Test Drive: 2013 Audi A4 car test drives reviews luxury cars audi
2013 Audi A4 2.0 TFSI Quattro S-Line. Click image to enlarge
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Audi Canada

Review and photos by Jonathan Yarkony

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2013 Audi A4

The 2012 Audi A4 is one of those cars that just seems to fit. While my personal tastes run to wagons, we had an A4 2.0 TFSI Quattro S-Line sedan in our hands for a week, and everything but the more limited space and access to the trunk seemed tailor made for me and my family.

First of all, the size. Although the A4, 3 Series and C-Class used to be considered ‘compact‘ entry-level luxury, the A4 is by no means a compact sedan, its 4701-mm (169.5 in.) length is longer than either of its German competitors by a wide margin, its 2,808-mm (110.5 in.) wheelbase is right in the middle and, to give you a sense of how these luxury cars have grown, is longer than a Toyota Camry’s wheelbase.

Test Drive: 2013 Audi A4 car test drives reviews luxury cars audi
Test Drive: 2013 Audi A4 car test drives reviews luxury cars audi
Test Drive: 2013 Audi A4 car test drives reviews luxury cars audi
2013 Audi A4 2.0 TFSI Quattro S-Line. Click image to enlarge

Width and height are also right on par with a Camry. That size affords a cabin that feels spacious, with plenty of rear legroom and shoulder room. The rear space makes it easy to maneuver child seat and daughter into position for a secure fit. Even trunk space is respectable at 480 L, with 60/40 split-folding rear seats yielding up to 962 L.

This Scuba Blue metallic ($750) A4 tester was a fully loaded Premium Plus ($47,400) with the $3,400 S-Line Sport Package, which adds an S-Line Body Kit, 19×8.5-inch alloy wheels with a seven twin-spoke design—a pattern seen on the previous-gen RS4—with 255/35R19 tires. The S-Line also adds a sportier, flat-bottom steering wheel with perforated leather on the side grips and shift paddles for the eight-speed automatic transmission (note that the automatic transmission with the base FWD A4 is a CVT with eight simulated ratios, but this was the traditional eight-geared auto).

Other interior accoutrements imparted by the S-Line package were a black cloth headliner, branded door sill inserts, brushed aluminum trim and a set of sport seats with Alcantara inserts that look and feel great. However, Mike Schlee noted that some people might find that the shoulder support might be too aggressive, pushing one’s upper torso forward.

However, the S-Line package isn’t all show. Mechanical upgrades include an adaptive damping suspension, variable throttle response (normal, sport), variable settings for the automatic transmission (normal, sport) and selectable, variable electromechanical steering (normal, sport). Also, Audi drive select control (Auto, Comfort, Dynamic, and Individual) is kind of like “one ring to rule them all”, as you can select your favoured settings for each of the above using an ‘Individual’ profile.

No matter which settings you choose, you will likely find that the ride is firm, but never too jarring. Some might feel shades of difference, and the Sport modes dial up the intensity, but you have to studiously register each component’s action to really spot the difference. In every way, it is still an Audi, which has for many years struck a fine balance between comfort and sport while leaning to the sporting side.

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