No Diesel Required: 2017 Audi A4 2.0T Ultra Does 37 MPG Highway
With front-wheel drive, a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, and a seven-speed dual-clutch transmission, the all-new 2017 Audi A4 Ultra’s EPA highway fuel economy figure is 37 miles per gallon.
Audi says, “No other luxury sedan in its competitive segment offers higher EPA-estimated city or highway mileage” than the new fuel-sipping A4, which the Environmental Protection Agency rates at 27 mpg in the city and 31 mpg combined.
The EPA scores the rear-wheel-drive BMW at 32 mpg city and 42 highway and the 330e at a combined 72 mpge equivalent. Audi presumably excluded these non-entry-level, uniquely powered models from the “competitive segment” definition.
The A4 Ultra, which improves upon the standard front-wheel-drive 2017 Audi A4’s 25/33 mpg ratings, is reduced to 190 horsepower and 236 lbs-ft of torque from the usual A4’s 252 horsepower and 273 lbs-ft.
Non-diesel rivals such as the BMW 320i, Mercedes-Benz C300, and Lexus IS200t have combined EPA fuel economy ratings of 28, 28, and 26 miles per gallon, respectively. Even the Audi A4’s little A3 brother maxed out at a combined 27 mpg in MY2016.
Including delivery fees, pricing for the 2017 Audi A4 Ultra begins at $35,850 in Premium guise — a $2,400 savings compared with the typical front-wheel-drive A4 2.0T — and $39,650 for the Premium Plus.
Audi also uses the Ultra badge on a particularly high-mileage version of the Audi A3 e-tron.
[Image: Audi USA]
I think a turbo is essentially a 50% increase in power displacement. So, all other things being equal (mass & aero), a 1.6 liter turbo should be comparable to a 2.3-2.5 liter. In city driving, with a lot of idling, the smaller displacement should give the turbo a significant advantage in fuel consumption. So, if you drive in NYC or Chicago, with lots of time stopped, turbo helps. But for most suburban driving, the gain is minimal. That said, I'd rather have a normally aspirated engine. I see the turbo as another major component that will break one day. I also think, all things being equal, NA has better response. Turbos, stop-start, are not worth it IMO. If one wants to use less fuel, one should a. drive less or b. get a smaller vehicle. But if one absolutely can't do A or B, I guess these hi-cost marginal improvements help save fuel--and set one up for some minor inconvenience day to day (turbo lag, the ANNOYANCE of JERKY stop/START), and some potentially major repair bills that will negate the minor savings realized. Also, I'm impressed with the mpg of the Verano above (37) and ATS AWD (34-35). My 2011 Malibu with 95k miles got about 32 mpg on an 1100 mile trip across PA. That included some local driving. I cruised at about 70-72 most of the time (range was 65 to 80). And I was very happy to have a relatively large car, with A/C, get that type of mpg. A generation ago, as a kid, similar trip across PA on I-80, our Fairmont 4-cyl, 4-speed got 30 mpg--no A/C and spent most of the time doing 55-60 (range 50-70). And those fill-ups were for pure highway driving, no local or around town driving
I wish could attach the Morphs meme. What if I told you... you could stay off the turbo and get the same mileage in the faster A4?
My company car, '15 TLX V6 (FWD), has gotten as high as 41.2 mpg doing 77 mph w/ AC on from Boston to DC. Several weeks ago I had a last minute drive from Philly to Pittsburgh averaging 79 mph w/ AC on and got 39.7 mpg. These are manual calculations not the trip computer which appears to be .8 mpg too high. I think that's good for a 290 HP V6 even though the 9 spd trans is clunky in city driving. The EPA sticker says highway should be 34 mpg but I know from speaking w/ other TLX V6 owners it's fairly easy to surpass.
The stock photo appears to be of an A4 quattro.