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Facelifted Audi A4 range on the way

Audi is giving its A4 range - including the saloon, Avant, allroad and S4 - a midlife nip and tuck along with improvements in engine efficiency, handling and 'infotainment' systems. Prices and specifications will be officially announced in the next few weeks but will more than likely remain unchanged from the current A4 range. The first cars will arrive with customers in Spring 2012.

Styling changes include a more arched bonnet while the grille is painted grey with a high-gloss black finish on six-cylinder and S line models. There are redesigned bumpers with angular air inlets and front fog lights while the A4 allroad stands out with horizontal chrome trim on the grills and round fog lights.

The headlights have also changed with a slight wave at the bottom edges and xenon plus headlights are available as an option or standard on S line models. The rear lights copy the same shape as the headlights, and in combination with xenon plus have strips of LEDs.

The interior has also been enhanced with a selection of new steering wheels that have chrome and high-gloss inlays, while the leather sport steering wheel gets a flat bottom. The MMI navigation plus system now features four instead of eight buttons, with a shift function integrated in the volume control dial while the seat heating and air conditioning are now directly operated at the respective buttons.

Audi A4 Avant 2012(4)

Fuel consumption levels have dropped by 11 percent on average, despite the increased power and torque of many of the engines. There's a choice of five diesel and four petrol engines for both the Saloon and the Avant with all being supercharged direct-injection systems. The fuel saving engine start-stop system and the recuperation system are standard throughout.

The TDI engines have been extensively modified to be more refined and quieter at low revs and the most economical model is still the 2.0 TDI with 136PS. In the saloon this can average a claimed 67.3mpg with CO2 emissions of just 112g/km. The nee 2.0 TDI 163PS returns a claimed 64.2mpg with emissions of 115g/km of CO2.

Two other four-cylinder diesel engines are available – with 143PS and 177PS. They can also be ordered for the A4 allroad, apart from the entry-level version. Three V6 TDI units complete the line-up. The 3.0 TDI with 204PS (not for the allroad quattro) is the most efficient six-cylinder engine in its class worldwide according to Audi and in the A4 saloon it helps achieves a claimed average of 57.6mpg. The second variant, the 3.0 TDI, has 245PS.

In terms of petrols, the A4 comes with a new1.8 TFSI engine with 170PS and 320Nm of torque yet still averages an impressive 50.4mpg - a 19 per cent improvement over its predecessor. The entry-level petrol engine is the 1.8 TFSI with 120PS. The 2.0 TFSI – as the only spark-ignition engine also available in the A4 allroad quattro – delivers 211PS. At the top of the line is the 3.0 TFSI in the sporty S4, which develops an impressive 333PS.

The chassis has also been improved withthe rear suspension control arms and shock absorbers more finely tuned. The electromechanical power steering is new in all models of the series.

Audi A4 2012 (1)

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