Audi has released pictures and spec details for the new S4 saloon and estate, ahead of its debut at next week’s Paris show.
As previously reported, the company has ditched the old S4’s 4.2-litre V8 engine and replaced it with a new supercharged, direct-injection 3.0-litre V6, producing 329bhp and 325lb ft of torque.
The new motor uses a pair of four-vane rotors capable of spinning to 23,000rpm (high for a supercharger), with the compressed air delivered to the engine through two intercoolers.
The engine is actually slightly down on power compared to the V8 S4, which had 339bhp, but it has 23lb ft more torque than its predecessor, and a more accessible powerband, translating into a 5.1 second 0-62mph time compared to the previous saloon S4’s 5.6 seconds.
Top speed is, unsurprisingly, limited electronically to 155mph. Buyers will be able to choose between a six-speed manual gearbox and a new seven-speed twin-clutch DSG transmission.
The S4 gets the latest iteration of Audi’s Quattro four-wheel drive system, with 60 per cent of torque heading to the rear axle under everyday use, and an adaptive rear differential similar, dubbed ‘Active Sports Differential’ by Audi, which works on the same principle as the torque vectoring systems we’ve already seen in the BMW X6 and Saab 9-3 Aero X.
Audi claims it chose to supercharge the new powerplant to ensure better response than using turbochargers.
The V6 is both cleaner and more efficient than the old V8, returning 29.1mpg on the European combined cycle (compared to the previous S4’s 21.2mpg Euro-average.) No CO2 figures have been released yet, but they are certain to be significantly better than the old car’s 321g/km.
Visually, the S4’s makeover has been relatively subtle, with a more aggressive front-end treatmeant and unique alloy wheels and a chunkier rear bumper – but it’s clear that plenty of visual ‘headroom’ is being left for any forthcoming ‘RS’ variant.
The S5 coupe will also be revised to receive the new engine and powertrain next year.
The S4 will go on sale in the UK next spring, set to cost around £36,000 as a saloon and around £37,500 in Avant form.