Audi A4 Ultrasport limited edition celebrates the end of U.S. manuals

Just 40 examples of S4-mimicking A4 with suite of special options

  • Image Credit: Audi
True, Audi will end its manual transmission era in a few months when the A4 and A5 go full auto for the 2019 year. Yet the Ingolstadt carmaker will rage against the dying of the stickshift transmission with a special gift: 40 Ultra Sport A4 models, every one of them with a hand-shaker gearbox. Last used on the B6 A4 built from 2000 to 2006, the Ultra Sport trim inched the standard A4 closer to an S4. The resurrected package does the same, bundling a suite of performance enhancements to give a select number of manual enthusiasts an exclusive color, the more aggro looks of the S4, and one last manually-managed hurrah.

Every Ultra Sport is identical, and all are suspected to be waiting at a U.S. port. The Quantum Gray normally reserved for S cars colors the exterior. The Premium Plus spec adds features like LED headlights, Audi side assist, Audi virtual cockpit and navigation, parking sensors front and rear, advanced key, and Bang & Olufsen 3D sound.

The Ultra Sport Package throws in the titanium black exterior package, sport adaptive suspension, 19-inch five-spoke wheels with matte titanium finish on summer tires from the S4's black optic package, carbon fiber mirror caps and rear spoiler outside. Inside, the cabin goes upscale with a flat-bottomed steering wheel, dynamic steering, stainless pedal caps, S-line leather and Alcantara with contrasting stitching, black cloth headliner, leatherette center console and door armrests, four-way power lumbar front seats, the carbon inlays from the RS4 Avant. The model and engine delete mean only those who know, will know. The Ultra Sport option adds $6,800 to the A4 Premium price.

Audi Club North America says that in order to get the manual transmission to the U.S. when Audi AG had dropped it from the German market, Audi USA honcho Scott Keogh pledged that manuals would make up at least 10 percent of sales. That didn't happen; even as a no-cost option, manual gearboxes never got above a 3 percent share. That's how we got here. For those who want to get one of the A4 Ultra Sports, we hear you should place a call to your dealer right this minute.

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