Apr

#2
I plan on getting it when my warranty is about to expire.
 
#3
I'm on the same boat, just waiting for my warranty to expire. There's a local shop out here in Austin that reflashes for APR.
 

Brad_B

New member
#4
So this is my 2nd attempt and resurrecting some old discussion and hopefully we can generate some new discussion and maybe even practical experience.

So some things up front, I am an engineer (mechanical by education and nuclear by trade) and not a mechanic meaning that I understand how things work but any time I turn a wrench, I am just as likely to strip the bolt as tighten it. So while I am very interested in researching power mods, I am going to leave the wrench turning work to someone better than me. I also understand that any performance mod involves risk. I am fine with risk, but just want to understand and manage the risk as best I can.

If possible, I would like to limit the discussion to APR and specifically stage2. I know their are other bolt-on options and maybe they should be considered. I also think stage1 seems fine, but it just seems like the jump to stage2 offers some real hardware backup to the software mod and seems to be the best bang for the buck (literally). I also think the jump to stage3 is another quantum leap in equipment, price, and performance that is beyond what most people want to do.

Finally, I am not looking to build a race car and my S3 will remain my daily driver. I love the S3 and is sporty enough for me, but who would not want another ~100 hp and ftlb at what seems to be a reasonable price. I will never have my S3 on any track and have never driven any car over 120 mph and usually 90 mph is my max, but additional acceleration specifically between the 0-80 mph range is always nice. So maybe the stock S3 is enough, but at the same time maybe my semi-conservative drive style mitigates any ECU or other mod risk.

So after a long preamble, here are the points I would like to discuss:

- By my quick count (only based on www.goapr.com , I have not talked to an APR dealer yet) the stage2 APR mod that I think is most appropriate includes: high flow exhaust (reqd, $900), intercooler (not reqd, $900), intake (reqd, $450), and the ECU2 ($200). To be honest, I am not entirely sure about the price of the ECU mod so really need to talk to the APR dealer. It could be as much as $700 or might even be included with the exhaust pipe. Also I am not including the TCU clutch mod which is $600 since I think you can a get low torque version. I would be interested in people's opinion on the clutch mod. That brings the total to $2450 which is maybe a little more than I originally thought but is still not unreasonable for the gains.

- Personally I feel much more comfortable making ECU mods with some hardware upgrades. Increasing intake flow, exhaust flow, and cooling are always sound engineering principles and I have done these simple mods without any ECU adjustments to other vehicles with good success. Any input on these specific mods would be appreciated.

- I am less enthusiastic about clutch/transmission mods. One of the things I like most about the S3 is how crisply it shifts so I am reluctant to make any adjustments to the clutch or transmission. I have read APRs discussion of the TCU upgrade, but am unconvinced if it is necessary and am actually concerned it may incur more risk.

- I am most interested in how the APR tunes will affect normal daily - with some occasional aggressive - driving. My primary desire is increased acceleration in a normal range not increased max speed and not necessarily always full throttle acceleration.

- Next I think the S3 is otherwise well equipped to handle the jump to ~400 hp. I know many people would like to include major brake mods or perhaps traction/stability mods, but I think these would be unnecessary. My intention would be to increase hp alone with no additional braking/handling mods.

- Finally, I think what would help most potential users is real world experience with mods (ideally APR specifically) so if anyone has experience or links to reviews of APR mods, they would be much appreciated.

Thanks for reading and happy driving.
 
#5
[MENTION=447]Brad_B[/MENTION]

I'd also like to see more tuning discussions. Last time I called my local APR dealer it was around $800 for the stage 1 tune, the guy said he'll discount if I purchased the down-pipe and exhaust at the same time.
 
#6
My dealer will do an APR tune for $1k that they say will boost output of my '16 S3 to 395+/- hp. They said some have complained that the Trans is less smooth once done but opine that the Trans learns and will adapt in short order?
 
#7
My dealer will do an APR tune for $1k that they say will boost output of my '16 S3 to 395+/- hp. They said some have complained that the Trans is less smooth once done but opine that the Trans learns and will adapt in short order?
395hp? Are they quoting you a stage II tune?
 
#8
No clue but it's only a flash, no other parts.
 
#10
I didn't check it out further as you did. It's likely the dealer exaggerated slightly.
 

SW_S3

New member
#12
Just ordered APR ECU/TCU

Hi all, new member... I can't wait until my warranty is up so just ordered APR ECU Stage 1 and TCU, will report back on my findings after April 19th install. I love my S3, clocking way too many miles on it in the first 3 months. I went with APR because of the reputation and very informative website and local dealer. They really seem to know this ECU and I look forward to posting my impressions here. In addition to the power I am looking forward to being able to left foot brake and prevent auto up/down in manual mode as I plan to do some HPDE events in the spring.

Looking forward to connecting with more S3 owners here. Cheers.
 
#13
Welcome aboard

Hi all, new member... I can't wait until my warranty is up so just ordered APR ECU Stage 1 and TCU, will report back on my findings after April 19th install. I love my S3, clocking way too many miles on it in the first 3 months. I went with APR because of the reputation and very informative website and local dealer. They really seem to know this ECU and I look forward to posting my impressions here. In addition to the power I am looking forward to being able to left foot brake and prevent auto up/down in manual mode as I plan to do some HPDE events in the spring.

Looking forward to connecting with more S3 owners here. Cheers.
 

SW_S3

New member
#14
Day 1 with high torque APR Stage 1 ECU and TCU upgrades

For those looking to spice up their S3, I highly recommend the APR solution. The car has a new personality in all modes. They did a great job with the transmission changes, shifting quicker and downshifting where you would if you were doing the shifting. The power comes on with far more force once the throttle is over 50% down, and the shifts are crisp. Dynamic is a blast now, way more aggressive throttle response and the torque is vastly improved. Well worth the cost and was installed in under an hour. Also very nice to see what gear you are in at all times. Nice.
 

S3Fan

Administrator
#15
Great feedback. Are you sticking with Stage 1 or plan on going to Stage 2 at some point?

Day 1 with high torque APR Stage 1 ECU and TCU upgrades

For those looking to spice up their S3, I highly recommend the APR solution. The car has a new personality in all modes. They did a great job with the transmission changes, shifting quicker and downshifting where you would if you were doing the shifting. The power comes on with far more force once the throttle is over 50% down, and the shifts are crisp. Dynamic is a blast now, way more aggressive throttle response and the torque is vastly improved. Well worth the cost and was installed in under an hour. Also very nice to see what gear you are in at all times. Nice.
 

SW_S3

New member
#16
No plans for stage 2 yet, will concentrate on handling and brakes first. I have not had the car on track yet so just basing this on street antics so far. The brake plan is Motul 600 and better pads, and possibly SS brake lines in front if the feel is still off. In my experience there should be no need for BBK and all of the negatives they bring ($$, weight, can't fit smaller rims, $$ for wear parts) so I want to find the right setup for street and track day brake pads.

I will be starting a thread on pads or joining an existing discussion as there seems to be limited options and not much discussion out there compared to other makes that have a clear "If you have an e46 M3, do this..." so the S3 community needs some solid info to clear the fog.
 
#17
I agree [MENTION=566]SW_S3[/MENTION], we definitely more tech discussions, we have a great platform and there's lots of potential to grow. Hopefully as our cars become cheaper and owners reaching the end of the warranty we'll see more people starting to mod their cars.
 
#18
I'll have to live vicariously through you for now. Having 4 more years of manufacturers warranty was the #1 reason I came up with to justify getting rid of a mint A5 that was paid off. So does Audi honor any of your warranty now?
 

SW_S3

New member
#19
The law is pretty clear on this as I understand it. If the motor is blown, you are screwed. Up to you to not blow it up! I suppose if the computer breaks that would be on you as well. The rest of the car's warranty is not impacted. Look on the bright side, if you blow it up, you can rebuild it as stage 3+ with better internals and fueling system!

Keep in mind how many cars have the software without incident. APR is also approved/installed by VW dealers (APR Plus). That was big for me in choosing the APR software.

Do it. You will love it!
 

SW_S3

New member
#20
Good article on Magnuson Moss:

"Obviously, an aftermarket camshaft or a hopped up ECU won?t void the entire warranty on your car. The master cylinder failed? The blue tooth quit working? Unless there is a logical connection between the mod and the part or system that failed, you should be good to go."
 


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