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Audi to show rugged A4 allroad in Geneva

Tue, 17 Feb 2009

While Audi's A6 allroad quattro didn't resonate in North America and ultimately was discontinued after the 2005 model year, it did enjoy mild popularity in Europe and continues to be sold there.

Now Audi plans to bolster the line with the addition of the A4 allroad quattro that's set to make its first public appearance at next month's Geneva motor show.

Beginning with an A4 Avant, Audi improves its off-roading abilities by raising the ride height by 37 millimeters to 180 millimeters and widening the track in front and rear by 20 millimeters. Stainless-steel underbody plates provide additional protection from rocks and gravel, and 18-inch, 10-spoke wheels wrapped in allroad-specific tires are added. Finally, an off-road detection technology program is implemented into the stability-control system allowing for more wheelspin.

To look the part, Audi designed specific front and rear fascia, a grille and extended fender flares.

Powertrain options include a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with 211 hp and two diesels: a 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel with 170 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque or a 3.0-liter V6 turbodiesel with 240 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque. At launch, the four-cylinder diesel will be available with a six-speed manual transmission, while a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox will come bolted to the four-cylinder gas engine and the V6 diesel. Additional engine and transmission combos will be available later.

Audi is taking orders for the A4 allroad quattro now in Europe with deliveries to begin in May. According to an Audi spokesman, there is no chance of it making it to the States.

By Jonathan Wong