Audi A4 breathes qual­ity and re­fine­ment

Bray People - - MOTORS - by David Tucker

T HE A-4 is the proud bearer of its mar­que’s im­pri­matur, a car that is un­mis­tak­ably an Audi. The car breathes qual­ity and re­fine­ment, from its dis­tinc­tive V-shaped bon­net to its sculpted boot­line.

It’s not sur­pris­ing that the Audi A4 and BMW’s 3Series have carved out a niche for them­selves as driv­ers’ favourites.

The A4 is a great drive and I was more than a lit­tle sad to see the gleam­ing black beauty de­part into the mist of a foggy morn­ing at the end of the test drive week­end.

The steer­ing was pre­cise, the road­hold­ing ex­cel­lent and the A4 was well-man­nered and with­out flaw.

I thought the ride was a lit­tle softer than an equiv­a­lent 3-Se­ries, but that is no crit­i­cism as it was easy to live with and com­fort­able in the ex­treme.

The roads were damp dur­ing the test week­end, but the A4 dealt with wet, slippy sur­faces with aplomb while soak­ing up the bumps which are now so fa­mil­iar on our coun­try roads.

The cur­rent A4 is slightly longer than its pre­de­ces­sor with the front axle moved for­ward to op­ti­mise axle load dis­tri­bu­tion.

As Audi says the ride is pow­er­ful. ag­ile, di­rec­tion­ally sta­ble and more dy­namic - sen­it­ments I would cer­tainly agree with.

The car was fit­ted with a 2.0 litre 120 BHP diesel en­gine, the oil burner re­turn­ing well over 50 mpg with a mix of driv­ing and more than 60 mpg on the open road.

Given the way fuel prices are go­ing, get­ting the best mpg from your car has never been so im­por­tant.

The A4 is helped in its Green as­pi­ra­tions with its stop-start tech­nol­ogy, length­ened gear ra­tios and im­proved aero­dy­nam­ics.

The on-board com­puter pro­vides a dis­play of when you need to change gear to get the best fuel con­sump­tion.

The car came com­plete with the top-spec S Line pack­age which in­cludes 18 inch, five-spoke al­loys, S Line badges and chrome plated front fogs and ex­hausts and other lit­tle touches that make your desri­able mo­tor all that more de­sir­able.

The cabin of the A4 is beau­ti­fully styled and fin- ished - it’s is a very nice place in which to be with ex­cel­lent all-round vi­sion and with all the driver in­for­ma­tion you need lit­er­ally at your fin­ger­tips.

The multi-func­tion steer­ing wheel con­trols were a bless­ing and very easy to use, the roller switches tac­tile and com­fort­ably func­tional.

As will all Audis there is a wide range of op­tional ex­tras, which come at a price.

How­ever Audi are cur­rently of­fer­ing the (€4,000) S Line ex­te­rior pack­age for only €750 on top of the new price of an SE or Sports model.

The road test car was pro­vided by Joe Martin from Audi Wa­ter­ford.

With new car prices a lot more re­al­is­tic than they were and the added value pro­vided by low-emis­sions cars with their lower rates of VRT and an­nual tax, the Audi rep­re­sents se­ri­ously-good value for money.

A4 prices start at €32,065 for the 1.8 TFSI and €34,060 for the 2.0 TDI.

Audi A4.

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