When Audi set out to design the new 2017 A4, focus went to technology, efficiency, and looks. The new A4 is as much as 265 pounds lighter than the outgoing model thanks to a mix of body materials and lightweight construction. Although the new model is lighter, it is slightly larger and has a lineup of efficient engines with reduced CO2 emissions. Along with the mechanical improvements, the automaker has updated its infotainment system and driver assistant technologies, giving customers an added sense of luxury.
In Europe, the 2017 Audi A4 will launch with seven engines, including three TFSI gas and four TDI diesel variants (European-spec A4 sedans and Avant wagons are shown here). To compete with the U.S.-spec BMW 328d, Americans might even get an A4 with a turbodiesel-four. Although the 2017 A4 will offer more power , a new combustion method on gas engines has helped fuel consumption decrease by as much as 21 percent. In the U.S., the outgoing 2016 Audi A4 in 2.0T form is good for 24/31 mpg city/highway with front-wheel drive and 21/30 mpg with all-wheel drive and an eight-speed automatic. Audi has also upgraded its seven-speed automatic (and it’s now available with front-wheel drive), as well as its eight-speed auto and six-speed manual. Automatic transmissions now feature a freewheeling function where wheel-selective torque control lessens the workload of the front-wheel drive and Quattro drive. The S tronic will now be offered for front-wheel-drive models, and the new TDI will feature the optional sport differential on the rear axle starting next year.
For the 2017 A4, Audi’s optional virtual cockpit features a 12.3-inch LCD screen that displays pertinent vehicle information and acts as the main control element. This fully digital combination instrument is one of two new features, the other being the MMI Control concept placed in the center console. The concept features an 8.3-inch monitor and a touchpad to input characters or zoom in and out. The voice control system has also been updated for the 2017 model year and can now understand everyday language, much like a smartphone.
The redesigned dashboard offers a decorative surface with contour lighting that illuminates the doors and center console at night. Customers can choose different interior colors and materials, giving them more freedom when configuring new models. New features also include the Audi smartphone interface, Bang & Olufsen sound system with 3-D sound, wireless phone charging, and a head-up display. Models equipped with MMI Navigation plus add a high-speed LTE network, letting customers connect to the Internet while on the road.
The 2017 Audi A4 will debut in the U.S. with far more safety and driver assist features than ever before, with systems such as the predictive efficiency assistant that helps drivers save on fuel. Other systems include active lane assist, Stop&Go adaptive cruise control with traffic jam assist. This new feature takes into account road markings and traffic to help drivers in slow-moving traffic. Park assist, rear cross traffic assist, exit warning, collision avoidance assist, turn assist, and the Audi pre-sense systems round out the features on the new 2017 A4. Customers can also opt for the camera-based traffic-sign recognition system.
Sales of the 2017 Audi A4 will start in Europe in the fall of this year, but we don’t expect to see the new model until closer to the end of the year.