2016 Audi S4 and S4 Avant arrive at Frankfurt Motor Show

Article by Andrew Christian, on September 15, 2015

German premium carmaker Audi has unveiled two new series-topping A4 models at the Frankfurt motor show – the MY2016 S4 and the S4 Avant sedans. Both the all-new S4 and the S4 Avant feature powerful engines at its core backed by an array of latest technologies.

Likewise, the MY2016 S4 and S4 Avant are fitted with intelligent lightweight design and a number of driver assistance systems. For instance, the sedans’ predictive efficiency assistant helps the driver save fuel through certain actions such as gear change prompts.

Meanwhile, the Stop&Go adaptive cruise control along with traffic jam assist could help ease a driver’s stress during heavy traffic by taking over acceleration, deceleration, and steering up to 65 km/h (40.4 mph).

On the other hand, the Audi active lane assist helps prevent the driver from straying away from the lane. Other driver assistance systems installed in the S4 and the S4 Avant include park assist, exit warning, cross traffic assist rear, turn assist, collision avoidance assist and the Audi pre-sense systems, as well as a camera-based traffic sign recognition system.

Ulrich Hackenberg, member of the Audi Board of Management for Technical Development, noted that the German luxury carmaker has over 20 years of expertise in developing sporty S models.

He remarked that Audi’s formula for success for the S models has been a good blend of state-of the-art drive train, suspension, remarkable quattro performance, restrained design, and infotainment technology.

Exterior Design

The new S4 models have an understated look. The width at the front is emphasized with the Singleframe grille and some horizontal lines. The air inlets and the bumpers are highlighted. Chrome was used to enhance select points while plenty of the add-on components were painted in finely graduated matt grey tones.

From the side, the most striking elements are its exterior mirror housings with an aluminium look and its prominent sill trims. A separating edge on the tailgate offers targeted aerodynamics.

The details on the S‑specific rear bumper are mesmerizing with a black honeycomb grille, the four tailpipes of the dual-branch exhaust system, and an S‑typical diffuser clip. 

Interior Design

As many as five passengers can be accommodated in its roomy interior. Class-leading standards of acoustic comfort are set by these models but what’s likely to sway more customers is its build quality. When it comes to luggage space, the Audi S4 Avant is impressive with 505 to 1,510 litres of room, depending on how the rear backrests are positioned. On the other hand, the luggage space for the S4 Saloon measures 480 litres.

The interior has a considerable width as the result of homogeneous styling with broad air vent strip on the instrument panel and integrated air conditioning control panel. Even in the dark, these models are clearly visible as its doors and its center console are lit up by LED light guides.

Pearl Nappa leather and Alcantara were used to cover the S sport seats (which are available in these colors -- ebony, magma red, and rotor grey). If you’re a stickler for comfort, you’d be glad to know that these seats have integrated headrests, adjustable side sections, and a pneumatic massage function.

Black dominates in its interior, typical for an S model. Its standard inlays use matt brushed aluminium. The Audi virtual cockpit is an option that you may want for the interior. All the information you need is displayed via the fully digital instrument cluster on a high‑resolution 12.3 inch screen that uses detailed graphics.

Three view types are available; one of which is an exclusive Sport screen that shifts the rev counter into the centre. S4 models use the MMI operating system – an innovation that is also highly sought by fans.

It operates like that of the most advanced smartphones, which have the intelligent free text search function. Three operating methods are offered with the MMI. Drivers can choose whether to control its varied functions via voice, the new multifunction steering wheel, or the terminal on the centre console.

Tinkering with this system has never been easier with the use of a rotary pushbutton and an integrated touch pad that can zoom and scroll as well as enter characters in its infotainment system, MMI navigation plus with MMI touch and 8.3 inch monitor.

The MMI navigation plus is made possible by the processing power of the second generation modular infotainment system (MIB). With this system, Audi’s cars will always have the latest consumer electronics technologies.

Powertrain

Instead of the supercharged unit of the former models, the new Audi S4 and S4 Avant are powered by a completely new turbocharged V6 TFSI engine. UK buyers can submit their orders in the spring of 2016 while deliveries are scheduled to begin next summer.

Powering the S models is a recently developed turbocharged V6 engine with petrol direct injection. The 3.0 TFSI delivers an output of 354PS and boasts a torque of 500 Nm (368.8 lb‑ft) that can tap into a broad range of speeds ranging from 1,300 to 4,500 rpm.

This new engine surpasses its predecessor when it comes to torque and power, while still being lighter and more fuel-efficient. It only takes 4.7 seconds for the Audi S4 powered with this engine to be driven from zero to 62 mph or 100 km/h. It goes on to reach a top speed that’s electronically limited at 155 mph (250 km/h).

Despite the significant boost in performance, the V6 is actually very efficient. When the S4 Saloon was subjected to the NEDC cycle test, it proved that it can return up to 38.2mpg and emit 170 grams of CO2 for every kilometre. Gear changes are highly responsive, quick, and comfortable due to its very efficient new eight-speed tiptronic transmission.

Depending on the driving situation, less fuel is consumed when it shifts to a freewheeling mode. All the Audi S models share a similarity in how the 3.0 TFSI transmits power to the road via the quattro permanent all-wheel-drive. In normal driving, about 60% of engine torque is sent by the self-locking centre differential to the rear axle while 40% is sent to the front.

There’s a variation depending on the current operating state but it is capable of distributing as much as 70% to the front axle and up to 85% to the rear.

In addition, the quattro drive train is equipped with the wheel-selective torque control based on an intelligent software feature. There’s more precision, agility, and stability in its handling as the wheels inside of the bend during dynamic cornering are given a slight break before traction is broken.

Handling is made even better with a sport differential (offered as an option) that actively allocates the forces between the rear wheels.

Press Release

Sporty and high-tech: the new Audi S4 and S4 Avant

260 kW (354 hp), 0 to 100 km/h (0 to 62 mph) in 4.7 seconds – Audi launches the new S4* and S4 Avant* at the IAA in Frankfurt am Main. The top models from the A4 series are ahead of the competition – with intelligent lightweight design, powerful engines, and an extensive package of the latest technologies.
“At Audi, we have more than 20 years of expertise in developing our sporty S models,” says Professor Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg, Member of the Audi Board of Management for Technical Development. “From day one, our formula for success has been a combination of outstanding quattro performance, restrained design, and state of the art drive train, suspension, and infotainment technology. The new Audi S4 and S4 Avant impressively continue this sporty tradition.”

Lightweight and powerful: the 3.0 TFSI
The heart of the S models is a newly developed V6 engine with petrol direct injection and turbocharging. The 3.0 TFSI has an output of 260 kW (354 hp); its 500 Nm (368.8 lb‑ft) of torque is available across a wide range of speeds from 1,300 to 4,500 rpm. The engine outstrips its predecessor in terms of power and torque, while simultaneously offering significantly lower fuel consumption and weight.

The engine can accelerate the Audi S4 from 0 to 100 km/h (0 to 62 mph) in 4.7 seconds, and the electronic limiter kicks in at 250 km/h (155.3 mph). Despite its considerably improved performance, the V6 is extremely efficient. In the NEDC cycle, the S4 Sedan consumes less than 7.4 liters of fuel per 100 kilometers with 170 grams CO2 per kilometer (31.8 US mpg [273.6 g/mi]).

The new eight-speed tiptronic transmission is highly efficient and provides fast, comfortable and spontaneous gear changes. Whenever the driving situation allows, it switches to freewheeling to save fuel.

As on every Audi S model, the power of the 3.0 TFSI is transmitted to the road by quattro permanent all-wheel drive. During normal driving, the selflocking center differential funnels 60 percent of engine torque to the rear axle and 40 percent to the front. Depending on the operating situation, it can distribute up to 70 percent to the front axle or up to 85 percent to the rear. The wheel-selective torque control based on an intelligent software function rounds off the quattro drive train. For dynamic cornering, the wheels on the inside of the bend are slightly braked before they can slip. This makes handling more precise, agile, and stable. A sport differential available as an option improves the handling further by actively distributing the forces between the rear wheels.

Intelligent dynamics: suspension
The new Audi S4 and S4 Avant handle corners of all kinds with aplomb – whether on a racetrack or a mountain pass. For fast motorway driving, both models feature impressive straight-line stability. This performance is down to the newly developed suspension. The five-link suspension on the front and rear axle precisely separates the longitudinal and transverse forces, thus ensuring optimum handling in all driving situations. Like the electromechanical power steering, both are designed to be very lightweight. Variable speed-dependent dynamic steering is available as an option.

The standard S sport suspension is 23 millimeters (0.9 in) lower than on the basic model. The ride height is the same with the optional suspension with active damper control. Along with the engine, steering, tiptronic and sport differential, CDC dampers (CDC = continuous damping control) are included in the Audi drive select handling system which comes as standard. This enables the driver to adjust the suspension characteristics in several modes.

The standard 18 inch wheels in 5‑twin-spoke star design roll on 245/40 size tires. A 19‑inch alternative is available from quattro GmbH. Powerful, stable brakes are fitted on the large wheels.

Sporty understatement: design
The appearance of the new S4 models is subtly understated. At the front, the Singleframe grille and the accentuated horizontal lines underline the width. The bumpers and air inlets are prominently profiled. Many of the add-on parts are painted in finely graduated matt gray tones, accentuated with chrome trimming at selected points.

The exterior mirror housings in aluminum look are a visual highlight on the clear flowing side lines of the 4.74 meter long S4 (15.6 ft). The strongly profiled sill trims also give both models a striking appearance. On the tailgate, a separating edge provides targeted aerodynamics. The S‑specific rear bumper integrates a black honeycomb grille, an S‑typical diffuser clip, and the four tailpipes of the dual-branch exhaust system. Intelligent composite construction characterizes the body. This makes it exceptionally torsionally rigid, safe, and lightweight. It is the basis for the low unladen weight of the car. The sedan with quattro drive as standard tips the scales at 1,630 kilograms (3593.5 lb), the Avant at 1,675 kilograms (3692.7 lb).

Sporty style: interior
The spacious interior can comfortably hold five passengers. The acoustic comfort sets new standards in the class, while the build quality is at a very high level. The Audi S4 Avant provides 505 to 1,510 liters (17.8 to 53.3 cu ft) of luggage space depending on the position of the rear backrests. The S4 Sedan has 480 liters (17.0 cu ft) of luggage capacity in the trunk. The homogeneous styling with broad air vent strip on the instrument panel and integrated air conditioning control panel gives the interior a generous width. In darkness, LED light guides outline the profiles of the doors and the center console.

The S sport seats are covered in a combination of pearl Nappa leather and Alcantara in the colors ebony, rotor gray and magma red. They have adjustable side sections, integrated headrests, and a pneumatic massage function. Typically for an S model, black is the dominant color in the interior. The standard inlays are made of matt brushed aluminum. Details such as the illuminated door sill trims with S4 logos, the embossing in the seats, and the special S4 start screen round off the high quality equipment.

The technical innovations in the interior include the optional Audi virtual cockpit. The fully digital instrument cluster displays all key information on a high‑resolution 12.3 inch screen using detailed graphics. The driver can choose between three views – one of them is an exclusive Sport screen, which moves the rev counter into the center.

The second major innovation on the S4 models is the MMI operating system. Its operating logic is similar to that of the latest smartphones, including the intelligent free text search function.

Extensive: infotainment and Audi connect
MMI offers the driver three operating methods: voice control, the new multifunction steering wheel, or the terminal on the center console. On the top infotainment system, MMI navigation plus with MMI touch and 8.3 inch monitor, the rotary pushbutton features an integrated touch pad for zooming and scrolling, and for entering characters.

The MMI navigation plus is based on the processing power of the second generation modular infotainment system (MIB). This enables Audi to consistently bring the very latest solutions from consumer electronics into the car.

Alongside the MMI navigation plus, the new S4 and S4 Avant feature the Audi connect hardware module. It provides a high-speed connection to the Internet using the LTE standard. The integrated Wi-Fi hotspot enables passengers to surf and send mail on mobile devices, while the driver can use the online services from the Audi connect portfolio. These include the Audi smartphone interface, which integrates iOS and Android mobile phones.

The Audi phone box links passengers’ smartphones to the on-board aerial. If the phones have the appropriate features, they can be inductively charged at the same time. The Audi tablet is used for flexible rear seat entertainment. Hi‑fi fans can order the Bang & Olufsen Sound System with state-of-the art 3D sound.

Efficient help: the driver assistance systems
Both S4 models provide a wide range of driver assistance systems. The predictive efficiency assistant supports the driver in saving fuel, for example with gear change prompts. The Audi active lane assist helps the driver stay in lane. The adaptive cruise control Stop&Go including traffic jam assist can take over acceleration, deceleration, and steering up to 65 km/h (40.4 mph), easing the strain on the driver in heavy flowing traffic. Park assist, cross traffic assist rear, exit warning, collision avoidance assist, turn assist, and the Audi pre sense systems provide important safety features. A camera-based traffic sign recognition system rounds off the range.

Attractive: equipment
Even the standard equipment is extensive. In addition to the features already mentioned, for both body versions it includes LED headlights and LED rear lights with dynamic turn signal. The Avant features an electrically controlled tailgate and luggage compartment cover, as well as anodized aluminum roof rails.

The optional equipment available underlines the high-tech nature of the new S models - for example, Matrix LED headlights, head-up display and sensor control for the tailgate on the Audi S4 Avant.

Audi will be supplying the two new S models from 2016.

Fuel consumption of the models named above:

Audi S4:
This car is not yet on sale. It has not yet been homologated and is therefore not subject to the 1999/94/EG guideline.

Audi S4 Avant:
This car is not yet on sale. It has not yet been homologated and is therefore not subject to the 1999/94/EG guideline.

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