The New Audi A6 - A Premium Saloon
The new Audi A6 Saloon is a combination of the new A4 and luxurious A8 models from the German firm. Many of the features inside the new A6 match those of the A4 and A8, which is not a bad thing given how good both those cars are. The A6 features the majority of the latest tech from the flagship Audi A8, as well as a slightly sportier look, and the introduction of mild hybrid technology, fitted with each engine in the line-up to help reduce emissions.
The Audi A6 is now in its 8th generation and has been built using the latest MLB Evo platform architecture, whilst still maintaining similar size dimensions to its predecessor. In fact, size has only grown by 7mm in length, 2mm in height and 12mm in width.
The Audi A6 is available as a saloon or estate (Avant) and looks good whichever option you choose. Both have a selection of petrol and diesel engines along with AWD (Quattro) or FWD in a diesel option. You have a choice of four trim levels, Sport, S-Line, Black Edition and range-topping Vorsprung.
The Audi A6 is a premium, mid-sized executive saloon. It's competing in a market against the likes of the BMW 5 Series, Jaguar XF and Mercedes E Class. It'll be no easy task to trump all of these cars, which, in there own right are superb, all offering unique experiences and creature comforts.
There's a performance S6 saloon version, and a selection of Avant models, but I will be focusing on the more general A6 saloon, which is likely to be the best seller, especially amongst company car drivers.
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Engines, Power and Performance
The A6 features all-new mild-hybrid technology with all engine choices, a feature found in its big brother the Audi A8. The mild-hybrid system is a small 12V or 48V electric motor, which reduces emission levels by enabling the engine to 'switch off' when the accelerator is not pressed at speeds between 34mph and 99mph. When decelerating the motor will work to recover some of the energy and store in a lithium-ion battery found under the boot. Sounds complicated, but the main thing you need to know is that emissions reduce, and Audi claims that there is a potential fuel saving of up to 4mpg.
There are two petrol engines with the first being the entry-level 45TFSI Quattro, a 2-litre engine developing 242bhp and 370Nm of torque. It will hit 0-62mph in 6secs and go on to a top speed of 155mph.
The second petrol engine is the 55TFSI Quattro, a 3-litre V6 engine with 335bhp and 500Nm of torque. It will race from 0-62mph in just 5.1secs and climb to a top speed of 155mph. Both petrol engines are mated to a seven-speed S tronic (dual-clutch) automatic transmission for quick and responsive gear changes.
Next up is the diesel options and we kick off with the 40TDI which is available with FWD or Audi's AWD Quattro system. The engine is a 2-litre unit developing 201bhp and 400Nm of torque capable of a top speed of 153mph. The FWD version will hit 0-62mph in 8.1secs, whilst the Quattro version achieves the feat in 7.6secs due to the added traction control off the line. The engine is coupled to the same seven-speed S tronic transmission as found in the petrol models.
Finally, we have the 50TDI Quattro, a 3-litre V6 with 282bhp and a mighty 620Nm of torque which will hit 0-62mph in just 5.5secs and reach a top speed of 155mph. Audi has mated this engine with their eight-speed Tiptronic automatic transmission to help utilise all of that added power and torque to its full potential.
Interior Quality and Technology
The interior of an Audi never disappoints and is always of the highest build quality, using premium materials to ensure a long-lasting and pristine finish. The seats are electronically adjustable and come with four-way electric lumbar support as standard so getting comfortable is not an issue.
The A6 features the latest Audi MMI infotainment system, with a colour 7-inch driver information system (DIS) including; sat-nav, Audi Connect (with 3 years free subscription) and smartphone connectivity using Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. There are a variety of other standard features included such as DAB radio and cruise control.
Audi does offer various optional extras and packages such as the Technology Pack which amongst other things replaces the 7-ich centre display with a larger 10.1-inch display and an 8.6-ich climate control screen directly below it. You also get a crisp 12.3-inch colour driver display cluster in place of the analogue dials as part of the Audi Virtual Cockpit. This is certainly an extra worth having for the added features and screen sizes you get.
Although the interior is very similar to other new Audi models, this is not a bad thing. I am a big fan of "if it's not broke, don't fix it" so I like that Audi has not changed the interior layout and design too much, rather just touched it up with a little extra detailing which gives it a simplistic yet eye-catching flow across the dashboard.
Space, Practicality and Safety
The Audi A6 is spacious throughout and passengers front and back will find ample legroom and headroom, even the tall will be surprised with the amount of room on offer. Upfront the standard electronically adjustable seats make it easy to get comfortable and find a great driving position. In the back, there is space for three adults to sit side by side, although the middle seat would be more suited to a smaller adult and child. If there are only two in the back, then you can pull down the rear central armrest to which there is also a couple of cupholders, especially useful if on a long journey to store your drinks.
There are various other storage cubbies to be found throughout the A6 including a couple of cupholders in the front, large door pockets and a spacious cubby under the centre armrest.
The boot is huge with a capacity of 530-litres, the same as the BMW 5 Series. However, the boot opening is wider and therefore more practical when loading and unloading, a definite plus over its rivals.
The Audi A6 achieved a top 5-star rating at the Euro NCAP safety tests, thanks to a host of the latest technical safety assists and features. Some of the standard features include; multiple airbags, front and rear parking sensors along with a rear-view parking camera, lane-keeping assist and cruise control with braking. There are various optional safety assists available, some of which are included on higher trim models such as blindspot monitoring, automatic parking and traffic sign recognition.
In such a highly competitive sector, the Audi A6 needed to come out swinging, and it certainly has not disappointed. The A6 is a very good car with great versatility and is certainly as good as any of its competitors and will make choosing your next car an even more difficult decision. Click here to find your next car.