facebooktwitterlinkedinyoutube

The new Audi A4: major upgrade now sportier and even more cutting edge

The new Audi A4: major upgrade now sportier and even more cutting edge
  • One of Audi’s bestseller now embraces the prestige of the full-size class with the new Audi design language.
  • Now fully connected with Audi connect technology and a new MMI touch display.
  • Electrification with mild hybrid technology enhances comfort and drive efficiency.

The A4 represents the core of the Audi brand – after four years in the making, the successful midsize Sedan is now tauter, sportier and more intelligent than before. Its exterior has evolved into Audi’s new design language and the introduction of the large MMI touch display offers the kind of operating experience that customers will be familiar with from their smartphone. Further to this, the new Audi A4 is the brand’s first model to usher in fully integrated connectivity functions with Audi connect, thereby enabling safety and service; security and convenience as well real-time infotainment functions to the driving experience. The engine options now come with a mild-hybrid system (MHEV) which allows for efficiency and comfort from broad-based electrification. This combination of advanced design, new technology, an efficient and connected driving experience, makes the product improvement on the Audi A4 quite a substantial package in the premium B-Sedan segment.

Sporty look: the exterior design

The midsize model looks even more dynamic and sophisticated thanks to the sportier design highlights. The Singleframe grille is now broader and flatter; horizontal lines emphasize the width at the front and rear. The side view is defined by the distinctive muscles above the fenders and the lower set shoulder line in between. They form strong contours above the wheels and make the quattro genes outwardly visible.

LED headlights now come standard in the Audi A4 and are available in different variations. The 35 TFSI features low beam, high beam and daytime running lights in LED technology. The 40 TFSI and S4 will feature a higher version of LED including a different daytime running light design and dynamic indicators for the rear; also available optionally is the top-of-the-line Matrix LED headlights with fully automatic high beam.

The equipment line concept is equally new: standard, Advanced and S line are now available for the exterior, not to mention the independent look of the S model with the standard high gloss styling package to accentuate it’s exterior look. Customers can choose from 12 paint colours, including a new Terra Grey colour option.

When it comes to the wheel options, 17” size is configured as standard on the entry trimline and a 18” standard wheel size on the Advanced and S line trims. There is an option to upgrade to 19” for a further sportier look. The Audi S4 offers 19” wheels as standard with a choice of three designs.

In the calmly styled interior of the Audi A4 the horizontal lines also convey the overall impression. In the centre of the instrument panel, slightly tilted toward the driver, is the large and new MMI touch display, the control centre for the new operating system. Interior customisation to standard seating is available in a variety of leather/leatherette colour combinations.  The S line interior package can be combined freely with the exterior lines and comes with Fine Nappa leather with S embossing. While ambient LED interior lighting is standard, the contour/ambient lighting package adds highlights to the interior in the dark for a very premium finish and is included as part of the Technology Package.

Cutting edge technology and connectivity

With its new MMI system, the highly connected Audi A4 offers a user experience similar to a contemporary smartphone. An MMI touch display with acoustic feedback replaces the functions of the previous rotary/pushbutton control on the centre tunnel console. The high-resolution TFT display measures 10.1 inches. Its graphics are deliberately clean and cut-down; the menu structure with its tight hierarchies is tailored to user expectations and facilitates ease of use. The MMI search is based on free text input and returns hits rapidly. The natural-language voice control, another function of the new system, understands many of the phrases used in everyday speech. Audi smartphone interface (which enables Apple CarPlay and Android Auto) is also standard on all models within the range.

The navigation in the Audi A4 is now even more versatile and more user-friendly with the optional Audi Technology Package which now includes MMI navigation plus, MMI touch and the full functionality of Audi connect. As Audi’s first model range to usher in fully integrated connectivity, the Audi connect portfolio includes a host of online services which offer advanced infotainment, navigation and Car-to-X services which take advantage of the swarm intelligence to service, safety and convenience built into the connected A4.

Audi connect takes the comfort, enjoyment and safety of driving the new Audi A4 to a whole new level. The technology focuses on integrating the structures that use online connectivity with the vehicle, to provide real-time information and multiple digital functions. This includes delivering internet services to the car via an embedded sim (installed directly into the vehicle) and used through the myAudi app. When inside the vehicle, the Audi MMI (multimedia interface) and Audi virtual cockpit becomes the mechanic of use.

myAudi app is the central nervous system for Audi connect and allows digital access to the vehicle, anywhere and at any time.  It is through this point that the driver can access important vehicle information, manage data and configure and set up certain services. The driver will be able to call up real-time information about the vehicle and keep an eye on the fuel level, range, service appointments, warning messages and other functions.

The Car2X services of Audi connect will include:

  • Safety and service features (licenced for 10 years and standard on the Audi A4) will support the driver in the event of damage, breakdown or minor accidents. This enables an emergency call or roadside assistance directly from the vehicle in order to access emergency towing, ambulance, police or fire brigade support. Notification of when a service is due is also integrated into the functionality and will trigger an automatic prompt to the registered Audi Dealer.
  • Security & convenience services (part of the optional Technology Package) will include remote functions (model-dependent) that network the vehicle with the smartphone.  This will allow the vehicle to be protected against unauthorised access, giving the driver control of selected vehicle functions by conveniently using the myAudi app. Features include car finder, remote lock/unlock, geo-fencing/speed alert and theft/alarm notification. A vehicle status report for information like the oil or fuel levels, mileage or service intervals are easily viewed on the smartphone as well.

On the other hand, the following infotainment services as part of Audi connect (requires MMI navigation plus as part of the optional Technology Package) will offer real-time information for navigation and infotainment. This includes:

  • Live and integrated Google Earth navigation and traffic information allow the driver to easily plan trips through the myAudi app and send destinations and routes directly to the vehicle.
  • Live information around points of interests (trading hours, parking availability), traffic information and weather updates are also included.

These features are available through an embedded e-SIM and data is freely available for a period of 3 years.

Audi connect, navigation and infotainment all run through the MMI which features a new main unit. The third-generation modular infotainment platform MIB 3 delivers phenomenal computing power. It works with an equally new, spatially separate communication box that bundles all connectivity tasks – such as telephony or the Audi connect services – and incorporates the Wi-Fi hotspot. The optional hardware modules include the Audi phone box and the Bang & Olufsen 3D Premium Sound System in the front.

Two instrument cluster variants are available: standard is the analog driver information system with colour display, or the all-digital Audi virtual cockpit plus. The driver can operate the 12.3-inch display with full HD resolution using the multifunction steering wheel with a choice of three views.

Broad-based electrification: the drive system

Audi will be offering the A4 model line with three turbocharged engines in South Africa. Their power outputs range from 110 kW to 260 kW – from the Audi A4 35 TFSI up to the Audi S4 TFSI.

For the market launch in October 2020, two engine variants (A4 35 TFSI and 40 TFSI) will feature a mild-hybrid system (MHEV) based on 12 volts, which reduces fuel consumption while improving comfort. This broad-based electrification makes an important contribution to achieving positive fuel consumption. In everyday use, the MHEV system reduces fuel consumption by up to 0.3 litres per 100 kilometres according to individual Audi measurements.  All A4 models come off the production line with an automatic transmission as standard. The model range is detailed below:

Model Engine (l) Power (kW) Torque (Nm)
Audi A4 35 TFSI Standard 2.0 TFSI 110 270
Audi A4 35 TFSI Advanced 2.0 TFSI 110 270
Audi A4 40 TFSI Standard 2.0 TFSI 140 320
Audi A4 40 TFSI Advanced 2.0 TFSI 140 320
Audi A4 40 TFSI S line 2.0 TFSI 140 320
Audi S4 3.0 TFSI 260 500

The range is expected to include a diesel engine in quarter one of 2021.

The Audi S4 TFSI

The 3.0 TFSI offering follows from the previous generation Audi S4. It combines sports car performance with good levels of efficiency and also impresses with high power, ample torque, spontaneous response and a sonorous sound. The direct petrol injection engine with turbocharging has an output of 260 kW and produces a hefty torque of 500 Nm from 1,370 to 4,500 rpm. The turbo V6 engine accelerates the Audi S4 from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.7 seconds, and up to an electronically governed top speed of 250 km/h. In the new S4, a fast and smoothly shifting eight-speed tiptronic handles the power transfer. Its lower gears have short, sporty ratios, while the upper gears are long to reduce revs and fuel consumption. The quattro permanent all-wheel drive makes a large contribution to the sporty handling of the S4. In normal driving, it distributes engine forces with a slight emphasis of the rear wheels – if necessary the majority of forces can be directed to the axle with better traction.

Local packages: offering simplicity

The new Audi A4 range will offer the package concept as introduced on other new models launched in South Africa. The concept aims to reduce complexity when ordering a new vehicle, considering that a customer is generally faced with a long list of options to choose from. It classifies key options according to a specific customer need and offers a straight-forward value proposition that is easy for a customer to understand. These packages have been defined by a combination of customer preferences as well as strategic options which aim to highlight Audi’s uniqueness or technology enhancements.

The packages include:

  • Comfort
  • Technology
  • Sport
  • Lights (35 TFSI only)
  • Assistance / City Assistance / Lane Assistance

Within each package structure is a few options suited to the particular proposition.

Market introduction and pricing

The Audi A4 range is currently available for sale at all Audi Dealerships in South Africa.

The model range is priced as follows:

  • Audi A4 35 TFSI S tronic                                R 644,000
  • Audi A4 35 TFSI Advanced S tronic                 R 663,000
  • Audi A4 40 TFSI S tronic                                R 681,500
  • Audi A4 40 TFSI Advanced S tronic                 R 700,500
  • Audi A4 40 TFSI S line S tronic                       R 726,500
  • Audi S4 TFSI 260kW quattro tiptronic             R 944,500

All models come standard with the 5 year / 100 000km Audi Freeway plan, inclusive of all taxes.