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A little while back I recall there was a discussion as to whether Magnetic Ride was a constantly variable system. My understanding was that it was, but I didn't get around to checking this again until recently. And the answer is: yes, it is constantly adjusting based on the driving inputs/situation.

The manual provides an example of this - saying that if the stiffness is set to the comfort mode, the system may choose to periodically increase stiffness during maneuvers such as cornering and braking: "damping is set somewhat harder for a brief period only as required, when rounding a curve and when braking." It also describes "imperceptible control processes" that can provide "individual modulation" to the dampers. So, while not a lot of information is provided (not a surprise - I don't expect they'll detail all of the programming in the owner's manual), it's clear that the system DOES, in fact, use variable damping even within a stiffness mode based upon analysis of the driving situation.

So, hopefully this clears up any confusion - you can select specific stiffness modes (comfort or sport) through the suspension button on the console, but even within those settings, the system will constantly be "individually modulating" the dampers based upon what it thinks needs to be done.

I know we often complain about the costs of magnetic ride (if the dampers fails), but it is quite a nice system, and I'm glad Audi included it.
 

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Great info as always Ez

I’ve always assumed it was just magnets off normally, and magnets on and fluid lined up for stiffer rebound when you press the button to light up.

It’s good to know that it’s variable damping all of the time. And that turning it in dies the same, but stiffer (sport setting I’m assuming).

It’s odd because with the manual trans, we don’t have a sport button like the rest of you. It’s just shocks normal or shocks stiffer.
 

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I thought this might be the case as with sport mode off there have been times when it feels stiffer than others.

Actually not always in a good way... I was driving down a fast A-road in Wales last weekend when I see a young lad in a vauxhall swing out behind me.. creeping up behind me, I think 'fine, if you want to dance, let's dance'... I drop it down a cog and eat up some road... much to my surprise he pretty much makes up the distance! I'm scratching my head a bit... put my foot down more, we're both doing 130mph and he's keeping up! I slow down and pull in later letting him pass after our bit of fun and it was a VXr8.. not seen one before, but dang they are quick vauxhalls!

But what I noticed was on this run the suspension was with sports mode off, but it had clearly tightened up due to the speed - this was working fine in some regards but obviously can't react well to uneven road, so there were times on that run where it felt suspension was actually reducing performance by changing.

PS
For my sins I found a dead quiet A road later on in the night and managed to get the car up to 160mph. Totally exhilarating, but terrifying too, I'm not sure how soon I'll be doing it again. I found the R8 to feel quite squirrely and flighty at speeds above 130, does anybody else find this? Does changing from Pirelli to Michelin tyres help with this a bit?
 

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A change to Michelin PS4S should be a priority above all else.
Right... ok. Still have virtually new P Zero's all round. But after the trip to germany and perhaps a few laps of castle coombe they will be in a different state!

Did you ever have tyres other than the PS4S on yours? If so what were the noticeable differences?
I was always led to believe the P zero tyres are good.. been very interesting to learn otherwise! Or maybe they just aren't right for the R8 for some reason.
 

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I thought this might be the case as with sport mode off there have been times when it feels stiffer than others.

Actually not always in a good way... I was driving down a fast A-road in Wales last weekend when I see a young lad in a vauxhall swing out behind me.. creeping up behind me, I think 'fine, if you want to dance, let's dance'... I drop it down a cog and eat up some road... much to my surprise he pretty much makes up the distance! I'm scratching my head a bit... put my foot down more, we're both doing 130kph and he's keeping up! I slow down and pull in later letting him pass after our bit of fun and it was a VXr8.. not seen one before, but dang they are quick vauxhalls!

But what I noticed was on this run the suspension was with sports mode off, but it had clearly tightened up due to the speed - this was working fine in some regards but obviously can't react well to uneven road, so there were times on that run where it felt suspension was actually reducing performance by changing.

PS
For my sins I found a dead quiet A road later on in the night and managed to get the car up to 160kph. Totally exhilarating, but terrifying too, I'm not sure how soon I'll be doing it again. I found the R8 to feel quite squirrely and flighty at speeds above 130, does anybody else find this? Does changing from Pirelli to Michelin tyres help with this a bit?
You mean kph, right?

I felt my R8 got a bit floaty when in 3-figure territory... I wanted it to feel dead planted but it never felt that way to me.
 

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Although P Zeros are not the best, I wouldn't write them off entirely until you have had your steering geometry checked and also played around with tyre pressures. The former can be done by any competent alignment shop and as for the pressures, 36 psi all round from cold is a good starting point. I do however agree that PS4's are significantly better tyres, but only if the other factors mentioned are right.
 

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Right... ok. Still have virtually new P Zero's all round. But after the trip to germany and perhaps a few laps of castle coombe they will be in a different state!

Did you ever have tyres other than the PS4S on yours? If so what were the noticeable differences?
I was always led to believe the P zero tyres are good.. been very interesting to learn otherwise! Or maybe they just aren't right for the R8 for some reason.
First tyres were PZero's, noisy and lacking stability at speed and gave no confidence at speed in turns.
Second were Michelin PSS, improved comfort and confidence at speed.
Third are Michelin PS4S, even more comfort and confidence in all circumstances, but you need to find the best tyre pressure for your driving style.
 

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You mean kph, right?

I felt my R8 got a bit floaty when in 3-figure territory... I wanted it to feel dead planted but it never felt that way to me.
Sorry meant to type mph. Clocked a top speed of 160 but anything above 130 feels pretty unstable, surprisingly so!
 

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First tyres were PZero's, noisy and lacking stability at speed and gave no confidence at speed in turns.
Second were Michelin PSS, improved comfort and confidence at speed.
Third are Michelin PS4S, even more comfort and confidence in all circumstances, but you need to find the best tyre pressure for your driving style.
That's exactly what I'd like to improve, certain kinds of corner I currently feel more comfortable doing in an E46 and I know that's not right!
Sounds like PS4S is the next change then, what I have been experiencing is not to do with dampers which is very much a good thing :)
In terms of tyre pressure I'm feeling like they are maybe too pumped at the moment, perhaps making it feel more sketchy cornering at speed.. It's strange it sometimes feels like the back end is lighter than the front even though the engine is back there..
 

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That's exactly what I'd like to improve, certain kinds of corner I currently feel more comfortable doing in an E46 and I know that's not right!
Sounds like PS4S is the next change then, what I have been experiencing is not to do with dampers which is very much a good thing :)
In terms of tyre pressure I'm feeling like they are maybe too pumped at the moment, perhaps making it feel more sketchy cornering at speed.. It's strange it sometimes feels like the back end is lighter than the front even though the engine is back there..
Once you've lost your confidence in a set of tyres it never comes back (ask any motorcyclist), a change to PS4S will restore your confidence after fitting/alignment and got the tyre pressure to your liking (recommended pressures seem very high).
 

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But what I noticed was on this run the suspension was with sports mode off, but it had clearly tightened up due to the speed - this was working fine in some regards but obviously can't react well to uneven road, so there were times on that run where it felt suspension was actually reducing performance by changing.
?
There seems to be common confusion about sports mode and suspension. There is no link at all between the two. Sports mode effects throttle response and gear changes only. The only thing that controls suspension settings is the suspension button, and the continuously variable element of mag ride itself.
 

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There seems to be common confusion about sports mode and suspension. There is no link at all between the two. Sports mode effects throttle response and gear changes only. The only thing that controls suspension settings is the suspension button, and the continuously variable element of mag ride itself.
I have a manual...

But when I press the mag ride button
It says on the dash:
'SPORTS MODE ON!'
Press it again
'SPORTS MODE OFF!''

So I meant sports mode / mag ride settings not the other kind of sports mode..

Sent from my STV100-4 using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #14
There seems to be common confusion about sports mode and suspension. There is no link at all between the two. Sports mode effects throttle response and gear changes only. The only thing that controls suspension settings is the suspension button, and the continuously variable element of mag ride itself.
I have a manual...

But when I press the mag ride button
It says on the dash:
'SPORTS MODE ON!'
Press it again
'SPORTS MODE OFF!''

So I meant sports mode / mag ride settings not the other kind of sports mode..

Sent from my STV100-4 using Tapatalk
To be fair, Audi uses the term "Sport Mode" in various ways, themselves, throughout the manual. They do so in relation to three settings, in particular, all of which are independently activated.

- Sport Mode (Transmission): For owners of R or S-Tronic transmissions, this is activated by pressing the "Sport" button on the transmission selector surround plate. It changes the way gears are held (auto mode), shift times, throttle response, rev-matching, and exhaust valves. Swansailor recently commented that he didn't believe the last two were affected on his 2008 R-Tronic; however, many of us, myself included, appear to have this behavior included. The manual makes no reference to them (that I can see), but they're easy enough to witness.

- Sport Mode (ESC): Audi references an ESC-reduced mode (allowing for some wheel spin/slip) ALSO as Sport Mode, which is also required for launch control.

- Sport Mode (Magnetic Ride): Audi refers to the stiffer magnetic ride setting as "Sport Mode" in the manual, as well.

It would probably have made sense for Audi to get their nomenclature and terms straight. :) MOST members on this forum refer to Sport Mode when speaking about the transmission related settings (probably because the button is actually labelled "Sport"; however, the ESC and Magnetic Ride settings arguably use the same term... making it all very confusing. :)

To be clear, however, these three systems, although called the same thing, each have independent buttons to activate them.
 

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I've had the car into the 150's at the track and do not remember the car feeling unstable. It was also probably at that speed for up to 15 seconds and not minutes, like you may have experienced on the highway. I've had both the stock Pirellis and Mich PS4S, which are on the car now. The Pirellis felt OK, but I do prefer the Mich handling in Wet or Dry situations.
 

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I've had the car into the 150's at the track and do not remember the car feeling unstable. It was also probably at that speed for up to 15 seconds and not minutes, like you may have experienced on the highway..
Exactly that, I hit 160 and stayed there for perhaps 4 seconds before backing off quickly. Every movement of the wheel is emphasised so much, it is not a speed I could confidently sustain for much longer. It's such a strange sensation coming back down to 110mph, it feels like you're going so slowly - really weird!
That speed test was on a totally straight road, and actually, it wasn't on that run that it felt unstable.
It's been on other runs let's say around 130mph but where there is a slow long bend in the road - as soon as the car starts to move away from wheels dead straight ahead, this is when it starts to feel a bit unstable and light on the road I have found.
 

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There seems to be common confusion about sports mode and suspension. There is no link at all between the two. Sports mode effects throttle response and gear changes only. The only thing that controls suspension settings is the suspension button, and the continuously variable element of mag ride itself.
I have a manual...

But when I press the mag ride button
It says on the dash:
'SPORTS MODE ON!'
Press it again
'SPORTS MODE OFF!''

So I meant sports mode / mag ride settings not the other kind of sports mode..

Sent from my STV100-4 using Tapatalk
To be fair, Audi uses the term "Sport Mode" in various ways, themselves, throughout the manual. They do so in relation to three settings, in particular, all of which are independently activated.

- Sport Mode (Transmission): For owners of R or S-Tronic transmissions, this is activated by pressing the "Sport" button on the transmission selector surround plate. It changes the way gears are held (auto mode), shift times, throttle response, rev-matching, and exhaust valves. Swansailor recently commented that he didn't believe the last two were affected on his 2008 R-Tronic; however, many of us, myself included, appear to have this behavior included. The manual makes no reference to them (that I can see), but they're easy enough to witness.

- Sport Mode (ESC): Audi references an ESC-reduced mode (allowing for some wheel spin/slip) ALSO as Sport Mode, which is also required for launch control.

- Sport Mode (Magnetic Ride): Audi refers to the stiffer magnetic ride setting as "Sport Mode" in the manual, as well.

It would probably have made sense for Audi to get their nomenclature and terms straight.
MOST members on this forum refer to Sport Mode when speaking about the transmission related settings (probably because the button is actually labelled "Sport"; however, the ESC and Magnetic Ride settings arguably use the same term... making it all very confusing.


To be clear, however, these three systems, although called the same thing, each have independent buttons to activate them.
I’m assuming for 6MT owners there’s no way to change throttle response since we don’t have a sport mode/transmission button. The other items are null for us obviously.

I plan on putting a race chip on mine here soon for that actually!
 

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On a straight flat road is pilot sport 4s is ok but the random bump will make you back down. I went 170 for a stretch late at night in Houston till I backed off when the road got bumpy. I've never experienced the Pirelli's but I can speak about the Bridgestone RE's when warm and dry the grip seemed better in a turn, ride was definitely stiffer and way more fun when cold and dry letting the tail end out a little bit. Although dangerous as hell when any amount of wetness was involved. I got rid of them right before they needed to be replaced but one dangerous event is enough. PS4S is the best all around tire though. Just wish they had a stiffer side wall.
 
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