- The Washington Times - Friday, August 24, 2001

The show model of the Convertible has a flatter front and a more pronounced tail than the A4 sedan, but its silhouette is undoubtedly A4.
The rest is characteristically Audi. The prototype model is 180 inches long and 70 inches wide, and we may expect that the measures of the production version will be about the same.
Audi promises that the A4 Convertible will be equipped with an electrohydraulically operated hood with a heated glass rear window as standard equipment. It also gets lightweight aluminum suspension and will be available with two V-6 engines: a new aluminum 3-liter unit (220 horsepower and a maximum torque of 221 foot-pounds) with aluminum engine block and continuous camshaft adjustment and the 2.4-version boosted to 170 horses and maximum torque of 170 foot-pounds.
Unique in the convertible segment is Audi's new transmission technology by means of the continuously variable Multitronic. This transmission combines the dynamic qualities of a manual gearbox and the convenience of an automatic with continuously variable acceleration.
The sporting talents of the new A4 Cabriolet are not limited to the drivetrain. Compared to the saloon and Avant models the lightweight aluminum suspension has been lowered and consequently the center of gravity.
The Convertible body has a high torsional rigidity. It is 112 percent more rigid than the former Convertible. This gain benefits both dynamic performance and comfort as well as the car's safety.
An active rollover-protection system provides additional safety if the car overturns. In this case, two protective bars, controlled by sensors, are triggered behind the rear seats within milliseconds. Together with the extremely rigid windshield frame they help to preserve the necessary survival space both for the front and rear passengers if the car rolls over. The Audi development engineers put up a safety package that contains seat belts with belt-force limiter and belt tensioner, together with full-size front and side air bags. The side air bags integrated into the front seats are designed to protect the head and thorax. An Electronic Stability Program (ESP) with hydraulic brake assist is added for maximum active safety.
The cockpit of the A4 Convertible has a striking center console with sporty aluminum trim.
The Audi A4 Cabriolet's standard specifications include, among others, a fully automatic hood, automatic air conditioning, the active rollover-protection system, electric windows, central locking with radio remote control, 16-inch alloy wheels and Isofix child-seat mountings on three seats. The Cabriolet's passengers have more space than in the previous Convertible and luggage space is larger.


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