Audi S4 Test: Logical Sportsmanship
We tested the Audi S4, the spearhead in the Audi saloon body. It is still very sporty, although the step with the Audi RS4 or RS5 is accused, by type of propeller and overall hardness. We are before a logical sports car.
I’m not going to cheat you. Of the three German premium manufacturers, Audi is possibly the best ordered of the nomenclatures of sports variants. Audi RS, BMW M and Mercedes AMG, It has no loss, but in recent years versions have appeared that are not so radical but with an extra spicy. More in Mercedes (smaller AMG nomenclatures) and in BMW (M Performance), than an Audi, where the jump has been upwards; we will all remember the Audi S3 and suddenly, an RS3 appears.
We can not really say that the RS models are exactly from this time, because it was already more than 20 years ago that the Audi RS2 was launched but it has been in more modern times where it has spread across practically the entire range of Audi and now we understand and we internalize that an Audi S can have an older brother RS according to bodies. Point.
That leads us to try an Audi S4 in saloon body and make the bodywork because both the Audi A4 and the A6, the RS version is reserved only for the Avant model, and not for the saloon. Fortunately or not, we are before the spearhead for this format. The car is very powerful, with 354 HP on paper and a 3.0-liter V6 turbo engine. Thanks to the turbo, it is capable of delivering a maximum torque of 500 Nm between 1,370 and 4,500 rpm.
Obviously, it can only be selected with Quattro integral traction that includes a self-locking central differential. The distribution of traction is 60% -40% back-front. The gearbox is an eight-speed and torque converter that is commercially called Tiptronic and works very well. Thanks to this, the car scratches the asphalt and wrinkles it in 4.7 seconds from 0-100 km / h and the maximum speed, as it is religion, is limited to 250 km / h.
On paper, everything indicates that it is a fast car, and its 7.7 l / 100 km of approved means even invite us to think that it is even thrifty (when it really is not like that). For those who may be interested in the trunk, the capacity is generous, with 480 liters that are distributed in more than one meter deep and exactly one meter wide. The announced weight itself is a little high with just over 1,700 kilos empty (although it is noted that the 90% full tank and 75 kilos of ballast that would correspond to the average driver are taken into account.) Also, it is a figure that I am sure that will weigh on the body.
The car part of 87,000 dollars, a figure that is obviously capable of fattening without brake based on paint, steering wheels, seats and technology. Yes, I would bet for the higher level seats, which are one piece and cost 1,363 dollars. They come coated in Nappa leather. The series is sports, but two pieces and come in Alcantara / leather but can be selected in Milano leather for 736 dollars. Fortunately, there are several visual elements that are standard, such as the Audi Virtual Cockpit and the navigator. For almost 1160 dollars we can bet on Matrix LED headlights that work in halftone and are highly recommended.
There is, if possible, a more sporting differential that costs 1,984 dollars whose function is to distribute torque on the rear axle. The variable sports suspension ‘damper control’ is also optional and costs 1,444 dollars. There is also an address that is regulated according to driving conditions (dynamic steering) which costs 1,500 dollars. I really think that the Audi S4 comes very well equipped, although, in the technical aspect, the sports differential and the variable suspension seem to be recommendable. In the technological, it depends on tastes. For example, the reversing camera costs 661 dollars and standard comes with parking sensors. I like that.
For safety, you also pay and if you want the blind spot or exit checkpoints and other aids, you will have to pay, once again, an additional amount. As standard, there is the Pre-Sense City that warns of the danger of a frontal collision and brakes the car in case of detecting a more delicate situation.
But we are here to value the Audi S4 for what it represents: a sporty variant. Fortunately, there are still saloons like this that stretch the gum against the SUV fashion and bet on a traditional format but radical sensations.
It is a long car, with 4,745 mm in length and a battle of 2,825 mm. Without mirrors, the car measures 1,842 mm and with mirrors, 2,022. High is 1,404 mm. To put in context the dimensions is 19 mm longer than a conventional Audi A4, equal in width and 23 mm lower.
But where it really is its differential appeal is in the aesthetics marked and adorned by the pride of the Audi S products, which are the specific elements. The front grille and bumpers are sporty, with huge contrast sections, specific brake calipers and a V6 T anagram on both sides. The mirrors are gray, thus differentiating the exclusive version whose rear shows its most radical side thanks to the four tailpipes. To tell the truth, he is aggressive in aesthetics but discreet at the same time; the pureblood is now the RS and there it is impossible not to distinguish it from a conventional version.
The ‘S’ anagrams appear in the entrance moldings and in the seats, which, as we mentioned at the beginning, impress, grip well and their aesthetics fall in love. Leather and Alcantara are the materials, together with the plastic that one sees as soon as the door is opened. And the feeling of quality is very high and the visual appeal is undeniable. Maybe the standard Audi A4 is already a big car.
Carbon fiber moldings and ‘Quattro’ anagrams cannot be missing for the Audi S4. The gear lever (where another ‘S’ logo is housed, is more aesthetic than functional.) Its shape serves to support the hand and to be able to handle with greater comfort the rotating wheel of the infotainment system, whose screen is not integrated so harmoniously and it seems a necessary addition on the dashboard, the resolution is sublime and the functionalities, a pending task since the complexity is still greater than in other models.
It is noted that the protagonist has been focused on the Audi Virtual Cockpit, which is still current and surprising, although it does not make the car better, visually more attractive. To tell the truth, so much personalization option and the menus rob a lot of protagonism to the central screen, which is where it is really interesting to see certain information, although seeing the gigantic map behind the wheel is brilliant. And is that the Audi, inside, have a caring presence. The steering wheel, flattened by the lower part, is again more aesthetic than practical. And the cams are shy and for small hands are slightly away from the ideal position.
In the rear seats, more for four than for five occupants, space is generous, although the central tunnel is too sharp. The air conditioner, being of three zones, shows a display for the rear occupants. The height of the window is certainly high and for greater privacy, our unit has practical side curtains and darkened windows.
The start is by button, and how could it be otherwise, what seems careful in the aesthetic part, it is also in the auditory part. The bellow is accused but elegant, with a certain rage although decent. It is not like in the Audi RS5 or RS3, where it seems that the throats of hell open at each gas stroke. Here there is sportsmanship and sensations, but in its proper measure and even a little more; bravo for work well done.
As is logical, the driving programs allow each user to configure the car and adapt the parameters to each driving situation. Obviously, sports cars adjust suspension, direction, and power delivery so that everything happens more violently, more directly; a perfect union between the car and the road. However, the Sports mode is really remarkable at all levels, which does not happen with many sports.
I have started talking about the ‘racing’ part of the car, because it is an S4, and what is expected from the performance can only be found here. It seems that the car hardens chord and becomes more predictable and reactive, but there is a little trick: the all-wheel drive and mechanics that hold the chassis like a wild animal in its natural terrain. The only problem is that a strong change of direction displaces a lot of weight, and although electronic aids and traction are there for your relief, it has been easier for me to enter that delicate area where the car already warns you not to, you are behaving as you should. So I decide to loosen and literally stay stuck thanks to the very powerful braking of the Audi S4; who designs the brakes in this house?