From this week the Audi A4 earns the right to use the 'e' suffix that subtly signifies major strides forward in economy and emissions control as already proven by the Audi A3 1.9 TDIe and the Audi A6 2.0 TDIe.
Available exclusively in saloon form, the new Audi A4 2.0 TDIe joins the range alongside the three existing, and continuing, 2.0-litre TDI variants, and employs the very latest efficiency measures to make 61.4mpg and 120g/km CO2 output a reality. Now open for order priced from £23,340 OTR, the latest Audi 'e' model will reach its first UK customers in October 2009.
Thanks to the punchy 136PS version of the 2.0-litre TDI engine first seen in the Audi A6 2.0 TDIe, the new acutely economy-focused Audi A4 will avoid reminding drivers that they have chosen to give priority to efficiency each time the accelerator pedal is pressed. Delivering peak power at 4,200rpm and a healthy 320Nm of torque from 1,750rpm, the directly injected diesel with its sophisticated piezo injectors will enable the exclusively six-speed manual Audi A4 2.0 TDIe to reach 62mph from rest in 9.5 seconds and to continue to a top speed of 143mph.
Although worthy of many more 'conventional' executive cars, this impressive performance data doesn't preclude an exceptional combined economy figure of 61.4mpg and an impressively low CO2 output of 120g/km in the A4 2.0 TDIe, positioning the car very favourably in the 13 per cent benefit-in-kind bracket for business users and therefore attracting a competitively low annual liability for a 40 per cent tax payer of £1,209.
Of the acutely efficiency-focused premium compact executive contenders, the Audi A4 2.0 TDIe arguably achieves the best compromise between power, performance, economy and emissions. It does so with the help of numerous modifications and new technologies, principal among these being the latest automatic start-stop and energy recuperation systems.
Start-stop Saves 5g/km
The start-stop system cuts engine power at idle when the clutch pedal is released and the gear lever is in its neutral position, and then restarts in just two-tenths of a second - more rapidly than any other comparable system - when the clutch is depressed. With the system's help, economy is boosted and CO2 is reduced by approximately 5g/km, but if required it can be deactivated at the touch of a button.
Recuperation technology provides further fuel and CO2 savings by recycling a proportion of the wasted kinetic energy which is generated under normal braking and normally dissipated as heat, and storing this temporarily in the vehicle battery to reduce the engine load when the car subsequently accelerates again.
The achievement of 'e' status in the Audi A4 has also been helped by a five per cent increase in the six-speed manual transmission's final drive ratio, by the installation of a power steering pump which operates only on demand and by the use of low rolling resistance tyres. The 'e' model also conserves fuel by slipping more cleanly through the air thanks to an additional streamlining underbody trim panel, extra enclosure for the radiator grille and sports suspension settings which help to reduce drag through a 20mm ride height reduction.
The Audi A4 2.0 TDIe will be available in Standard and SE trim levels, both featuring the usual appointments such as electronic climate control, alloy wheels (16-inch for Standard models, 17-inch for SE), a CD audio system and electric front and rear windows.Published 9 July 2009