Driving position and dashboard
You won’t have many issues getting comfortable, thanks to a generous range of seat and steering wheel adjustments. Sport, S line and Black Edition models have well-bolstered seats that hold you in place more securely through corners than the entry-level Technik, but even that entry-level trim has four-way lumbar support adjustment.
The A4 Avant’s minimalist dashboard is simple and easy to use. All models get Audi’s Virtual Cockpit as standard, placing a 12.3in digital display where you’d otherwise find a set of analogue instrument dials. This makes it even easier to control the myriad systems at your fingertips.
Visibility, parking sensors and cameras
With fairly narrow windscreen pillars, you get a decent view forward in the A4 Avant. The size and shape of the door mirrors give you a good view of what’s coming up alongside, too.
The Avant’s estate car shape also opens up the view rearwards compared with the A4 saloon, although its angled rear pillars mean it’s still not quite as easy to see out of as some rivals, such as the boxier Volkswagen Passat Estate.
Fortunately, every version has front and rear parking sensors, while the optional Parking Assistance Pack gives you a 360deg camera and can automatically manoeuvre the car into parallel and bay parking spaces.
Sat nav and infotainment
Not only does the 12.3in Virtual Cockpit display we mentioned earlier take the place of conventional analogue instruments, it can also mirror the infotainment screen's media, phone and navigation information onto the instrument panel where it’s just a little below your view of the road ahead. The system has updated graphics for 2020, making it even easier to use than previous versions. Optionally, you can add up a head-up display that projects your speed, the speed limit and sat-nav instructions onto the windscreen so you don’t have to take your eyes off the road.
Every Avant gets Audi’s impressive MMI infotainment system in its latest form, with a 10.1in touchscreen. The sat-nav is super quick to respond and can calculate a route quickly, although the system can be a little laggy when swapping between menus. However, there tends to be quite a lot of information on the central screen at any given time, so it can be tricky to read all the stats you need at a glance. We prefer to use the dedicated sat-nav mode for the standard-fit Virtual Cockpit.
The A4 Avant’s interior is beautifully crafted from high-class materials. Harder plastics are few and far between and nearly everything else has a plush, soft-touch finish. Real metal or wood veneer trims can be chosen for the dashboard and centre console, and combine with well-damped switches to create an upmarket ambience.
The overall level of fit and finish is a grade or two above plenty of other cars in this class, although the latest 3 Series Touring is nearly as polished inside.