Editor: Jason “The Bok” Date – 27 July 2016
Buyers shopping in the mid-size executive sedan segment have a lot of choices. With fierce competition from the likes of the BMW 3 Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class and the more recently introduced Jaguar XE.
The Audi A4 has always retained an image of understated restrained styling. The latest edition B9 version remains conservative, yet its large chrome grill and bold front fascia make it anything but ordinary.
The Audi A4 is currently available within SA in two different engine sizes, the 1,4-litre petrol, 2,0-litre petrol and a 2,0-litre diesel unit. All engines come with the option of turbocharging. The vehicle which I had been driving for review featured the 2,0 litre TFSI turbo petrol engine. With its 140 kW of power and 320 Nm of torque, the 2,0 litre TFSI engine remains an incredibly solid performer, with the 0 – 100 Km sprint is dealt with in a mere 7,3 seconds. With its communicative steering, the new A4 feels particularly poised in the corners and manages to effortlessly steam roll any bumps and creases in our roads.
Weight is an issue which we all shy away from. Just as weight affects our own performance in day-to-day life, the same applies for any automobile. Audi engineers have been very hard at work to ensure that the latest generation A4 saves weight and adds structural rigidity, thanks to an extensive use of aluminium body panels.
The new car sheds as much as 110 kg depending on the model and this makes for an overall more dynamic drive, as well as improved performance and fuel economy. Power and fuel economy have gone up by as much as 25% according to Audi.
Audi always manage to produce impeccable interior design, build and comfort. The interior of all-new A4 is nothing short exceptional, every element within the cabin feels as if it will outlive you as the driver!
The latest generation Audi A4 is as much about being high tech as it is about being high quality. With every imaginable technological innovation, you could previously only dream of in large executive saloon cars. In the centre of the dash, you find a large 8,3″ display which floats above the dash. The Audi MMI interface has been developed in conjunction with Nvidia so the interface operates flawlessly.
In the centre of the dash, you find a large 8,3″ display which floats above the dash. The Audi MMI interface has been developed in conjunction with Nvidia so the interface operates flawlessly. To operate the Multi Media System(MMI), you simply rest your hand on the gear selector and simply operate the central jog dial. The jog dial also allows for handwriting based gesture input.
The centrally based MMI system is just the beginning of the all-new A4. The vehicle now features Audi’s industry-leading virtual cockpit technology. The virtual cockpit takes over your conventional instrument cluster and turns the entire experience into a large digital display spanning over 12 inches across. The virtual cockpit display allows you to completely customise your instrumentation cluster experience. Though this feature can be pretty expensive (as much as R32,000) including navigation and all options related to the maximise the systems ability, I really do feel that it is well worth fitting as an option when buying the A4.
In summary, the all-new Audi A4 may resemble its predecessor, it does have however have a few tricks up its sleeve. With its wealth of technological abilities and dynamic drive, the Audi A4 is a very accomplished product. It not only improves on the previous generation Audi A4 (B7) in all departments, it also brings with it a level of gadgets, tech and sophistication previously only seen on luxury super saloons.
SA Pricing (as at article publication date)
|Engine Variant||SA Price|
|1.4T FSI manual (110 kW/250 Nm)||R441 000|
|1.4T FSI S Tronic (110 kW/250 Nm)||R459 000|
|1.4T TSI Design S Tronic (110 kW/250 Nm)||R488 000|
|1.4T FSI Sport S Tronic (110 kW/250 Nm)||R492 000|
|2.0T FSI S Tronic (140 kW/320 Nm)||R496 000|
|2.0T FSI Design S Tronic (140 kW/320 Nm)||R513 000|
|2.0T FSI Sport S Tronic (140 kW/320 Nm) - As Tested||R517 000|
|2.0T FSI Quattro S Tronic (185 kW/370 Nm)||R616 000|
|2.0 TDI S Tronic (140 kW/400 Nm)||R517 000|
|2.0 TDI Sport S Tronic (140 kW/400 Nm)||R538 000|
|2.0 TDI Design S Tronic (140 kW/400 Nm)||R534 000|
Watch as I take the all-new Audi A4 (B9) for a drive: