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Mac

Non-Shouty/Argumentative Discussion About the RS3

73 posts in this topic

Firstly, is this even possible? Looking at the threads in the RS forum made me wonder if we'd been invaded by bedroom keyboard warriors.

I was seriously considering ordering the RS3 when it was announced. I loved my S3 - probably my favourite day to day Audi that I've owned. Sure, the RS4 was faster and more capable, but it was a hideous owners experience.

What made me change my mind? Well... I wasn't particularly impressed with the pictures I'd seen of it. It looked like any other Sportback A3 - and at end of line for that platform I didn't want a car that looked the same.

The main thing though that put me off was the higher profile front tyres than the rear - I.e. wider tyres at the front than the rear. I'd not heard of that before and made me think the car must be very nose heavy...?

Having seen one in the flesh now must admit it looks better than it did in the photos I saw... But it still looks like an S-Line, and not what I expected of an RS car. When I tested the RS5 I remember thinking then it wasn't a true RS car.... Is my idea of an RS car wrong? I always though RS units should be crazy fast, stunning grip...and, well, special?

Interior on the RS3 looked ace, but most Audi units I've been in always have great interiors.

It just doesn't look like a 50k car to me. Performance looks pretty stonking though, and I bet it's faster point to point than my M3? Certainly with me driving both anyways :P

What's people's take on it then? When the B5 RS4 first came about I used to love spotting them on the road - hence I bought one. I thought they were special. A modern obtainable (at the time) RS2 kinda.

I don't see or feel that about the B7 RS4, the latter RS6 and certainly not the RS3.

My expectations changed, or the RS brand going mainstream?

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Personally I think both the 1M and RS3 are too expensive.

However, I would be much more likely to buy an 1M because putting aside driving likes and dislikes - I think the RS3 looks bland. I don't think it looks anything like its money (but nor does the 1M) but in some ways i think it goes beyond that. It just looks very ordinary indeed. Perhaps that is intentional, but I was amazed to discover the swathes of what i thought were carbon fibre are in fact plastic - and that cemented by overall view of the car.

The RS4 and 5 look like a lot of car. They have real presence, just as the M3 does. The 1M looks aggressive and purposeful. The RS3 just doesn't, in my view. If I had spent £40-45k on that car I think I'd be feeling rather let down each time I looked at it.

BUT

My views are irrelevant and so are those of anyone else. I don't like the RS3 so I won't be buying one, but those that have spent their hard earned cash on them should be excited and hopefully they'll be delighted with their acquisition. Ultimately, we're all going to have different tastes and the ones that really matter are those that invest in the car itself. I genuinely hope they're chuffed to bits with the car and it'll nice hearing from them when the real reviews start to filter in.

I still don't understand anyone buying a car they haven't driven though. I cannot fathom that one bit. I've been moaning about the Z4 ride and thats after I drove one and lots of other cars. I just couldn't spend £40,000+ on something I'd only seen pictures of and relied on third party reviews of publications who, in the main, have to maintain good relationships with manufacturers. I know a few independent reviews have started to come in, but most people had ordered their RS3's well before those. That's what I don't fully understand. It indicates they've ordered on the looks, the badge and the brand - and I will never, ever, understand that.

On the last point, I think both the RS and M brands have gone mainstream and did so 5-6 years ago. It could be argued that the last real enthusiasts M car was the E30 M3 Evolution - because they've all been softened or turned into more executive-attracting cars since then. I think the RS was even moreso because of the lack of the 'edge' feeling, but they still have a place and a very good market share. On that note - Audi and BMW have both clearly got something right. They know their markets much better than us.

I don't think any of that is argumentative or confrontational, and hopefully the responses will bear that out.

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What does RS actually stand for? What were Audi trying to achieve when they created it?

On a personal level, I drove a S5, great GT car, back to back with the B7 RS4.

The RS4 exceeded expectations on so many levels and I was very pleased with how quick it was and how it handled, it's what I thought an RS car should be about.

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I still don't understand anyone buying a car they haven't driven though. I cannot fathom that one bit. I've been moaning about the Z4 ride and thats after I drove one and lots of other cars. I just couldn't spend £40,000+ on something I'd only seen pictures of and relied on third party reviews of publications who, in the main, have to maintain good relationships with manufacturers. I know a few independent reviews have started to come in, but most people had ordered their RS3's well before those. That's what I don't fully understand. It indicates they've ordered on the looks, the badge and the brand - and I will never, ever, understand that.

I have - repeatedly. Skyline GTR - never so much as seen one in the flesh when I ordered mine. RS4 - bit their hand off when one came up.

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For me, there is a point whereby a car costs enough to be ... well, just more. I mean either bigger, more powerful, more special parts, more focussed, more reverred, more legendary or whatever. I don't think the RS3 delivers enough of those things to cost as much as it does. It might be quick, sure, but it just doesn't look the part. Perhaps the A3 platform just doesn't suit RS clothing, although I think it fits the S clothing very well (although I tested the S3 and thought it was dull and offered nothing over the LCR).

I'm not even sure the 1M fits the 1 series platform clothes that well but to my eye it does more so than the RS3.

Perhaps I can't see beyond the fact that £45k is a huge amount of money to spend on a car and adding another £10k just gets you into a different perceived level - an M3 or RS5 for example. If nothing else, the amount of materials used in the car's production give a better justification for an increased cost.

I mean jesus, you could buy a flaming nice (really nice) Porsche for £45k - albeit 2nd hand. I didn't buy a C2S because I wanted the best of what BMW had to offer in the 3 series - and everyone said it was simply amazing. Maybe that is the point of the RS3 then - it is the best of what can be done by Audi for the A platform so maybe I'm not so different after all.

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My main gripe is that it's a seven year old body that already looks dated, and that Audi have short-changed their fans with the lack of those little extra RS details that make the other RS offerings just special enough over their ordinary siblings.

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I cant really add anything that hasn't been said by Mac, MrMe and Garçon, all those points when added together would mean it's not a car that would ever feature on my shopping list.

Best of luck to those that do buy though, and I genuinely hope it lives to, or exceeds their expectations.

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My main gripe is that it's a seven year old body that already looks dated, and that Audi have short-changed their fans with the lack of those little extra RS details that make the other RS offerings just special enough over their ordinary siblings.

I'm ashamed to say I'd never actually considered that.

The 1M is a newish chassis/design isn't it - whereas the RS3 using the A3 underpinnings and is, as you say, getting rather old. Not once had that occurred to me. Wow, now that really does make it look like a case of not engineering a car and simply engineering profit from enthusiasts. Can't believe I'd not spotted that.

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I think that was the main crux of the arguments on those other 'argumentative' threads +++

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Now I'm aware that this might sound hypocritical as I liked my RS6 partly for this reason but I think they have gone overboard on the 'understated' thing and now use it as an excuse for bland and not making enough of an effort. I think there is a difference between understated and unremarkable and Audi are currently treading a fine line in terms of the look of the RS3. It does seem a lot of money as well but I am aware I am gradually becoming my father and recalling when new cars cost two shillings or a farthing or a nice turnip. Of course, the RS3 might be a fabulous drive and that would make up for the looks and price but I can't comment on that.

I still don't understand anyone buying a car they haven't driven though

I didn't drive either of the cars I bought this year. If you ever get the chance to see a base Hyundai Accent or Dodge Grand Caravan and feel the presence of those cars, you will understand.

RS = Renn Sport. German for sporty, basically.

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RS = Renn Sport. German for sporty, basically.

Did they nick the RS moniker from Porsche when Porsche built the RS2 :confused:

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The 1M is a newish chassis/design isn't it - whereas the RS3 using the A3 underpinnings and is, as you say, getting rather old..........

A3 3dr 2003 '03'

A3 Sportback 2004 '54'

BMW 1 series 2004 '54'

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But the A3 sportback is exactly as it was in 2004, whereas the 1 series chassis was overhauled for the coupe.

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Did they nick the RS moniker from Porsche when Porsche built the RS2 :confused:

I think 'RS' translates as 'Race Sport', and yes the Audi RS2 was so called due to the Porsche input, complete with Porsche badging. The rear reflector panel between the rear lights stolen from your 993 was a nice touch.

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A3 3dr 2003 '03'

A3 Sportback 2004 '54'

BMW 1 series 2004 '54'

The 1 series Hatch was 2004, but the saloon/Coupe is a different model number (E82) and didn't appear until 2007. The 1M is based on that - not the hatch...

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Well, having just been to see an RS3 in the flesh and I certainly agree that it is a bit underwhelming. You could argue that it is stealth but I think Audi should have done a bit more - before visiting, the dealer sent me a photo taken square on to the side of the car and I would give money to someone who could tell it was not an A3 S Line or an S3.

Interior was very nice even given the age of the car it is based on but I couldn't help thinking that it did not stand out enough for the increase in price over the S3. What really put me off was the lack of space. I am 6 ft 3 and had to have the drivers seet as far back and as low as it would go and even this felt too high and left zero room in the back, I mean not even enough for a five year old. I think this problem was made worse by the black plastic shell on the back of the bucket seats.

I made the visit full of expectation that i would finally be in the long awaited RS3 this Friday and ended up not even taking a test drive (have driven the TT RS so know all about the engine).

Now really hoping to find a new 1M lurking somehwere...

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Just sent you the PM Robbie. Spoke to them this morning and have sent you their details. The car is available in 2 weeks apparently, but no longer speccable.

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I am 6 ft 3 and had to have the drivers seet as far back and as low as it would go and even this felt too high and left zero room in the back, I mean not even enough for a five year old. I think this problem was made worse by the black plastic shell on the back of the bucket seats....

I saw a Grey RS3 in Edinburgh last Wednesday - in all honesty, it was the alloy wheels that made me look again and then I noticed it was the RS3.

Given that this is a balanced thread, I'd also add that the Bucket Seats in my RS4 Avant gave little or no room for back seat passangers either. They are a big, cumbersome seat and although I loved them (with the S-Button allowing the driver to adjust the bolsters), they reduce space in any car.

On the RS3 - I'd love a drive in one, just to check out the engine but all RS cars are expensive, all that's changed is that the opposition are manufacturing better cars for folk to consider these days too.

Just my 2p's worth - +++ TP.

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It would be nice to know if anyone has been brave enough to buy one for themselves, by themselves- as in zero Co car sponsorship, self employed perk, car or fuel allowance (etc).

Reason I say that is that in my eyes funding something new, and dare I say as unimaginative as the RS3, totally out of your own pocket declares a different type of buyer.

Someone that is in a scheme, has much light running and buy costs, and due to purchase 'criteria' limitations (such as under 3 years old, warranted etc) would maybe take one on.

If the car had been truly innovative- new chassis, better styling, new engine etc more may have desired one.

As it stands, it's a bin parts car on a model that is due a clean up via the design table- that makes it unattractive, expensive and a hard call to buy when there are so many cars to choose from.

On the right day mint, nearly new- AMG's, M3's and RS5's are no more expensive to buy.

I did buy the R32 before driving it, 8 months wait and took one of the 1st 10 in the UK- That car was a different thing, desired by 1000's and even if I hadn't liked it could have sold it for more than it cost. On delivery, the dealer mentioned he could arrange a 3k bounty if I allowed them to pass it on to a client who'd asked them to ask.

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The main thing though that put me off was the higher profile front tyres than the rear - I.e. wider tyres at the front than the rear. I'd not heard of that before and made me think the car must be very nose heavy

:grin: Sorry for being thick but what do you mean? What are the actual tyre sizes?

The tyre profile is xx where the tyre is 285/xx/R20 - the aspect ratio, or profile of the tyre, in this case xx% of the tyre width. Do you really mean the fronts are wider than the rears? +++

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Sorry, yes, poor choice of words. Didn't mean higher profile (in other than higher number) - I meant wider.

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Sorry, yes, poor choice of words. Didn't mean higher profile (in other than higher number) - I meant wider.

Ah ok I get it - the front tyres are really wider than the rears?! Never seen than on a road car! There are some guys running much wider fronts on GTR (285!!) than standard but the rears are always bigger still +++

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