2012 Audi A4 SE Technik 2.0 TDI from UK and Ireland


Classy and comfortable car. More for passengers than drivers


Nothing yet. Keyless ignition fob has thrown a tantrum once when it fell out of the hole on the dashboard whilst the car was in motion (it's supposed to lock in position!) - doesn't exactly inspire confidence in this new fangled technology.

General Comments:

First impressions very good. Owned the previous generation B7 A4 before, and it's a wholesale improvement over the old.

Good Points - engine refinement and sound insulation a lot better from the common rail engine compared to the old PD (Pumpe Düse) unit used in the old shape A4 - the 143 BHP engine is punchy and fast enough for most people. You are never aware it is a diesel except when it is ticking over when the radio is turned off. Handles better than my old A4 - less nose heavy, but still not as good as a 3 Series. Impeccable build quality and finish inside, MMI system for working the stereo, satnav and phone connectivity is very complex, but you learn quickly. Comfortable and classy - it's got a great "feel-good" factor whenever you get in it.

Bad Points - fuel economy nowhere near what Audi claim it to be. Over a long journey, expect an average of 47-48 MPG; short journeys seem to kill it completely with averages of 41-42 MPG. Don't take any manufacturer economy claims at face value. Plus the much touted auto start/stop system rarely activates... so what's the point??? Cramped driver's footwell caused by the design of the gearbox; the transmission tunnel is fatter on the RHS and forces your feet across to an offset position. It isn't a problem obviously if you have an automatic transmission, but on the manuals make sure you can live with it. Automatic handbrake isn't to everyone's taste, although you get used to it.

SE Technik spec is great value as you get satnav and full leather interior thrown in for free - Audi optional extras aren't cheap, so this is effectively a £3k saving over buying the standard SE and specifying those items separately.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 24th February, 2015

2012 Audi A4 Premium Plus 2.0 turbo quattro from North America


Pretty, but uncomfortable for long trips


Squeaky sunroof when closing.

Squeaky shifter.

General Comments:

This is a very pretty car. I have it in bright red. It is very reliable and the manual transmission is smooth. The quattro has gotten me out of a jam a few times.

The seats are not comfortable at all. They are hard and my lower back hurts after a three hour trip. I did not have this problem in my Saab 9-5, nor do I when I drive my wife's Volvo XC90.

I am not convinced that the sports seats would have been more comfortable for the long haul. I have sat in a model with sport seats, and they were very stiff as well.

I will buy a new car in about three years, and I will pay attention to the seats. I probably won't return to Audi unless they pad their seats a little more.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd October, 2013

11th Dec 2013, 00:00

If you love the car, you could have the seats reupholstered.

11th Dec 2013, 13:43

Not many match SAAB or Volvo seats for long-distance comfort. Had a few Audis before, the seats are pretty average, but a friend's A4, same age but with the 6-cylinder engine, had comfortable seats. I think they offer more than just sport and normal seats, there may be another variant they use for upper trim variants.

29th Jan 2014, 12:26

I drive a recent Audi and the seats are indeed rather stiff... If you are used to (have driven with) soft seats, then it's not going to be a pleasure to sit in a Audi.

30th May 2014, 07:25

I am the original poster. I sold my 2012 Audi A4 last week and bought a 2009 Volvo S80 V8 on CPO, loaded. My family is growing soon and the A4 is just too small. The Volvo seats are far superior in terms of comfort.

I will post my experiences with the Volvo S80 V8 in a few months. So far I have been very happy.