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Expert Reviews 1 of 2
By Cars.com Staff
June 19, 2006
Vehicle Overview Audi redesigned its compact, entry-level A4 midway through the 2005 model year by giving it a larger engine with direct fuel injection. For 2007, the convertible (Cabriolet) version was redesigned; changes for the rest of the lineup are minor. The A4 continues to be offered in sedan, wagon (Avant) and convertible versions.
Each body style comes in 2.0T form with a turbocharged four-cylinder or in 3.2 guise with a V-6.
Sedans and Cabriolets are available with FrontTrak front-wheel drive or quattro all-wheel drive. The Avant wagon comes only with quattro.
The A4 lineup includes a 3.2 quattro sedan, an Avant wagon with a six-speed manual transmission and a 3.2 front-drive sedan with Audi's multitronic continuously variable transmission. A new S-line series includes a sport suspension, trunklid lip spoiler, sporty side sills and brushed-aluminum interior trim. A hill-hold function has been added to all CVT models.
Audi continues to offer a high-performance S4 series, which is listed separately in the cars.com Research section.
Exterior "Unmistakably Audi" is how the German automaker describes its smaller series, flaunting the brand's sporty character. Clear-glass headlights have sweeping lower edges and an inward taper. Body-colored bumpers are said to accentuate the car's low center of gravity. Visibly flared wheel arches round out the picture.
Standard tires on 2.0T models measure 16 inches in diameter, but 17-inch tires are installed on models with the V-6 engine. For 2007, those 16-inchers have been redesigned. Xenon high-intensity-discharge headlights, a moonroof and Parktronic rear park assist are available. Optional adaptive headlights can pivot 15 degrees.
Interior Sedans and wagons seat five people and have four-way power lumbar support. The seat cushions have prominent bolsters. Standard equipment includes automatic dual-zone air conditioning. Leather seating surfaces are included in 3.2 models. The available Audi Navigation Plus system has a 5-inch video screen.
Under the Hood A 200-horsepower, turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder powers 2.0T models. An aluminum 255-hp, 3.1-liter V-6 is installed in 3.2 editions. A six-speed manual gearbox is standard in all models except the 3.2 FrontTrak. The multitronic CVT is available only in models equipped with FrontTrak, but sedans and wagons with quattro all-wheel drive can have a six-speed Tiptronic automatic that permits manual gear selection.
Safety Side curtain airbags deploy from above the side windows. Side-impact airbags for front occupants are standard, and rear-seat airbags are optional. Audi's Electronic Stabilization Program incorporates Brake Assist.
Driving Impressions The A4 is solid and appealing, joyfully tackling twisting roads and taking every turn in stride. Despite a taut suspension, the ride is magnificent on smooth roads and recovery is swift when you hit a bump. Ride quality is nearly as good with the available sport suspension.
Plenty of power hails from the V-6, in a civilized manner. Strong performance with the turbocharged four-cylinder is devoid of turbo lag, and it's a tad more spirited. The manual gearbox shifts easily, and Audi's automatic transmission works without any harshness.
Audi's ultra-smooth multitronic CVT works masterfully and subtly. After slight hesitation during takeoff, the car moves ahead with some haste. Passing attempts at low speeds, however, sometimes yield a shortfall of response. You hear a little engine noise while accelerating with the CVT, but not much.
A4 Cabriolet The Cabriolet was redesigned for the 2007 model year and now features a new single-frame grille. Behind that grille is one of two new engines, a 200-hp, turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder or a 255-hp, 3.1-liter V-6. The suspension has been redesigned to better transmit that power to the road.
Audi used the redesign as an opportunity to upgrade the Cabriolet's safety features, integrating side airbags into the front seats to protect occupants' heads. The automaker reinforced the Cabriolet's A-pillars to protect occupants in the event of a rollover, which also causes two protective bars to deploy upward, behind the rear passengers' heads.
Four people fit inside the A4 Cabriolet's cabin. Standard equipment includes an electric roof, dual-zone automatic climate control and a large ski sack. Back to top
Expert Reviews 1 of 2
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