|December 1, 2010
Source: Audi of America
Audi has created an intelligent combination of various materials, rendering the body of the new Audi A6 extremely light, safe, and stiff. Thanks to its composite steel-aluminum construction, the body weighs approximately 15 percent less than a conventional steel construction, earning the sedan with the four rings a top ranking among the competition. Providing 130 kW (177 hp) of power, the A6 2.0 TDI tips the scales at just 1,575 kilograms (3,472.28 lb), not including the driver.
Aluminum components make up more than 20 percent of the body. The strut mounts at the front of the car are castings; the struts in the engine compartment and the crossmembers behind the bumpers are sections made of this lightweight material. All add-on parts, such as the front fenders, the engine hood, the rear hatch and the doors, but also the bulkhead and the crossmember in the luggage compartment, are made of aluminum panels.
High-end steels also play a key role in the new Audi A6. The best of these are the hot-shaped steels, which get their extreme tensile strength from a temperature increase during the shaping process. These steels are found in some areas of the passenger cell and at its transition to the front end of the car. In many areas, tailored blanks are used. These are panels of various thicknesses that are thicker and stronger in areas subjected to higher loads.
The new Audi A6 sedan is extraordinarily quiet. Thanks to a sophisticated aeroacoustics system and extensive insulation, the noise level in the interior remains very low even at high speeds on the highway. The excellent vibrational comfort is the result of painstaking tuning of all components, systematic hydraulic damping in the axle and drivetrain bearings, and the extremely stiff body.
The precision aerodynamic tuning, which also includes the paneled underfloor and the airflow through the engine compartment, translates to a drag coefficient (Cd) of 0.26 in the base version, an improvement compared with the predecessor. The frontal area of the new Audi A6 measures 2.3 m2 (24.76 ft2).