German tuner launches new program for Audi’s entry level luxury sedan

The Audi A4 doesn’t get the same kind of adulation reserved for the R8 supercar or the attention that is normally commanded by the A6 and A7 luxury sedans. But ever since it first arrived in 1994, the A4 has earned the reputation of a model that brings out the Audi fan in a lot of people. It’s true that while it may the entry-level model in the German automaker’s premium lineup of sedans, the A4 has carved out an identity unique to its own.

That identity is also why a tuner like ABT Sportsline has spent hours upon hours of its time building programs specifically for the A4. The tuner’s latest work also speaks to the versatility of the A4 as the kit comes with engine upgrade packages for two engine variants of the sedan, one for the 2.0-liter TFSI that nets 330 horsepower and another for the 3.0-liter TDI V-6 engine that results in 325 ponies.

There’s not a lot of flash that went with the creation of this program. ABT Sportsline opted to keep it simple and effective and the results are what you see. Exterior upgrades are limited, although there are a couple of aero components that provide both cosmetic and handling improvements. A fresh new set of wheels also adds another layer to the A4, as does a suspension upgrade that ties everything together to create a more balanced ride for the sedan.

It’s fitting that ABT Sportsline embarked on building this program as it celebrates its 120th anniversary this year. The A4 has, for a long time, been one of its most tuned models, and with the release of this new upgrade, it seems that the tuner’s old habits aren’t about to die down anytime soon.

Continue after the jump for read the full review.

Exterior

Audi AS4 By ABT Sportsline High Resolution Exterior
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The exterior upgrades on the Audi A4 are what you’d expect from ABT Sportsline: subtle but very effective. The kit includes a new front lip, a modified front grille with air inlet panels, fender inserts, and a new rear skirt set that integrates the A4’s quad exhaust pipes. Rounding out the exterior upgrades is a new set of 19- and 20-inch wheels that ABT Sportsline is offering in either DR, ER-C, and FR variants. All the wheel options can be wrapped in high-performance tires.

Interior

No interior upgrades were mentioned by ABT Sportsline, although I do suspect that the usual upgrades like floor mats, emblems, aluminum pedals are included.

Drivetrain

Audi AS4 By ABT Sportsline High Resolution Drivetrain
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Every Audi program that ABT Sportsline creates is centered on an engine upgrade and this one is no different. The German tuner didn’t dive into the specifics of how it created the engine upgrade, but expect the tuner’s ABT Power “New Generation” module to be involved in some capacity. That module comes with a state-of-the-art uprating system and a control unit, helping the A4’s two engine variants – the 2.0-liter TFSI and the 3.0-liter TDI V-6 – increase their respective output. In the case of the 2.0-liter TFSI, power has been increased to a tidy 330 horsepower and 325 pound-feet of torque, an nice increase from the standard output of 248 ponies and 273 pound-feet of torque. As for the 3.0-liter TDI V-6, ABT Sportsline was able to generate 325 horses and a mouth-watering 487 pound-feet of twist, up from the standard 268 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque.

Chassis and Suspension

Audi AS4 By ABT Sportsline High Resolution Exterior
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To accommodate the modifications on the exterior and drivetrain of the A4, ABT Sportsline installed height adjustable suspension springs that effectively lowers the car’s center of gravity while also improving its handling and cornering abilities.

Pricing

As is often the case with ABT Sportsline, pricing details are subject to inquiries. If a customer is interested in knowing more about the tuning kit, contacting the tuner directly is the quickest and surest way to get an accurate price quote.

Competition

Mercedes C 450 4MATIC by Brabus

2016 Mercedes C 450 4MATIC By Brabus
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The Mercedes C 450 4MATIC is a good competitor to the Audi A4. It just so happens that Brabus also presented a program for the Mercedes back in January 2016. At the heart of that kit is an engine upgrade that features the tuner’s new PowerXtra B30-410 plug-and-play tuning module that provides a newly calibrated mapping for injection and ignition into the car’s 3.0-liter twin-turbo V-6 engine. The result is a noticeable increase in output to 410 horsepower at 6,100 rpm and 420 pound-feet of torque at 3,700 rpm, more than what ABT Sportsline was able to get out of the A4. With these upgrades, the C 450 4MATIC is expected to boast a 0-to-60-mph sprint time of just 4.6 seconds. Top speed has also increased to 174 mph on account of the elimination of the electronic speed limiter.

Read our full review on the Mercedes C 450 4MATIC by Brabus here.

BMW 3 Series by AC Schnitzer

2015 BMW 3 Series LCI by AC Schnitzer High Resolution Exterior
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If ABT Sportsline has become an expert in building tuning kits for Audi vehicles, the same can be said for AC Schnitzer when it comes to BMWs. Back in November 2015, the German tuner offered a new program for the 3 Series that included, among other things, a menu of engine upgrades for various 3er variants. The most notable was for the 340i, which saw its output increase to 360 horsepower, a nice improvement from the standard model’s 320-horsepower output. AC Schnitzer accomplished this by installing a high power charge cooler and a sports catalyst to go with some clever remapping of the sedan’s ECU unit.

Read our full review on the BMW 3 Series by AC Schnitzer here.

Conclusion

Audi AS4 By ABT Sportsline High Resolution Exterior
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Nobody’s going to be doing any world record runs with this upgrade for the Audi A4. Then again, that’s not the kit’s primary objective. The focus here is to give the A4 extra power and performance to maximize its capabilities without overstepping any bounds. If you’re looking for a kit that’s going to turn your A4 into a rocket, better look somewhere else. But if you prefer a program that helps refine the A4’s looks and performance capabilities, ABT Sportsline is as good a choice as any to get the job done. It’s proven itself to be more than capable of doing that.

  • Leave it
    • * Not much on the aesthetic front
    • * Not suited for those who want supercar-like abilities from their A4s
    • * Plenty of other options available
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