Audi A4 Review & Prices
The Audi A4 feels solidly put together and comes with a cabin roomy enough to seat five, but alternatives are more fun to drive
Find out more about the Audi A4
The Audi A4 is to modern-day business transport what the Ford Cortina was back in the 1970s. Basically, if your daily attire involves a shirt and tie, the Audi A4 is likely to be quite high on your shopping list, doubtless alongside the BMW 3 Series, Jaguar XE and Mercedes C-Class. This is thanks – in part – to its sharp style, classy interior and economical petrol and diesel engines.
The Audi A4 has a few sporty styling tweaks to help it stand out from these cars, however, so has plenty of aggressive intakes, sharply creased lines and – depending on which model you pick – some seriously bright Matrix LED headlights. If the old A4 was frowning, this new one is clenching its teeth and staring right through you.
Inside, the changes aren’t quite so in-your-face, but you do get a whopping-great 10-inch infotainment display as standard with all the navigation and smartphone-mirroring mod-cons you could ask for.
Group Test: Audi A4 v BMW 3 Series v DS 9 v Genesis G70 v Mercedes C-Class
It isn’t just the Audi’s touchscreen that you’ll find yourself pawing at regularly – almost all of the A4’s materials feel lovely and plush, too. It’s just a shame that electric seat adjustment is reserved for top-spec cars.
Despite this, you won’t have any trouble getting comfy in the Audi A4’s spacious cabin and there’s very nearly as much room in the back for passengers as in the BMW 3 Series. The boot’s a doddle to load too, and there’s plenty of space for a few large suitcases.
All of the Audi A4’s petrol and diesel engines will happily cart you and a fair amount of heavy luggage around, but for long motorway slogs you’ll want to pick a 2.0-litre diesel engine. There’s also a faster Audi S4 diesel model that’ll lap up cross-continental road trips without breaking a sweat and a selection of petrol engines that’ll be better if you do plenty of town driving.
The Audi A4 might not be as fun to drive as a BMW 3 Series or quite as stylish as a Mercedes C-Class, but it strikes a fantastic balance between comfort, tech and quality
Whichever engine you go for, you’ll find the Audi A4 is comfortable to drive – even over fairly broken road surfaces – and cruises along quietly at speed. Its automatic gearbox is easy to use (if a little jerky when parking) and you can get plenty of driver-assistance features to take the edge off long stints behind the wheel.
What the Audi A4 doesn’t do so well, however, is put a great big grin on your face on a twisting ribbon of country road. Sure, there’s plenty of grip – especially in quattro four-wheel-drive models – but it doesn’t feel as agile or as keen to dive from one corner to the next as an Alfa Romeo Giulia or BMW 3 Series.
This is only a small niggle, however, and certainly shouldn’t put you off considering the Audi A4 as your next new car. Read on for more information in our detailed interior, practicality and driving review sections or head over to our Audi A4 deals page to see how much you can save on a new car.
The Audi A4 has a RRP range of £36,965 to £50,975. However, with carwow you can save on average £3,395. Prices start at £34,086 if paying cash. Monthly payments start at £344. The price of a used Audi A4 on carwow starts at £15,162.
Our most popular versions of the Audi A4 are:
|Model version||carwow price from|
|35 TFSI S Line 4dr S Tronic||£35,856||Compare offers|
|35 TFSI Sport 4dr S Tronic [17" Alloy]||£34,086||Compare offers|
The Audi A4 range starts off approximately on par with the BMW 3 Series and well below the newly released Mercedes C-Class when it comes to pricing. The base Sport trim is already well-equipped and while most higher trims focus more on aesthetics than additional equipment, you will still have to pick one of those to get access to the best options and safety systems.
The Audi A4 is smooth, refined and punchy in any configuration, although it doesn’t feel quite as engaging to drive as some alternatives
The low seating position doesn’t afford you quite the same commanding view as you get in one of the marque’s SUVs, but the A4’s large glass area and nimble responses make it perfect for narrow town roads.
Most road abrasions are ironed out without issue, even when shod with the larger 18- and 19- inch alloys as found on the S Line and Black Edition trim levels respectively. The steering is typically Audi-light, making parking manoeuvres a doddle, although the automatic transmission can feel a bit jerky at crawling speeds. Like most executive saloons in this class, a manual gearbox is no longer available.
The standard parking sensors front and rear and a reversing camera should help you avoid any minor scrapes, while the pre-sense city safety package can warn you of possible collisions and activate the brake assist system if required.
On the motorway
The A4 is supremely quiet on the motorway and, even at higher speeds, wind and tyre noise are well suppressed. Both the base 150bhp petrol and 163bhp diesel engines are more than capable on longer journeys, but we’d opt for the punchy 204bhp diesel if you regularly travel with a full complement of passengers. The diesel models also offer a distinct advantage in fuel economy although they’re not as refined as the petrol units.
On a twisty road
For the majority of drivers, the A4 will feel safe and comfortable along a twisty stretch of road. The steering feels pleasingly accurate, and the suspension minimises lean in the corners, but if you’re after the last word in driving engagement then the BMW 3 Series and Alfa Romeo Giulia are still ahead in this regard.
Front-wheel drive is standard and the optional quattro all-wheel-drive system can provide additional grip in slippery conditions.
Acceleration out of slow corners is responsive, especially with the 204bhp petrol engine, if you want serious pace, however, then the 341bhp diesel S4 or the intense 450bhp RS4 raise the performance to another level.
The A4 is a spacious saloon, capable of seating four adults in comfort with space for their small items, although the load area lacks clever functionality
Occupants in the front get access to four cupholders while two deep pockets in each rear door will take even large water bottles. Fold the centre section down between the rear seats and you get another set of cupholders – dehydration is not an option here.
There’s a handy place to store your keys and oddments in the centre console just ahead of the gear lever, and the centre armrest lifts up for another more secure place to keep your valuables. The glovebox isn’t particularly big, but useful enough for smaller items.
You will have no problem getting comfortable in the front row, both the steering wheel and seats offer plenty of adjustment. Leather is standard on all but the base Sport trim and the seats feel firm yet supportive. That should help keep you fresh and ache-free even on longer drives, plus it is worth noting that the S Line trims get more supportive leather and Alcantara sports front seats.
Space in the back seats
Being relegated to the back in the A4 is no hardship, the two outer seats will accommodate a pair of six-footers without complaint, although the centre pew is less accommodating as it is narrower and makes do without an individually sculpted backrest. Head and legroom is good overall, with space in each door pocket for bottles and phones and easily accessible ISOFIX points for child seats.
The A4 compares favourably with other luxury saloons of this size, offering 460 litres of boot space with the rear seats in place. This is just 20 litres less than what you get in a BMW 3 Series and a smidgen more than what is available in a Mercedes C-Class. In practical terms, you will easily fit in four medium-sized suitcases plus a pair of squashy bags, or a buggy and a pair of travel bags.
The rear seats can be folded in a 40:20:40 formation. The load area is not completely flat, but you get 965 litres of luggage space which is as generous as any alternative. You get some foldable hooks as standard but will need to tick the Storage Pack option to get a 12V socket and netted storage. There is no false floor or other smart storage solution here, so it’s a worthwhile extra.
With a selection of interior options and plenty of practical touches, the Audi A4 range caters to a broad audience
Step inside the A4’s cabin and its luxury saloon credentials are immediately apparent in the quality of everything from the door handles to the dashboard surfaces. It may not have the ultra-modern look of the newer C-Class, but it exudes quality and is still one of the nicest interiors in this segment. Black or Grey cloth is standard on the base trim, but leather is fitted on the rest of the range and certain trims also get a sporty flat-bottomed steering wheel and sports seats covered in a combination of Alcantara and leather. Most A4 variants come with brushed aluminium inlays, while the top Black Edition trim is offered with a Piano black finish.
The A4 underwent a refresh in 2019 which updated the interior trim as well the tech on offer. As a result, Audi’s impressive 12.3-inch Virtual Cockpit is now standard across the range. While the 10.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system looks less well-integrated than the units found in the 3 Series and latest C-Class, it is intuitive to use and most commonly used features can quickly be accessed through the responsive touchscreen, while the climate controls are still accessible via traditional dials on the dashboard.
The Virtual Cockpit can also display sat-nav information as well as be reconfigured in a number of ways to help keep the driver focussed on the road ahead.
Both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard, while USB ports and various external inputs allow you to connect, play and charge a variety of devices. You get a decent eight-speaker sound system as standard, and there is also an impressive 19-speaker 755-watt Bang & Olufsen option which can be had as part of the Comfort and Sound Pack.
The Audi A4 is offered with two petrol and two diesel engines, all of which are fitted with an automatic transmission as standard. Quattro all-wheel drive is only available in conjunction with the most powerful 204bhp diesel engine, the rest of the range are fitted with front-wheel-drive.
The economy champ is the 163bhp diesel model, which promises up to 58.9mpg in combined driving conditions and can complete the 0-62mph sprint in a sprightly 8.2-seconds. As a comparison, the 150hp petrol version offers 45.6mpg and is 0.7-seconds slower to 62mph.
There’s little reason to opt for the base petrol, as the 204bhp version is hardly less efficient, at 44.8mpg, and is appreciably quicker with a 0-62mph time of 7.1 seconds. Both of those figures eclipse the comparably priced 184bhp BMW 320i, but it can’t quite match the 200bhp Alfa Romeo Giulia in acceleration.
The range-topping 204bhp diesel is the quickest A4 of the lot, (excluding the S and RS variants) with a 6.9-second 0-62mph time and a respectable 53.3mpg combined fuel economy figure. That puts it on par with the equivalent models from both Mercedes and BMW when it comes to performance, but it trails both on fuel economy.
All Audi A4s come standard with the pre-sense city safety package. It alerts the driver of any potential collisions up to 53mph and in extreme situations works in conjunction with the brake assist system to help avoid a collision.
The current model has not received a Euro NCAP rating, but the previous A4 scored a full five-star crash test result with 89% awarded for adult occupant safety and 87% for children. With a full complement of airbags and a range of passive and active safety measures, the latest version should be even safer.
In terms of safety and security features, hill hold assist, keyless entry and cruise control with speed limiter are standard fitment, while higher trims offer active lane assist, turn assist, adaptive cruise control and camera-based traffic sign recognition systems. Unfortunately, most of these are unavailable even as options on the base trims.
Every A4 comes with a three-year 60,000-mile warranty, extendable at an additional cost up to four years/75,000-miles or five years/90,000-miles.
Servicing intervals will vary depending on whether you choose a fixed-price service plan or variable service intervals. Your driving style will also have a bearing on how often you need to get your car serviced, numerous short trips and harsh acceleration will likely have you visiting the dealer more often.
Recent customer surveys have shown that some owners have experienced some reliability issues, although overall running costs were considered to be better than average. There have also been a handful of recalls, with the most notable being potential airbag issues – something that has been an industry wide problem and not specific to the A4.
This particular A4 model has been on sale for a number of years, so most niggling issues should have been resolved by now.
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*Please contact the dealer for a personalised quote, including terms and conditions. Quote is subject to dealer requirements, including status and availability. Illustrations are based on personal contract hire, 9 month upfront fee, 48 month term and 8000 miles annually, VAT included.