Of all midsize luxury sport sedans; the Audi A6 has always seemed to have the perfect blend of exhilarating performance, comprehensive technology, and copious comfort. Let’s see if that continues, as 2019 sees the arrival of an all-new 8th generation A6.
Audi has been on quite a roll lately; packing more and more performance, luxury, and technology into their vehicles. Yet doing it with such cohesion, that it all blends together into a very enjoyable package. The 2019 Audi A6 is the latest exhilarating example.
These days, it’s all about the user experience. After all, we’re basically just driving tech-devices back and forth to work, while hopefully not using our actual hand held tech devices at the same time.
We’ve seen this new dual-touchscreen multi-media interface in the A8 already, and despite our misgivings of yet another screen intrusion…no more central controller here…the new system works fairly well. Everything is highly configurable, with drag-and-drop tablet like operation.
It will also recognize your handwriting, and there’s always voice command, which now understands more natural speaking, like “I’m cold” or “I’m hungry”; you know, typical road trip talk. As for manual controls; they’re mostly on the steering wheel, with a lone volume knob on the console.
Just about all information can also be displayed in the optional 12-inch full-digital instrument cluster.
As many as 24 sensors and cameras can be found inside and outside the car; to both help keep the A6 safely in place in the world, and you alert in your driving environment.
Understated luxury throughout, and great comfort in all seating positions as expected; with plenty of room in the rear seats for adults of all shapes and sizes.
Trunk area is well finished, but not as spacious as some rivals, with 13.7 cubic-ft. of luggage capacity.
There’s a new 3.0-liter V6 engine available that swaps out the supercharger for a turbo. It also weighs less than before, and gets help from a new 48-volt mild hybrid system to create 335–horsepower, and 369 lb-ft. of torque.
It delivers that healthy amount of power with a smooth immediacy that quickly becomes quite intoxicating. A 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission ensures gearing is always appropriate for any situation.
A 2.0-liter I4 turbo, remains the base engine, and is actually rated for a few less horsepower than before; down from 252 to 248. But all A6s, regardless of engine, now come with quattro all-wheel-drive standard.
The turbo-6 was naturally our choice for track duty. And unless you’re just really a fan of supercharger noise, you won’t mind trading it for the 44 lb-ft. of additional torque you get with the turbo.
Launch control is new as well, and it works great; getting you off the line with a strong jab of low end punch, aided by slip-free quattro grip.
There’s an additional hearty thrust of power midway up the tach, and we hit 60 in just 4.7-seconds. That’s almost a full second quicker than with last gen’s supercharged 3.0-liter.
If you’re in a bigger hurry, expect the soon-to-be-arriving S6 to shave another half second or so off of that.
Automatic shifts are very positive, but never violent; all powertrain elements working in perfect harmony for the 13.3-seconds that it takes to complete the ¼-mile at 104 miles-per-hour.
Dynamic mode requires a commitment to live with a very firm ride when on the street; but here at the track, it rewards you with some of the most aggressive turn-ins we’ve experienced in recent memory. Steering is both sharp and fast, giving the A6 an ability to seemingly shed size and weight as speeds increase.
It should be noted that our car not only featured the upgraded Sport Suspension which comes with 20-inch wheels and a lower ride height, but also swapped the 20s for 21s with summer performance tires.
We’re sure glad that Audi hasn’t forgotten that driving experience is still quite important to some of us.
Much like big brother A8 that the A6’s chassis is derived from, the entire exterior of the A6 is new; yet it’s Prologue-inspired design looks much the same as before. That’s how things work at Audi.
Minor evolutions to point out are a grille that’s wider and lower than before, new LED lighting of course, and an overall increase in sharpness to body lines.
Additionally, the rear end has a little more curve to it, to enhance airflow.
Government Fuel Economy Ratings are 22-City, 29-Highway, and 25-Combined. We averaged a quite good 27.1 miles-per-gallon with Premium grade.
That earns an average Energy Impact Score, burning 13.2-barrels of oil yearly with CO2 emissions of 6.0-tons.
A6 pricing starts at $55,095 for a 2.0-liter in Premium trim. Top-line Prestige comes only with the 3.0-liter and starts at $68,095.
As before, the 2019 Audi A6 gracefully occupies that middle ground between BMW performance and Mercedes-Benz luxury. The interior user experience may have taken a step back as far as we’re concerned, but the exterior driving experience is better than ever; keeping the total package one that is extremely hard to beat.
Engine: 3.0-liter V6
Torque: 369 lb-ft.
0-60: 4.7 seconds
1/4 mile: 13.3 seconds @ 104 mph
EPA: 22 mpg city / 29 mpg highway
Energy Impact: : 13.2 barrels of oil/yr
CO2 Emissions: : 6.0 tons/yr