A6 / BMW 5-series competitor for a lot less.
By Laird on Tuesday, November 15, 2011
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 30,000
overall rating 10 of 10rating details
- Overall Rating
Pros: "Luxury, handling, and performance for a good price"
Cons: "brake dust, sun visor clips like to break often"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"It's a shame that Audi stopped selling the 3.2L V6 as an option in the A4 after 2009 - it made for the best bang-for-the-buck out of all the mid-range German luxury cars. Why buy an A6 with the same engine, trim and options when the A4 was $10,000 less? Or an A5 - sure, they're very sexy cars, but $6,000 more just to have two fewer doors? The A4 3.2L was the luxury value champion and one of Germany's best kept secrets.
Audi added 200lbs of weight with the larger 2009 body, and the 2.0T, although plenty good for getting around town, doesn't come anywhere close to showing off the car's potential. Stick Drive Select in comfort mode and chauffeur around town smoothly but confidently with a superbly finished interior. Even the 3.2, with an additional 50HP, can't shake the unflinching, herculean grip of the AWD Quattro. Pop it into Dynamic mode and chase Vipers through twisty mountain roads, making that poor Viper owner wonder why they spent twice as much to guzzle 8mpg, scald their legs from the exhaust heat, and suffer chronic headaches from the exhaust drone.
The interior is superb, with leather appointments and a control system that makes BMW owners cry silently to themselves. Navigation, bluetooth, iPod and smartphone integration all come included, though the A2DP bluetooth audio add-on is another $180. Did you know there's even a towing package? With the same drivetrain as the 5000lb-pulling Q5 and factory-designed hitch mounting already in place, a few hundred bucks (mainly for the brake light integration module) will get you all set up at U-Haul to pull a pair of motorcycles or jet-skis wherever you want to go. All this, and you don't have to worry about the turbocharger's bearings wearing out at 85,000 miles, leaving you with a $7,000 repair bill. If you want a luxurious car for the long-haul, the 2009 A4 3.2L is practically impossible to beat.
Just two complaints: The brake dust from the stock brake pads is ridiculous, but it does clean off nicely if you wash your car at least once a week. Also, the little plastic visor clip that holds your sun visor in place is flimsy and breaks often, costing $35 a pop to replace."
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