We’re on the cusp of seeing the sixth generation Audi A4. It’s about time, as the current model debuted in 2015 for the 2016 model year. Amid sedan sights, we’ve seen the occasional Avant test vehicle out and about in the A4 and S4 trims. This time, instead of taking photos, our spy crew clicked notes for some video footage.
Several prototypes are seen here, all wearing the same layer of camouflage. We don’t see the hard cover underneath, but the placeholder taillights are still attached. Some vehicles have twin-ended single-exit exhausts, one of which makes a clear four-cylinder sound when the driver pulls away. Another test vehicle that uses dual exhausts in the corners has also appeared. We believe this is the S4 Avant, which is further supported by bigger black wheels with big brakes behind it. And when pulled, the sound is more in tune with the 3.0-liter V6 used on the current S4.
Despite stricter emission regulations coming in Europe, our sources believe the turbocharged V6 in the S4 will carry over, although it could get a hybrid assist to add power while reducing exhaust fumes. The A4 can stay on pure internal combustion, using an updated version of the turbocharged 2.0-liter four-pot tuned for cleaner emissions. However, some sources say every Next-gen models will have some form of mild hybrid assistance. That also applies to diesel engines, which are expected to return.
As for styling, the exterior will obviously take an evolutionary approach. The headlights will be thinner, the grille will be slightly wider, but it will still be easy to recognize as an Audi. Inside, you can expect plenty of digital displays, although Audi doesn’t look like they’re going to follow BMW or Mercedes-Benz by tackling them all into one big screen. A recent spy shot of the interior reveals a stand-alone tablet-style center touchscreen, with another display lowered to the driver.
Our spy sources feel confident that the next-generation A4 in both sedan and Avant trim will go on sale in 2023. Whether it will be the 2023 model year remains to be seen. If we get to debut before the end of the year, which is very likely at this point, it should be a 2023 vehicle. If the reveal is pushed back to the first quarter of next year, chances are you’re seeing a 2024 model. And no, there’s currently no indication Audi will ship the A4 Avant. new to North America.
Interested in more news about the vehicle that will debut soon? Check out our Pebble Beach and Monterey Car Week previews on Chatting About Cars podcast, available below.