Although Audi's still secretive about its plans for the next-generation S4, it has revealed what is rumored to lurk underhood: a 3.0-liter supercharged direct-injection V-6.
Audi's named the motor the 3.0 TFSI, although unlike previous motors with the TFSI nomenclature, the V-6 makes use of a supercharger in lieu of a turbocharger. That blower is nestled between the banks of the 90-degree V-6, allowing Audi to squeeze the 3.0 TFSI into tighter packages.
The supercharger, coupled with direct fuel injection, allows the smaller V-6 to produce respectable numbers. Preliminary specifications for the 3.0 TFSI have the supercharged six turning 290 hp at 5000 rpm and 310 lb-ft of torque from 2500 to 4850 rpm.
Sure, that horsepower figure is down 54 ponies from the current S4's 4.2-liter V8, but the real magic lies in the torque figures. The 3.0 TFSI produces eight lb-ft of torque more than the V-8, and does so at 2500 rpm - 1000 rpm lower than the V8.
Audi also tells us to expect an average combined fuel economy of 25.5 mpg from the engine, which is an impressive 10 mpg better than today's S4.
Expect to see official details surrounding the 3.0 TFSI's installation in the S4 as soon as October, when the new S4 may be unveiled at the Paris motor show.