Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Frankfurt: Audi’s New A4 Holds Widespread Appeal

Despite not coming off like a showstopper, the new-for-2008 A4 models on Audi's stand were mobbed, even a day after their introduction. Competing engineers and hordes of journalists were seen crawling over, under, and in Audi's entry-level sedan, with many of them measuring and taking stock of the Four Ring's new offering. We even watched an extremely tall man (perhaps 7' 6") fold himself into the A4 (see above), taking advantage of the extra legroom the new model affords. With his seat all the way back, he still had his knees up and around nine-and-three on the steering wheel, but the good-natured evaluator remarked that it was normal for him to drive in this fashion, and in fact, the car was markedly more accommodating than before. We'd probably recommend our new friend stick with an A8L, however.

While the A4's styling is clearly an evolution of the previous car, with a few A5 styling clues thrown in for good measure, the design just plain works, and it looks attractive inside-and-out. The LED string headlamps really mark out the corners with authority, and the thinner, longer A5-esque taillights look at home as well. Job done, we'd say.

Of course, the proof will be in the driving, but we're excited to see what Audi's new rear-biased Quattro system does for the A4's driving dynamics. Stay tuned.


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