2016 Audi A4 mule spied

The next-generation 2016 Audi A4 still hasn't been seen with its production body, but our spies in Europe have spotted a prototype mule of the next-generation car.
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While its body is clearly the current Audi A4's, the test mule's underpinnings are believed to be a work-in-progress version of what is to be used under the all-new 2016 A4 (B9 model). That car will be based upon the Volkswagen Group's modular underpinnings.

The interior of this mule seems to give a little away about what to expect in the cabin of the new A4, including a colour central display screen (which appears to show an Audi A3 - perhaps hinting at what's under the bonnet of this prototype), and an apparent pop-up central media screen.

Audi A4 mule_1

Exact details are scarce, though it is highly likely the new model will be offered with a range of petrol and diesel turbocharged four-cylinder engines, while a pair of high-output diesel and petrol units are also expected. Audi is almost certain to build a petrol-electric plug-in hybrid e-tron model, while a plug-in diesel may also be on the cards.

The crucial new Audi mid-sizer is set to take on the all-new Mercedes-Benz C-Class, not to mention the likes of the BMW 3 Series, Lexus IS, Volvo S60 and Infiniti Q50.

The next-generation Audi A4 is expected to make its international debut at the 2015 Geneva motor show in March. Audi Australia has indicated that the new A4 is unlikely to make it to showrooms locally next year, but it could show up in the first half of 2016.

Audi A4 mule_9

The current Audi A4 (B8 model) has been on sale since 2008, though it got a thorough update in 2012.

Audi's A4 is selling at a stable rate compared to this time last year (1614 to the end of July 2014), while rival Germans have dipped off slightly but still hold a commanding lead (BMW 3: 2533 units; Mercedes-Benz C: 2522), and the Lexus IS has crept ahead of the Audi, too (1640 units sold).