Cost & verdict

Audi A4 Saloon review

Manufacturer price from:£27,815
What Car? Target Price:£25,051
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Audi A4 Saloon
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14 Jan 2016 08:00 | Last updated: 21 Aug 2018 15:01

In this review

Cost & verdict

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

Audi A4 saloon running costs

Executive saloons are popular with company car drivers, so CO2 emissions are just as important as list prices. The most efficient A4 (the 2.0 TDI 150 Ultra) emits just 99g/km, which is exactly the same as the cleanest versions of the BMW 3 Series and Jaguar XE. Emissions do rise slightly if you opt for an automatic gearbox, but even the more powerful 2.0 TDI 190 Ultra pumps out less than 105g/km.

Perhaps most remarkable of all, though, is the 3.0 TDI 218. This V6 diesel emits just 119g/km even with the standard fit four-wheel drive, which is considerably less than the less powerful four-wheel-drive BMW 320d. The average real-world fuel economy of this is also very impressive – only fractionally worse than the 2.0 TDI 190’s when fitted with quattro four-wheel drive.

The A4 is predicted to hold on to its value well by executive saloon standards, and insurance premiums are also reasonable. List prices are a close match for the 3 Series although it’s worth noting that, if you’re a private buyer, you could have the larger BMW 5 Series or Audi A6 without spending much more money.

Audi A4 saloon equipment

All A4s come with climate control, cruise control, rear parking sensors, keyless start and a DAB radio. However, we’d recommend going for Sport trim, because this gets you an all-important sat-nav and a pair of more supportive sports seats in the front.

S line trim brings some styling upgrades, but you still have to pay extra for full-leather seats – as you do on every other trim level apart from S4. Don’t forget to deselect the Sport suspension option and go for the no-cost option of Comfort Dynamic suspension if you want the best ride and handling balance.

The S4 also gets different styling, S Sport suspension and brakes, quad exhausts, S4 badging and an infotainment upgrade.

The Comfort and Sound Pack is worth considering; it adds keyless entry, electrically adjustable front seats, an upgraded stereo and adjustable lumbar support (if you’re buying a version that doesn’t come with this anyway).

Meanwhile, the optional Vision Pack gets you the excellent and highly recommended Virtual Cockpit, along with a head-up display and high-beam assist. Unfortunately, this pack is only available if you also buy the Technology Pack – both options together push up the price significantly.

Audi A4 Saloon

Audi A4 saloon reliability

The A4 was just above middle ranking in our most recent customer satisfaction survey, doing slightly worse than the BMW 3 Series but sitting well above the Mercedes-Benz C-Class.

Audi as a brand ranks in the top half of our latest reliability survey, managing 12th out of 32 manufacturers.

You do get a three-year, 60,0000-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.

Audi A4 saloon safety and security

The A4 received five stars from Euro NCAP for its ability to protect occupants in an accident. Study the results in more detail, though, and you’ll see the Audi scored slightly lower marks than the Jaguar XE for protecting adults and pedestrians, but did a better job of keeping children safe.

All versions come with city emergency braking as standard to help prevent low-speed shunts, and if you choose you add the Driving Assistance Pack you’ll get lots more preemptive safety features, including automatic braking at higher speeds, road sign recognition and lane-keep assist.

The A4 comes with six airbags as standard, although you can choose to add rear side airbag, and we’d advise doing so if you plan to carry rear passengers on a regular basis.

Thatcham awarded the A4 five stars (out of five) for resisting being stolen and four stars for guarding against being broken into.

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Verdict

New A4 saloon sets the class benchmark for interior quality and engine refinement

  • Exceptionally refined
  • Smooth and powerful engines
  • Class-leading interior quality
  • 148bhp engines a touch weedy
  • Leather seats cost extra on SE trim
  • Ultra versions have a firm low-speed ride
There are 9 trims available for the A4 saloon. Click to see details.See all versions
Black Edition
We are yet to try out this variant...View trim
Fuel Diesel, Petrol
Sport
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Fuel Diesel, Petrol
SE
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S Line
We are yet to try out this variant...View trim
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SE
The entry-level SE still comes with luxuries including three-zone climate control, Bluetooth, a DAB radio, a 7.0in infotainment screen, cruise control, rear parking sensors, 40:20:40 spilt-folding...View trim
Fuel Diesel, Petrol
What Car? Target Price from
£25,051
Average Saving £2,764
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OUR PICK
Sport
Our favourite trim comes with all the features of the SE, but adds sat-nav, a punchier 10-speaker stereo and front sports seats. We’d still recommend adding at least adjustable lumbar support and t...View trim
Fuel Diesel, Petrol
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£26,622
Average Saving £2,943
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S Line
This range-topping trim gets more aggressive-looking S line bumpers and side skirts, 18in alloys and S line detailing inside, too. You also get LED headlights and electric lumbar adjustment for the...View trim
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£27,923
Average Saving £3,092
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Black Edition
Based on S line trim, Black Edition models gain matt titanium detailing and 19in wheels on the outside, plus piano black inlays and a flat-bottomed steering wheel on the inside...View trim
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£29,623
Average Saving £3,282
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S4
This sporting flagship of the range gets everything S line models do plus 'S' sports suspension and brakes, quad exhausts, S4 badging and an infotainment upgrade. The styling is also changed slight...View trim
Fuel Petrol
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£41,512
Average Saving £4,568
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