I know I've been inundating everyone with the looks and interior quality of the A6 and have talked little about the driving experience. My apologies. The test vehicle features the 4.2-liter, 335 horsepower V8 engine that offers lots of highway power. I can't say I'm in love with the way it reacts to the right foot in short bursts. Perhaps I'll get more used to the feel of the accelerator over time but it seems a bit sensitive and a tad jerky.
But floor it and the A6 flys. On the highway this thing is a monster and you can tell it was made for the Autobahn. The only problem is the Autobahn is probably a lot smoother than I-90 here in Chicago. And the suspension seems tuned for silky smooth asphalt, not the pockmark laden concrete I usually see. Even around-town bumps are more than noticeable. This feel was totally unexpected from the luxury sedan. Compared to sports cars I?ve tested the agitation is insignificant but it is a surprise nonetheless.
The A6 really excels at cornering. Quattro, or all-wheel drive, allows for some high-speed exits from highway ramps and I took more than a few at higher than normal speeds. Every time I felt safe as can be and was really moving. Even parking the A6 in my crowded lot is pretty easy despite the size. After getting acclimated to the pinpoint turning of the wheel being a tad more precise than I?m used to (I almost took out a curb or two) I really enjoyed the response.
The big beast of an engine does intrude into the cabin, especially under heavy acceleration. This is no Lexus. The A6 was made for drivers that want to feel the road and hear the engine and both of them are definitely prevalent. I don?t think most owners will mind though if they go into the experience looking for those attributes.