2008 Audi A4 2.0T Avant quattro 4dr Wagon AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6M)
This car will go anywhere, safely and comfortably. It is fun to drive, considering the cargo capacity. The 2.0T is a great combination of power and fuel economy (it's no wonder that VW/Audi settled on it for just about every model for the last 10 years). On ramps: fun. Twisty mountain roads: fun. Race track: fun. Highway cruising: smooth and comfortable. Around town: perfect. Load up kids, dogs, luggage, groceries, everything. Bikes, skis, and boats on top no problem. Seriously, for active families who don't want a big SUV, this is about as close to perfect as you can get. Kids who want to lower it and stuff some wide wheels on, no problem, you will get big scene points because it's an avant.
The car is fantastic, extremely fast, it only has two flaws. One, in deep snow the car is too low so although it maintains excellent traction, snow builds up underneath so it can't go through more than 8-10" of snow. Two, the back covers on fronts seats, glue gave out over time.
2008 Audi A4 2.0T Special Ed. quattro 4dr Sedan AWD (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 6A)
Bought 2008 Audi A4 2.0T AWD with 29K miles to replace a 2003 3-series that was starting to nickle and dime me to death; the moonroof breaking and soggy floors (from the doors not moon roof) was the last straw. Bottom line is I appreciate the A4, but it lacks the getup and go of the 3-series, granted the 325xi BMW was a 3.0L-5 speed manual. I commute about 70 mi. per day mostly on the interstate, the A4 with sport suspension gives a decent ride and is extremely comfortable for a 35 minute commute with an aver. 24.7 MPG but it lags substantually off the line until you get to about 2500+ RPM, however, at hyway speeds it kicks into passing mode just fine and you'll be going 90 before you know it. I've driven it 6500 miles and haven't had any maintenance issues yet however I've broken the latch to the storage area in the armrest and broke the hook that holds the sun visor. I've read these are common complaints; I don't think I've been overly 'hard' on it. The A4 has been good for me by softening my somewhat agressive driving style. If your looking for a nice comfortable ride with some sportiness the A4 is right up your alley.