Thought that Top Gear (BBC2 20:00 UK) had really lost the plot but they redeemed themselves excellently tonight! Multiple Audi quattros featuring the ultimate Audi Quattro Sport vs Mitsubishi Evo VI and of course the delightful Vicki! More of this type of excellent feature will keep many watching I'm Sure. Sure, Clarkson was occasionally funny but you cannot match the hooligan antics of T.N. and V.B.H. on the race track - all they need to do now is send old Quentin on a circumnavigation of the globe in his beloved Merc and rid us of him for good.
My first introduction to Audi was a friend of my father who bought a Coupe quattro and scared me witless in it at the age of 10! Fantastic! Now I'm looking for a second car - find me a Quattro Sport!!
03-09-2000, 01:58 PM
Wouldn't you just love one of those Sport Quattros! Wow, a 20 year old car giving an Evo 6 a run for its money, isn't bad going! It just shows what an excellent car it is.
I always wanted an Audi after seeing the Sport Quattro Group B rally cars on TV when I was a child. They looked, and still do, awesome.
I was also scared a little once at the age of 17/18 in some sort of Audi, a 80 or a 100, I think. I know it was turbocharged, because the lad had to have it fixed soon after he bought it (second-hand). But it went like ****-of-a-shiny-shovel!
'99.5 A3 1.8T MS Silver
03-10-2000, 12:40 AM
I agree, redeemed themselves, although Tiff's antics in the S6 recently was also impressive. I would love to lap that airfield with him. What do you mean the lovely Vickki ! She was unimpressed with the TT, passed on the Roadster, didn't like the uprated Boxter because it was too expensive, the girl has no taste !!!
Seriously it did show how advanced and accomplished the Quattro and Sport Quattro was and that they have not been totallt eclipsed by the more modern cars.
There have been a couple of Sport Quattros for sale over recent months and it looks as though £40K may get you one.My local dealer had an Ur Quattro last summer, 20V Hreg air and 45000miles.They asked for£22000 but I know £19-20K would have secured it.
03-10-2000, 06:48 AM
She gets on my nerves that woman!
You are right she's got no taste at all. I think she's very anti-audi.
She said the S3 was boring when she drove it, and "not involving enough!" Now I find that VERY hard to believe. Every thing I have read says its a very well balanced car, very good to drive, and quick. She doesn't know what shes on about!
Bring back Clarkson!! He I loved his sense of humour. :)
03-10-2000, 01:47 PM
Did you see her test drive the special edition
of the Lotus Elise? She's just demanding...
About the S3, you should recall that, in the
end, it was her choice... then again, the
alternative was a BMW 3 series...
03-12-2000, 02:45 AM
I get the impression she is absolutely into drivers cars such as the Elise etc. I can, on occasion, agree with what she says - In direct comparison with some rivals (306 GTI6 being the obvious example) the A3 can be a little too refined as a *pure* driving machine - HOWEVER - I personally would not buy the 306 GTI6 because the power band is inaccessable at 5000rpm +, it feels like is has been built largely from balsa wood, the image is all wrong and it is a noisy, thrashy machine. Where I think that some Top Gear reports go wrong is that they assess cars on a race track / airfield and in such an environment the fastest, tightest handling, most involving car does come out on top - it does not consider the real world motorway trawl, B road blast etc. I often drive quickly and enjoy doing so, but if I were to quantify the number of times I have my car slewing sideways down back roads it would be small in comparison to the amount of time travelling along speed camera patrolled roads, through traffic in town etc. I think if I was offered a race track drive in a selection of cars, there are a few that would be ahead of the A3, but on the road itself I could think of none better (at the same price obviously) than my A3. My last car was a Saxo VTR which had much better handling, steering, throttle response than my A3 and was superb at speed through winding roads - I sold it because of all it's downsides and I whilst I enjoyed it when I occasionally drove on suitable roads, the rest of the time it drove me nuts. I certainly would not swap to a similar car again.
I always take magazine reviews etc on their merits - i.e. a very subjective evaluation. You cannot think that just because a reporter says car (A) is good and (B) is crap that things are black and white - take for example the VW Golf GTi, most reporters love it mainly due to cost - but as has been discussed here before, it is slower, poorer handling, not as involving as the A3 - who is right?? Who knows?
I'm not sure that the T/G reports are anti audi, they are just expressing a very personal preference in a non real world situation that often leans towards a very different character of car. Audi make their cars to a particular formula which is emulated throughout the range - many people including us love this style and character - some do not.
At the end of the day, who cares if a reporter rates another car better than the next one - lets just hope they keep the raw entertainment factor up there with the last episode.
03-12-2000, 01:06 PM
You're right in your analysis, but, you should
recall the test Clarkson did on the new VW GTI.
In the end it was his choice though it was the
poorest performer of the lot... He chose it for
the same reasons you (and I) chose the A3.
I believe that the Top Gear people are biased
towards nothing... maybe against Japanese cars,
but then again, maybe so am I, although I
recognize that Japanese cars are among the
best. Vikki has given goods reviews about
every Audi, but the S3 and TT have flaws also...
She is absolutly right to say that the gearbox
is to slow. It is! I think nobody would deny
that... the same for the suspension... These
are design options from Audi and they have to
accept the critics... But in the end, like I said,
the S3 was her choice... She qualified the BMW
328 coupe has being more adequate for her
grand-dad by comparison. She qualified the TT
as the most beutiful of the roadsters... I think
she's being very fair to Audi...
03-12-2000, 03:30 PM
David R & Luis,
Vikki, and I can't be certain of this, as I don't have the video tape, regarded the S3 and TT as dull. Which just can't be true - for real world people like me and you - but maybe for them. The reason? They are driving high performance cars week-in week-out. Jap cars that rival the performance of Ferraris etc. So cars like the S3 and TT are bound to be "dull" in comparison. I mean, one week Evo 6, next week S3. Which is dull?
What I think happens on Top Gear is they forget who they are reviewing the car for, themselves or us the viewer, and I think Vikki does this the most. She's got more testosterone than I have!! She is self indulgent in these cars, on race tracks / air-fields, and forgets that for the every day driver, on sweeping A roads and motorways, car XYZ will be fantastic car. Know-wot-I-mean?! Tiff does the same thing, but always gives a neat summary, aimed at the likely buyer of such a car.
I can't deny, I love seeing them thrashing the arse of these cars on air fields. But when Vikki drove the TT in the mountain roads of France/Itlay (??) she didn't get her foot down! And Audi designs these cars so that if you don't feel like driving quickly, the car isn't going to make you. You've got to agree with that! The A3 fits into that mould exactly. You've got to want to drive it on the limit, it won't force you.
As for believing what you read or see on TV, what else can you do? If it is a good reviewer, they'll give an honest opinion targeted at the reader, and I think you get that more in quality car magazines such as CAR, and the magazine arm of Top Gear, rather that TV Top Gear.
As for Clarkson and the VW Golf GTi. I remember vividly seeing his review of that car, and had said it's handling was "sloppy" in comparison to other cars in that class and it's A3 sibling.
Anyway - still can't stand Vikki.
03-12-2000, 04:15 PM
I had a test drive in a 306 gti6 the only reason it has six gears is because the powerband is so narrow, my previous car was a 1.9 205 gti and the difference between that and my A3 turbo is tremendous, firstly the A3 isn't as stiff yet it has as much grip, is more progressive and seems to flow better through multiple corners, it is silent in comparison to the pug, and the tuneability, well you can't get that much more out of a non-turbo can you!
03-12-2000, 04:18 PM
When I was little I wanted a Lancia Delta S6 that had a turbocharger and a supercharger mmmmmmmm!
03-13-2000, 11:08 AM
Got it in one, Al.
"If you don't want to drive quickly then it doesn't make you"
Exactly correct - problem is though, that this style is lost on many who only have brief acquantaince with such cars - shame really, their loss not ours.
That is what I was trying to say !!!
03-13-2000, 11:20 AM
I think the 205GTi and Saxo are similar concepts with similar driving characteristics - I agree that the A3 is smoother, grips as well and is superbly quiet as a cross country tool etc - I would say still that my Saxo (and I guess the 205) are probably more fun in terms of throttle adjustability, throttle response and overall raw enjoyment. The tail happy antics of the Saxo were great to exploit although it did catch me out once - the a3 does not have a similar willingness to "play" however - I am in no disagreement about the sheer speed with which it will convey you from A to B.
In summary - A3 much faster, safter and more confortable, not quite so entertaining.
This is not intended as a critisism in any way - I think my A3 is much, much better than the Saxo - just an observation.
DO you agree??
03-14-2000, 02:58 AM
03-14-2000, 11:04 AM
I don't know, the A3 can still be very entertaining, its just a bit more controllable on the limit meaning you can stay there longer, however understeer is quite apparent and is one thing I'd like to change, as well as a slightly more sporty exhaust note, but nothing like the deafening drone of my old 205!
03-14-2000, 06:34 PM
Well, It's a fact that they don't "race" the
cars on the road the way "we" do(?!) but I
don't think they are as insensitive as you
describe them... although you may have a
point with Vikki, I like her agressiveness...
She thrashes those cars like no other... I
guess that's why she's part of the show...
About the evaluation you give about the A3,
as David, I couldn't agree with you more...