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Audi A4 interior, tech and practicality

Comfort and visibility

There’s loads of adjustment in the Audi A4’s steering and seats so drivers of all shapes and sizes will be able to get comfortable. Mid-range Sport trim and up adds electrically adjustable lumbar support to the front seats, making it easy to travel long distances without back pain. Electric front seat adjustment is also available as an option on all trims.

The control layout is intuitive and easy to use. Important dashboard functions including the climate controls all get physical knobs and buttons, which not only look and feel nice, but are easy to use on the move. Shortcut buttons for the infotainment system were moved from the centre console to the touchscreen in the late-2019 refresh, which we feel isn’t quite as easy to use without taking your eyes off the road.

Visibility is good, although the A4's saloon bodystyle is naturally a little trickier to see out of than an estate or hatchback because the boot extends further than the rear windscreen. At least all-round parking sensors are standard on all trims to make squeezing into tight spaces much easier. Of course, with the A4’s lower, road-friendly ride height, you do miss out on the more raised driving position you’d get in an Audi Q3 SUV, for example.

Standard equipment

Entry-level SE models are well equipped as standard. You get 17-inch alloy wheels, selectable driving modes, three-zone climate control, keyless go, cruise control and all-round parking sensors. There's also a seven-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. This was renamed to Technik trim following the late-2019 refresh before being dropped from the selection entirely for more recent cars.

Sport trim is next up and adds a handful of subtle styling changes outside, along with heated front sports seats and an extra pair of speakers in the cabin. You also gain a built-in sat nav for the infotainment system.

S Line is a popular choice and mimics the look of Audi’s rapid S and RS cars, but without the headline-grabbing power, fuel consumption or purchase price. You get larger 18-inch alloy wheels, lower sports suspension and an aggressive body kit to make the car look meaner. Inside, there’s leather and suede upholstery, brushed-aluminium-effect styling details and shift paddles for cars with automatic gearboxes.

You’ll also find Black Edition which ups the wheel size to 19 inches, and adds a suite of black and dark-coloured styling details to the S Line trim. Inside, there's a flat-bottomed steering wheel and the brushed aluminium is swapped out for piano black detailing.

Moving further up the A4’s trim lineup mainly upgrades its styling, so you’ll be the best judge of how much the sharper-looking trims are worth it to you. For us, we think the heated seats of Sport trim make it worth the upgrade but jumping to S Line trim is only worth it if you’re also choosing one of the more powerful engines.

Infotainment and audio

The A4’s infotainment system is shared with lots of other Audi models and is generally pretty good. It responds quickly to inputs, the menu layout makes sense, and the on-screen graphics are clear enough to prod at a glance. We actually think the system in cars built until 2019 is a little better because it includes a rotary control dial in the centre console with physical shortcut buttons around it – this makes the screen easier to control without taking your eyes from the road as much as the touchscreen-only setup in newer A4s.

We do prefer the instrument cluster in cars made after the late-2019 refresh, however, because all models after this point include Audi’s Virtual Cockpit as standard. This swaps the gauges out for a 12.3-inch screen that can be configured to highlight your driving info, or even show you a full-screen map right in your eyeline.

The standard stereo is perfectly acceptable and only the pickiest of sound-tech nerds will find fault in how it reproduces music. For those buyers, Audi offers an optional Bang & Olufsen sound system that offers a much more scintillating listening experience.

Rear seat space

As you’d hope from a premium saloon, there’s a good amount of space in the back seats, even if there are tall adults sat up front. You don’t get quite as much room to stretch out as you’d find in the larger Audi A6, for example, but neither do you feel hemmed in by small windows and a sloping roofline. Seating three passengers side-by-side on the rear row is achievable but means elbows will be bumping constantly, so this will only work for shorter journeys.

Parents won’t struggle to load their kids into the back of the A4 thanks to the fairly wide door openings and decent rear-seat space. Plus, the two Isofix points on rear-outer seats are easy to access behind an obvious plastic flap. You will have to bend over a little to get everyone buckled up, however, which you wouldn’t have to do in a higher-riding SUV like the Audi Q5.

Boot space

You get 480 litres of space in the A4 saloon’s boot, which is more than enough for two large suitcases and a few softer bags squashed around them. You can also fold the rear seats to store longer objects, but the slightly tight saloon-style bootlid makes loading awkwardly shaped objects a little trickier. The A4 Avant estate measures in just 15 litres larger on paper but is much more practical in practice thanks to its taller roofline and larger boot opening.

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