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Thread: 4 fun

  1. #1
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    Default 4 fun

    http://www.businesstimes.com.sg/sub/...79703,00.html?

    Published May 17, 2008

    4 fun

    As the world's fastest-growing premium brand, Audi is charging ahead with a product offensive. Here, we drive its newest and sportiest model, the 4.7m long Audi A4 3.2 FSI quattro

    By SAMUEL EE


    FIFTEEN centimetres may only be half a foot but to the new Audi A4, it is a quantum leap. By moving the front axle 15 cm forward, the German premium carmaker has completely transformed its compact saloon model.


    Top of the line: The new Audi A4 3.2 FSI quattro exhibits neutral behaviour in sweeping curves and tenacious grip

    The past couple of A4s have been sharp-looking cars. But the brand with the four interlocking rings is sometimes viewed as the third choice after the other two compact sedans from its bigger Teutonic cousins, both of which also happen to be rear-wheel-driven.

    The top-of-the-line A4 has an all-wheel-drive layout though, and that is a dynamic advantage. The new A4 3.2 FSI quattro has a 3.2-litre direct injection V6 driving all four wheels. The A4's quattro has a new balance which distributes the torque 40:60 to the front/rear axles under normal conditions - a sportier tweaking of the previous 50:50 split.

    All-wheel-drive can be appreciated on dry or wet roads. With quattro, the Audi exhibits neutral behaviour in sweeping curves and tenacious grip. In the new A4, there is an additional dose of fun because you can power into a fast corner even more confidently while leaving a couple of understeering cars wallowing in your wake.

    The 3.2-litre power plant with its 265 horses is so smooth that it almost feels meek when starting from stationary. But its elasticity, especially from 60 kmh onwards, is impressive and may cost you your driving licence if you're not careful.

    Standard on all new A4s here is the Audi Drive Select feature, which varies the throttle response, gear shift points, power steering assistance and the electronically adjustable dampers. Apart from Comfort, Dynamic and Auto modes, there is also an Individual alternative which can be configured with a specific combination of settings.

    But just choosing 'Dynamic' is good enough most of the time. The A4 stiffens up, the ride turns hard, the steering more precise and the six-speed tiptronic box allows you to manually change up using the steering wheel-mounted paddles to only fifth gear. Rarely has a volume model provided such an entertaining drive.

    The A4's all-new platform displays balance and refinement. With the front axle relocated 15 cm forward, the new car looks sportier and weight distribution has improved. The longer wheelbase - 2,808 mm - not only benefits ride comfort but also rear legroom.

    Another asset is its new size. At 4.7 metres, the A4 is one of the biggest cars in its segment. Together with its enhanced driving dynamics, this new car certainly scores an 'A'.

    Audi A4 3.2 FSI quattro

    Engine: 3,197cc V6
    Gearbox: 6-speed tiptronic transmission
    Max power: 265 hp @ 6,500 rpm
    Max torque: 330 Nm @ 3,000-5,000 rpm
    0-100 kmh: 6.2 secs
    Top speed: 250 kmh
    Price: $188,000 (with COE)
    Distributor: Premium Automobiles, tel 6566-1111

  2. #2
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    Default Re: 4 fun

    http://www.businesstimes.com.sg/sub/...79704,00.html?

    Published May 17, 2008

    Sportier look and feel


    THE new Audi A4 has taken on sportier overtones, both on the inside and the outside.

    To complement the competent new chassis, the A4 1.8 TFSI - the turbocharged 1.8-litre model - is available in two trim levels. The higher Ambition level includes the S-line exterior kit, cool leather and alcantara sports seats, adaptive lights and 17-inch alloy wheels. For the A4 3.2 FSI quattro, the S-line look comes standard with bigger alloys. The exterior package means an aggressive-looking front spoiler, side skirts and a meshed rear diffuser. Inside, there is an electrically operated rear roll-up sunscreen and exotic wood inlays.

    In Singapore, both the 1.8 and 3.2 models come with Audi Drive Select as standard. This brilliant driver assistance feature allows for variable steering assistance, a more aggressive throttle response and gear shift pattern, and variable damping control. In other words, you can drive the A4 like a sports car, a luxury limo, or anywhere in between that is to your liking.

    As the flagship model, the 3.2 also gets other goodies like keyless entry, Bang & Olufsen sound system, and a user-friendly navigation system that can be viewed from a 50 metre to 600 km scale.

    The new A4 also offers excellent ergonomics. The sport seats can go so low that even an NBA player will find the perfect driving position.

    Another clever touch is the new location of the audio volume-on/off knob - it now sits on the lower centre console just beside your left thigh. This is in addition to the useful click wheels for the steering wheel-mounted audio controls.

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