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2007 Audi A4 Test Drive Review

The Audi A4 is a stylish and refined alternative to the BMW 3 Series, and it has the athleticism to compete with the best.

7.8 /10
Overall Score

Among the compact luxury-car segment, the BMW 3 Series is known as the sporty one, the Mercedes-Benz C-Class is the classy one, but what of the Audi A4? Actually, the A4 embraces a bit of both, while providing the safety of Quattro all-wheel drive (AWD) and sophisticated styling inside and out. It undercuts the rivals on price, too.

The third-generation A4 is available as a sedan, a convertible (called the Cabriolet), and a wagon (called the Avant). The sedan and wagon were introduced for the ’05 model year, but the Cabriolet soldiered on as the previous-generation model. For 2007, the Cabriolet has been redesigned to join the rest of the lineup in the current generation.

Look and Feel

9/ 10

The A4’s upright rear deck flows into clean lines that focus the onlooker towards the slightly angled front headlights and large, square grille. It gives the A4 an athletic, yet upscale, presence. Inside, the A4 continues the clean lines and refined touches, such as the wood paneling and brightwork around the gauges, steering wheel, and shifter bezel.

There are 21 variants of the A4, including sedan, Cabriolet, and Avant wagon, as well as different drivetrain configurations. Standard features on the base sedan include 16-inch aluminum wheels, dual-zone automatic climate control, remote keyless entry, heated mirrors, and fog lights. Features like leather seating, navigation, a power sunroof, and larger wheels are all options or come on higher trims.

The look of the A4 can be further enhanced with the S-Line package, which adds sporty visual cues inspired by the high-performance S4 and RS4 variants.

Performance

8/ 10

The base engine is a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, making 200 horsepower. The available 3.2-liter (or 3.1-liter depending where you search) V6 engine makes 255 horsepower.

The sedan and convertible are available with front-wheel drive (FWD) or Audi’s Quattro AWD system, which continues to be the standard for luxury-car AWD setups. It provides enhanced traction for inclement regions and adds to the cornering prowess in any weather. The Avant wagon comes standard with Quattro. Manual and Tiptronic automatic transmissions are available, as is a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT).

Even the base 4-cylinder provides solid acceleration, and with the manual or Tiptronic automatic, it delivers a rewarding driving experience. The CVT does not feel as engaging as the other two transmission options and may present some additional maintenance costs, due to its comparative complexity.

Form and Function

5/ 10

The A4 sedan provides 13.4 cubic feet of trunk space, which is less than the BMW 3 Series (16.2 cubic feet), but more than that of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class (12.2 cubic feet). The rear bench can fold down for more space, or you can access the trunk via the small cubby lid in the center of the rear seat, which allows for helpful ski storage.

The Avant wagon provides 27.8 cubic feet of cargo space behind the rear seat. That number can grow to 59 cubic feet with the rear seats folded.

The new Cabriolet has just 8.9 cubic feet of cargo space, but it can be expanded by a movable barrier with the convertible top. When the top is up, this space can grow to 10.2 cubic feet.

When it comes to actual cabin space, the A4 is a bit tight, especially compared to the BMW and Mercedes-Benz rivals. Backseat legroom is limited in all versions, making the A4 an ideal individual commuter car.

Tech Level

8/ 10

The A4 comes standard with an AM/FM/Satellite radio, while the premium system includes a digital display with a navigation system. The display folds out, providing digital memory card clots for music.

For 2007, the A4 loses its tape cassette player, but more than makes up for it with MP3/CD compatibility. The instrument panel of the A4 features a TFT digital display with readouts such as the radio station, mileage, and other information.

Safety

8/ 10

Audi provides the A4 with a full complement of front- and side-impact airbags, including seat-mounted side airbags, and a front-passenger airbag occupancy sensor.

The A4 also comes standard with remote keyless entry, an anti-theft engine immobilizer, automatic seat belt pre-tensioners, anti-lock brakes, and traction control. Optional safety features include a low tire pressure warning, headlight washers, and daytime running lights.

Cost-Effectiveness

9/ 10

Among the A4’s seemingly endless lineup of configurations, the most efficient one is the 2.0-liter FWD sedan. With the CVT, it returns 21 mpg city, 29 highway, 24 combined. With the 6-speed manual, it returns 20 city, 31 highway, 24 combined.

The most efficient AWD version is the 2.0-liter 4-cylinder with the 6-speed manual, returning 20 mpg city, 28 highway, 23 combined. The least efficient version of the 2007 Audi A4 is the 3.2 liter V6 in the sedan and wagon when paired to Quattro AWD and the 6-speed manual. This combination returns 15 mpg city, 25 highway, 19 combined.

Base MSRP for the 2007 Audi A4 is $28,240 for the 2.0T manual FWD sedan. This undercuts the BMW 3 Series, which starts at $32,400. The Avant wagon starts at $31,340 while the Cabriolet starts at $39,100.

Updated by George Kennedy

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