The new Audi S4 assumes a top position in the new A4 family. It remains understated, with the modest sporty look typical of most Audi performance cars, and it retains its quattro permanent allwheel drive. The 3.0 TFSI has been redeveloped from the ground up.
The direct petrol injection engine with turbocharging has an output of 260 kW and produces a hefty 500 Nm of torque from 1 370 to 4 500 rpm.
In terms of power and torque, it surpasses the previous model while achieving considerably lower figures in weight and fuel consumption. The turbo V6 engine claims acceleration for the Audi S4 from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.7 seconds, and up to an electronically governed top speed of 250 km/h.
In the new S4, a fast and smoothly shifting eight-speed tiptronic handles the power transfer. Its lower gears have short, sporty ratios, while the upper gears are long to reduce revs and fuel consumption.
When the driver releases the accelerator pedal at a speed between 55 and 160 km/h the automatic transmission switches over to an efficient free-wheeling mode. The quattro permanent all-wheel drive makes a large contribution to the sporty handling of the S4. In normal driving, it distributes engine forces with a slight emphasis of the rear wheels – if necessary the majority of forces can be directed to the axle with better traction.
Torque vectoring optimises handling and stability in fast cornering with minimal brake interventions.
The optional sport differential actively distributes torque between the rear wheels.
The five-link front and rear suspensions enable significant comfort gains with sporty response. An alternative to electromechanical power steering is dynamic steering which varies its steering gear ratio according to the driving speed.
The front brakes have internally-vented discs that are 350 mm in diameter. They are gripped by black or, optionally, red painted six-piston fixed calipers with S lettering.
The optional S sport seats have integrated head restraints, adjustable lateral supports and a pneumatic massage function. Fine Nappa leather is optional in the colours black, rotor gray or magma red with diamond pattern, contrasting stitching and an S badge.
The colour black dominates in the interior, which is set off by contrasting inlays made of matt brushed aluminum. The optional Audi virtual cockpit, the fully digital instrument cluster, shows all key information on a 12.3-inch TFT display in brilliant resolution, a high level of detail and intricately rendered graphic effects.
The “view” button on the sport leather steering wheel with multifunction plus is used to switch between the different user interfaces.
Three views are available, including an exclusive sport mode with the tachometer as the dominant element. The main operating unit is the MMI control panel on the centre console, which is also new.
When MMI navigation plus with MMI touch is installed, the rotary push-button control has a touchpad for zooming on the map and entering characters.
Like with a smartphone, the MMI operating logic is designed for the fewest steps possible, including intelligent freetext search known as MMI search. The new voice control can also process expressions and sentences.
Another high-end option for the new S4 is the head-up display. It projects relevant information onto the windshield as symbols and numbers. They appear to hover around two metres in front of the driver within a window area measuring 200 x 80 mm.
The Audi phone box connects smartphones to the on-board antenna and charges them inductively based on the Qi standard.
The Bang & Olufsen sound system with its new type of 3D sound adds the spatial dimension of height. Its amplifier delivers 755 watts of audio power to 19 loudspeakers.
The Audi S4 comes standard with the 5 year/100 000km Audi Freeway Plan and is priced at R809 000, before options.