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Tunbridge

S4 Salon/Avant vs. S4 Convertible Handling

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As per the title, is the handling/ride on the S4 Convertible much different due to the lack of roof and extra weight.

I've got a test drive booked in a convertible (04 reg) for the weekend but haven't driven a 4 door or Avant yet?

Anything to watch out for?

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[ QUOTE ]

As per the title, is the handling/ride on the S4 Convertible much different due to the lack of roof and extra weight.

I've got a test drive booked in a convertible (04 reg) for the weekend but haven't driven a 4 door or Avant yet?

Anything to watch out for?

[/ QUOTE ]

Speed cameras ECLIPSe.gif

I would imagine the the cab would have a little skuttle and shake and the performance to be marginally down on the saloon

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Isn’t the cab heavier than the saloon?

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I think that's what he meant.

Scuttle shake is basically non-existent on these. You may find it's less light on its feet than a saloon and certainly my first B6 cab used to lurch round corners with its heavy engine (I originally had a 2.5 TDI FWD). The 1.8T quattro was much better (less nose-heavy, and Quattro helped) and the new B7 with sport suspension is better still (I now have a 3.0 TDI S-line). The saloon never seemed to have such a problem when I had loaners.

So I imagine the same factors apply now, but with B7 suspension and the sort of low-riding sports set up you get with an S4, you'll have less of a problem than I did with my first cab.

Basically it's all down to weight - if its too heavy for you, you'll notice in the cornering. If you get on OK with that, then you shouldn't have any other problems - certainly flexing, scuttle-shake etc. due to lack of roof is (IMHO) a non-issue in these cars.

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Cheers for the info, my main concern is that it will feel big and heavy and not be as much fun in the corners.

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Very little scuttle shake - and what there is I have got used to. Surprisingly (to me anyway) its more noticable with the roof down than up - it must provide a degree of strength I guess. You smile more than you shake though 169144-ok.gif

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[ QUOTE ]

Very little scuttle shake - and what there is I have got used to. Surprisingly (to me anyway) its more noticable with the roof down than up - it must provide a degree of strength I guess. You smile more than you shake though 169144-ok.gif

[/ QUOTE ]

The roof being up adds torsional rigidity. With the roof down then this is lost, resulting in a little skuttle and shake due to the chassis losing rigidity.

The amount will vary greatly depending on models. I.e. VW Eos is supposed to suffer terribly. S2000 very little. The amount boils down to if the chassis was purposely designed for a convertible or a saloon/hatchback come convertible.

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I test drove both B6 variants before buying the saloon. The comments on roof / up vs down are what I found but generaly I did not find the cab in either vent as sure footed as the saloon on exactly the same road in exactly the same conidtions (drive back to back). The saloon felt planted, the cab was skittish.

I think weight distribution with the cab with roof down aslo has an effect on its handling. Plus its a slower car (or maybe that was because it was blue and the saloon was black, the fastest colour to have). wink.gif

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The Cab is definately less agile in the corners. It has more weight to carry and I believe slightly softer suspension (according to Audi UK & Audi driver magazine) to account for additional weight, and to cushion the strengthened chassis apparently.

Scuttle shake is noticeable but significantly less than other cab's. I've clocked very high speeds with roof up and down and have been impressed. 169144-ok.gif

P.S maybe it's because mine is red which is better and faster of course grin.gif

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i've never felt scuttle shake, even taking corners v. quick. roof up or down. suspension is softer than the tin top which gives a slight wallowy feel but never felt scuttle.

i've never felt any difference between roof up/down either. it has no effect on rigidity whatsoever. its a fabric roof with a thin frame. scuttle shake is because of weeknesses mid-point in body.... you'd need a solid roll bar welded behind the doors to make a difference! grin.gif

a 150kg of extra steel provides the rigidity - not the fabric roof!

a good plus point though - its easier to 4 wheel drift in the cab as its so heavy, which is fun! grin.gif

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Sounds like you have your answer Tunbridge. If the handling on corners is the most important thing, then you're right to be slightly wary .. when it's good it's fine, but it's incredibly sensitive to things like tyre pressure and bothers me sometimes. For some of us the cab appeal outweighs the rest; do see what it's like with the wind in your hair at full speed, it grabbed me on my first test drive and have been hooked on cabs since. But if handling is everything and you'd hardly use the roof, you may be happier with the saloon.

Don't forget the S4 sound with roof down is a bonus though, with your engine 169144-ok.gif

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[ QUOTE ]

i've never felt scuttle shake, even taking corners v. quick. roof up or down.

[/ QUOTE ]

Chav, I do get a shaking / buffeting (more noticeable roof up) at around hmm hmm 100 mph (where legal) but I reckon I may be more roof buffeting in the wind than perhaps scuttle shake in the true sense.

Please tell me I'm not the only one who experiences this or I will get paranoid there's something wrong with the car frown.gif

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Well - I drive the country lanes a few times a week - roof up and roof down. On the B7 S4 Cab scuttle shake is noticable - but only over very rough patches - and its a lot less than any other Cab I have ever driven. Its Def slighly worse with the roof down --- but its just something you get used to - and a small price to pay for the fresh air - the looks - the feel good factor - its a fantastic car to own. We are talking really small differences here - handling wise - saloon to cab. 169144-ok.gif

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i live down country lanes etc... never felt scuttle shake even when drifting (yes drifting not driving grin.gif) hard. the suspension is pretty soft i find, and must have been designed that way to mask it.

interestingly, i think cab sport suspension is better than the cab S4 suspension on very rough ground (have gravel tracks with bumps etc)

i really cannot say the handling is any different with the roof down though. possibly a bit more drag when accelerating, but not really a handling difference.

S4teve - when at xxx mph never felt scuttle. obviously wind increases a bit but dont feel any unwieldy vibrations etc. i'm convinced however that roof down wind noise is slightly louder in the B7 than in the B6 and cant for the life of me work out why

(eg. xxx mph, roof down, windows up, deflector up etc. very strange)

The handling difference between cab and saloon is pretty noticeable though, there's a 150-200kg of extra steel and the tintop audi is a heavy car, never mind the cab.

as you say though dave, the feel good factor more than makes up for it.

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Scuttle shake isn't something you notice when really pushing it i.e. drifting, its the body shake or slight shudder you get when going over rough roads. The A4 most definitely does suffer from it but not as bad as other cab's I've driven, the Saab 93 being one of the worst and the C70 too surprisingly being a newer design.

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that reminds me - is it just me that keeps cracking their windscreen.

always in the same place - about 10-12 inches from the left, at the bottom near the centre of the left hand wiper blade.

sodding annoying!!

maybe i should swap for a proper offroader! grin.gif

actually am considering an allroad, but would miss roof down an awful lot!

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