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Audi S4

The independent definitive Audi S4 video review
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    S IS MORE (some text hidden)

    By Car & Driving

    The fifth generation Audi A4 offers potent performance in S4 guise. As with all previous versions, this is a saloon (or estate) that doesn't shout about its speed, despite it being faster than ever. The experts at Car and Driving check it out.

    Ten Second Reviewword count: 54

    With the continued popularity of diesels, you might wonder what the point of Audi's S4 is. After all, who wants a thirsty petrol V6 when the V6 diesel has 272PS? Still, economy is better than ever, while the S4 is now capable of 0-62mph in less than 5 seconds. That's reason enough for us.

    Backgroundword count: 164

    The S4 has been a fixture in Audi's range since 1991 and has largely followed the same formula. Sure, engine-wise, it might have been offered with (in order of appearance) a turbocharged in-line five, a V8, a twin turbo V6, another V8 and a supercharged V6, but all have been mounted up front with power sent to all four wheels. All have also been available as a saloon or Avant (estate) guise too. The main thing that all S4 models have shared is discreetness. Unlike some rivals, this Audi has never shouted about the level of performance it offers. There might be extra exhaust pipes, subtle badging and some attractive alloy wheels but Audi have always avoided bulging arches, vents and in your face body kits - there's the RS4 for that. And so we come to this current generation model, a car that returns to the turbocharged V6 format but offers more power than ever. How does it stack up to its predecessors?

    Driving Experienceword count: 196

    While it may seem like Audi have simply replaced the supercharger of the previous model's V6 with a turbo, the 3.0 TFSI unit is in fact all new. The lightweight motor churns out 354PS, 10PS more than the throbbing 4.2-litre V8 that was once fitted to the S4. Being turbocharged, there's plenty of torque this time round too; 500Nm to be precise. While you might expect this to be coupled to one of Audi's dual-clutch semi-automatic gearboxes, there is in fact an eight speed Tiptronic unit. Despite this older style of gearbox, a reduction in weight helps this become the fastest S4 ever. 0-62mph is dispatched in an exceedingly rapid 4.7 seconds, while the top speed is limited to 155mph as you would expect. Unlike some of its older brothers, this latest S4 should prove to be fun when the road gets twisty too. Under normal conditions, the centre differential channels 60% of the engine's torque rearwards. This can be as much as 85% or as little as 30% should slippage be detected. Handling prowess can be further enhanced with an optional sports rear differential that can actively shuffle torque between the rear wheels as well.

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    Pictures (high res disabled)

    Statistics (subset of data only)

    Min

    Max

    0-60 mph (s):

    5

    5.1

    Combined mpg:

    36.2

    36.7

    CO2 (g/km):

    178

    Extra urban mpg:

    44.1

    45.6

    Height (mm):

    1406

    1415

    Insurance group:

    36

    ... and 6 other stats available

    Scoring (subset of scores)

    Category: Luxury Saloons and Estates

    Performance
    90%
    Handling
    80%
    Comfort
    80%
    Space
    80%
    Styling, Build, Value, Equipment, Depreciation, Handling, Insurance and Total scores are available with our full data feed.

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