New For 2014

In addition to the 3.0 TDI joining the 2014 A6 lineup, other amendments for 2014 include a mild power increase for the 2.0T, standard heated front seats on the base front-wheel-drive A6, an available Style package for the A6 Premium that bundles xenon headlamps and eighteen-inch wheels, leather door armrests for the S6, and a new Black Optic exterior trim package for all A6 and S6 models.

Vehicle Summary

Now in its fourth generation, the Audi A6 remains the “entry level” model of Audi’s large-car portfolio. As such, it’s the only model of the A6/A7/A8 trio to offer not only the turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder, but also front-wheel drive and a continuously variable transmission. Despite those humble origins, buyers can upgrade to a supercharged 3.0L V-6 or even a hot 420-hp, twin-turbo V-8 in the new S6 model. The A6 TDI, which was added for the 2014 model year, gives buyers a diesel option as well.

Overview

The 2014 A6 might be the lowest of the rungs on Audi’s large-car ladder, but that doesn’t mean it’s any more pedestrian. From twenty paces, it’s almost easy to mistake the A6 for a short-wheelbase A8. Its interior design and trim are largely shared with the debonair A7 fastback — although rear-seat passengers will notice a bit more headroom. A6 Avants — or station wagons — are sold overseas, but in North America, the 2014 A6 and S6 are sold strictly as sedans, leaving buyers who want the versatility of a hatchback to shop the A7.

BMW’s 5 Series carries the reputation of being a driver’s car, but in truth, the A6 is no slouch when pushed hard on back roads. Steering, although light, is sharp and quick. The S6 is even more agile, especially in conjunction with the optional sport differential, which shifts power to the outside rear wheel in corners, helping the car feel more neutral.

Although Audi offers RS6 models abroad, the S6 — which packs a 420-hp twin-turbocharged V-8 — is the most powerful A6 variant sold in North America. Another new model provides a different sort of performance: the A6 TDI, which packs a 3.0-liter turbo-diesel V-6, earns EPA ratings of 24/38 mpg city/highway. Those figures are close to the 2.0T’s, but the turbo-diesel’s power and performance is virtually identical to that of the thirstier 3.0T supercharged V-6. Better yet, it’s devoid of the stereotypical diesel clatter and is quieter than the diesel V-6 found in the Mercedes-Benz E320 Bluetec.

You’ll like:

  • Elegant interior
  • 2.0T’s fuel economy
  • TDI yields 2.0T-like fuel economy and 3.0T-like performance

You won’t like:

  • Overboosted power steering
  • TDI’s $8000 premium over 2.0T

Key Competitors

  • BMW 5 Series
  • Cadillac CTS
  • Lexus GS
  • Mercedes-Benz E-Class
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