to the real world.
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      09-10-2010, 08:52 AM   #81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adc View Post
Or you can look at these track times: http://vir.ssmoparmuscle.com/
I bet you a good case of beer these are much closer to the real world.
I've seen all these tests in C&D. You can't go by these times because there are so many variables including temperature, drivers, etc. For example look at the cayman S. 4 second difference on two different days? Also the 911 turbo and carerra S ran almost identical times, and both were slower then the M3? Saying a carerra S is as fast as a 911 turbo is like saying a 335i without the sports package is as fast as an M3 coupe with the competition package. Also I doubt a 135i is going to be 3 seconds slower then a 335i. Just doesn't make sense.

Real world driving: 911 turbo > M3 > S4 > 335i > S5

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      09-10-2010, 09:34 PM   #82
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M3 vs S4
M3 vs STI
make it stop...........
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      09-10-2010, 10:36 PM   #83
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nal13 View Post
For example look at the cayman S. 4 second difference on two different days?
You're not paying attention perhaps - the Cayman S times are from different model years - the 2006 model is very different from the 2010 model.

The 2007 335i lapped faster than the 2007 RS4 - so yes, I can believe it's very close to the current S4. VIR is a very fast track so who knows, any advantage the S4 might have putting the power down in tight corners may not come into play.

Quote:
Also the 911 turbo and carerra S ran almost identical times, and both were slower then the M3? Saying a carerra S is as fast as a 911 turbo is like saying a 335i without the sports package is as fast as an M3 coupe with the competition package.
Perhaps not of one is a 2007 997.1 and the other a 2010 997.2 - also depends on transmission, options etc.

Quote:
Also I doubt a 135i is going to be 3 seconds slower then a 335i. Just doesn't make sense.
You haven't driven them, I have - the 135i understeers like a pig, people try to drive over this limitation which overheats the 215 front tires which in turn makes it understeer more... and it simply kills the lap times.



Look, what you need to understand is that these various tests prove that the cars are close - it's a give and take. One is faster in one test or circumstance, the other in another test or circumstance - in the real world, if you snooze for a fraction of a second, you'll see his taillights.

I will deliver what is my main criticism of the 335i - and incidentally the absolute main reason IMO why the S4 edges it in certain tests or situations - the runflats. I've run a 335i for 2 years - stock, chipped in all sorts of ways - and ran it hard both on the street and track. As soon as I changed the stupid runflats it became another car - as simple as that.

Audi chose extremely well how to equip the S4 in terms of suspension and tires, and it shows. The rear sport diff is icing on the cake, and yet another point where the 335i looses ground with its open diff. But it's heavier, which is why the 335i can still do battle with it.

So yeah, anybody looking at a 335i should take a long, good hard look at the S4 - I would not be surprised if they chose the S4.


The M3 on the other hand... is a different animal altogether. I fell in love with it not during a limited test drive on crowded DC area roads, but rather at Watkins Glen when I snagged up one of BMW's press cars. I drove that car within an inch of its life on some very challenging, rain slicked country roads and it simply blew my mind. Not in the dry, but in the wet - that's where it shone. A special car without a doubt.

And even though it deploys the 400BHP remarkably well, it's still not set up for maximum grip from the factory - for a 400BHP RWD car, 265 section rears aren't very big. It's set up this way to be progressive and approachable and at least for now I think I'll keep it this way - lap times be damned.


I'm not going to continue arguing these things - everybody is free to believe anything they want. The information is out there and so are the cars themselves - everybody should test drive them and make a decision.
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      09-11-2010, 02:43 PM   #84
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^^^Agreed. About everything.
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      09-20-2010, 07:01 PM   #85
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I was in a similar situation but I made my choice already... which is now leading to me purchasing my 1st bmw.

I currently own an Audi, and I didn't think anything could turn me away from the quad ring ... until they jacked up the RS5 (at least imo). I had such high hopes for that car and it's inability to meet my expectations and who knows maybe many other Audi loyals expectations completely turned me towards the path of purchasing an M3 instead.

lol my mind tried to twist the competition so much to make me go with the Audi instead, but deep down I knew that the M3 was ultimately what I wanted, performance wise and just for overall enjoyment of driving.
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      09-20-2010, 07:55 PM   #86
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neon01 View Post
Be warned, this will be long and very detailed.

For background, I'm currently driving a '09 335i coupe, which I do love, but now that I'm able to afford a little more car, I've got the bug again. I'd also like something with 4 doors to make the change really worth it too.

So I spent the entire weekend test driving a few M3s and S4s back to back to back to get as much experience as I can. I'm going to give an account of both, but keep in mind these are my opinions, and I'm not implying that they are necessarily correct. Don't be offended if I've said something in contradiction to the way you feel.
First, the M3 sedan:

Interior: Quality of materials is top notch, everything laid out perfectly, despite the somewhat "austere" appearance. Part of this could be that I'm accustomed to my 335i, and it's essentially identical in form and function. What few minor differences that existed were generally positive (like the added bluetooth functionality on 2011.5 models, the center armrest extender, and other bits). The one thing I didn't care for was the soft touch plastic trim around the shifter. I actually like the aluminum in my 335i better, and it found me wishing that that piece had received the same trim as the dash, since over time the plain black plastic will probably show wear quickly. Seats couldn't be more comfortable. Grip you and swaddle you at the same time. Just incredible. Back seat was comfortable too, just enough room without being too big. My biggest gripe is that they don't have Coral Red for the interior. I thought I wanted Fox Red until I saw it in person. Now I don't care for it. It's more like brick, really. Too much brown for my tastes. I'm not sure what that leaves me with. I guess black, but that seems so mundane. Hate silver, and I've never seen Bamboo. It seemed that the coupe seats actually felt better than the sedan, but I guess that doesn't make sense, since they're the same exact seats, right? I don't like the fact that they essentially make you purchase the hi-fi sound system for a whopping $2k now, since the base system just sucks..bad. Wish they had a L7 system for $800ish like the 3er.

Exterior: What's not to like. It's an M3. A perfect 10 imo. It's got that mean, aggressive look (especially the comp package that I'd plan on ordering) that I love.

Handling: Wow, just wow. It was hard for me to get a good idea of what aspect of the M Drive was really making the difference (power, EDC, steering), but when you set that car up for spirited driving, it just feels like heaven going through the twisties. Oddly enough, the coupe I drove seemed to feel better than the sedan, though they weren't back to back, so its hard for me to assert that the difference is real. Anyone have input on the comparison between coupe and sedan?

Transmission (M-DCT): Incredible. _Insert other superlative_. The only fault I could find with the system was that it didn't like to downshift in D mode. Even in D-5, downshifts required substantial throttle application to occur. This is not at all the case with my 335i. I'm sure this is to pump up the EPA figures...sadly. I don't know that there's anything I can do about it either, unfortunately.

Engine: The sound is pure bliss. I could literally listen to it all day long. Unfortunately, the power plant doesn't exactly scratch me where I itch. After driving my 335i, the power delivery of the M3 just isn't immediate enough for me. I know it's actually fast, it just doesn't _feel_ fast until I get it at least 4-5k rpm. The power and torque are definitely there, I just had to work a lot harder to find them than in the 335i. Luckily the M-DCT makes the job much easier. I know many have said it, but the lack of torque in the lower rpm band (below 3k rpm) is really a detractor for me. When this is coupled with the transmission's resistance to downshifting unless you really goose it (in D mode), this definitely makes the car feel a little less than the supercar than it is. I definitely feel like I could learn to drive this car in such a way that it would feel really fast all the time (i.e. keep revs up much more than I do now), but it would probably result in terrible gas mileage. Then again, it'd be an aural delight.

Overall: The package was great, I truly loved it. Handling was extremely crisp and controllable, the engine sound was ecstasy, and the interior was comfortable and solid. However, if I'm honest, the lack of torque did dampen the experience for me. I was also put off by the fact that I couldn't stand Fox Red (which leaves me limited interior color options), and the _perceived_ difference between the sedan and the coupe. For whatever reason, the coupe just _felt_ better. I'd love it if someone came in here and (honestly) told me I was nuts, and that they both should feel virtually identical while driving.

Now the S4 (this will have some comments referring to the M3 for comparison, since it occurred afterward):

Interior: I used to think Audi was far and away BMW's better in interiors, and there are quite a few things I _do_ like better about the B8 S4 interior than the M3, but it's certainly not so cut and dry. The overall quality of materials in the Audi definitely felt subpar. For example, there is a large piece of silver plastic trim that surrounds the MMI display that looks like it's something that should have been rejected from an Infinity. This piece should match the material in the inlays (aluminum, carbon fiber, etc). Also, little things like the complete lack of armrest pads on the doors in the Audi made it feel a little cheaper and less comfortable. On the other hand, many things about the Audi trounced the BMW, like the seat aesthetics (the black and red nappa leather seats with red contrast stitching for seats and steering wheel was to die for), the info vie w on the gauge cluster is multi-color and conveys much more information, the little dials for volume and selection on the wheel are very ergonomically pleasing, the tach and speedo that sweep from 6 oclock position instead of the standard 7:30 position like a Ferrari, the interior lighting scheme is a nice cool white/red instead of a (imo) garish orange/red, and others. The seats in the Audi were very nice (better than my 335i), but I'd put them just a peg below the M3 in comfort, plus they don't have the adjustable bolsters like the M3 (a trifle, but nonetheless). I didn't like the diminutive second cupholder in the Audi, but I do like that the first one is deep and located in the center console, not on the dash. Still, have to give the edge to BMW for the cupholders. I missed the small storage compartment under the armrest in the S4. I kept trying to "open" the armrest, as it feels thick enough that it should open. Also unusual since I recall my 2000 S4 had an armrest that would open. I did like the fact that it was height adjustable. A major letdown in the S4 was the height of the door armrest. I felt that it was too low to use for anything but the lowest seat height setting. Maybe it's just me. Also, it could use a thicker steering wheel. I liked the MMI system a lot, and the B&O sound system was great (though it could really use an EQ), but I think I'd give the nod to the BMW Nav system/interface. After getting used to using the Idrive system in my '09 335i, it's hard to beat the efficiency you can achieve with the 7-button system on the BMW. The Audi system was nice, but I think even with a lot of use I'd probably have to look down to find most of the buttons that are farther from the knob. The glove compartment in the S4 was nice and spacious, but seemed to hit my knees when I sat in the passenger seat even with the seat moderately far back. The rear of the S4 was very nice, and had little elastic map pockets on the front seatbacks (something conspicuously absent on the M3). I also missed the M3 (and 335i) interior "club" lighting. Maybe I just couldn't see it though as it wasn't fully dark yet - does the S4 have ambient lighting in the door areas like BMW?

Exterior: The S4 is one classy car. It's the best looking S4 to date, by FAR. This certainly says a lot. However, aside from the cool LED daytime running lights, it just doesn't have the "mean" factor that the M3 has. It looks more proportionate as a sedan than the M3 does though, I think. I like the aluminum mirrors and the rear of the S4 definitely looks better than the M3. From some of the other angles though, it appears a little plain compared to the M3. I would have liked some fender flares over the somewhat slab sided A4, but I guess they reserve those for the RS-series only. Just a few more cues to the fact that you're getting more than an A4 with the S-line package would be nice. The wheels were the biggest weakness IMO. The standard split 5-spoke on the prestige package are a little ho-hum, and the Ti "sweep" 5-spokes if you get the $400 Ti Sports package looked dreadful in photos (though I admit they might be better in person).

Handling: The S4 I drove did not have Audi Drive Select or even the sport differential, so this may change if those are added, but I really felt that the S4 handled extremely well. Actually, much better than I thought it was going to. It did resist rotation a little when I really pushed it, but it took a lot to get to that point. It felt so planted and surefooted that it was extremely confidence-inspiring in the twisties I took. Didn't feel quite as _good_ as the M3 dynamically, but felt like it would handle a short spirited drive with just as little drama and just as much fun as the M3. On the track, I'm confident the S4 would do very well, though it might not feel as good as the M3 while doing so. The ride in the S4 was perhaps a touch more rough (again, without ADS) than the M3 in comfort or normal settings, and maybe on par with the M3's sport EDC setting.

Transmission: Loved the S-tronic about as much as the M-DCT. It felt a little closer to a true automatic since I didn't get the slight feeling of a slipping clutch at low speeds like the M3, but it felt superb when up/downshifting while moving along. Shifts were clean and extremely quick, just like the DCT in the M3. Auto mode left something to be desired, as it was also saddled with a logic that demanded short shifts at 1500 rpm (I'm told you can adjust this if you use the dynamic setting with ADS, but again, this car didn't have it). Just like the M3, you really needed to get into it in order to wake the car up. Also like the M3, the auto mode was smooth as butter on accel and decel. A major gripe of mine with the S4 was the "farting" noise that accompanies upshifts under heavy throttle. I'm told this is normal and is a byproduct of extreme rev reduction by the ECU to rev match for the next gear. It doesn't sound _that_ bad, but I'm sure I'll have to answer questions about it any number of times when I carry passengers. Unfortunately it gets louder with an aftermarket exhaust too (which the S4 could really use). Another gripe I had was that the S4 doesn't indicate which gear it's in when in Auto mode, making downshifts for passing something of a best guess.

Engine: Ohh, lord. Man, did Ingolstadt do this one right. _If_ I have anything bad to say about this engine, it's that it isn't loud enough. Sadly, I'm not sure I could ever put an aftermarket exhaust on for fear of louder "farts". The engine in the S4 is just fantastic. Pulls HARD at all points of the tach; there is _always_ power when you want it. Until I drove this, I actually thought my 335i had very little lag. In truth, I still do, for a turbo, but this is truly lag-less. The only other nit is that the power band seems to flatten after about 6k rpm, which effectively reduces your redline even further. Still, with the flat torque curve on the S4, that's at least 4500 _very_ useable rpms. I've read that some tuners are opening up that power from 6k up too, so there may be more to the story eventually.

Overall: The S4 does about 95% of what I want it to do extremely well. It feels fast (much faster than I expected), it handles well, it feels very planted and secure, it has a great interior with few faults and a phenomenal aesthetic, it has a very smart looking exterior, and it can do everything I could conceivably want it to do with aplomb. Unfortunately it didn't give me the emotional connection I got with the M3. I never felt like I was driving a $60k sports car, I felt like I was driving a very fast and sporty looking luxury car.

The decision: Unfortunately, after some real reflection and a lot of test driving, I'm still not sure which car I'm going to go for. I really hate to admit it, but I'm actually somewhat biased toward the BMW since I've been a BMW guy for the last 6 years and they've always treated me right. The last Audi I owned I loved to death (2000 S4 2.7 T), but it did leave me with a big repair bill on account of failed turbos, and I always felt like the ugly duckling when I would show up to the DC metro area BMW car club meets with my S4 (they met far more regularly than the Audi group at the time). I know that the S4 has come a LONG way since then, and I shouldn't let this affect my decision, but if I'm honest to myself, it does a little. Despite everyone saying that the S4 is a competitor to the 335i, and the M3 is more competition to the RS4, I disagree. It may be that an M3 could spank an S4 at the track, but in my experience, both handle much better than my 335i, and both have similar features and benefits for a _roughly_ similar cost. My brain is telling me to just forget the M3 since the daily drivability (read: torque) of the S4 beats the M3 pretty substantially. And I probably spend 70% of my miles commuting, so that's a strong selling point for the Audi. Plus it has AWD and an interior aesthetic that I'm going to appreciate more than the M3 on a day to day basis. However, at the end of the day, I'm not getting into an M3, and the emotional attachment of the M3 just won't allow me to move on and forget it. Right now I'm about 60/40 in favor of the S4, but I can't seem to truly make up my mind. Oh well, I suppose I could have worse things to worry about.

Any thoughts?

I think you deserve some kind of award if you read all of this, btw.
get the s4 its a nice car. id prefer the rs5 rs4 to any s cars. the rs attempts to be in the M league the s is not in that class. more the 335 class. in fact when i bought my 335 i watched and you can too the comparison and race between the s4 and the the 335. guess who won? you got it the 335. so by comparing the s whatever to the M is like comparing a 3 series to an M.
have a nice day and let me know what toyota you wound up with
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      09-20-2010, 08:50 PM   #87
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobbyd1961 View Post
get the s4 its a nice car. id prefer the rs5 rs4 to any s cars. the rs attempts to be in the M league the s is not in that class. more the 335 class. in fact when i bought my 335 i watched and you can too the comparison and race between the s4 and the the 335. guess who won? you got it the 335. so by comparing the s whatever to the M is like comparing a 3 series to an M.
have a nice day and let me know what toyota you wound up with
Uh, you're a few weeks late to the party, apparently. I bought a 2009 M3 Sedan about 2 weeks ago.
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      01-03-2012, 03:15 PM   #88
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The main reason I bought a 335xi and not a s4 was because the price was wayyy more, knocking on the door to the m3 price range. I can't remember specifically what the price was exactly but priced out to how I wanted it, the s4 came out to around 70g's, and my 335 was 57 loaded. And I also did bmw select, which audi does not offer, so my monthly payments are a joke at $305 a month. If I had the money there would be an m3 in my garage, not an s4. Without a doubt my man go with the m3.


Edit: The guy at the audi dealer was not trying to help me at all in knocking the price down for the s4. After I bought my 335i I returned my leased a4 to the dealership and told the guy I bought the bmw instead because they gave me a way better price on the car, the dealer had the most angry expression on his face lol
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Last edited by BMW6Speed; 01-03-2012 at 03:21 PM. Reason: wanted to add something
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