The A4 Convertible was first launched with just two V6 petrol engines - a 170bhp 2.4-litre and the smooth 220bhp 3.0-litre version. The bigger engine is superb delivery excellent pace and a lovely V6 noise from the twin exhausts that sounds even better with the roof down. In August 2002 Audi broke new ground when it introduced a 2.5-litre V6 TDI unit with 163bhp to the line-up.
At a time when diesel convertibles simply didn't exist this become a first in the UK. In 2003 an entry-level 1.8T engine was launched with 163bhp. This became one of the most popular choices thanks to its blend of punchy performance and economy. A quattro version of the 1.8T (and 3.0 V6) was made available in mid 2003. For performance fans the only choice is the S4 quattro and with a whopping 340bhp from it's 4.2-litre V8 engine it's no surprise it can race from 0-62mph in just 5.9 seconds.
Audi's premium convertible is much improved over earlier cars and has been tuned to deliver a pleasing drive that is responsive yet highly composed. The ride can be quite firm, but the trade-off is a more sporty drive. It's good through corners with very little body roll and precise, responsive steering. The soft top remains highly composed with little sign of body flexing unless the road is particularly rough.
The 2.4 litre petrol model and the two diesels are only available with front-wheel-drive, while the 1.8T and 3.0 litre model have the option of quattro all-wheel-drive.