THIS ‘BASE’ MODEL HAS ALL THE BELLS AND WHISTLES
Audi A4 mixes hi-tech and creature comforts with style
THE irony was not lost on me.
Here I a stretch of road in Albert Park that also doubles as the home straight for Australian Formula One Grand Prix and I was unable to get my Audi A4 out reverse into drive.
This of itself would have been embarrassing. But this particular occasion happened on grand final night for a futsal competition. I’d managed to fluke park right outside the venue and as such my parking space was in high demand and departure heartily —
loudly — wished for. Now, I have had trouble with gearboxes in past (I recall one which you engaged reverse by grasping a ring around the gear shift and lifting it upwards) but I couldn’t work out what was doing wrong in what is at most a one-step process (put gear into reverse).
The wrinkle on this occasion was that the A4 wouldn’t let me select drive until I had my foot the brake, something I must have unconsciously been doing every other time I’d put it into drive.
Lesson learned. Once I’d read Audi’s helpful instruction in panel on dash was business as usual.
And the new A4 is very nicely, thank you very much. Safety is much one of its KPIs.
In fact, sector could well be at what primarily aimed. It’s an executive car for those executives who like their luxury understated.
I was behind the wheel of the 1.4-litre TFSI, “base” model (it’s still priced at $55,500 plus on-roads) four-car range and only one not to have a 2-litre engine.
The engine size belies a stylish and spacious mix of hi-tech creature comforts. Four adults in comfort? Tick. Great exhaust note cornering? Tick. The 1.4 TFSI engine develops 110kW between 5000-6000rpm, and maximum torque of 250Nm from 1500-3000rpm. Audi claims this will push the car 0-100km/h in 8.5 seconds rest, with fuel AUDI A4 ENGINE: 1.4-litre, four-cylinder, direct fuel injected turbocharged petrol; 110kW/250Nm TRANSMISSION: Seven-speed S-tronic automatic ECONOMY: 5.5 litres/100km (combined) PRICE: From $55,500 (plus on-road costs) WOW FACTOR: Performance of a full-sized sedan from a 1.4-litre engine