• Oct 28, 2009
To many people, Audi is replacing BMW as the go-to yuppie-mobile of choice. For one thing, Walter de'Silva's designs are almost universally lauded (Q7 notwithstanding) whereas the new crop of Bangled Bimmers are... controversial to put it as nicely as humanly possible. But it's not just down to looks and interior -- it can't be.

For the past decade or so Audi, BMW and of course Mercedes-Benz have all been engaged in mercilessly meeting each other tit-for-tat. 3/5/7 Series vs. 4/6/8 vs. C/E/S-Class, M/AMG/S, X5/ML/Q7, etc. It goes on forever. But the point is, Audi and BMW appear to be on equal footing and it looks like Audi has taken the copycat game to new heights.

Everyone knows that the BMW 335i is the most underrated car currently on the market in terms of raw thrust and grunt. BMW claims 300 hp and 300 torques, but even dogs know that BMW's trick 3.0-liter twin-turbo engine puts out much closer to 350 hp and 350 tire-spinning pound feet of torque. Why? Well, lower insurance rates for their customers probably isn't one of the reasons. However, remember that when the E90/E92 3 Series came out, BMW was still selling the 333 horsepower E46 M3. Meaning that it would be pretty hard to sell an older, $55,000 car with less power than a newer and just as quick $40,000 car. Or so the theory goes, though we should point out that BMW engineers angrily call us liars when we bring this scenario up.

And guess what? Looks like Audi is pulling the same trick with their new supercharged S4. Volkswagen and Audi tuner APR stuck a 2010 Audi S4 on an AWD-dyno and discovered the following. Instead of the 333 hp and 325 torques Audi is claiming, they pulled 331 hp and 336 pound-feet of torque... at the wheels! Figuring that AWD cars have about a 20% parasitic drivetrain power loss, the actual crank output of the S4 is huge. How huge? By our calculations just about 400 horsepower/torques. Gulp. Tip of the Audi driving cap to Brenton!



[Source: Quattro World]


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  • 68 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Wow, makes me want the S4 more. Was sad to see the V8 go, but looks like they got it topped with this new motor. I wonder if anyone tuners have tapped this motor yet?
      • 5 Years Ago
      I don't know if I believe you. Audi should give me one so I can see for myself.
      • 5 Years Ago
      i think the connection b/t the insurance rates and underrating the engines is true.
      • 5 Years Ago
      But what type of dyno did APR use? If we want to compare the numbers of the S4 to those of the 335i, it better be a dynojet.

      Audi's quattro drivetrain has been thought to actually have a ~22% drivetrain loss (at least in the B5/B6 era). That would put it up to at least 425hp. That's amazing.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I think it was on inside line where I saw an s4 that run 13.2 at 106 vs the 335i run a 13.5 at 103.8.

      • 5 Years Ago
      The GTR is the most underrated car on the market and find a credible source not one from a tuner.

      And if the BMW 135i made 350 hp it'd be faster than the equivalent weight 370Z which it isn't.
        • 5 Years Ago
        @Aprime

        MSNBC's slogan... The Place for POLITICS...

        Fox News.... claims to be a "Fair and Balanced" "news" organization... FAIL....

        back to car news...
        • 5 Years Ago
        Fox News? You mean MSNBC. MSNBC's journalist believe MediaMatters.com to be a CREDIBLE NEWS SOURCE, while a ****load of the stuff they say is literally coming out of the least credible sources on the Internet, namely forums and personal opinion blogs, and the material is then interpreted as factual. Heck, even factual material is perpetually taken out of context to serve their points. The fact of the matter is media sources ought to be checked and journalists to be heavily criticized for the piss poor job they're doing in this century. You just don't quote someone quoting someone else (who's probably quoting another person quoting a modified Wikipedia article), you go directly to the SOURCE.
        • 5 Years Ago
        So a slow news day or just plain laziness AB. Rip of an article that was initially ripped from a tuner house homepage. If this is what is you guys consider "EVIDENCE", you boys and girls at AB have a lot to learn about journalism... unless you're pining for a job at Fox News, then this is about right.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Claims of HP at the crank are solely for bragging rights, all that matters is HP at the wheels. Even APR doesn't back calculate crank HP, as it's all based on a fictitious "drive train % loss" which no one knows the actual value of.

        The dyno numbers are APR's base from which to compare when they complete their ECU tuning. It's not meant to be a de facto statement of how much hp/tq the S4 is making.
        • 5 Years Ago
        The GT-R isn't as underrated as the naysayers originally thought:

        http://www.autoblog.com/2008/12/30/mt-claims-nissan-not-lying-about-gt-r-horsepower/

        But back to the Audi, that dyno sheet looks impressive, but I'll reserve final judgement until I see what kind of dyno it was tested on.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Maybe its only the 335(and even the 535/635) that is underrated and not the 135?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Just send us the S5 Sportback. Then I'll give the engine a try.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Dynos vary widely in their power reported depending on fudge factors in their software as well as normal everyday variables. If you really want to know the power a car is making, take it to the dragstrip, race it and weigh it.

      Two other very important things people often get wrong IMO:
      1) AWD power losses are greatly overestimated. It's not that much different vs 2WD. If it were that much different you'd see it in the fuel economy and other places.
      2) Modern ECUs, particularly in forced-induction engines, are smart enough that they know how much power they are making and manipulate their power output to produce a target HP number as the air quality changes. This means the "SAE correction" on chassis dynos is useless and wrong.

      Adding all that together, the car is probably making 331HP, just like Audi claims.

      People said the same thing about the BMW 335 and it makes exactly what it's supposed to- 306HP. My 335xi went 13.40@103 bone stock. The audi should run about the same with 25HP more and 200lbs heavier unless the transmission is a lot quicker than my right arm in the BMW w/6MT.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I'd rather have a CTS-V.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The numbers posted are UNCORRECTED and SAE Corrected. We gave both since everyone want's to see both. That way no one can argue about correction factors as both are listed.


      The bright lines are 6 run averages.

      The dim lines are the 6 individual runs

      The solid lines are SAE Corrected.

      The dotted lines are UNCORRECTE.

      All figures are at all 4 wheels.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Too bad Audi's styling is too homogenized. The only redeemable Audi model is the S5.

      Although I suppose a lot of people appreciate the "bauhaus" sensibilities.... Audi's are the Honda Civics down here in Miami. Even the guy driving the RS4 feels like he's driving an A4 (as styling is concerned).

      Though lots of power is nice... I can't fall in love with the new A4 body. The backside is just horrendous.
      • 5 Years Ago
      now if it only was in the US as an Avant...grrr
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