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  •   Sam Preston reacted to this post about 1 year ago
    READER TESTS fitting a new steering wheel

    Fitting a new steering wheel can transform the interior of your Audi – we joined Darren Ford from the Audi Owners Club to see what’s involved…

    FITTING GUIDE #Audi-S4-B8 / #steering-wheel-upgrade / #Audi-A4-B8 / #Audi-A4 / #Audi /

    We’re often asked what’s involved with fitting a different, or later spec steering wheel to an Audi, so this month, our resident tester, Darren Ford from the Audi Owners Club, has fitted a new steering wheel to his immaculate S4 B8 saloon. The new wheel was sourced from Fly Design on eBay but there are many companies offering upgrades online. You don’t have to change the steering wheel of course – many people want to remove their existing wheel to get it recovered. There is a range of finishes including Alcantara and carbon fibre available to give your interior that bespoke touch. As with all technical work such as this, if you are not totally confident in your abilities, always seek the help of an Audi specialist.

    Fitting time:...................................................................30mins
    Tools required:.... T30 torx driver, T55 torx bit, 10mm spanner
    Difficulty:............................................................................................2/10
    Cost:.............................................................. £300 (plus fitting)


    1. Before you start, decide whether you are going to disconnect the earth. Our auto electrician did not, but you may want to for extra reassurance. If you do, be sure that you have any codes you may need and access to a VCDS (VAG-COM) unit. At the rear of the wheel, at the three and nine o’clock positions, you’ll find two plastic tabs. Pop these open carefully with a small screwdriver.

    2. Turn the wheel half a turn – below the wheel, on the steering column there is a notch. Line up the tab you have just opened with this notch, which allows access with a screwdriver.

    3. Once these two screws have been removed, the airbag can be carefully pulled forward.

    4. You will now see a yellow tab connecting the airbag to the steering wheel – this can just be teased out, then gently unplugged.

    5. There is an additional wire located bottom right – this is the multifunction connector. Again just tease it out and carefully unplug it.

    6. Undo the centre-spline bolt, and remove the steering wheel. It may need a tap to free it up.

    7. Reverse the previous steps to refit the new steering wheel.

    8. Test the new steering wheel to ensure it is firmly secured and that all of the multi-function buttons, as well as paddle shifters and horn work as they should.

    Conclusion

    Fitting a new steering wheel to the S4 B8 was a simple, pain free process. The new wheel is far chunkier and nicer to grip, and updates the inside of the S4. It was a direct replacement, offering the same functions as the OEM wheel, so in that sense straightforward. Obviously newer Audis with extra steering wheel functions (such as Drive Select), can still be fitted to older/lower models, but these functions will not be available.

    OUR TESTER

    Darren Ford is an Audi enthusiast and carries out all of the product tests for the Audi Owners Club. He has many years of experience and works with a select group of trained technicians to give Audi owners the information they need to make the right buying decisions.
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  •   Darren Ford reacted to this post about 3 years ago
    WRAPPER’S DELIGHT #Audi-S4-Tuned B8 daily driver / #Audi-S4-B8-Tuned /

    When you’re the boss of a wrapping company, your own car needs to be something a bit different, but this S4 also has the performance to go with the striking looks… Words & Photography Davy Lewis.

    When it comes to bang for your buck, it’s hard to beat a 3.0 TFSI. The supercharged V6 is one of the jewels in Audi’s engine line-up – an engine that is smooth, powerful and delivers a healthy 333bhp punch from the factory. Although available in a range of Audis, it’s the B8 S4 that has really made this engine famous, because with some relatively simple upgrades, you can transform your saloon or estate from a quick car, to a near 500bhp weapon.

    The beauty of an S4 is that it can be used as a daily driver with plenty of room for transporting kids, dogs – you name it. They’re docile and well mannered around town, but when you want it, they can deliver a hell of a punch. It’s this everyday performance that appealed to Andy Roose, Director of Autowrap Manchester. Working closely alongside Colin Jackson and the guys at Stadt Technik, Andy has had access to a range of quality upgrades to make the most of the S4’s latent potential.

    As a company demo car, it made perfect sense. Let’s start with the engine work. As Revo dealers, Stadt Technik took the car into their Manchester workshop and gave the S4 a full Stage 1+ makeover. This involved fitting the performance pulley kit, along with the induction setup and Stage 1+ software. There’s a Milltek exhaust system to free up the gas flow, and all told, the upgrades provide a healthy increase in both power and torque. The headline numbers are 448bhp and 450lb/ft. This sounds great on paper, but it’s even more impressive when you actually experience it.

    Going from a stock S4 into a Stage 1+ tuned car really is a game changer. Whereas previously a squeeze of the throttle resulted in some rapid acceleration, with the upgrade, the same pressure unleashes a wave of torque. There’s so much instantaneous grunt available that it’s hard to believe you’re in the same car. In first and second it’s savage – although this is a manual, so there’s no S-tronic launch control, it’s still impressive. In fact, part of the fun of a Stage 1+ S4 is watching passengers as you demonstrate a launch – a word of warning though: make sure they haven’t just eaten breakfast.

    It isn’t merely the low gear, off-the-line acceleration that’s impressive – press the throttle in any gear and you’ll be rewarded with instant, linear power. It’s almost as if there’s a larger engine up front – a very different sensation to a big-power turbo, for example. Part of the fun with an S4 is that it looks quite sedate and unthreatening. Other drivers don’t expect these cars to be so quick. That said, this one is a little more in your face than most.

    You see, as director of Autowrap Manchester, Andy has access to a myriad of vinyl designs. So, as a company demo car, the S4 needed something a little out of the ordinary to help it to stand out. The current wrap is actually a one-off sample, but Andy liked it so much he’s keeping it. There’s an oldschool 2000s flavour to this flip colour, which changes depending on where the light is. It will not be to everyone’s taste, but the beauty of a wrap like this is it can be easily changed. To further enhance the exterior, Andy has fitted an RS-style front grille, along with some black badges to give an altogether moodier look to the S4.

    A set of wheels, spacers and lowering springs is one of the easiest ways to transform the looks of a car. It’s something Stadt Technik always recommend, and, along with black optics, privacy glass and an RS-style front grille, is a guaranteed way to improve most non-RS Audis. This S4 benefits from all of the above, plus a set of 19in AC alloys finished in bronze. They sit perfectly within the arches and really suit the avant. And that’s about it. The interior is a stock mix of leather and Alcantara, which is a perfectly nice place to be. The exterior has even been finished off with a full ceramic coating to keep it looking tip-top throughout the winter. It really is the perfect daily driver.

    “Going from a stock S4 into a Stage 1+ car is a game changer”

    Below: Black details look very effective. Above: RS-style grille. Left: 3.0 TFSI has been fully Revo’d. Above: Privacy glass and black badges. Left: Carbon effect splitter is neat. Right: Alloys sit perfectly. Below: Milltek system. Above: The go-to guys for wraps in Manchester. Top: With getting on for 450bhp, this S4 is rapid.

    “An S4 B8 avant is one of the best daily drivers out there”

    TECHNICAL DATA SPECIFICATION #Audi-S4-Avant-B8 WIDE BODY / #Audi-S4-Avant / #Audi-S4-B8 / #Audi-A4-Avant-B8 / #Audi-A4-B8 / #Audi-A4 / #Audi-S4-Avant-Revo-B8 / #Audi-S4-Avant-Revo / #Audi-S4-Revo / #Revo-supercharger / #Revo / #Milltek / #Audi

    Engine 3.0 #TFSI #V6 , #Revo-supercharger-pulley-kit , #Revo-air-intake-kit , #Revo-Stage-1+ software, #Milltek-exhaust
    Transmission 6-speed manual
    Suspension #H&R springs
    Brakes S4 stock
    Wheels 19in #AC-alloys with Vredestein tyres
    Interior S4 leather and Alcantara
    Exterior Black badges, custom vinyl wrap by #Autowrap-Manchester , carbon front splitter, privacy glass, #RS-style front grille
    Contacts Autowrap Manchester www.autowrapmanchester.co.uk, Stadt Technik www.stadttechnik.co.uk
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  •   Davy Lewis reacted to this post about 3 years ago
    #DRIVE LOW PARK LOWER

    You think you’ve got problems with getting your car low? We suggest you go and find Vick Singh Nagi, he’s a full-blown addict. Words: David Kennedy / Photos: Si Gray

    Getting low is an addiction, and it’s one that afflicts many of us. There’s no ‘Just Say No’ campaign or ‘Talk to Frank’ adverts on evening TV, nothing to steer people away. It sneaks up on you. Just a taste, a set of lowering springs bought off a mate at first, just to make your car look a bit cooler.

    Everyone else is doing it, how bad can it be? Sure enough that first taste gets you. Soon, you’re hanging out in dark garages and workshops away from prying eyes, winding coilovers down on their threads. Just a few more millimetres you say, that’s it…

    Soon enough, you start making excuses, lying to yourself. Sure, you can’t get over speedbumps anymore, but that’s fine. Sure, you’ve spent all your hard-earned on modified drop links and chassis notches. Your arches might be mullered but that’s okay, everyone’s doing it right? But then you need to get lower and chase the rush. You ditch the helpers or cut the coils. Now you’re on the hard stuff. There’s no Promises or Priory that can help you now. If only you hadn’t let your mate give you those lowering springs all those years ago…

    “Yeah I’ve got a problem, there’s no way I can pretend otherwise, it is what it is I guess,” Vick Nagi smiled. “#drivelowparklower, right?”

    Vick is a man who shouldn’t need much of an introduction to readers of this magazine. While he hasn’t had a car featured before in these hallowed pages, the Leeds-based Dub nut has owned more awesome cars than we can count and had his hand in even more. Many UK people will recognise Vick’s name for his many years of service as the peace-and-harmony-preaching Edition38.com moderator, or the man on the mic on stage at E38’s show for four years. With so much time already under his belt, not to mention a happy family, successful property development business and his side gig Lowpro UK who supply air-ride, audio gear and wheels, we were shocked to learn he’s only 29 years old – it seems like he’s been around forever! “It all started when my brother Bobby and I used to be out on our BMXs around Leeds. We would always see and hear Bini Yousaf’s Mk2 VR6 back in the day,” Vick smiled. “Then I ended up getting my own Mk2 GTI that I did a few bits to but being young and not having enough money meant it ended up getting scrapped as my mum couldn’t cope with a primered shell on her drive!”

    A few cars came and went later including a Mk1, a few Mk2s, a nicely built Polo G40, that Corrado (more on that later) and a B7 RS4. And that’s not including his partner Avril’s car collection. “Avril is all about power, she’d much rather go to a hillclimb than a static car show,” Vick laughed. “You guys featured her Mk4 back in Drive-My, she’s had a 420bhp Anniversary, a tuned Edition30, she’s still got her R32 and we’ve been building her TFSI Mk2 for a while now too. If she had her way the Audi would have big power and be on R888s. She’s a real petrolhead… which makes things easier for me!”

    With a new house purchase on the cards Vick had to let the RS4 go but with a dog and son Vaughn in tow, they needed to replace it with something equally as practical and it was the Edition38 forums that came up trumps. “It was the wrong colour in red but it was the exact spec I wanted and I figured that seeing as it was going to be a sensible daily workhorse it didn’t matter much,” Vick explained. “The first thing I did was send it to Leeds Bentley where my good friend Kevin Swallow replaced every service part that could be – the EGR, water pump, cambelt, everything. I wanted it done right and done reliably and he was the best man for the job.”

    Vick knew he was never going to keep the A4 as Audi intended and with memories of Belgian B8s in his mind, not to mention his friend Shiv’s white example that had been kicking around the show scene at the time, it wasn’t long before things started happening. JH Pro Paint sorted the paint out and as soon as the clear coat dried Vick was shooting down the M1 to have Shiv fit the Air Lift Performance suspension kit paired with AccuAir E-Level management.

    “The car has always been a daily, travelling to building sites, carrying tools around and taking Vaughn out and about so from the off it evolved with how we used it,” said Vick. “With that in mind, air-ride was a given, but I wanted it to be different,” he added. “To be honest it all started because people were saying what’s the point of air if you can’t drive it as low as you can on coilovers? And with Simon Sweetland from (super low coilover specialist) StillStatic giving me friendly grief about it, and my good friend Phil from The Install Company doing the same, I knew what needed to be done.”

    Once it was back from Shiv’s it was time to give the Audi new rolling stock. Luckily, Vick isn’t exactly lacking in that department. “I’ve got a room full of wheels in my house!” he laughed. “Avril collects art, my art is wheels.”

    He’s not joking either, just about every time we saw the A4 over its run of shows it was on a different set of wheels! “It’s had about eight sets on it, every cast Rotiform made, Rotiform splits, 20” BBS E28s and a few sets of 20” Audi OEM wheels too. Manny at BSmart Auto actually keeps a few sets of 20” tyres in stock for me now as I’m always needing them stretched on last minute,” he laughed. “I wanted something special for Ultimate Dubs 2015, though, and Brian at Rotiform put together these 10x20” INDT centrelocks for me which I just loved,” he added.

    As for the bodywork, well there’s more to that than there initially seems too: “I replaced the stock rear lights with the latest B8 RS4 Neon Bar lights which cost me an absolute fortune from TPS along with the OEM LED number plate lights too.” The car went back to JH Pro Paint again later on to have the arches pulled, rolled and widened. It also paid a trip to JC Weldfab where the rear trim was replaced with a US-spec S Line item along with a custom exhaust system being built with two large tailpipes to fill the valance better. “The system was tweaked so it would sit higher under the car,” Vick remembered. “Getting it lower and lower was always on my mind, so anything that could be done was.” Vick then had Jon at Vinyl Image wrap the roof bars and chrome trim in gloss black: “It’s funny, I’ve had three different Jons working on the car, Jon at JH Pro Paint, Jon at JC Weldfab and then Jon at Vinyl Image!”

    Just air and wheels. That’s all you need to build a show car these days, isn’t it? That seems to be the all too common misconception anyway.

    In fact, there is a world of difference between just bolting on an off-the-shelf air kit and the kind of work that’s gone in to a car like Vick’s A4 here. Sure, the struts themselves are as they were when they left Air Lift’s Michigan factory, but everything else? An Audi Master Tech would have a field day! The arch plastics have been trimmed and the top turrets have been notched to make space for the control arms to name just two bits that aren’t as they’re meant to be anymore. “Phil at The Install Company modified nearly every point under the car that involves the suspension – the rear arms and top mounts have been tweaked, and the inner arches are pretty heavily modified too,” Vick smiled. “We wanted it to be the lowest driving A4 in the world, and I think we achieved that.” So how low can it go and still drive normally? “Taking out the steering column when it was at its lowest on a catseye on the M1 was impressive and annoying at the same time… especially as it went through the subframe and punctured the rack…”

    Other highlights? The RS4 wavy brakes, fitted by another mate in the shape of Aaron Smith with Syco Graphics cutting up some custom stickers for them.

    Vick’s aware that to some people, a car like this will always be seen as just an ‘air and wheels’ build. But you know what? It doesn’t bother him one bit. “Most people love it as they understand there is a lot more to it than meets the eye but some see it as over-hyped as it’s just air and wheels, you know,” he smiled. “I don’t mind either opinion as I love it and I know the fun and stress of building a real low-driving car has not been simple or easy.

    “I really like the look of an OEM car, to me the A4 almost looked like a concept – you know how concepts are always a lot lower than the real thing and have wheels that completely fill the arches? I think it looks like that,” he added.

    Vick is one of those people we could talk to for hours, he’s just that kind of guy. Not least because, boy, once he gets going it’s hard to stop him but also because we like the way he thinks. “I know it’s a cliché but it’s the people that make the car scene such a nice place to be,” Vick smiled. “Take me doing the MC’ing on stage at E38 for example, I met so many good people and contacts from doing that over the years, people like Jon at JH Pro Paint. I badgered him to come up on stage with his Mk1 and now our families are friends, how cool is that? And I’ve got so many stories like that too, I love it.” Vick was well known on the Edition38 forums for preaching positive vibes and stopping arguments, and he’s just like that in person too. In fact, if you’re ever in a bad mood at a show, go find Vick. We guarantee you’ll leave him feeling a whole lot better!

    “Being such good friends with so many people means I can get away with badgering them as much as I do,” he laughed. “Take all the custom chassis work that Phil did. Not only did he do some incredible work on the car but he became one of my closest friends in the process, the man is an absolute genius and we share the same opinion about having fun with cars and not taking things too seriously. But I probably became the biggest pain in the backside for him!” he added laughing. So what’s next for Vick? “I’ve got my T5 that Phil’s raised the inner arches and fuse board on.

    He’s also raised loads of other engine bay gubbins and developed a totally custom loadrated Air Lift-based four-link setup for it so it’ll be the lowest driveable T5 anywhere soon. We’ve also still got the ’bagged R32, Avril’s TFSI Mk2 is in the works and there’s the Corrado to get back on the road too,” he said. “Now that we’ve got Vaughn and our business is growing so fast, other things are taking over, I’m so busy family time is more important than it ever was. I’ve now sold the Audi and have a Mk7 Golf R and I’ve already got an Air Lift kit sitting here for it…”

    Seeing as Vick is a man of many words, it only seems right we leave the last words to him: “My time is so valuable these days and I’m in the fortunate position that I can afford it, so I don’t mind paying for the best people to work on my car,” he said. “But don’t call it a chequebook car, that drives me crazy! Why? Because who has a chequebook these days? If anything, it’s a debit card car or a bank transfer car!”

    We could all take a leaf out of Vick’s book. So many positive vibes come from this man, it’s no wonder he has so many friends in the right places, even if he does still badger them to death…


    Dub Details / #Audi-A4-Avant-B8 / #Audi-A4-Avant / #Audi-A4-B8 / #Audi-A4 / #Audi / #Audi-A4-Avant-2.0TDI / #Audi-A4-Avant-2.0TDI-B8 / Rotiform / #Rotiform - INDT

    ENGINE: 2.0 #TDI 140bhp, six-speed, #JC-Weldfab exhaust, #DTUK tuning box

    CHASSIS: 10x20” centre-lock #Rotiform-INDT wheels, #Air-Lift-Performance struts, #AccuAir-E-Level management, custom work by The Install Company, rear arms modified, front top mounts modified, underside modified at nearly every suspension point, inner arches all modified, B8 RS4 wavy discs front and rear

    EXTERIOR: 25mm wider front arches, 20mm wider rear arches, gloss black optics, US-spec rear valance from 3.0-litre model in S Line grey, RS4 Neon rear bar lights, badges all custom made by G23 in black, arch liners all modified, US-spec grey S Line plate blank, all trims replaced with new items, tinted plates, windows tinted all-round

    INTERIOR: All stock, Audi MFSW, hidden air install, Recaro baby seat, #Recaro pram in boot

    SHOUT: Avril and Vaughn, my sweethearts and the people that support my/our obsession! My parents (just for giving up telling me off for wasting money on cars) and my brothers and sister. Adam and Dan at G23 Engineering, Jon and Michael at JC Weldfab, Jon and his team at JH Pro Paint, Subhraj Sidhu, Simon at StillStatic, Mark Ikeda, Mike The Polisher, Corey, Carl and Cody at Air Lift, Parm, Raj and Marcus at Car Audio Security, Russ Whitefield, Pepe Cappunci, Kevin Swallow, Zach at ZZ detailing, Manny Sirha and the team at BSmart Auto centre for tyres and everything (01132 426 338), Si Gray for amazing shots, Syco Graphics, Chris Scragg, Richard Proctor at Leeds TPS, Ricky Sohanpal, Brian at Rotiform wheels, Jon at Vinyl Image, my friends at Edition 38, Meguiar’s and Phil James at The Install Company for more than I can list. And Lowpro!

    “We wanted it to be the lowest driving A4 in the world, and I think we achieved that”

    It’s the subtle touches, like the oversized tailpipes and raised exhaust system – to allow for more ‘lows’ – that make this far more than just an ‘air and wheels’ build.
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  •   Davy Lewis reacted to this post about 3 years ago
    / #2008 / #Audi-A4 / #Audi-A4-B8 / #Audi / STRETCH LIMOUSINE

    Finland has lakes and forests, plenty of lakes and plenty of forests. Somewhere in between lies the small town of Jyvaskyla, home to Mika Hermaala, the uncrowned fitment king of Europe. But lets turn back the time 12 months. Mika is driving around in his black A4, fitted with air-ride and anodized red VIP-Modular wheels. Definitely eye candy for the locals, but in greater Europe just one of many. So he decided to change his course mid season. Racing style wrap and wheel swap to #BBS , which made it unique in Scandinavia, but in the rest of Europe once again it was nothing special. Depressed by the lack of recognition he drove around like this for the rest of the season, thinking of new ideas for his Audi that Europe hasn't seen.
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  • David Kennedy created this group

    Audi A4 B8

    Audi A4 B8 Typ 8K 2007 - 2015
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