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  1. #1
    Registered Member One Ring
    Join Date
    Oct 15 2018
    AZ Member #
    Southern Nevada

    Audi: Allow Manual S4 as a special order

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    I've owned a 93 S4 and a 2011 S4. Both were stick shift and each were (well, the 2011 should be "is") terribly responsive, true sports sedans. Since the 2011 has 80+k miles on it, the thought of a new car has intruded itself. With this in mind my wife and I (the 2011 is hers) test drove the 2018 S4. It was really disappointing.

    The paddle shift totally changes the character of the car dramatically. That wonderful direct connection between driver and engine was missing, as say, you go click, click, click click from eighth to fourth gear. It feels more like playing a video game than driving a car. Something very, very precious is lost when one can't engage a gear with a mechanical random access device--the stick--rather than with an electronically linked device that requires sequential behavior (8-7-6-5-4-etc.). I suppose were I to have used the car in automatic I may have had a different experience but if I wanted an automatic, I might be looking at a Mercedes Benz.

    My suggestion to Audi: If you're not going to export a stick S4 to the States, ALLOW US TO SPECIAL ORDER A MANUAL ONE. If economy of (small) scale means additional cost, I, for one, would gladly pay a premium.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Two Rings
    Join Date
    Apr 07 2010
    AZ Member #
    My Garage
    2018 Subaru Outback
    Southington, CT

    Audi cannot simply ship a car to the US with a Manual Tranny. The engine/drivetrain have to be federalized to confirm they meet federal emissions and safety regulations. This is a very expensive process. I do not know the numbers but let's say the federalization process costs $1M and Audi would sell 100 manual S4's in a year. Are you willing to pay an extra $10,000 for the manual?

  3. #3
    Veteran Member Four Rings
    Join Date
    Apr 05 2012
    AZ Member #

    Not only that but the whole drivetrain has been designed exclusively for the automatic. They'd also have to do re-engineering of all drivetrain related systems and then test it all to make sure everything works flawlessly. You're looking at A LOT of money to add a manual transmission.

    I know Pagani said they would install a manual transmission in a Huayra if the buyer paid all the R&D and testing which Pagani said would be "into the 7 figures".

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