- High-class interior
- Comfortable ride
- Efficient engines
- Not as fun to drive as rivals
- Looks a little understated
- S Line suspension stiff
Audi’s executive saloon is impressive, though it lags behind some rivals
The Audi A6, first introduced in 1994, is Audi’s flagship large executive saloon car. Rivalling the BMW 5 Series, and the Mercedes E-Class, the A6 is designed to epitomise luxury. With a refined ride quality, exceptional interior, and an impressive range of engines, the A6 is a well put-together car. It may not be as entertaining to drive as the 5 Series, nor the E-Class, but it’s still a comprehensive package.
The fourth-generation A6, introduced in 2011, added more efficient engines, a newly designed interior, and an improved chassis.
Exceptional quality, good sized boot, generous standard kit
One place where the A6 really excels is in its impeccable interior. Every time you step into the A6, you’ll feel like you’ve got excellent value for money.
The cabin of the A6 is a place of real prestige. Most people would expect this from an executive saloon, but the A6 goes one step further. Soft-touch materials are used throughout, and there’s a real attention to detail with the finish, making the A6 feel as luxurious as nearly any car on the market. Controls are similarly well-placed, well-designed, and well-damped, making inside of the A6 an astonishingly good package.
When it comes to space, the A6 also impresses. With a 530 litre boot capacity, there’s enough room for a couple of large suitcases, a full set of golf clubs, or even the christmas family shop. It’s also a practical square shape, which makes awkwardly shaped items easy to move in and out. There’s more space than any of the A5’s rivals, making it an incredibly practical car.
Equipment levels, even in the most basic trims, are pretty impressive. The cheapest SE trim comes with an exhaustive list of goodies which include leather seats, four-zone climate control, front and rear parking sensors, cruise control, automatic lights and wipers, xenon headlights, and an impressive infotainment system that incorporates a sat-nav, and a DAB radio. For an entry-level trim this is hugely impressive, and it’s unlikely that you’d need to add any optional extras.
The inside of the A6 really is the complete package. There’s quality on show in every department, there’s enough practical, useable space to easily cope with day-to-day living, and with an exhaustive spec list, it’s going to feel like you’ve got yourself a bargain.
Comfortable, refined, but not as entertaining as some rivals
The Audi A6 doesn’t quite live up to the driving experience of either the BMW 5 Series, or the Mercedes E-Class, but it’s still an impressive car to drive. For such a big car, it still feels agile through the corners, and steering is sharp, and reasonably responsive. It’s not going to put a smile on your face as much as often as a 5 Series would, but it’s hardly a poor car to drive.
Ride refinement are however as good as you’re going to get from a large executive saloon. Regardless of whether you go for a 2, or 4-wheel drive chassis, the suspension system will iron out all but the worst of potholes and rough road surfaces. S Line and Black Edition models come with a stiffer suspension, which feels a little more jolting, and sport-orientated S6 models come with an impressive air suspension system.
Gearbox options on the A6 come in two guises, a 6-speed manual found exclusively on the 2.0 TDI model, and a 7-speed twin-clutch automatic on the rest of the range. The latter is much better suited to the A6, especially if you’re going to be eating up the motorway miles. Both are impressive however, and have ratios that suit the car down to a T.
Quality engine options, though lacking a hybrid option
In terms of how you want to power your A6, you have two options: petrol, or diesel. A petrol option is only available on the super-fast S6, whilst diesel engines are powerful, efficient, and reasonably green.
If power is at the forefront of what you want from your A6, the standout engine in the range is to be found in the petrol-powered S6 TFSI Quattro. This 4 litre, 8 cylinder engine, packs in an astonishing 450bhp, that will slingshot you from 0-62mph in an unbelievable 4.4 seconds. For a car of this size and weight, this is astonishing.
For the eco-friendly buyer, the best engine in the range is to be found in the diesel-driven 2.0 TDI Ultra. Producing just 109g/km of C02 emissions, this engine is a great choice for company car buyers, as it falls into the lowest emissions tax bracket. For the money-conscious, this also happens to be the most fuel efficient, achieving up to 67.3mpg. This engine really is a great package, as it also has enough power to shift the A6 with ease. For most buyers, this is the engine to go for.
Whichever engine choice you go for in your A6, it’s going to have enough performance to power you through every situation that you’re likely to find yourself in. There’s options for the power hungry, the eco-friendly, and the money conscious. The A6 engine range really does have something for everyone.
Full marks in NCAP safety tests with impressive safety equipment as standard
Like nearly every car in its class, the Audi A6 easily achieved the highest possible 5-star NCAP safety rating. With scores of 91% in adult occupant safety, 83% in child occupant safety, and 41% in pedestrian impact safety, the A6 isn’t quite as safe as a BMW 5 Series, though it impresses in comparison with a Mercedes E-Class. There’s also six airbags, and an electronic stability control system as standard. Optional extras include lane assist, and additional rear passenger airbags.
Reasonably cheap to run, if you go for the right model
The Audi A6 is a reasonably cheap car to run. This obviously varies from model to model, so it’s worth considering the figures before plunging for purchase. The 2.0 TDI Ultra model is the standout option, and is the one we’d most recommend. More powerful engines are more expensive to run, without adding too much to the A6. The hugely powerful S6 is understandably expensive, but it’s a price worth paying for its stonking performance.
Insurance wise, the S6 sits roughly in line with its major rivals. It’s certainly not cheap, with the range starting in group 26 for the 2.0 TDI SE, making its way up to group 40 for the range-topping S6 super-saloon, but it’s no more expensive than a 5-series or an E-class.
Depreciation is a large factor with the Audi A6, but only if you choose to buy from new. With first year depreciation as high as 40%, you’re better off opting for an inspected used equivalent.
The Audi A6 is an executive saloon that most people will be proud to own. The interior is among the best in class, there’s a comfortable ride, efficient engine options available, and though the A6 isn’t the most fun to drive, it’s still one of the best motorway cruisers on sale today.
Buying a used Audi A6 online with Carspring
If you’re after a used Audi A6 for sale, it can all feel like a bit of an ordeal. What, with long days spent around gigantic car supermarkets, or time spent trawling through classified websites, looking for that ideal used Audi A6. Carspring makes it simple. Buy your next used Audi A6 online with the touch of a button. Simply decide on the model you want and choose how you want to pay.
Looking to finance your used Audi A6? Not a problem, we work with our carefully selected finance partners to ensure that, if you’re paying monthly for your used Audi A6, you know you’re getting the best rates. What’s more, with any Carspring used Audi A6, you also get our 14-day money-back guarantee and 6 months’ free Carspring Warranty. Plus, you don’t have to leave your home. We’ll deliver your used Audi to you at a time and place of your choice.
*This is an approximate figure based on the range of the car’s list price and the AA’s average 1st-year depreciation cost of 40%.