Costs, insurance groups, MPG and CO2
The Audi A4 Avant isn’t the cheapest car in its class to buy outright, but it is predicted to depreciate relatively slowly. This means two things: private buyers will recoup a reasonable amount of their initial outlay when it’s time to sell; and if you're buying on a PCP finance deal, monthly payments are pretty competitive.
We reckon the 40 TDI diesel in Sport trim makes the most sense, because if you venture too far up the range then you'll find yourself in the price territory of altogether bigger and better estates, such as the BMW 5 Series touring.
Equipment, options and extras
All A4 Avants come with climate control, cruise control, keyless start, heated front seats, and the aforementioned 12.3-inch Virtual Cockpit and 10.1-inch infotainment system. In fact, the entry-level Technik has just about all the necessities for a mid-size executive estate car so we’d stick to that trim level and spend the remainder of our budget on some choice options, such as leather seats.
Sport, S line and Black Edition trims add further sporty styling upgrades but not much in the way of additional equipment. At the top of the range sits the Vorsprung model, which includes almost every feature shown in the Audi brochure, such as Matrix LED headlights and leather upholstery, as well as an opening sunroof, but also makes the Avant quite pricey.
As a brand, Audi ranks in the lower half of the table in the 2018 What Car? Reliability Survey results, managing 20th out of 31 manufacturers, which is slightly disappointing for such a premium brand. That’s below BMW, but beats Mercedes in the rankings.
You do get a three-year, 60,000-mile manufacturer’s warranty, which includes roadside assistance. For a reasonable cost, you can extend this for up to five years or 90,000 miles.
Safety and security
The smaller A4 received five stars from Euro NCAP for its ability to protect occupants in an impact. Study the results in more detail, though, and you’ll see the Audi scored lower marks than the Jaguar XE for protecting adults and pedestrians, although it did a better job of keeping children safe.
All versions come with automatic emergency braking as standard to help prevent low-speed shunts, and the optional Driving Assistance Pack includes road sign recognition, lane-keeping assistance and adaptive cruise control, which make easy work of following the car in front when traffic builds up. The Avant also comes with six airbags as standard, and you can also choose to add rear side airbags.
Thatcham awarded the A4 five stars (out of five) for resistance to theft and four stars for guarding against being broken into.
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