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S5 modifications - APS, UK, 15th Feb

22868 Views 168 Replies 33 Participants Last post by  Wolfman
All, a number of S5 owners met at the premises of APS in Brackley, Northants on Friday to undertake some of the more popular modifications bing talked about on this forum. Here's a few initial details - I'll post a pictorial diary of the day and fellow owner Ian, sound recordist extraordinaire, has some 'before and after' sound files which clearly show the (marked) difference between stock and Milltek resonated exhaust. To answer the burning question - 'is it worth it and should I wait for a non-res version' - 'YES' and 'NO'. More details later.

Background to the day

As many of you will know, Ian and I had separately approached APS for details and pricing on a series of mods (primarily exhaust and suspension/track). Ian pulled it together via another thread and APS arranged a day for a number of owners to meet and either have the mods performed, or simply view the work in progress and its results. Hence, we met at APS's premises in Brackley, Northants this last Friday 15th.


Have to spend a few lines commending this outfit. Their premises are immaculate (as you'll see from the pics), their customer service and communication (through partner, Ed Jackson) is beyond reproach and their engineers are not only damn good blokes but at the top of their game. They work in pairs on each car, methodically assisting each other and checking each stage of the work. Gained huge comfort in watching the way they handled my prized possesion. They have a wealth of experience with a variety of VAG models and this is apparent in conversation with them. You'll also find it hard to beet their keen pricing!

The cars

On the day, three cars were to be modified, these being:
  • Mine (Meteor Grey), in for exhaust, spacers, springs and Sportec pedals
  • Ian's (Phantom Black) in for the same less pedals, although having seen them, quickly added to his list :)
  • Colli's (Ibis White), intended to have re-map, spacers springs and pedals done, with exhaust next week. As it turned out, springs hadn't arrived so he'll be back for those with the exhaust.
We were also joined by Graham and his meteor S5 who was interested in seeing the results, and Neil from Honda's F1 operation round the corner who's had a loaded black S5 for a few months and joined us to see the work taking place.

So, at one point, close to £250K's worth of S5 all parked up - quite a sight (and sound!).....

The mods - subjective impressions

In summary, the mods make a huge difference to the car and make it, in my opinion, the type of car we hoped Audi would make. Aesthetically, the pictures speak for themselves with the car now possessing a totally aggressive stance - the word that springs to mind is 'menacing'. The Milltek slash-cut exhaust looks tremendous, well-suited to the car and avoiding the Max Power look by virtue of its careful integration with the lines of the rear valance. It could be said that for this benefit alone, the mods are worth the money but what of the drive?

When my car was initially lowered from the ramp and the engine fired-up, I have to say my heart sank and Ian's face fell. At idle, the exhaust note was noticeably more subdued - we both started to wonder if we had done/were about to do the right thing. Then I sat in the car and revved it up. OMG. The sound of the car, most particularly from inside had changed beyond recognition. From the standard burble, the note had changed to a deep but hard-edged growl (check out Ian's comparative sound files for confirmation of this). The car was taken out by Ed for a quick shakedown and upon return, I went out for a quick blast up and down the A43. I didn't stop smiling. Under load, the exhaust just bellow - unmistakably a V8 sound but more akin to a race car. No need to put the back seats down now to get the benefit! ;) With the window down, it was apparent that the sound that passers-by are subjected too is no less arresting - the car just howls its intent :eek:

The ride quality is, as you'd expect, notably firmer and certainly in the UK, it's fair to say that 90% of the time, you'll be completely aware that the car is riding on stiffer springs. That said, it's part of the miraculous metamorphosis of the car from GT to hard-edged sports saloon and totally in keeping. Any trade-off in terms of ride comfort (and there is some) is more than balanced by the car's poise on the road and enhanced cornering ability - roundabouts on the A43 were despatched in one seamless movement, body-roll all but banished and the car still largely unaffected by mid-corner road surface imperfections although on one or two occasions, I have sensed it skip slightly as it encounters bumps and holes, where the previous set-up would have been more tolerant.

Regarding the spacers - can't honestly say I notice any negative impact on steering feel - although there's a sense of additional weight at low speeds. Steering accuracy is unaffected as speeds increase. Both Ian and I (and I think Colli?) decided on aesthetic grounds to go with front spacers as well as rears and whilst we each harboured some concerns about the possible effects on steering geometry, this seem to have been misplaced. We'll keep an eye on the front tyres for any signs of uneven wear, but first impressions are comforting.

That's it for now - in the office today and have to do some proper work - will post some more pics in follow-on posts and more later from I and others.....


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Hi Dan,

Good to speak to you again today and thanks very much for booking in with us, i certainly don't think you'll be disappointed :)

Look forward to meeting you next week.

Regards, Ed
Hi SAJ_1982,

Between 18bhp and 20bhp and 15-18lbs.ft of torque. In reality the difference is how the engine responds, much more positively with stronger torque and greater willingness to rev in higher rpm’s too.

These engines do take a time to loosen up nicely, as with all large capacity V engines. Both the R8 and RS4 B7 we dyno tested were a little shy of the stock figures simply because of lack of miles. We've mapped quite a few B7 RS4's and they were very different to how they were with sub 10Kmiles under the belt, they get very much stronger.


Regards, Ed
Hey all,

Well, 2.5 hour drive plenty of tea and fodder and a 2.5 hour drive return I now have a lowered, spacered, remapped and exhausted :) S5. As you all stated Ed and his team were very professional, knowledgable and helpful. I specifically requested the tailpipes of the exhaust were pushed back further and lifted to appear more OEM. They did just that and the car is now EVEN better. lowering and spacers are spot on.

The remap although not that noticable at first due to the fact the car is so new and is still bedding in still feels more responsive, smoother to drive. I will report more in a couple of months.

The slightly stiffer ride makes the car feel more sports car like with better steering response too! The sound from the exhaust has left me deliberately hanging in gear and changing down to early to absorb the V8 rumble :D

All in all I would absolutely recommend APS. I arrived at :)30am and left at 2ish. Job done!
Pics will come and and when I get off my arse and the weather is nice :p

Thanks again all for the indepth feedback it persuaded me to go this route. No regrets!
Hi Dan,

Nice to meet you both on Wednesday, thanks for your feedback and I’m very pleased to hear your happy with the work carried out to your S5, makes a great improvement doesn’t it. :D

Speak to you soon and thanks again for visiting us.

Regards, Ed
Mad, see how it goes, I'm not in any hurry, just thought it might be worth seeing who we can get together...

Just a thought on this, if a few of you fancy coming along then we could host a sort of mini meet here if you wanted? We don’t mind keeping the workshop clear for the day so you can have the opportunity to come down and have a good look at an S5 while it’s being worked on and so fourth? It might be a good opportunity for anyone who is contemplating doing some upgrades to sample one that already has a Milltek/remap/springs etc.

Please let me know if anybody would like to do this and we can look at arranging a day for you all.

Regards, Ed
You might be able to remember me Ed,Dave here from Durham (north east) i spoke to you last month about getting exhaust,springs and spacers done like the guys (Ian,Colli,Ess5ive) well i am saving my pennys and hope to come down in near future to get work done and your idea about giving us all of your time on a day sounds great i would certainly be up for that as i am pretty new to mods etc and to see the experts at work on the cars would be great.
I am very busy at work atm and possibly be end of next month or june before i book my car in,not sure what time scale you guys are on for getting work done ?
Hi Dave,

Hope you are well, I do indeed remember. :)

I think probably the best thing is if everybody could throw some dates in, so we can work out the best possible Saturday to do this on, realistically if it is going to be a Saturday then we would be looking in June, the 7th is looking like a good one here?

Ed I like your idea. Im in 2 minds about the Miltek and really want to hear one before I make a decision. However if possible on that day you dedicate to us :), there is an S5 with a miltek and I like it....would I be able to get it installed then to?
Hi Micky,

Sure no problem, we will have all the bits in stock and will also be able to fit them on the day if you do wish to go ahead.

Ok so if you guys could let me know on the date please, Saturday June 7th and we’ll get this day booked down for you all!

Regards, Ed
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Ok guys looks like the 7th it is then, we've booked that this end. We'll lay on some complimentary food and drinks too, confirm nearer the time what that is but as Nathan's wife is Spanish its normally very nice cuisine!

So the list so far is...

Blade (Pete) S5....Milltek and Spacers.

Ess5ive (Joe) - KW coilovers and Brembo Sport discs (will probably have to have these fitted later as no confirmed date from Brembo yet)

Ianhp1 (Ian!) - Goodrich Braided Lines, Brembo sports discs, possibly KW coilovers and possibly remap (last two depend on the availability of cash!)

MickyT S5 - Possible Milltek

Hope i've not missed anyone but please add your name if i have!:)
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Sorry I should have been clearer. MickyT S5 is me...Michael. :) Sorry for the confusion.
Sounds good Ed, looks like being a good day and still time to try get a few more members along. I can't decide on which tips to go for, do you have both in stock or will I need to decide before we come up ??

We need to know before hand please as we keep the slash cut only in stock, so far we have only sold and fitted slash cut, general opinion seems to be that these look best and i have to say i agree with that. All personal choice though at the end of the day. :)
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