The Audi S4 is the sport version of the company's A4 small sedan, but beyond simple suspension tuning and a body kit, Audi fits the car with a whole new engine.
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Although most of the body is the same as the A4, the S4 gets bigger front vents, with a fascia designed to better funnel air. The wide bumper band across the grille de-emphasizes the size of the grille.
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For 2010, Audi replaced the previous S4's V8 with a supercharged 3-liter V-6. Taking advantage of direct injection, this engine makes 333 horsepower, getting the S4 to 60 mph in less than 5 seconds.
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In form, the S4 is a quintessential European sedan, with curved, modern styling.
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The S4 gets beefier brakes than those on the standard A4, complete with Audi S logos on the calipers.
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The mirror caps differ from the body color, using this brushed aluminum look.
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Being an Audi, the S4 comes standard with Quattro all-wheel drive. The Drive Select package brings in a torque vectoring rear differential and active suspension.
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The cabin of the Audi S4 feels more luxurious than past models, with better-looking materials. We also had a carbon fiber trim package that replaced some of the uglier plastics.
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The Drive Select package also brings in dynamic steering technology, which helps considerably in cornering.
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With the responsive engine and thrilling acceleration, it's not hard to hit redline in this car.
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The instrument cluster display shows route guidance information when a destination is programmed into the navigation system.
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We are really impressed that you can actually select music on an iPod using this instrument cluster display.
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Our car had the six-speed manual, which shifted with nice precision, but the high-tech option would have been the seven-speed dual clutch gearbox.
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Nvidia supplied the graphics chip for the navigation system, allowing this detailed rendering of downtown San Francisco.
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This destination entry screen is a little rough, one of the few failings of the Audi S4.
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The navigation system includes traffic information, and it will dynamically route around bad traffic.
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Strangely, Audi includes SD card slots near the CD player, so you can play MP3s through the stereo.
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The car has an onboard hard drive, with room for music storage. The interface lets you choose music by album, artist, track, and genre.
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The MP3-compatible disc player shows music by folder.
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The car's Bang & Olufsen audio system uses a 10-channel 505-watt amp powering 14 speakers.
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The audio quality was very balanced, lacking thumpy bass or shrill highs.
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Audi's Bluetooth phone system lets you dial individual numbers or access a paired phone's contact list.
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A new voice command feature lets you say the name of the person you want to call.
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The backup camera shows very useful overlays, with distance and trajectory lines.
Photo by: Josh Miller/CNET
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