Audi has tried long and hard to make its A4 as desirable as the BMW 3-Series but hasn’t quite succeeded. At least until now. While the BMW may still have the edge on ultimate driver appeal, the 2008 A4 is
2010 Audi A4 saloon car review and test drive
a better all rounder. As beautifully finished as ever, Audi has ensured the A4 saloon is priced a little lower than premium alternatives and is more generous with equipment. Build quality was never in question, but now the 2010 Audi A4 saloon offers unrivalled interior space, superb comfort, improved driving dynamics and excellent refinement – making it our class favourite. There’s also a great choice of engines offering everything from economy and low emissions to high performance.
There’s been no major revolution in the engine line-up for the 2010 Audi A4 saloon, but the range benefits from subtle modifications and improvements. The entry-level engine is the 1.8 TFSI with 120bhp, which is smooth and quiet, while offering good low down pulling power thanks to the fact it’s turbocharged. This engine is also available with 160bhp which brings the 0-62mph down from 10.5 seconds to 8.6 seconds and is also available with an automatic gear box.
2010 A4 Avant test drive and car review
But for even quicker performance, there’s the superb 2.0 TFSI – an engine shared with the 2005 Volkswagen Golf GTI. Thanks to 211bhp it accelerates from 0-62mph in just 6.9 seconds and is available with an eight-speed Multitronic gearbox which uses two clutches to deliver super-fast shifts. The popular 2.0 TDI has changed significantly thanks to the adoption of ‘common rail’ technology and this has resulted in a huge improvement in refinement and noise levels. It’s available in several power outputs – 120bhp, 143bhp and 170bhp – and all offer strong in-gear performance along with impressive economy. In October 2009 a 2.0 TDIe model was introduced which uses a stop/start system aerodynamic tweaks to average 61mpg while emissions are just 120g/km of CO2, making it cheap to tax. It doesn’t feel slow though and the 136bhp engine will accelerate from 0-62mph in 9.5 seconds – almost identical to the 143bhp 2.0 TDI. Audi’s six-cylinder diesel engines – both the 2.7 TDI and 3.0 TDI are improved for 2008. The 2.7 TDI (available in front-wheel drive only) gets an extra 10bhp over the previous version (now 190bhp) and with its Multitronic automatic transmission it will sprint from 0-62mph in 7.7 seconds. The 3.0 TDI quattro has many new components and is quicker in the dash from 0-62mph than the 3.2-litre petrol engine plus thanks to huge pulling power it makes an excellent long distance cruiser. Impressively it accelerates from 0-62mph in a mere 6.1 seconds – quicker than most hot hatches. The 3.2-litre V6uses Audi’s FSI fuel-saving direct injection technology and with 265bhp (increased from 255bhp on the previous A4), it’s a lively performer reaching 62mph in 6.2 seconds, with a top speed electronically limited to 155mph.
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