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Audi Continues Focus on Worldwide Markets with A4L Launch


Audi Media Site

Audi Media Site

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Continuing to invest in the worldwide markets that are ensuring its continued growth, Audi debuted its new A4L yesterday in Beijing, China. The vehicle is a 2009 Audi A4 with a wheelbase extended 2.36 inches. Audi says the vehicle is a smart mix of sports sedan and luxury vehicle, and may be "enjoyed as both a driver's car and a chauffeured luxury sedan." The majority of the added wheelbase benefits rear seat comfort.

Powering the A4L will be Audi's 2.0-liter TFSI engine in 180 hp tune, or the firm's 3.2-liter FSI V-6 making 265 hp. The long-wheelbase vehicle will be produced exclusively for the Chinese market, reflecting the unique automotive needs of that market as well as Audi's aggressive push to continue its worldwide sales climb.

Notably, the A4L will be produced in China at an Audi manufacturing facility in Changchun. The new A4, which has sold 200,000 units since its worldwide launch last year, was recently voted "Most Beautiful Car of the Year" by the readers of German automotive magazine Auto Bild.

The A4L will be unveiled publicly tomorrow at the Guangzhou Motor Show, and will be available in Chinese dealerships beginning January 2009.--Colin Mathews
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Comments (6)
  1. That sounds rather STUPID of Audi.
    They already have an A4L.
    It's called the A6.
    (not to mention the A8 which also comes in A8L)
     
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  2. you think, Ed? Looking at their sales climb, they seem to have a pretty solid worldwide growth strategy...but I suppose sales and time will tell. The A6 is a wider, heavier platform, and Chinese city streets are notoriously narrow and tough to navigate. The narrower A4L should be easier to pilot on those streets, but its bigger backseat should placate Chinese execs. Also lower curbweight compared to A6 should keep efficiency acceptable.
     
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  3. colin
    'November 17th, 2008 - 2:02 pm
    you think, Ed? Looking at their sales climb, they seem to have a pretty solid worldwide growth strategy…but I suppose sales and time will tell."
    And so far, time has told that Audis suck, their beauty is only skin-deep, their atrocious reliability is legend.
    the rest of my reply got lost. The A4 is very heavy and almost as wide as the A6, only much shorter. Chinese roads are plenty wuide, as I observed first hand in Shanghai for more than one month of workign there recently. The Caddilac STS (NOT CTS!!) lengthening makes much more sense than the A4s.
    PS No serious auto enthusiast would choose the Audi over the BMW, only old ladies in the Midwest (or males that behave as such) buy them for the AWD or FWD... and then pay an arm and a leg in repairs. A really atrocious reliability record, which has stopped Audi and VW from becoming another Honda or Toyota in the US market.
    Audis are satill NOT serious alternatives to M-Bs and esp. BMWs. Their FWD or AWD steals some sales in the snowbelt. I know a loyal Audi owner (again and again), he does not dare drive a MB or BMW due to their RWD, he is an old lady as far as driving goes, and to keep them in decent shape he has wasrtwed an arm and a leg. Similar stories from all other Audi Owners I know. Reliability has been the Achilles heel of VW/Audi.
    PS I have lived and worked for more than a month in Shanghai CHina, their streets are just as wide as ours, I do not know where you get your urban myths.
    it makes sense to elongate the Caddilac STS (NOT CTS!!) there, and they have done so, because the stock car has pitiful rear room for a car this size and luxury. That is a well thought out strategy.
    But as far as weight, the current A4 is almost as obese as the A6 and NOT much narrower, while it is far, far shorter.
    Look up the specs if you doubt it.
    The A6 is a wider, heavier platform, and Chinese city streets are notoriously narrow and tough to navigate. The narrower A4L should be easier to pilot on those streets, but its bigger backseat should placate Chinese execs. Also lower curbweight compared to A6 should keep efficiency acceptable.
     
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  4. One more note : The A4L should be just called the A4 and the A4 the A4S as in SHORT. The current and esp. the previous A4s had pitifully little rear leg room, as an owner of an A4 told me, he used to own a Golf Gen 2 before that and was sure that even the tiny 1980s GTI had more room in the back than the much heavier A4.
    ALSO< colin: Euro streets sare plenty narrow, so how come Audi developed this thing only after the chinese demanded it?
    And Europeans, esp. Germans, are far taller and heavier than the chinese.
    The A4 had historically pitiful rear room, esp. for a FOUR DOOR vehicle. My Honda Accord coupe 1990, weighing 500 lbs less than the A4 of its time, had far bigger rear room (and overall length)
    Today especially that Audi has the Golf Fighter A3, having a short, tiny rear room A4 makes no sense.
     
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  5. Awww come on, Ed - have you sat in the new A4 backseat? I was never a huge A4 fan either, as previous generations indeed had very cramped rear quarters (my head bumped the roof). Also, you're right, the front-wheel-drive biased chassis was hardly sporting. But I recently rode in the new-gen A4, and I have to give them props. MUCH better handling (they moved the engine rearward for better chassis balance), and habitable rear seat. In fact, much more comfortable than the 3-series BMW. As to the specs on the vehicles, even though the A4 has grown, it is still a significantly narrower, lighter car: A4 curb weight: 3,527 lbs. Width: 71.9 inches. / A6 curb weight: 3,858 lbs. Width: 79.2 inches. I rest my case. Eight inches and 300+ pounds is not insignificant. But beyond all of this - if the Chinese love the A4 and it sells, I'm sure Audi won't be too concerned about possible competition with the A6. No doubt, if it were my money, I'd get a BMW. But Audi has really upped its game recently, and that new A4 really impressed me, and I was biased against it going in.
     
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  6. "A4 curb weight: 3,527 lbs. Width: 71.9 inches. / A6 curb weight: 3,858 lbs. Width: 79.2 inches. I rest my case"
    You rest your case? Your own facts prove MY case! 72" is VERY WIDE, it used that only S-class Mercedeses were so wide, so poof goes your argument about the "narrow chinese streets", and 3527 lbs is ridiculously heavy for any car of the A4s length and interior room or lack thereof). Maybe we need $10 gas to make these makers shape up!
    PS The A6 is NOT 79.2 in wide. Not even the A8 is that wide. Give me a break. You obviously saw a width that INCLUDES the mirrors! Even the huge S-class 92-99 was 74.5 in wide!
    PS2: I am not a fan of any "BANGLED BMW", and I, like many others, prefer the prior gen 3 series than the current one, the coupe especially looked perfect (but NOT the new one), and I have driven a rental the dealer gave me when they could not finish the service on my 740iL 1998 by the end of the day, it was an AWD 328 4-door and I found it poor both interior, exterior, and driving wise. I saw a 5 series today in the parking lot, a 97-03 model, and it looked tiny, but it was widely regarded as one of the best cars ever. I was looking for one of these with a 6sp and the 4.4 but ended up buying the bargain 740iL instead, which is far, far more car and still a beauty to see AND Drive.
     
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