September 27, 2002

The New Audi S4
Audi AG Press Release

Audi is unveiling the top sports model in the A4 range. The current generation S4 is making its debut at the 2002 Paris Motor Show. The further developed V8 engine with chain located at the rear and with a swept volume of 4.2 litres develops 253 kW/344 bhp and 410 Newton metres of torque. As a result it sets clear benchmarks in the B segment: a benchmark for supreme, even development of power resulting from the large displacement, and a benchmark too for a new dimension in dynamic handling.

The S model tradition at Audi

The "S" models began in the 1980s when the legendary Audi quattro went from victory to victory on the world's rally tracks. The first vehicle to bear the "S" symbol in its name was the unmistakeable S1 quattro crowned with large spoilers with which Walter Röhrl, among others, won the Pikes Peak mountain race.

More modest in appearance but nevertheless still in the sporting mode were the first Audi road vehicles that had the "S" emblem: the S2 with a five-cylinder, 2.2-litre turbo engine and 169 kW (230 bhp) based on the Coupé and the Audi 80 model line.

In the second half of the 1990s Audi then introduced several of these especially sporty top models in their respective model lines:

  • the now 165 kW (225 bhp) S3
  • the 195 kW (265 bhp) S4/S4 Avant (built as an Avant until 2001)
  • the 220 kW (340 bhp) S6 and S6 Avant
  • and the 265 kW (360 bhp) S8 (built until 2002).

    All these models not only have engines that marked a major hike in power compared to their next most powerful cousins, but also quattro permanent all-wheel drive, sports suspension and sporting attributes in the interior and exterior design and the particularly extensive equipment specific to the S models.

    Audi's "S" philosophy is also derived from these properties: S models are sporting and exclusive but at the same time high-performance top versions of the individual model lines. They bring together the brand's technical highlights - such as quattro permanent all-wheel drive, powerful engines and suspension for the optimum in dynamism - to produce a synthesis of driving enjoyment and versatility.

    And they appeal to customers who do not wish to define their liking for distinctive sportiness with aggressive and obtrusive design attributes, but who prefer clear and yet discreet visual signs.

    Exterior design

    Superiority therefore is already expressed in the consciously restrained appearance of the new Audi S4. The body of the S4 Saloon and Avant, which is sporty in its proportions and in the basic shape, is only different in subtle ways from the other members of the model line. It is in the details that the new S4 is clearly characterised as the sports version.

    A typical situation that many drivers of the new Audi S4 will find themselves in: when manoeuvring to overtake, a knowledgeable driver in front when looking in his or her rear-view mirror will see the more powerful, fully painted bumper with large air ducts, xenon headlights with contrasting titanium-coloured inner housing and polished aluminium door mirrors. The signal is clear - a special Audi model is approaching.

    An awareness that is confirmed with a glance at the tail end when the S4 has driven past. Here the onlooker will notice the typically powerful exhaust tailpipes on both sides and - on the saloon version - a discreet rear spoiler as the characteristic feature of the Audi S4.

    S4 models can be identified from the side by sills in the same colour as the body, contrasting door trim strips and the characteristic "S" wheels of Avus design. Large 17-inch discs at the front indicate the performance of the braking system.

    The exclusive exterior paint finishes Imola Yellow, Brilliant Red, Nogaro Blue and Goodwood Green, pearl effect are available - as on the other S models - for the S4. The S4 can also be ordered in Brilliant Black, in the metallic colours Silver or Dolphin Grey and in Ebony Black or Moro Blue, both with pearl effect.

    Interior design

    The Audi S4 is not only notable for its sporting exterior but even more so for its inner values. This applies not only to the technology but also to the passenger compartment. The number one property of this independent top-of-the-range model is the sporting character which is clearly reflected in the original design and in the high-quality interior equipment.

    The instrument cluster thus has the characteristic grey "S" dials and special needles. The leather, three-spoke sports steering wheel with the "S" emblem also emphasises the especially sporting character of the vehicle. If a six-speed tiptronic gearbox is chosen, the gears can also be changed with paddles mounted on the steering wheel - an ergonomic concept that has already proven its worth on the multiple Le Mans winner, the Audi R8, and on the Audi RS 6.

    The Recaro sports seats that are electrically adjustable in eight directions provide firm lateral support as well as excellent comfort on long journeys. Not only the driver and front passenger benefit from these qualities, but also passengers on the two rear seats.

    Inlays in carbon fibre (standard version) or, as an option in birch grey, aluminium grey or piano finish, are exclusive to the S4. Like the special materials for the surfaces and seat upholstery, these create accents of sporting elegance.

    The S4 is equipped with a leather/cloth combination as standard; as an option a leather/Alcantara combination or the especially exclusive silk nappa leather are also available. Depending on the choice of material, the interior can be designed in various black/colour combinations or alternatively in silver, blue or dark green.

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