We’re fans of the 2018 Audi A4 at Cars.com. It won our most recent Luxury Sports Sedan Challenge, and we also named it our Luxury Car of the Year for 2018. To earn those accolades, the A4 didn’t just excel in one particular category; instead, it’s a superlative combination of luxury, practicality and sportiness that puts it on top.
Interior quality is important, especially when buying a luxury car — even if it is a compact sedan. The A4 succeeds with excellent materials quality throughout, from the trim pieces to the seating surfaces. Not everything inside is roses, however — the A4’s normal multimedia interface is solid, but when using Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, the lack of a touchscreen interface makes for a less-than-ideal experience. It’s not a deal-breaker, but it could be better.
The A4 also offers seating for adults both front and rear — even both at once, if you’re feeling adventurous. For a small sedan, the A4’s backseat legroom is impressive and allows taller adults to sit one in front of the other without sacrificing too much comfort. And if all of those passengers have luggage, a functional, deep trunk carries a lot of cargo. The 40/20/40-split rear seat also makes it easy to take home larger items.
To round out the package, the A4 also offers impressive performance. It was second fastest during our comparison testing at a drag strip in 2017, bested only by the Alfa Romeo Giulia. Unlike many of its competitors, however, the A4 still offers a manual transmission for purists, and it’s a good one at that. But don’t wait for 2019 to try to get a manual A4 — it’s gone after the 2018 model year.
Sure, you could get something faster or flashier, but it’s unlikely that would have the same winning combination of attributes that makes the A4 one of our favorites.
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