Currently reading: Audi A4 long-term test review: interior niggles
Detaching trim detracts from the appeal of our saloon’s cabin

Not so long ago it was easy to choose between Germany’s big three prestige brands.

You bought a BMW if driving pleasure was your top priority, a Mercedes-Benz if you were more interested in comfort and an Audi if you wanted to spend your time in one of the classiest cabins around.

Then things got confusing. BMW started making front-wheel-drive MPVs, while Mercedes started pushing its AMG Line trim, with the big wheels and stiffer suspension that brought a firmer ride. Only Audi stayed true to its traditional strength, with all of its cars featuring interiors built to the highest standards. Or, at least, that’s what I thought.

Audi a4 lter 19th 0766

Don’t get me wrong: the materials in the Audi A4 feel extremely plush from carpet level upwards, while the crisp on-screen graphics and beautifully damped switchgear add to the feeling that no expense has been spared. However, after less than three months, the gear selector gaiter has started coming loose, revealing the mechanicals beneath. And while you can click it back into place, it quickly works free again.

This is far from the end of the world and could happen in any car, but it’s still disappointing, given Audi’s reputation.

About the same time that the gear selector started doing its striptease, I got a tyre pressure warning on the dashboard, and sure enough the nearside rear tyre was pretty underinflated. Yet, with little visible sign of it and a long motorway journey planned for the next day, there’s a good chance that I wouldn’t have noticed if it weren’t for the tyre pressure monitoring system. It’s not really something I’ve given much thought to before, but I’m realising just how important such safety systems are and that they should really be a legal requirement.

As a bonus, while I’ve heard many people complain of getting continual warnings after they’ve had a flat, the A4’s system is easy to reset through the MMI infotainment screen.

Steve Huntingford


Read our review

Car review

The Audi A4 zeroes in on efficiency, technology and quality - but is it enough to drive compact saloon buyers away from the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class?

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Price £34,700 Price as tested £41,450 Economy 46.2mpg Faults None Expenses Tyre inflation 50p Last seen 14.9.16

Read our first report on the Audi A4 here

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Jimbbobw1977 2 December 2016

My MK3 Focus, you know the

My MK3 Focus, you know the one with nasty dash that everyone hates that looks like a phone and looks tacky... well 60k miles later... nothing has broken, nothing has come apart and nothing rattles. Just saying, unlike our other car an Audi A3 that rattles...
Lapps 2 December 2016

Audi USP

This is more serious for Audi than for most manufacturers as 'perceived quality' is their USP. Remember their mechanical bits are designed to be cheap enough to be used in Skodas and Seats!

It is a fairly cynical business model, but a successful one. Remember Audis profit per car is almost identical to the pricing premium they charge over VW prices.

They need to follow their own plan though!

Ski Kid 2 December 2016

Quality probably good but let down by design tolerances

we have two interior problems on a Golf and although repaire dunder warrany both quicly broke again so did not bother to get fixed as it was such a hassle foe no reward when you return to square 1.I think our issues and this gear shift surround on the A4 are incorrect tolerances or material specification issues.Alos some of the plastics are cheap in the Golf ,Ford Kia like.