2005 Audi A6 Makes North American Debut

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April 7, 2004

Audi is setting a new benchmark in the luxury performance segment. The latest generation of the Audi A6 combines superior driving dynamics and sophisticated technology with exceptional comfort and equipment.
Powerful engines with up to eight cylinders and 335 horsepower, the most advanced transmission technology, as well as quattro ® permanent all-wheel drive set the foundation of the new A6 sports sedan. Thanks to the cutting-edge suspension combined with high body rigidity, this power and performance opens up a new dimension in driving dynamics.

With its design and performance, the A6 promises to be the most progressive car in the luxury performance segment.

A new face in the business class

The lines of the new A6 combine the clear architecture typical of Audi with other core elements of the brand’s progressive design.

Already acknowledged as classic, the fundamental proportion of Audi’s sports sedan with its low-slung windows and coupe-like roofline now comes with even greater strength and energy. The contours of the shoulder line sweeping up and the movement of the dynamic line above the side sills give the entire body of the car a unique push in forward design. The distinctly curved dome on the middle of the engine compartment hood symbolizes the power and performance offered by the new Audi A6. Seen from the front, the trapezoidal design of the single-frame radiator grille reveals clearly that the A6 represents the latest generation of Audi models.

The most advanced headlight technology is equally visible behind the clear-glass headlight covers. The new A6 is the first Audi to feature optional dynamic adaptive light technology, which incorporates powerful bi-xenon lights that help you see around corners. The headlights follow the course of the road ahead as a function of steering angle and road speed, substantially improving the visibility. The driver sees upcoming bends more clearly and precisely and is able to detect possible obstacles at an earlier point in time. Obviously, this means a significant improvement in active safety.

Another brand-new feature is daytime running lights featured in conjunction with bi-xenon and active cornering lights. Consuming very little energy, the daytime running lights offer the benefit of enhanced safety and visibility with virtually no additional fuel consumption and, as a result, no increase in CO2 emissions. Unlike use of the conventional low-beam headlights during the day, this new technology does not harm the environment in the slightest.

Low-slung rear lights wrap distinctly around to the inside and characterize the rear end of the car. A chrome strip visually divides the luggage compartment lid horizontally, at the same time creating a striking union between the rear lights and the trunk. The very dynamic rear contour line provides an additional design cue at the back and marks the rear upper end of the trunk.


A quick look at the interior shows the changes in generations. The new A6 showcases a high and wide center console with controls and instruments in perfect reach accentuating the sporty architecture of the interior fully integrating the driver.

Sporty design and perfect ergonomics characterize the cockpit. A joint cover at the top connects the central instrument panel and the upper part of the center console facing slightly towards the driver to form one common element.

The round temperature and fuel gauges are located in the corner of the newly designed, teardrop-shaped surrounds, next to the large tachometer and speedometer.

The new generation of Audi steering wheels is also making its production debut in the new A6. The most outstanding visible symbol of the four-spoke steering wheel is the single-frame trapezoid centerpiece with the four Audi rings on the central airbag cap. The oval exterior geometry also serves to vary the single-frame design.

Well-organized and structured, the center console has certainly been inspired by the interior design of the new A8. An electromechanical parking brake is used on the new A6, giving the designers greater freedom in their interior ergonomics.

The Multi Media Interface (MMI) control terminal, located behind the gearshift lever, is in perfect ergonomic arrangement and places its display exactly in the driver’s line of vision, integrated beneath the top dashboard cover.

All the car’s occupants benefit from a higher standard of comfort and spaciousness inside. The wheelbase of the new Audi A6 is up by more than three inches over the car’s predecessor to 112 inches. This means extra comfort and safety as well as additional legroom for the front passengers, plus extra knee room at the rear. Shoulder room at the front has an additional inch, plus an inch at the rear. The luggage capacity on all models is 19.2 cubic feet.

Drive train

The new Audi A6 is entering the market initially with two engine choices fitted in longitudinal arrangement – both engines share a level of power and torque that is outstanding in this segment of the market:

4.2 liter V8 with 335 hp and 310 ft. lbs. torque
3.2 liter V6 FSI with 255 hp and 243 ft. lbs. torque

Both of these power units, as featured in the new Audi A6, comply with the stringent LEV 1 emission standard.

The six- and eight-cylinder engines come from Audi’s new V-configuration engine family with a 90° cylinder angle and a distance of 90 millimeters (3.54″) between the cylinders. They are both compact in design and feature a variable intake manifold for better torque at low rpm and continuous inlet camshaft control.


The powerful 4.2 liter V8 with chain drive made an outstanding debut in the Audi S4. Now this supreme power unit has been re-tuned and updated for the new Audi A6, offering powerful torque and an agile response and superior fuel economy all in one.

The new 3.2-liter six-cylinder features Audi’s FSI (Fuel Stratified Injection) technology for the first time in North America. The new FSI engine delivers a more dynamic engine with higher torque and power output, and lower fuel consumption. The main factor contributing to these improvements is how fuel is delivered. Fuel is not injected into the intake port but directly into the combustion chamber. The injector, which is supplied by a single-piston pump and common rail fuel line, is on the side of the cylinder head and controls the injection time to within thousandths of a second, at injection pressures of up to 110 bar. The engine only needs a fuel-air mixture capable of immediate ignition in the area around the spark plug. The remainder of the combustion chamber is filled with a leaner mixture of excess air. As a result, the engine can be run without the incoming mixture flow being throttled. The direct-injection engine also benefits from reduced heat losses, because the layer of air around the `cloud’ of ignitable mixture isolates the latter from the cylinder and cylinder head.

Other exciting features of the 3.2 liter V6 FSI are on-demand fuel supply, four-valve technology, a variable intake manifold and infinitely variable camshaft adjustment which gives the driver a dynamic and powerful reaction to every movement of the accelerator plus a broad useful speed range of up to 7200 revolutions per minute. All this equals muscular torque and a high standard of fuel efficiency.


The supreme fuel economy and dynamic performance offered by the new Audi A6 also results from the six-speed automatic transmissions with a wide range of gear increments.

After making its successful production debut in the previous Audi A6, multitronic™ now once again proves its special qualities in the new A6, combining the benefits of a manual gearbox with those of a geared automatic transmission. A new feature is the introduction of seven shift stages in the Tiptronic ® mode.

Benefiting from this kind of technology, shift comfort is superior to even a conventional automatic converter transmission, while the transmission’s dynamic performance and all-round economy can compare with the qualities of a manual gearbox. And whenever the driver wishes to actively intervene in the transmission process, they are able to do so in seven predefined stages by means

All engines are available with quattro permanent all-wheel drive, a typical feature of all high-performance Audi models, the 4.2 offers quattro as standard. With the power unit and drive train of the new A6 being fitted longitudinally, all quattro models come with a torsion center differential distributing engine torque in a straightforward but very effective flow of power to the front and rear axles and thus making a significant contribution to the driving dynamics and superior safety even in extreme situations so typical of quattro drive.

Driving dynamics and motoring comfort

Torsional stiffness is improved by more than 34 percent in the new Audi A6.

Qualities of this kind offer significant advantages in terms of both comfort and driving dynamics. With vibration reduced to a minimum thanks to the exceptional body stiffness, the interior is now the perfect foundation for excellent acoustics.

The supreme stiffness of the steel body is the result of consistently enhanced joining technologies plus optimized panel profiles. At the same time the improvement of vibration behavior ensured by numerous optimized details quite literally sets the basis for the harmonious but nevertheless sporty set-up of the chassis. In conjunction with the direct, extremely stable link connecting the steering column to the module sub frame, this body configuration is the basic prerequisite for the A6 sedan’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 quattro models.

The result is a standard of dynamic driving behavior beyond comparison. Like the A8, the A6 is a sporty and dynamic car, benefiting from speed-dependent Servotronic ® and supplementing the precise handling of the new A6 by even more sensitive steering precision.


The new Audi A6 comes with a level of equipment by no means ordinary even in the luxury class. Right from the start, customers will appreciate and enjoy this premium standard in the choice and qualities of materials and finish, such as aluminum or wood inlays and aluminum wheels.

The MMI with its seven-inch color display and a fully integrated radio complete with an optional Bose sound system shines above the competition. Another standard feature on all A6 models in the range is automatic climate control with enhanced output and optimized noise control, featuring indirect ventilation and B-pillar outlets, air quality, humidity, and sun angle sensors. The electromechanical parking brake and a light and rain sensor add a sense of comfort and security.

The new A6 comes with a long list of standard safety equipment. Active safety components include the latest generation of ESP including brake assist and Electronic Brake-pressure Distribution (EBD).

In the event of a collision, the car’s occupants are protected by the robust structure of the body with predefined deformation and a highly stable passenger cabin. In conjunction with the seat belts, front and side airbags as well as the Sideguard ™ head airbag system, the driver and passengers are provided with 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 airbags 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 nine exciting colors, four of which are new to Audi: Stratos Blue Metallic, Cooper Red Pearl Effect, Cambridge Green Pearl Effect, and Dakar Beige Metallic.

The driver of the new Audi A6 is rarely required to hold the car key in hand the conventional way. A new feature to North America is Audi’s optional advanced keyless entry, which acts as an electronic access and authorization 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 the keyless entry feature, the driver is also able to release the steering and ignition electronically through wireless remote control before setting out. A simple touch of the starter button on the center console starts the engine.

MMI can be further upgraded with a DVD navigation system and BOSE® Surround Sound which offers the acoustic qualities of a concert hall.

Steering wheels of the latest generation with 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.

At a glance: The new Audi A6

  • New, distinctly sporty exterior and interior design
  • Dimensions: L 193 in, W 73 in, H 57.4 mm, wheelbase 111 in (+ 3.3 in)
  • Improved spaciousness in the interior for all passengers
  • Powerful engines:

    4.2 V8 335 hp and 310 ft. lbs. torque & 3.2 V6 FSI with 255 hp and 243 ft. lbs. torque

  • Audi dynamic suspension with four-link front suspension and self-tracking trapezoidal-link rear suspension on quattro versions
  • Speed-dependent servotronic steering as standard
  • High-performance brake system with electronic brake assist
  • Electromechanical parking brake (EPB) as standard
  • New: adaptive light cornering lights with bi-xenon plus and daytime running lights (option)
  • Light and rain sensor as standard
  • Multi Media Interface (MMI) basic with color display as standard
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System
  • Advanced keyless access and authorization system (optional)
  • New generation of steering wheels: leather-covered steering wheel as standard
  • BOSE Surround Sound System, DVD navigation (optional)
  • Two-stage activation front airbags, Sideguard head airbag system, plus side airbags and active head restraints at the front as standard
  • Dual zone climate control with indirect ventilation, center air vents and an air humidity sensor system. Further features are the residual heat function, automatic air re-circulation, and additional rear seat ventilation through the door pillars.
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