A new Audi A4 will arrive next year to take on the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes C-Class, and our exclusive image previews how it could look
Back in the summer, Audi updated the A4 with a handful of small design tweaks and new standard equipment, but the brand is planning a much heavier overhaul for its compact exec in 2019.
With a new BMW 3 Series arriving to much fanfare, and the heavily-updated Mercedes C-Class impressing, the A4 – which has been on sale since 2015 – is beginning to gather cobwebs.
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Compared with the glut of new metal hitting Audi showrooms in recent months, it is beginning to look old among its own breed especially. That’s why the facelift heading the A4’s way will be visually substantial and the result of a £500m investment by the manufacturer.
Image 4 of 9
Image 4 of 9
As previewed by our exclusive image, the A4’s exterior design will morph directly into something altogether more up to date and on-brand, echoing its larger and newer A6 and A8 siblings. While spy shots so far have only suggested a new face, we expect the design refresh to be much more in-depth than Audi is willing to let on at this stage, with not just every panel but also large sheets such as the roof and bonnet to alter, along with the headlights, tail-lamps and wheels.
Things are set to change in the cabin in a big way, too. The A4 uses the same MLB Evo platform as the larger A6, and as such, it will be overhauled with that car’s interior tech.
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The old MMI infotainment system will be replaced with the newer dual-screen set-up that is found in the A6, A7, A8 and Q8 SUV. As standard, an 8.8-inch display will be the main interface, with a 10.1-inch unit that features built-in haptic feedback optional. Underneath, a secondary 8.6-inch screen will be fitted, while Audi’s 12.3-inch Virtual Cockpit digital instrument panel could become standard equipment in a bid to outgun the C-Class and 3 Series for interior technology. Audi will update the A4 with its latest voice assistant technology as well.
Beneath the visual recharge, the marque’s engineers are planning chassis and suspension revisions to give the solid but otherwise sensible A4 a bit of added dynamic prowess.
What Audi plans to do with the selection of powertrains is a little less obvious, with a large question mark hanging over how the updated car will fit into the brand’s electrification strategy. Audi is aiming to have electrified variants of every car it sells ready for 2025. It could hold off on a plug-in A4 until the next-generation model arrives, and still fulfil that brief.
Of course, an updated A4 means that a refreshed A5 coupé will be along in due course as well. The interior will be updated around the same operating concept, also gaining the dual-screen set-up. However, the A5’s exterior refresh will be a little less extreme than the one planned for the A4.
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