Americans in general are obsessed with CUVs/SUVs, which is why people who would rather have a station wagon are running out of options. To list the amount of crossovers and SUVs currently on the market, I will need to use all twenty fingers and toes, but I just need one hand to list all the traditional station wagons available for sale.
However, if you add jacked up wagons with lower body cladding, then the number increases into double digits, which is good, but not great.
One of these lifted wagons with lower body cladding is the new 2017 Audi A4 Allroad, that surprisingly looks more like a wagon than a crossover, which I personally like. This, ladies and gentlemen, is a breath of fresh air in a market supersaturated with passive-aggressive, gas guzzling, four-wheeled behemoths.
Like the newly redesigned A4, the 2017 Audi Allroad is based on the new modular MLB platform. Even though the new model looks a lot like the outgoing one, the two generations do not share a single body panel. However, like the previous Allroad, the new model is kitted with exaggerated wheel arches, which can be either painted in body color or contrasting gray, and include front and rear underbody shields to protect vital chassis components during mild off-roading.
Compared to the standard A4 Avant, the Allroad sits 0.9 inches higher due to an increase of 1.3 inches in suspension and larger wheels (up to 19 inches). To make the Audi Allroad all-terrain worthy, the vehicle features a new Off-Road Mode in Drive Select, which re-calibrates the throttle, transmission, and shift points to traverse inclement surfaces.
With the second row seats up, the 2017 Audi Allroad has 18 cubic feet of storage capacity, which grows to a cavernous 53 cubic feet when the seats are folded.
Like the A4 sedan, the Audi Allroad is motivated by a new generation of the ubiquitous 2.0 L turbocharged four-cylinder motor, which produces a healthy 252 horsepower and 274 lb-ft. torque (an increase from 220 hp and 258 lb-ft. torque from 2016). The updated engine is mated to a new seven-speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission with manual shifting mode and steering wheel mounted paddle-shifters.
The redesigned Audi A4 Allroad should arrive on U.S. soil during the second half of this year as a 2017 model. Pricing should not be much higher than the 2016 Allroad’s starting price, currently in the mid $40,000 range.
*Rahul Raman is the Founder of CARS 360 Mke, an automotive news outlet. He is a regular contributor to Automoblog and the author of our First Look series.