Back in January I drove the in a cold and damp Sicily and yesterday I was putting right-hand drive versions through their paces here in UK.
I wouldn't defer from my original impressions of the new car regarding its build quality and finish, both of which are exemplary. But both examples I tried – the cooking two-liter diesel that will be a big seller to business buyers and the three-liter TFSI quattro – betrayed the same issues that contemporary Audis, and their German counterparts, always do when driven over Britain's gnarled road surfaces: a firm ride.
Now, I have to say straight away that both cars are much improved over the previous model, but with the quattro's air suspension set to the `Sports' setting, there was some fairly vocal crashes and thumps coming through from the road. Even an Audi insider conceded that, despite engineers from Ingolstadt coming to the UK to put their products through their paces, they still hadn't quite got the suspension settings spot on for the UK.
It doesn't take much to get the TFSI up to nudging three-figures, but there's still a lack of involvement in the steering and, generally, in its dynamics.
I was intending to illustrate this piece with a picture of the Google Earth map as we zoomed down motorways and country lanes but, alas, it resolutely failed to connect. Not Audi's fault, I admit, but an illustration that the brave new world of connectivity is still around the corner. In Surrey anyway.
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