A gallon-stretching new 2.0 TDI version of the visually and mechanically transformed A4 Cabriolet is to deliver the most potent combination of desirability and cost effectiveness ever offered by an Audi soft-top in the UK.
The first four-cylinder diesel Audi Cabriolet ever to be produced in right-hand-drive form will be available to order from next month with an OTR price of approximately £26,500, and is scheduled to reach UK customers in the first quarter of 2006.
The new A4 Cabriolet 2.0 TDI adopts the proven four-cylinder, 2.0-litre turbocharged diesel engine already used by A4 Saloon and Avant models. With the help of a sophisticated pump-injector fuel injection system that permits extremely efficient fuel combustion, it provides the A4 Cabriolet 2.0 TDI with 140PS at 4,000rpm and an impressive maximum of 320Nm of torque from 1,750rpm up to 2,500rpm. This equates to a 0-62mph time of 9.7 seconds and a maximum speed of 131mph, and gives the A4 Cabriolet 2.0 TDI the potential to cover up to 43.4 miles per gallon (combined cycle).
Environmental impact is also minimised by a diesel particulate filter, which helps to limit CO2 output to a maximum of 176g/km. The filter is fitted as standard and works in conjunction with the catalytic converter to maximise exhaust gas cleansing. It needs no additives, and so will need no servicing throughout the lifespan of the car.
For an even better compromise between ride comfort and handling agility the latest A4 Cabriolet’s four-link front and self-tracking trapezoidal-link rear suspension has been extensively modified to include new elements adopted from the new A6 and the S4 quattro. Revised spring and shock absorber settings and a thorough rework of the steering configuration also help to give the driver greater precision and feedback, while larger diameter brakes provide even more assured stopping power.
The 2.0 TDI unit is the fourth new engine to join the latest range that made its debut at September’s International Motor Show in Frankfurt. The four-cylinder turbo petrol 2.0 T FSI with 200PS, the super-refined 3.2 V6 FSI with 256PS and the equally polished 3.0 V6 TDI, now upgraded from 204PS to 233PS, were announced at the Frankfurt unveiling. The familiar 1.8-litre turbocharged petrol unit with 163PS also features in the initial line-up.
The five engines will be available with a choice of three trim level options – standard, Sport and S line – and will deliver their power to the road either via quattro four-wheel-drive or through the front wheels. Customers can also choose from five-speed and six-speed manual gearboxes, the continuously variable multitronic transmission, which has seven speeds in its ‘manual’ mode, and the six-speed tiptronic automatic gearbox.
As before, the new A4 Cabriolet features an electro-hydraulically operated hood with a heated glass rear window as standard across the range. Its already much praised sound insulation can be further improved in the latest model by an optional acoustic hood, which through the use of new fabrics with a greater density reduces cabin noise to a level that virtually matches the refinement of the fixed head A4 Saloon.
Inside, new generation steering wheels with centre sections mirroring the single frame grille design and aluminium door trim inserts and inlays mark out the latest A4 Cabriolet from its predecessor. Standard equipment includes electric front and rear windows and mirrors, electronic climate control, a Concert audio system with CD player and an automatic roll-over protection system. New even more protective two-stage airbags are also now fitted, as is the latest generation Electronic Stability Programme (ESP) incorporating new features such as Hydraulic Fading Compensation (HFC) for the brake system, hydraulic brake assist and a wet-weather disc wiping function.