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2016 Audi A6 New Car Review by Bob Plunkett

2016 Audi A6 Road Test Review

By Bob Plunkett

Audi A6 sedan brings
turbo/supercharged/diesel power choices

Audi's A6 mid-size touring sedans -- sensuously styled with a projectile prow yet the elegant arching canopy over a spacious 5-seat cabin -- gain in power and efficiency with 2016 editions offering turbocharged, supercharged and turbo-diesel powertrains.

On the revamped face of A6, Audi's designers planted a widened single-frame grille sandwiched between sharp-edged and narrow headlamps featuring signature white-light LED tube rings and lower corner foglamps.

The rear view of each 2016 A6 vehicle features LED taillights and new trapezoidal tailpipes integrated into the lower bumper.

Beneath the skin, A6 models use a super-rigid monocoque structure blending lightweight aluminum body panels with a steel frame. And weight-saving aluminum components make the suspension, tuned and tweaked for precise and predictable action, feel light and lively.

The 2016 A6 configures for FrontTrak front-wheel-drive or Quattro all-wheel-drive. Audi's Quattro device employs a self-locking center differential with rear-biased torque split and automatically shifts the majority of all engine torque to whichever wheels, front or rear, attain the best bite of traction.

Audi lists eight A6 models for 2016 with three different powertrains:  A6 2.0T FrontTrak Premium, A6 2.0T FrontTrak Premium Plus, A6 2.0T Quattro Premium, A6 2.0T Quattro Premium Plus, A6 3.0T Quattro Premium Plus, A6 3.0T Quattro Prestige, A6 3.0TDI Quattro Premium Plus, and A6 3.0TDI Quattro Prestige.

The 2016 A6 2.0T stocks a new 2.0-liter 4-in-line engine with turbocharger and intercooler plus Audi's FSI (fuel straight injection) technology applied. The new engine delivers 252 hp, a 32-hp boost over the previous 2.0-liter turbo 4-pack. Transmission for FrontTrak is a new tightly controlled 7-speed dual-clutch S-tronic automatic, while the Quattro version gets a fuel-saving 8-speed automatic outfitted with Tiptronic manual shift mode.

EPA-estimated fuel economy figures for the 2.0T engine tally to 24 mpg city and 35 mpg highway with FrontTrak and 22/32 mpg (city/highway) for Quattro.

The 2016 A6 3.0T totes Audi's dual-cam aluminum V6 displacing 3.0 liters and rigged with a supercharger and dual intercoolers plus FSI. Output jumps to 333 hp, a 23-hp increase from the 2015 3.0T. Transmission for Quattro exclusively is the 8-speed Tiptronic automatic, and the fuel economy numbers amount to 20/30 mpg (city/highway).

The 2016 A6 3.0TDI carries Audi's 3.0-liter V6 engine that burns ultra-low sulfur diesel (ULSD) fuel and employs a common-rail direct injection (CDI) fuel system with electronically controlled turbocharging to enhance engine power and torque. It delivers 240 hp plus 428 lb-ft of torque with Quattro exclusively through the 8-speed Tiptronic automatic, and achieves high fuel-burn scores of 25/38 mpg (city/highway).

Brakes, with a big disc at every wheel, rely on electronic and computerized links to tame the all-season tires. Anti-lock brake (ABS) controls are standard, along with electronic brake distribution (EBD), plus Audi's electronic stabilization program (ESP) that checks lateral slippage and skidding.

Audi leads the auto industry in cockpit design and the interior scheme for A6 models seems quite handsome. Cabin layout is familiar with two sport buckets in front and a broad bench in back with indents for two but room for three. The stretched wheelbase -- over nine feet long -- brings sufficient legroom for riders in rear quarters.

A retractable 8-inch MMI high-res display rises from the top center dash and links to a rotary MMI control wheel mounted on the center console. The MMI system accesses the internet via a 4G LTE connection, with updated service for faster Google Earth and Google Street View applications plus an integrated Wi-Fi hotspot for up to eight devices.

A Black Optic package is new on 2016 A6 models, adding Black Optic Titanium Matte wheels, black chrome front grille and black chrome window surrounds.

The 2016 Audi A6 3.0T and 3.0TDI Premium Plus models list a Warm Weather package on the option chart, adding 4-zone automatic climate controls, manual sunshades to rear-seat side window and a power sunshade to the rear window.

Audi starts the 2016 MSRP chart at $46,200 for the A6 2.0T FrontTrak Premium. Top model A6 3.0TDI Quattro Prestige lists for $63,700.