Driving dynamics and motoring comfort
Torsional stiffness up by more than 34 per cent clearly proves the qualities of the new Audi A6, especially as the previous model was already widely lauded for its supreme strength and stiffness.
Qualities of this kind offer significant advantages in terms of both vibration comfort and driving dynamics. And vibration amplitudes reduced to a minimum provide a clear sign of the exceptional standard of body stiffness, at the same time creating the perfect foundation for excellent acoustics within the interior.
The supreme stiffness of the steel bodyshell is the result of consistently enhanced joining technologies plus optimised panel profiles. At the same time the improvement of vibration behaviour ensured by numerous optimised details quite literally set the foundation for the harmonious but nevertheless sporting set-up of the chassis. In conjunction with the direct, extremely stable link connecting the steering column to the module subframe, this body configuration is the basic prerequisite for the A6 saloon's precise handling.
Audi's dynamic suspension featured on the new A6 is likewise based on sporting, proven technology: the enhanced four-link front suspension acknowledged as a particular Audi stronghold and the self-tracking trapezoidal-link rear suspension carried over from the Audi A8 - a combination featured on both the front-wheel-drive and quattro models.
The result is a standard of dynamic driving behaviour beyond comparison, plus control ease far superior to the competition. Clearly, features of this kind again place the new A6 on the same level as the A8 praised so convincingly by the motoring press. Like the A8, therefore, the A6 is the most sporty and dynamic car in its class, benefiting in this respect also from speed-dependent servotronic featured as standard and supplementing the precise handling of the new A6 by even more sensitive steering precision.
As an alternative to conventional steel springs, adaptive air suspension with air spring elements and adaptive damping front and rear will also be available at the start of 2005. Different settings and levels of hardness available on demand via the MMI control system enable the driver with adaptive air suspension in his car to consistently choose the ideal suspension setting for all road conditions and individual styles of motoring.
Regardless of whether the customer opts for steel springs or air suspension, however, a fundamental feature of the A6 chassis always remains unchanged: its active driving configuration with precisely defined steering behaviour and superior agility. And at the same time the new Audi A6 consistently lives up to the highest standard of luxury performance in terms of vibration and suspension comfort.
Even in standard trim, the new Audi A6 comes with a level of equipment by no means usual even in the luxury class. Right from the start, even at first sight, you will appreciate and enjoy this premium standard in the choice and qualities of materials and finish, aluminium inlays and aluminium wheels, for example, coming as standard features.
A unique asset versus the competition is the Multi Media Interface "MMI basic" comprising not only a 6.5-inch monochromatic display, but also a fully integrated radio complete with a CD player and four loudspeakers. Another standard feature on all A6 models in the range is automatic high-comfort air conditioning with enhanced output and optimised noise control, which is not to be taken for granted even in this segment.
The electromechanical parking brake as well as a light and rain sensor are further standard fitments.
The range of safety equipment featured as standard in the new A6 is just as outstanding, active safety benefiting from the latest generation of ESP including brake assist and Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD).
In the event of a collision the car's occupants are effectively protected by the robust structure of the body with predefined deformation and a highly stable passenger cell. And in conjunction with the seat belts, front and side airbags as well as the sideguard head airbag system give the driver and passengers superior safety and protection.
The two full-size front airbags are activated in two stages, depending on the severity of an accident. Active front head restraints fitted as standard help to protect the occupants in a collision from behind.
The range of optional equipment available in the new Audi A6 again leaves nothing to be desired. Just one example is the choice of 15 different paintwork colours, four of which are new to Audi.
The driver of the new Audi A6 is rarely required to hold the car key in his hand the conventional way. For like on the Audi A8, Audi's optional advanced key acts as an electronic access and authorisation system: The key incorporates an electronic pulse transmitter sending a signal to a proximity sensor in the door, where the signal received is checked and verified. Following approval, the system unlocks the doors as soon as the driver or passenger pulls the door handle.
Using advanced key, the driver is also able to release the steering and ignition electronically through wireless remote control before setting out. Then all he has to do is start the engine by pressing the button on the centre console.
Numerous equipment options are available to enhance the ambience of the car: highly original leather and cloth variants as well as wood and aluminium trim provide ample freedom of choice to make every A6 a unique, one-off model tailored to its owner.
MMI can be further upgraded by a 7-inch colour display and a DVD navigation system. BOSE Surround Sound, in turn, offers the acoustic qualities of a concert hall.
Radar-based adaptive cruise control efficiently supports the driver of the new Audi A6 in keeping the right distance from the vehicle ahead. Enhancing the standard cruise control system, this sophisticated system raises driving comfort to a significantly higher level by automatically controlling the speed of the car as a function of the pre-selected distance from the vehicle ahead.
In practice this relieves the driver of constantly having to press down the accelerator and brake pedals, adaptive cruise control thus adding a lot more driving pleasure particularly on long trips on the motorway in bumper-to-bumper traffic.
Automatic high-comfort air conditioning plus makes a significant contribution to the occupants' driving pleasure, offering not only separate air distribution and temperature control for the driver and front passenger, but also indirect ventilation, centre air vents with separate temperature control, and an air humidity sensor system. Further features are the residual heat function, automatic air recirculation, and additional rear seat ventilation through the door pillars.
Steering wheels of the latest generation with either three or four spokes are available in wood or leather and may be fitted as an option with multifunction keys for operating the MMI as well as gearshift paddles.
Driving pleasure in the new A6 can be enhanced to an even higher standard by opting for adaptive air suspension or sports suspension with the body lowered by 20 millimetres. And to match this outstanding suspension, there is a choice of various alloy wheels up to 18 inches in size further refining the car's driving dynamics and sporting look.