Audi UK has opened its order books for the new A6, which goes on sale in April.
The seventh generation of its large executive express is destined to bring lots of new customers, says brand director Jeremy Hicks. Audi forecasts 30% of volume to be fresh business and the segment dominating BMW 5 Series is squarely in its sights.
Hicks believes new A6 is such a strong proposition that it has an opportunity to grow annual volume to 15,000 from the outgoing model’s 10,000 units. That’s on a par with the 5 Series volume last year.
However, he insists A6 will not be “forced” at the expense of margins and residuals.
New A6 certainly is a step forward. Improvements have been made in its efficiency, performance and dynamism. It’s a car that has been designed with the practical, conservative, tax-driven fleet market in mind.
A four-cylinder 2.0-litre 175bhp TDI, expected to make up 75% of UK demand, offers 129g/km CO2 emissions (band D VED) and 57.6mph combined economy while still delivering the respectable performance of an 8.7 second 0-62mph sprint and 142mph top speed. Such figures will ensure it’s attractive to company car users while still satisfies their running-cost-conscious fleet managers.
The launch range is completed by three V6 engines – two 3.0-litre TDI versions, with 201bhp or 242bhp, plus a 297bhp 3.0-litre TFSI petrol which will sell in tiny numbers. The highest powered diesel and petrol come with Quattro four-wheel drive.
To help control emissions, all derivatives have start-stop systems. Eventually, Audi will add a 2.0-litre petrol-electric hybrid, which will promise 242bhp and up to 45.6mpg economy while allowing drivers to use full electric mode in urban environments.
Trim choices are kept to two – SE and S Line. Standard equipment includes leather trim, alloys, MMI control interface, retractable 6.5in screen, sat-nav, Bluetooth, front and rear parking sensors. S Line adds xenon headlamps, styling treatments, sports suspension, front sports seats and better grade leather and alloys.
Pricing the range from £30,145 makes the A6 accessible and competitive with its segment rivals. It also gives Audi dealers a chance to encourage customers to up-spec the car with a plethora of margin-enhancing high-tech features.
A long list of options include up- grading to 8in MMI touch, wi-fi hotspot, head-up display, upgraded B&O sound system, adaptive air suspension, massaging seats and high-tech auto-adapting LED headlights.
This A6 is quiet, efficient, elegant and incredibly well built. Audi dealers have never been better positioned to tempt business leaders out from their current executive saloon.
Rivals: BMW 5 Series, Jaguar XF, Mercedes-Benz E-Class
The all-new Audi A6 is packed with technology, but it's the executive car's refinement and build quality that really impress.
This A6 is the lightest and most aerodynamically efficient car in its class, as well as the most economical. Thanks to class-leading residual values, its cost as a company car via monthly contract hire should be even lower than the BMW's.