Parkers overall rating: 4.5 out of 5 4.5
  • Excellent fit and finish throughout
  • Standard-fit Virtual Cockpit
  • Large infotainment display; now touchscreen only

Audi is a company famed for its interiors, and it’s no different with the A4, which boasts the best quality and neatest – if not the most exciting – design of the compact executive segment of the car market.

Unsurprisingly there are similarities with other Audi models thanks to the full-width air vent graphic also found in the Q7. The 10.1-inch multimedia screen looks like it should fold away – as it did on older Audis, but is, in fact, permanently fixed.

All A4 models come with the firm’s Virtual Cockpit system, which displays all relevant information (from sat-nav, audio, telephone and regular dials) on a multi-configurable 12.3-inch LCD screen replacing standard instruments. This only became available as standard as of 2019, and was an option on pre-facelift cars.

Intuitive controls and excellent build quality

As you’d expect, each element of switchgear feels reassuringly solid, with fine design and neat detailing and we especially like the conductive toggle-switch style climate controls.

Before the car’s update, the infotainment system was controlled via a MultiMedia Interface (MMI) rotary controller, with fingertip input, located near the gearlverl. This was especially intuituve to use. Now though, it’s all touchscreen-controlled: although it looks sharper and is usufully large at 10.1 inches, it's fiddlier to operate on the move. Not only do you have to look at the screen more, there's no ledge to rest your hand while you're doing so. Thankfully, the voice-activated controls work without too much faff.

Comfortable cruiser

  • Excellent driving position
  • Impressive seats on all models
  • Ride can be firm on standard suspension

Seat adjustment, along with that of the steering wheel, is ample and we found no issues getting into a comfortable driving position. All the seats available are comfortable and supportive – especially on S Line models with extendable seat cushions beneath your thighs.

The ride is excellent when fitted with the optional adaptive damping system, managing to carry off larger wheels without massive issue – generally ironing-out any lump or bump it encounters in the road with ease. It’s very impressive.

However, choose a model with standard suspension and the A4 can fidget over imperfections in the road – it’s certainly no worse than an equivalent 3 Series, itself a car that rides on the firmer side of things, but we would still recommend spending extra on the adaptive option.

The lack of wind noise is impressive, and there’s not too much of a racket being kicked up from the road – as long as you stick with sensibly sized alloy wheels – while the engines are barely audible either. It’s a great long-distance cruiser.

All that really lets the A4 down from a comfort perspective is spce in the rear, but if that's a critical issue you'd need to progress to the larger A6 Saloon.