2008 S6 New Car Test Drive
The Audi A6 continues a legacy of dynamic excellence and exceptional comfort. The A6 is packed with technology, enhancing convenience and driving dynamics. The attention to detail inside and out is impressive.
There is much to love about the A6. Its cabin is airy and comfortable, with firm, supportive seats. Its styling is crisp, clean and modern, though the front is dominated by a massive grille.
Underway, the A6 boasts sharp, precise steering, and a firm but comfortable ride. In high-speed corners the quattro models feel like they're on rails, a benefit of Audi's superb all-wheel-drive system. Braking and handling are excellent, whether on dry pavement or when hurtling through a torrent of rain.
V6, V8 and V10 versions of the A6 are available. The well-equipped V6 model delivers brisk acceleration, while the V8 qualifies the A6 as a performance sports sedan. The V10-powered S6 is for serious drivers who don't mind trading comfort for high performance.
Most cars are redesigned every five years or so; this latest-generation A6 was launched as a 2005 model so it's about midway through the design cycle. It's larger and roomier than the previous-generation version, and features dramatically changed styling.
For 2008, an Audi Lane Assist feature is offered that warns drivers when they drift out of their lanes without the use of a turn signal. Every A6 also gets headlight washers, Sirius satellite radio. For 2008, the S line exterior equipment is standard; this includes more aggressive front and rear bumpers, S line badging for the front grille, and 18-inch wheels. Quattro models are available with 19-inch wheels; chrome-finish 18-inch wheels with summer performance tires are optional.
The 2008 Audi A6 line includes the 3.2 ($42,950), 3.2 quattro sedan ($46,100), 4.2 quattro ($56,300) sedan, 3.2 quattro Avant wagon ($49,000), and S6 quattro sedan ($72,350).
The A6 3.2 models take their name from a 3.2-liter V6 that delivers 255 horsepower. The A6 4.2 has a 4.2-liter V8 that generates 350 horsepower. The S6 has a 5.2-liter V10 that puts out 435 horsepower. Quattro models feature Audi's all-wheel drive system and come with a six-speed automatic transmission. The 3.2 model has front-wheel drive and comes with a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) with seven preset gear ratios for manual shift capability.
The A6 3.2 and 3.2 quattro come loaded with standard features: leather upholstery; cruise control; wood trim; dual-zone automatic air conditioning with pollen filters; heated power mirrors with passenger-side tilt-down back-up aid; power windows; power door locks; remote keyless entry; 12-way power driver's seat with four-way adjustable power lumbar support; 60/40 split-folding rear seats; tilt/telescoping steering column; leather-wrapped, multi-function steering wheel; leather-wrapped shift knob; trip computer; theft deterrent system; AM/FM/6CD/MP3 with 10 speakers; Sirius satellite radio; Bluetooth wireless cell phone link; rain-sensing variable-intermittent wipers; automatic headlights; headlight washers; front and rear fog lights; and P245/40R18 tires on alloy wheels. The Avant also gets heated front seats, roof rails, rear cargo cover, and a power sunroof.
Options for 3.2 models start with a Premium package for the sedan ($3,550) and Avant wagon ($2,550). The wagon version includes daytime running lights, memory for the driver's seat and exterior mirrors, power-folding auto-dimming exterior mirrors, Bose surround sound system, auto-dimming rearview mirror, compass, power liftgate, and bi-xenon headlights. The sedan version adds a power sunroof and heated front seats, and deletes the power liftgate. An S line Interior Package ($2000) includes steering wheel shift paddles, Milano leather upholstery, front sport seats, perforated leather shift knob, black cloth headliner, aluminum door sills, and Gray Birch wood trim. A Cold Weather package ($600) adds heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel and a removable ski sack. A Technology Package ($2500) includes voice recognition, Advanced Key keyless access and starting, an Advanced Parking System with rear park assist and a rearview camera, adaptive cornering lights, universal garage door opener, and a power tilt/telescoping steering column. Options for 3.2 models include premium Milano leather upholstery ($1,000); manual rear and side window sunshades ($250); manual side sunshades plus a power rear sunshade ($400); rear side airbags ($350); DVD-based navigation system ($1,600); leather-segmented steering wheel with shift paddles ($690); iPod adaptor ($290); sport suspension ($500); leather dashboard trim ($1,275); chrome wheels with summer performance tires ($1180); and Audi Lane Assist ($900). Customers can also choose P245/45R17 tires on alloy wheels as a no-cost option. Also available for the 3.2 quattro Avant are P255/35R19 summer performance tires on alloy wheels, adaptive cruise control ($2,000), and an adaptive air suspension ($2,300).
The A6 4.2 quattro adds premium leather, adaptive bi-xenon headlights, daytime running lights, power tilt/telescoping steering column, heated front seats, memory for the driver's seat and mirrors, power sunroof, Bose sound system, auto-dimming rearview and exterior mirrors, compass, and a universal garage door opener. Options are similar to those for the 3.2; the 4.2 also offers a solar sunroof ($790) that uses a solar panel to operate a fresh air fan when the vehicle is parked in the sun.
The S6 gets a sports suspension, P265/35R19 tires, and a rear spoiler, in addition to the equipment listed for the 4.2. Options exclusive to the S6 include carbon-fiber interior trim ($400);.