The nutter-spec Audi RS4 tends to hog the limelight, but the more understated S4 has always been a very fine car. And so the new Audi S4 promises to be.
Following on from the all-new A4, launched earlier this month, the S4 features a brand-new 3.0-litre, turbocharged V6 petrol engine, which replaces the old supercharged unit. It produces 349bhp and 389lb/ft of torque, both significant improvements over the old car.
0-62mph is dispatched in a paltry 4.7 seconds, buffer it runs into the electronic buffers at 155mph. Yet it returns entirely reasonable economy numbers of 38.2mpg and 170g/km of CO2.
A new eight-speed automatic gearbox sends power to quattro four-wheel-drive. Under normal circumstances, 60 per cent of the power is sent to the rear wheels; up to 85 per cent can be sent the rears and 70 per cent to the fronts in extremis.
The inside wheels are braked slightly on turn-in, improving agility and stability when the going gets twisty. An optional sports differential simulates torque vectoring.
Ride height has been lowered 23mm compared to the standard A4. Upgraded suspension with active damper control is optional, as is variable-ratio steering. Audi Drive Select driving mode selector comes as standard.
The S4’s exterior has received a subtle makeover. Deeper bumpers and sills, a small rear spoiler, larger grille and matt grey and chrome detailing as the giveaways. The interior is marked out by leather and alcantara sports seats and brushed aluminium trim.
Audi’s brilliant 12.3-inch digital instrument display, the latest MMI infotainment interface with touchpad controller and full LED lighting are included in the asking price.
We don’t actually what that asking price will be, yet. UK sales of both the S4 saloon and Avant estate start next spring. Full pricing and specs will be announced nearer the time.
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By Only Motors