June 9, 2005
Compiled by: AudiWorld Staff
Photos by: Don Pavlik & Raj Ashar
In early May, AudiWorld held a dyno shootout for B6 S4′s in Willow Grove, PA at AWE Tuning. Before going any further, we would like to thank Todd, Mike, Tom and the others for the generous donation of their facilities and man power. AWE’s shop is a top notch facility, impeccably clean and with a customer waiting room like no other we have seen. Leather couches, internet access, a plasma screen TV and an XBOX setup keep waiting customers well-pampered.
As readers probably recall, AudiWorld published a previous B6 S4 owners dyno event article complete with more than a little controversy. At the time we received a healthy amount of reader feedback regarding the need to provide more scientific and complete results regarding the various B6 S4 tuning programs. This second shootout, therefore, was inherently designed to provide a better-controlled, more apples-to-apples comparison.
AudiWorld provided invitations to each and every significant North American chip tuner / reseller. When it was all said and done we had contacted (in alphabetical order): AMD, AMS, APR, AWE, GIAC, Motodyne, REVO and Stratmosphere. Initial interest from the tuners was positive, but as the dyno day actually approached some tuners decided to focus on other priorities and skip the shootout. Ultimately the lack of a complete slate of tuners diminishes the overall results, but since the groundwork had all been laid we decided to forge ahead anyway.
We decided to run a two-part B6 S4 shootout with a:
1. Single car multi-chip dyno test
2. No-mods-barred “Uber” S4 dyno test
The rationale for this testing format was to provide both consistency in the first case and no limits in the second case. We knew it was critical to use one single S4 for the chip testing so as to remove any potential setup variability that might be found between different vehicles.
Both tests were run using only 93 octane fuel. Participating vehicles were instructed to arrive with less than 15 miles until empty via the trip computer readout and AudiWorld supervised the re-fueling of all vehicles to full at a single gas station a quarter mile away from AWE’s facility.
Unfortunately, one participant arrived with a freshly topped up tank of fuel. We had to round up tools, hoses and fuel cans to drain the tank per the rules of the shootout.
AudiWorld was well aware of the potential sensitivity to running this shootout at AWE’s facility and on their equipment. In order to provide the most impartial testing possible, Neil McGarry and Don Pavlik were trained to calibrate and operate the dyno without any intervention from AWE’s staff.
The B6 S4 used in the first part of the shootout was a stock 2005 belonging to AudiWorld member SullyS4. Later in the day this same car was upgraded with AWE’s full exhaust system and run again in the second shootout.
For each particular setup we ran three different pulls and then reported only the best of the three.
Murphy’s Law unfortunately made a few appearances during our time in Pennsylvania. AWE’s uber S4 started developing misfires the night before, and Motodyne had a mishap with their trailer which
resulted in a loading ramp smashing the trunk lid before the car even came off their trailer. The damage was not extensive, but an injured S4 elicits a wince of sympathy nonetheless.