2016 Audi A6 3.0T Review
A strong case for a best-in-class midsize luxury sedan.
Published: November 2nd, 2015
Classy, sophisticated, tasteful - we could continue with an entire thesaurus list of adjectives to describe the 2016 Audi A6, but one thing is for certain, it's refined.
With a mid-cycle refresh, Audi has taken their A6 and polished it further, creating a fourth generation luxury sedan that's turning heads. With subtle exterior design cues, powerful updates under the hood, and even better technology, the A6 is one the best luxury midsize sedans out there, if not the best-in-class.
Exterior: Subtle, yet noticeable improvements.
Subtle design changes to the exterior give the A6 a greater presence with a wider front grille, redesigned LED headlights, new bumpers, and twin trapezoidal tailpipes in back. Sharp lines and numerous chrome accents give the A6 a sporty, yet elegant outer look. The character line across the length of the body just beneath the windows gives the A6 less visual height and elongates its appearance. Designed with aluminum and hot-shaped steel bodywork components, the A6 is even lighter, making it more nimble and agile on the road.
Ours sat on 20-inch wheels with a five-arm star design that gave it a neat flair, completed with a matte titanium finish. Paired with a bright Ibis White paintjob, and the A6 is one beautiful piece of German craftsmanship.
Interior: No less than what you'd expect from the Audi badge - pleasurable and ergonomic.
A6's cabin is one of the best in the business. Especially with Nougat Brown leather and layered Walnut inlays, it's warm, welcoming and beautifully-designed. Buyers will have the addition of two new interior colors, and four new inlays to choose from compared to the previous model. Front seat passengers are treated to both heated and ventilated seats, with a nice finger-thawing heated steering wheel for added comfort. Backseat occupants will be equally satisfied with a spacious amount of leg room, heated rear seats, and separate climate controls.
The interior design layout is essentially the same for the 2016 A6, but that's okay because it was already attractive and easy-to-navigate. Audi prides itself on technology and innovation, so it's no surprise that the A6 gets outfitted with the next level of in-vehicle connectivity, with a 4G LTE connection and integrated Wi-Fi hotspot, Apple Siri Eyes Free integration, and Audi MMI navigation on an eight-inch power-retractable monitor. The Google Maps satellite overlay on the nav system is especially cool.
Plus, there's all the all the other entertainment features you'd expect like Bluetooth integration and internet radio streaming, which sounded great on our upgraded Bose sound system. The car does come packed with a lot of technology, but it isn't too overwhelming, though you do have the superfluous touch pad radio, and a very basic head-up display, but it all contributes to the luxury feel of the car.
The Driving Experience: Upgrades from under the hood.
When it comes to the redesign of this vehicle, the proof is in the pudding. Underneath the hood, the 3.0T has been enhanced to produce 333 horsepower, up 23 hp from the previous version, 325 lb-ft of torque, and a Tiptronic transmission, allowing drivers to override the automatic mode and select gears manually. A well-tuned sport suspension on the A6 keeps body roll to a minimum, delivering a smooth, nimble ride.
With Audi Drive Select, drivers can choose between Comfort, Auto, and Dynamic driving modes, the latter is the ideal choice, providing ideal stiffness, quicker gearshifts and better throttle response - making the A6 feel especially quick. After all, the A6 can go from 0 to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds - a segment best. While it's not sports-car-fast, it gives a spirited ride while remaining composed. You feel the supercharger kick in on passing maneuvers, with authoritative and smooth acceleration without any undesirable whiplash. A low suspension makes for agile handling, while surprisingly, still allowing for a ride height that allows for great visibility. The A6's start/stop fuel conservation system happens to be one of the best we've experienced. Sometimes these systems can actually be more annoying than helpful, with noticeable lag and rough noisiness, but this one is sprightly, rapidly starting back up when you hit the gas pedal with little lag time. For its power and speed, the A6 averages decent fuel economy, getting 20 mpg in the city, and 30 on the highway.
In addition to being a fun car to drive, the A6 is also a safe one, with a 2015 IIHS Top Safety Pick+ endorsement to back it when equipped with the Driver Assistance package, which present on our test car. It includes useful features like Audi active lane assist, which keeps the A6 in its lane due to driver inattentiveness but deactivates with intentional steering inputs from the driver and during lane changes, and pre-sense plus which issues a warning in the head-up display when the car senses a potential collision. Another added benefit of this safety package is the top view camera which gives a bird's eye view of the A6, in addition to letting drivers scroll through multiple front and rear views of the car.
Final Impressions: The best of the sport and luxury worlds.
As fun to drive as it is appealing to the senses, the 2016 Audi A6 is the ultimate sports sedan refined. Not many sedans give such a gratifying driving connection, but the A6 pulls this off seamlessly, in an under-the-radar type of way. It doesn't need a loud exhaust or bucket seats to signal it has power, its performance can speak for itself. At the same time, with a starting price of $57,400, the Audi A6 3.0T doesn't fail to impress upon you that it's a luxury vehicle. So, if you're torn between springing for a sporty ride or bathing in comfort, the A6 is a nice blend of both.
Specifications & Price
Engine: 3.0-liter V6
Transmission: 8-speed Tiptronic
Drivetrain Layout: Front engine
Power Output: 333 horsepower/ 325 lb-ft.
Fuel Economy (mpg): 20 city/ 30 highway
Base Price: $57,400
As Tested: $68,875 (Incl. $925 destination)
Options On Our Test Car: Prestige model with head-up display, LED headlights, warm weather package, and front seat ventilation; Sport package with sport suspension; Driver Assistance package with Audi pre sense plus, active lane assist, and top-view camera.
• For more information such as specs, prices, and photos of the 2016 Audi A6, click here: 2016 Audi A6.