The Audi S3 (8V) is the third generation of the S3 model, a high-performance variant of the popular Audi A3 compact car series. Launched in 2013, this model is revered for blending the practicality of a compact car with the exhilarating performance of a sports car. It’s tailored for enthusiasts who desire a luxurious, yet thrilling driving experience.


  • Model Introduction: The Audi S3 (8V) is part of the third generation of the Audi S3, produced from 2013 until 2020. It’s a compact sports sedan known for its balance of luxury and performance.


  • Exterior: The S3 (8V) features a sporty and sleek design, with Audi’s signature grille, LED headlights, and a muscular stance. It often comes with 18-inch alloy wheels and quad exhausts, enhancing its sporty appeal.
  • Interior: The interior is upscale, featuring high-quality materials, a well-designed dashboard, and a driver-focused layout. Standard features include leather seats, a flat-bottom steering wheel, and Audi’s MMI infotainment system.

Performance and Specifications

  • Engine: The S3 (8V) is typically powered by a 2.0-liter TFSI turbocharged four-cylinder engine.
  • Power Output: This engine produces around 300 horsepower and 280 lb-ft of torque, providing brisk acceleration and responsive power delivery.
  • Transmission: It’s commonly paired with a 6-speed S Tronic dual-clutch automatic transmission, offering quick and smooth gear changes.
  • Quattro All-Wheel Drive: The S3 (8V) comes with Audi’s Quattro all-wheel-drive system, enhancing its grip and handling, particularly in challenging driving conditions.
  • Performance Figures:
    • 0-60 mph: Approximately 4.7 seconds.
    • Top Speed: Electronically limited to 155 mph.

Driving Dynamics

  • Handling: The car is known for its agile handling, with a well-tuned suspension that strikes a balance between sportiness and comfort.
  • Braking: It features strong and reliable braking, with the option for performance-oriented brakes in some models.

Technology and Safety

  • Infotainment: Audi’s MMI system with navigation, Bluetooth, and audio streaming is standard.
  • Driver Assistance Features: Options include adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, and a rear-view camera.

Ownership and Maintenance

  • Fuel Efficiency: It offers reasonable fuel efficiency for a performance car, but actual mileage can vary based on driving style and conditions.
  • Maintenance: Regular maintenance is crucial for the S3’s performance and longevity. It’s recommended to follow Audi’s service schedule.

Common Faults

Engine-Related Issues

  • Oil Consumption: Some owners have reported higher than normal oil consumption, which can lead to more frequent top-ups and potential long-term engine damage if not monitored.
  • Timing Chain Tensioner: Earlier models might face issues with the timing chain tensioner, which can lead to engine timing problems and potentially severe engine damage.

Transmission and Drivetrain

Electrical Problems

  • Infotainment System Glitches: Some users have reported glitches with the MMI infotainment system, including freezing or unresponsiveness.
  • Battery Drain Issues: There have been instances of unexplained battery drain, often related to the car’s electrical system or malfunctioning components.

Suspension and Brakes

  • Suspension Noises: Wear and tear on suspension components, particularly in high-mileage vehicles, can lead to noises or decreased ride quality.
  • Brake Wear: Performance-oriented brakes may wear faster than standard brakes, especially if the car is driven hard or used on track days.

Interior and Exterior Components

  • Sunroof Rattles: Some models with sunroofs have reported rattling noises, which can be due to loose components or tracks.
  • LED Lighting Failures: Issues with LED headlights or taillights, such as flickering or complete failure, have been noted.

Miscellaneous Issues

  • Water Pump and Thermostat Failures: These components can fail, leading to overheating and potential engine damage.
  • Carbon Buildup: Common in direct-injection engines, carbon buildup on intake valves can lead to reduced performance and rough idling.


  • Regular Maintenance is Key: Many of these issues can be mitigated or prevented with regular, thorough maintenance.
  • Pre-Purchase Inspection: For those considering purchasing a used Audi S3 (8V), a comprehensive pre-purchase inspection is highly recommended to check for these common faults.

By being aware of these potential issues and addressing them proactively, owners can enjoy the performance and luxury of the Audi S3 (8V) while minimizing the risk of major repair.


Like many performance cars, there are a large number of modifications available for the S3. Let’s look at the best modifications for the Audi S3 (8V) to elevate its performance, aesthetics, and overall driving experience.

Performance Upgrades

  1. ECU Tuning: One of the most impactful modifications for the S3 is ECU tuning. It optimizes the engine’s parameters such as fuel mixture, ignition timing, and boost pressure, unlocking additional power and torque. This upgrade alone can transform the car’s performance. A “Stage! 1 map should see in excess of the 350BHP.
  2. Exhaust System: Upgrading to a high-performance exhaust system not only enhances the engine’s breathing but also adds a more aggressive exhaust note. Look for systems that are lighter than the stock setup for additional benefits.
  3. Air Intake System: A high-flow air intake system ensures that the engine gets a larger volume of air, which is essential for combustion. This relatively simple modification can improve throttle response and add a few extra horsepower.
  4. Intercooler Upgrade: Given the turbocharged nature of the S3, upgrading the intercooler can significantly improve efficiency and performance, especially under sustained high-performance driving conditions.

Suspension and Handling

  1. Lowering Springs/Coilovers: Lowering the car not only improves the stance but also lowers the center of gravity, which enhances handling. Coilovers offer adjustability in terms of ride height and damping.
  2. Performance Tires: Upgrading to high-performance tires can drastically improve the S3’s grip and handling. They are the only contact point with the road, so investing in good tires is crucial.
  3. Upgraded Brakes: Larger brake discs and high-performance brake pads will improve braking performance, an essential aspect for a high-performance vehicle like the S3.

Aesthetic Enhancements

  1. Body Kits and Spoilers: For those looking to enhance the aesthetics, body kits and spoilers can give the S3 a more aggressive and personalized look.
  2. Wheels: Upgrading to lighter and wider wheels not only improves the car’s appearance but also reduces unsprung weight, benefiting handling and performance.
  3. Wrap or Paint: A custom wrap or paint job can completely transform the look of the S3, making it stand out from the crowd.

Interior Upgrades

  1. Racing Seats and Steering Wheel: For a more race-inspired feel, upgrading to bucket seats and a sportier steering wheel can enhance the driving experience.
  2. Custom Gauges: Adding custom gauges for boost pressure, oil temperature, etc., can be both functional and aesthetically pleasing.

Modifying an Audi S3 (8V) can be an exciting journey. Whether it’s enhancing performance, handling, or aesthetics, the right modifications can transform the car into a more personalized and exhilarating machine. Always remember to use quality parts and consult with professionals for installation and tuning to ensure the best results and maintain the vehicle’s reliability and safety.

Let’s hear from you!

Let’s hear your Audi S3 buying tips! What are your experiences with the S3 and what are your best modifications? Let us know in the comments below