2012 Audi S4 vs. Its Competition

2012 Audi S4 4-door Sedan S Tronic Premium Plus Angular Front Exterior View
Bengt Halvorson Bengt Halvorson Deputy Editor

The 2012 Audi S4 don't aim to rival top-performance models like the BMW M3 or Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG; instead it takes on the likes of the BMW 335i and Benz C350 and provides a high-powered alternative for those who want a step up from the basic A4 sport sedan.

Compared to either of those models, the S4 is very competitive.

Obviously, it's quicker and sportier than the C350, as well as better-appointed inside; compared to BMW's almost lagless turbo six in the 335i, Audi's supercharged V-6 has a similar personality, with gobs of torque down low, though it isn't quite as perfectly smooth.

The Acura TL, with all-wheel drive, is a surprisingly athletic sport sedan, with a roomier interior that's a refreshing departure from the European sedans in style.

As a wild-car possibility, at a fraction of the cost of the S4, consider the Subaru Legacy GT.

Yet another alternative would be the new 2012 Buick Regal GS.

Before you laugh too hard, we know the Buick doesn't have a reputation approaching that of the S4, but the new GS is a product that stands out from the rest of the lineup and, with its strong turbocharged four, well-tuned suspension, and track-ready Brembo brakes, deserves a drive if you're not too brand-conscious.

2012 Audi S4 4-door Sedan S Tronic Premium Plus Angular Front Exterior View2012 Audi S4
Browse Used Listings
2012 Acura TL 4-door Sedan 2WD Advance Angular Front Exterior View2012 Acura TL
Browse Used Listings
2012 BMW 3-Series2012 BMW 3-Series
Browse Used Listings
2012 Mercedes-Benz C Class2012 Mercedes-Benz C Class
Browse Used Listings
2012 Subaru Legacy 4-door Sedan H4 Auto 2.5i Premium Angular Front Exterior View2012 Subaru Legacy
Browse Used Listings
Quick Specs
For those who like what they see in the pert Audi A4 sport sedan but want an emphasis on the 'sport'—without giving up any practicality—the 2012 Audi S4 is the way to go.
The 2012 Acura TL is a surprisingly well-rounded luxury sedan, with a host of advanced tech features, and in top SH-AWD trim morphs into a complete and compelling sport sedan.
The 2012 BMW 3-Series delivers the class-leading sport-sedan performance and handling enthusiasts have come to expect, yet it makes substantial improvements in fuel-efficiency, active safety, and connectivity.
With a new base four-cylinder engine, the 2012 Mercedes-Benz C-Class makes even more sense for value-conscious (yet image-conscious) luxury shoppers.
The 2012 Subaru Legacy remains the only mainstream, mid-size sedan to offer all-wheel drive; it's also among the better-handling models in this class, and a strong value in 2.5i form.
MSRP From    
Gas Mileage    
18 MPG City / 28 MPG Hwy17 MPG City / 29 MPG Hwy17 MPG City / 34 MPG Hwy15 MPG City / 31 MPG Hwy18 MPG City / 31 MPG Hwy
Gas Supercharged V6Gas V6Turbocharged Gas I4Turbocharged Gas I4Gas Flat 4
EPA Class    
Compact CarsMid-SizeCompact CarsCompactMidsize Cars
Style Name    
4-Door Sedan Manual Premium Plus4-Door Sedan Automatic 2WD4-Door Sedan 328i RWD SULEV4-Door Sedan C 250 Sport RWD4-Door Sedan H4 Manual 2.5i
All wheel driveFront-Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveRear Wheel DriveAll Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity    
Passenger Doors    
Body Style    
Sedan4 Door SedanSedan4 Door SedanSedan
ManualAutomaticAutomatic w/Manual ShiftAutomaticManual
Detailed Spec Comparison
 2012 Audi S4 vs. 2012 Acura TL2012 Audi S4 vs. 2012 BMW 3-Series2012 Audi S4 vs. 2012 Mercedes-Benz C Class2012 Audi S4 vs. 2012 Subaru Legacy