2012 Audi A4 Wagon Performance
This performance review was created when the car was new. Some links may no longer point to an active page.
Most automotive writers agree that the 2012 A4 Avant has performance that mixes power and efficiency with comfort and sporty handling. Though it isn’t the best performer in the class, most reviewers say the A4 offers better fuel economy and more comfort, making the performance tradeoffs worth it.
- "While we'll rarely (if ever) turn down an abundance of horsepower and torque, we also appreciate a car that hits that elusive sweet spot of power and efficiency. ... the 2012 Audi A4 is one such car." -- Edmunds
Acceleration and Power
Test drivers are impressed by the 2012 A4 Avant's smooth powertrain. It features a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that produces 211 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. An eight-speed Tiptronic automatic transmission is standard.
The EPA reports that the A4 Avant nets an estimated city/highway fuel economy of 21/29 mpg.
- "And, with its responsive 2.0-liter turbocharged gasoline 4-cylinder engine, the A4 has more than enough horsepower and nearly instantly-available torque." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "The turbocharged four-cylinder engine provides class-competitive acceleration, but it lacks the refinement of a six-cylinder, transmitting some off-putting vibrations through the steering wheel." -- Edmunds
- “... surprisingly strong acceleration, with good overall throttle response." -- Consumer Guide
- "The turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine makes for an enjoyable drive. Other reviews have questioned whether this engine can stand up to the competition's six-cylinder engines. My answer is, you bet it can. With the turbocharged engine and the Quattro all-wheel-drive system, this baby can go wherever you need it to. I never found myself saying, 'Come on A4, give me more!'" -- Mother Proof
- "Acceleration is sparkling, and the engine is silken in its smoothness with an unexpectedly spunky growl. We found ourselves running around in second and third gears all day without complaint. No one will be making any sort of apologies for this car's having a four-cylinder. It's a delightful engine no matter how you slice it." -- Car and Driver
Handling and Braking
Reviewers say the A4 wagon nicely balances sporty handling with ride comfort. Standard all-wheel drive only makes it a better performer.
- "A4 is impressively solid." -- Consumer Guide
- "The 2012 Audi A4 prioritizes precision over outright comfort on the road, though you won't hear us complain. The suspension manages to find a middle ground between the typically-soft Mercedes-Benz and the more-rigid BMW ride philosophies. ..." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "[T]he factory settings are inherently good in the A4 Avant, which nicely dances on the line between comfort and sport. The A4 is doing a decent job of establishing itself as a quattro alterna-BMW 3 Series, with the right compliance over rough roads and just a bit of roll in fast turns before settling into flat cornering. It won't beat you up and at the same time, it won't leave you the least bit bored. And the new A4 Avant drives like a smaller car -- say, the old A4." -- Motor Trend