Style, speed, and plenty of space for things

Produced since 1994, the S6 is Audi’s go-faster version of the A6, slotting in under the even-faster RS6 variants. Previously offered as the fourth-generation C7, Audi just unveiled the latest fifth-gen S6, following up on the fifth-gen A6 that debuted at the 2018 Geneva International Motor Show. Once again offered in a long-roof Avant wagon body style, the latest S6 comes with fresh and sporty styling, oodles of comfort in the cabin, and a new mild-hybrid diesel powertrain under the hood. Read on for everything else this performance wagon is bringing to the table (beyond the groceries, obviously).

  • 2020 Audi S6 Avant
  • Year:
    2020
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    V6
  • Transmission:
    8-speed auto
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    349
  • Torque @ RPM:
    516
  • Displacement:
    3.0 L
  • 0-60 time:
    5.1 sec.
  • Top Speed:
    155 mph
  • Price:
    € 79000
  • Price:
  • car segment:
  • size:
  • Purpose:
  • body style:
  • Overall:
    8.8/10

2019 Audi S6 Avant Exterior Styling

  • Looks sharp and futuristic
  • Darkend trim
  • 20-inch wheels as standard, 21-inchers available
  • Quad exhaust tips
  • Integrated rear spoiler
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Outside, the 2019 Audi S6 Avant brings the usual Four-Ring aesthetic update, which basically equates to a few nips and tucks added here and there. The new look falls in line with the latest C8 generational changeover, and while on balance it isn’t terribly different from anything we’ve seen from Audi in the past, the new S6 Avant definitely does look a bit sharper and slightly more futuristic than it did before.

That also includes a hearty dose of aggression that’s unique to Audi’s “S” model line, which helps the S6 standout from the standard A6.

Standard spec includes dark chrome trim and aluminum bits added from front to back, as well as purposeful aero upgrades.

2020 Audi S6 Avant
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Viewed head on, the 2019 Audi S6 definitely looks the part of a low and wide performance machine.

Front and center is Audi’s traditional Singleframe grille design. While this primary intake is definitely big, it actually looks a little smaller than the taller grille found on the outgoing S6. Under the grille is a prominent chin spoiler, while the lower corners ditch the older model’s fog lights in favor of technical air blade elements. Higher up, the horizontal headlight housings are sharper and more pointed for the 2019 model year, and come with revised daytime running light graphics. The net result is a nose that looks wider and lower than before.

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It’s a theme we see continued into the profile, where the S6 rocks a lowered ride height compared to standard A6 lineup.

The new S6 also comes with revised character lines that enhance the visual width of the front and rear fenders, under which Audi mounts standard 20-inch alloy wheels. Larger 21-inch wheels are offered as an available option. Up top, you’ll find blacked-out roof rails, while the angle of the roofline reminds us of the Porsche Panamera. The Avant’s tail section also extends outwards to accommodate extra cargo room.

2020 Audi S6 Avant Exterior
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Finally, we have the S6 Avant’s tail section, which features a rear diffuser with a dark chrome matte finish. There’s also four exhaust pipes compared to the standard twin outlets on the A6, plus an integrated roof spoiler. A single dark character line connects the taillight housings and adds further visual width.

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Compared to its chief rivals, which include the Mercedes-AMG E 43 4Matic Estate and BMW 540i xDrive M Sport Touring, we think the S6 Avant is definitely the best-looking option out there.

The sharp styling elements play well with the long, sleek body style, whereas the Merc and Bimmer look much chunkier and even slightly bloated from certain angles. We think the Audi’s dark trim pieces also work much better with the performance theme than the polished chrome of its rivals. And while the look doesn’t really change much year to year, we’re not all that bothered - this thing looks good regardless, and that’s enough to make us forget Audi’s slow styling evolution.

2020 Audi S6 Avant Exterior Specifications (in inches)
Width w/o mirrors 74.25
With w/ mirrors 83.07
Front Track 63.77
Rear Track 63.11
Length 195.03
Wheelbase 111.33

2019 Audi S6 Avant Interior Design

  • Takes layout from new A6 sedan
  • New digital screens in the dash
  • Virtual Cockpit is now standard
  • Optional flat-bottom steering wheel
  • Leather/Alcantara upholstery standard, full leather optional
2020 Audi S6 Avant Interior
- image 834645
Take a step inside, and you’ll find the 2019 Audi S6 Avant once again takes its cues from the new C8-generation A6, with a cabin layout that’s essentially identical between the two models.

Compared to the previous generation, the new-gen brings new digital gauges, dual infotainment screens in the dash, a simplified array of hard buttons on the central tunnel, and wide climate control vents along the upper portion of the dash, plus a number of geometric styling elements throughout.

All told, we definitely prefer this latest cabin style to that of the older model. We think the simplified, streamlined aesthetic plays perfectly to the S6’s luxury aspirations, and it also incorporates the sportier elements of the S line quite nicely.

Side by side with rivals from Mercedes and BMW, the S6 feels modern, yet mature.

While the huge screens, copious glossy trim, and ample ambient lighting in the AMG E 43 definitely give the Merc that extra “wow” factor, it also feels a little gimmicky next to the more elegant Audi. What’s more, the stand-up infotainment screen and button-stuffed center console in the 540i M Sport feel dated next to the twin-screen setup in the S6.

2020 Audi S6 Avant Interior
- image 834643

Moving on, the 2019 S6 Avant comes with all the usual S-line bits and pieces, including S badging throughout, a black and silver color palette, and contrasting stitching.

Standard spec includes a three-spoke multifunction steering wheel, but a sportier flat-bottom option is also offered. Lower in the cockpit, you’ll find stainless steel pedals and illuminated aluminum sill trim.

As in years past, Audi is once again offering a decent number of customization options for the S6 heading into the 2019 model year.

Standouts include a selection of leather and Alcantara upholstery as standard, or Valcona leather as an available upgrade. Color schemes include black, rotor gray, or arras red. Brushed aluminum trim is standard, while fine grain ash trim is optional.

The S6 Avant also gets a set of standard sport seats embossed with the S logo in the seat backs. More lateral support is offered with upgraded sport seats and integrated head restrains, or you can add extra comfort with multi-adjusting sitters outfitted with both ventilation and massage functions. Four-zone automatic air conditioning is standard.

2020 Audi S6 Avant
- image 834831

On the infotainment front, Audi replaced the older model’s standard analogue/digital gauge combo with its branded Virtual Cockpit system as standard. Featuring a large 12.3-inch display mounted just behind the steering wheel, the Virtual Cockpit comes with several configurations. MMI navigation is included as standard.

It’s worth mentioning that the Mercedes E-Class also offers a large 12.3-inch digital gauge display, which actually stretches across the dash to meet with a 10.25-inch screen above the center console, creating what appears to be a single cohesive display unit. While certainly striking to look at, we prefer the Audi’s segmented screen layout, which we think looks more orderly and cleaner than Merc’s display setup.

Meanwhile, BMW offers a smaller 8.8-inch Dynamic Digital Instrument Cluster as standard with the current 5 Series, but the spec will see an upgrade soon when BMW updates to the 7.0 infotainment system and Live Cockpit feature.

2020 Audi S6 Avant Interior
- image 834644

Back to the Audi, Ingolstadt has yet to provide us with a breakdown of the 2019 S6 Avant’s safety tech spec, but we expect it to include optional upgrades like automatic braking, adaptive cruise control, automatic high-beam assist, and lane-keep assist.

Finally, the wagon-bodied S6 Avant provides ample cargo capacity, with as much as 1,680 liters (59.3 cubic-feet) available with the rear seat down. That’s about on par with the BMW 5 Series’ 60 cubic-feet, but a bit under the 64 cubic-feet you get with the Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

2020 Audi S6 Avant Interior Specifications (in inches)
Front Headroom 41.53
Rear Headroom 39.33
Front Hip room 60.11
Rear Hip Room 59.09
Front Shoulder Room 57.75
Rear Shoulder Room 56.53
Boot Width 41.33
Boot Length to Rear Seats 46.29
Boot Length Seats Folded 77.87

2019 Audi S6 Avant Drivetrain And Performance

  • No more petrol power
  • Mild-hybrid 3.0-liter diesel
  • Sharper throttle response, lots of low-end torque
  • 349 horsepower
  • 0 to 60 mph in 5.1 seconds
  • 155 mph top speed
  • 36.2 mpg combined
  • Eight-speed automatic transmission
  • Quattro all-wheel drive is standard
  • Four-wheel steering optional
  • Optional carbon ceramic brake package
2020 Audi S6 Avant Drivetrain
- image 834640
One of the 2019 Audi S6 Avant’s biggest upgrades can be found under the hood, where the outgoing model’s petrol-powered 4.0-liter V-8 was replaced with a 3.0-liter V-6 diesel.

Rumored had it Audi was leaning towards a performance oil-burner for this generational changeover, and now that rumor is confirmed, as the gas-option is officially off the table.

Even more interesting is that the ‘six also comes with 48-volt electric assistance, otherwise known as a “mild-hybrid” setup. It’s a setup that’s similar to the recently released SQ5 TDI, boosting both power and efficiency without the complexity of a full hybrid system thanks to a belt alternator starter and lithium-ion battery pack under the vehicle floor.

Essentially, the system works like an “electric supercharger,” juicing the compressor with 8 kW of power for a quicker boost spool. Audi says the system fires up in less than 250 milliseconds and can spin at 70,000 rpm.

2020 Audi S6 Avant Drivetrain
- image 834637

It’s a pretty slick setup, and even though it keeps emissions and fuel efficiency high, you still get the sharp throttle response of a large-displacement engine.

In addition to the electric compressor, the S6 also gets a traditional exhaust-driven turbocharger, which by itself pumps out a heady 2.4 bar (34.8 psi) of boost.

All said and done, the new diesel-powered S6 doles out 349 horsepower. That ain’t bad for a wagon, but the truly impressive figure is the torque, which is rated 516 pound-feet, coming online at just 2,500 rpm.

Properly motivated, the 2019 S6 Avant will accelerate to 100 km/h (62.1 mph) is just 5.1 seconds. Top speed is limited at 155 mph.

Unfortunately, that 0-to-60 mph time is about half a second slower than the outgoing model, but it’s still on target for the segment. For example, the Mercedes-AMG E 43 4Matic makes 396 horsepower and 348 pound-feet of torque from a twin-turbo 3.0-liter V-6, good enough for a run to 60 mph in 4.6 seconds. Meanwhile, the BMW 540i xDrive M Sport Touring makes 335 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque thanks to a 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder, with the run to 60 mph requiring 5 seconds dead. Both models top out at an Audi-matching 155 mph.

Lined up side by side, the S6 Avant is slower than the Merc and about even with the Bimmer in terms of acceleration. However, the S6 Avant stands out for two very clear reasons - not only is it a diesel, but it’s also got mild-hybrid electric assistance, which combine to create gobs of low-end torque. Rest assured, that’s something that’s definitely noticeable on the street. This thing is sure to be a superstar when it comes to quick-passing maneuvers.

As previously mentioned, the electric compressor also helps with overall efficiency, and will even enable the car to coast for as long as 40 seconds with the internal combustion engine turned off. Audi says the S6 Avant posts a combined mpg of 36.2 mpg, which is a big jump from the outgoing model’s 30 mpg. It also bests the Merc’s 32.8 combined mpg, but falls just shy of the Bimmer’s 37.6 combined mpg.

The rest of the S6’s drivetrain includes an eight-speed tiptronic automatic transmission and quattro all-wheel drive as standard.

The setup distributes torque in a 40/60 ratio front to back, with a maximum split of either 70 percent in front or 85 percent in the rear depending on available grip levels. Standard spec includes a self-locking center differential, plus the option for a rear “sport” differential.

2020 Audi S6 Avant Exterior
- image 834648

The smaller V-6 in the engine bay means less weight over the front axle, which definitely works to improve the handling. Further agility comes with standard S sport suspension with damping control, which lowers the ride height by 20 mm (0.8 inches) compared to the standard A6’s suspension setup.

You can also get an adaptive air suspension system with adjustable dampening force, which Audi offers as a “comfort-oriented alternative.” The air setup comes with three mode settings, including one with a higher ride height for rough roads, an automatic mode that lowers the body by 10 mm (0.4 inches) when traveling over 120 km/h (74.6 mph), and a dynamic mode that keeps the body close to the ground at all times.

There’s also a wheel-selective torque control system, or torque vectoring, which will apply the brakes to the S6’s inside wheels while cornering for better grip. A sport steering setup points the wagon where desired, with a ratio that varies between 9.5:1 to 16.5:1.

Headlining the list of updates for the 2019 model year is an optional all-wheel steering system, a first for the S6.

Opt into this, and you’ll get a separate rear-axle steering system complete with a spindle drive and track rods. The system can turn the rear wheels by as much as 5 degrees in the opposite direction as the front wheels at speeds up to 60 km/h (37.3 mph), while over 60 km/h, the system will turn the rear wheels by as much 2 degrees in the same direction as the front wheels. The ultimate result is more agility at low speeds, and greater stability at high speeds.

2020 Audi S6 Avant Exterior
- image 834649

Running it all is an electronic chassis management system, which harmonizes all the electronic bits by collecting data from various sensors and calculating the appropriate settings. This extends to the all-wheel steering system and sport differential, when equipped.

Throwing the anchor are six-pot aluminum calipers, which are painted in black and come with the option for a red finish. These large calipers clamp onto equally large 400 mm (15.7-inch) discs in front and 350 mm (13.8-inch) discs in back. If you intend on doing some performance driving every so often, make sure to grab the optional carbon ceramic brakes, which come with 400 mm (15.7-inch) front discs and 370 mm (14.6-inch) rear discs that cut overall unsprung weight by 9 kg (19.8 pounds).

Finally, the standard tire sizing is set at 255/40R20. Audi also offers an optional sport tire compound if desired.

2020 Audi S6 Avant Exterior
- image 834653

As for those interested buyers residing here in the U.S., the new S6 will come with a 2.9-liter TFSI engine, which replaces the current model’s 4.0-liter V-8. It’s the same powerplant found in the RS4 Avant and RS5 Sportback, and it too comes with a 48-volt mild-hybrid system. Output is rated at 450 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque. No word on acceleration figures, but the current model’s 450-horsepower V-8 can send the U.S.-spec S6 to 60 mph in 4.4 seconds.

2020 Audi S6 Avant Drivetrain Specifications

2020 Audi S6 Avant Drivetrian Specifications
Engine 3.0-liter V-6
Transmission Eight-Speed Automatic
Driveline Quattro AWD
Fuel Diesel
Electrical 48-Volt
Drivetrian Mild-Hybrid
Horsepower 349
Torque 516 @ 2,500 RPM
0-60 MPH 5.1
Top Speed 155 MPH

2019 Audi S6 Avant Prices

2020 Audi S6 Avant Exterior
- image 834660

The 2019 Audi S6 Avant is headed to the European market in the summer of 2019. Pricing starts at 79,000 euros in Germany.

No word on whether or not Audi will offer the S6 Avant here in the U.S., but it’s unlikely, despite relatively recent tweets that Audi might finally bring the long-roof Sixer to these shores.

2019 Audi S6 Avant Competition

Mercedes-AMG E43 4Matic Estate

2017 Mercedes-AMG E43 4Matic Estate High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
- image 678659

Those of our readers living in Europe have all manner of fast, five-door wagons to play with, including this bruiser from Mercedes-AMG. Situated just below its even-faster sibling, the E 63, the E 43 arrives to the party rocking a turbocharged 3.0-liter V-6 under the hood, which doles out as much as 396 horsepower and 348 pound-feet of torque through a nine-speed automatic transmission. Grip is provided by the 4Matic all-wheel drive system, which biases torque towards the rear axle for extra lively handling. The interior is also a rather nice place to be.

Read our full review of the 2017 Mercedes-AMG E43 4Matic Estate.

BMW 540i xDrive M Sport Touring

2018 BMW 5 Series Touring High Resolution Exterior
- image 709551

The Bavarians also play in this space, offering up the 5 Series to compete against Audi’s line of 6’s and Merc’s line of E’s. Going head-to-head with the S6 Avant will be the 540i xDrive M Sport Touring, a mouthful of a name that adds all-wheel-drive grip and extra M Division speed to the mix. It looks great with its kidney grille up front and aggressive proportions in the flanks, while a decent wallop under the hood is provided by a turbocharged powerplant. It’s also got oodles of room in the interior and plenty of gadgets to boot.

Read our full review on the 2017 BMW 5 Series.

Final Thoughts

2020 Audi S6 Avant Exterior
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While a slower, diesel-powered S6 might not look all that great on paper, the devil is in the details with this one.

Let’s start with that mild-hybrid oil burner under the hood. While it’s definitely a bit slower in the sprint to 60 mph, the latest S6 Avant makes up for that with improved efficiency and, critically, a lot more torque. The net result is that driving this thing around town will feel much more rewarding than the outgoing model’s petrol-powered predecessor, with oodles of twist on demand making short work of passing maneuvers.

Indeed, while mixing speed, comfort, and practicality isn’t always an easy thing to do, the 2019 S6 Avant pulls it off, finding the right balance between all three. While there are faster, more comfortable, and more practical options out there, there are few models that mix each characteristic so well, and in such equal proportions.

  • Leave it
    • No more V-8 rumble
    • Not sold in the U.S.
    • Slower than the petrol-powered predecessor

Further Reading

2019 Audi A6 Avant Exterior
- image 776971

Read our full review on the 2019 Audi A6 Avant.

2016 - 2018 Audi A6 High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
- image 567003

Read our full review on the 2018 Audi A6 sedan.

2016 Audi S6 High Resolution Exterior
- image 567034

Read our full review on the 2016 Audi S6.

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Read more Audi news.

Sportiness meets efficiency – the new Audi S6 and S7 models make their entrance with a torquey V6 TDI engine, offering customers in Europe the ideal performance models for the long haul. For the first time, Audi has combined an electric powered compressor with a 48-volt primary electrical system. The S sport suspension with damping control, dynamic all-wheel steering and the ceramic brake system tick all the boxes for dynamic cornering and deceleration. The striking design with the sophisticated looks of an S model lends these sporty full-size models particular presence.

Audi S6 Sedan: Combined fuel consumption in l/100 km: 6.3 – 6.2(37.3 – 37.9 US mpg)*; Combined CO2 emissions in g/km: 165 – 164 (265.5 – 263.9 g/mi)*; Audi S6 Avant: Combined fuel consumption in l/100 km: 6.5(36.2 US mpg); Combined CO2 emissions in g/km: 171 (275.2 g/mi); Audi S7 Sportback: Combined fuel consumption in l/100 km: 6.5(36.2 US mpg); Combined CO2 emissions in g/km: 170 (273.6 g/mi)

* Fuel consumption and CO2 emission figures given in ranges depend on the tires/wheels used as well as the selected equipment

“Torque kick”: electric powered compressor and 700 Nm of torque
The huge torque peaking at 700 newton-meters (516.3 lb-ft) constantly available on demand to the driver across an engine speed range of 2,500 to 3,100 rpm is the ideal basis for performance-minded customers in Europe. The S TDI models offer high driving dynamics and efficiency – an especially attractive combination for long-distance driving. With the S6 and S7 TDI models Audi systematically takes the successful drive concept of the SQ7 TDI (combined fuel consumption 7.6 – 7.2 l/100 km (30.9 - 32.7 US mpg)*; combined CO2 emissions 199 – 189 g/km (320.3 - 304.2 g/mi)* to the next level. For the first time, Audi’s engineers have paired an electric powered compressor with a 48-volt primary electrical system.

This takes the three-liter V6 TDI’s total power output to 257 kW (349 hp). Power transmission is handled by the eight-speed tiptronic automatic transmission, which always operates in tandem with quattro permanent all-wheel drive.

Spontaneous helper: the electric powered compressor
The electric powered compressor delivers high starting performance. As well as very vigorous acceleration, the electric supercharger provides a repeatable boost function when accelerating. This means the EPC pre-empts any hint of turbo lag, and enables high responsiveness and powerful acceleration in every driving situation.

The EPC’s response time is under 250 milliseconds, its peak output is seven kilowatts and its maximum speed is 70,000 rpm. The electric turbocharger’s boost function extends all the way to an engine speed of 1,650 rpm. Thanks to dual supercharging, in other words the EPC working in tandem with the exhaust turbocharger, the full-size S models achieve a constant torque of 700 newton-meters (516.3 lb-ft) across an engine speed range of 2,500 to 3,100 rpm. The EPC supports the TDI’s turbocharger whenever there is insufficient energy in the exhaust gas for a spontaneous torque buildup – when starting off or accelerating at low load, from a low engine speed.

The EPC, which visually resembles a conventional turbocharger, is mounted directly on the engine in the intake air path behind the intercooler. In most operating statuses it is circumvented by a bypass. However if the load demanded by the accelerator is high and the energy available on the turbine side is low, the bypass valve closes, guiding the intake air to the EPC. The compressed air flows directly into the combustion chamber.

The result: spontaneous response and impressive pulling power when accelerating, overtaking and for changes of load. That places the entire power of the 3.0 TDI engine immediately at the driver’s disposal whenever they require it. In everyday driving, the technology avoids frequent downshifts, keeps the engine speed level low and suppresses the turbo lag to which a conventional exhaust turbocharger is susceptible.

The EPC paves the way for an impressive starting performance. The V6-TDI complete with EPC propels the new S6 Sedan from 0 to 100 km/h (62.1 mph) in 5.0 seconds, with the S6 Avant and S7 Sportback taking a tenth of a second longer over the standard sprint. The top speed is electronically limited to 250 km/h (155.3 mph).

“Clean power” – coasting for up to 40 seconds: the 48-volt mild-hybrid system
While the EPC boosts the performance, the mild-hybrid system (MHEV) helps to improve fuel efficiency. The 48-volt MHEV system comprises a belt alternator starter (BAS) and a lithium‑ion battery with a capacity of 10 Ah housed in the vehicle floor beneath the luggage compartment. The BAS is connected to the crankshaft. During deceleration it can recover up to 8 kW of power, which it then stores in the lithium-ion battery. When the driver accelerates again, the BAS reacts instantly by restarting the engine.
MHEV technology allows for start/stop operation from a speed as low as 22 km/h (13.7 mph). Thanks in part to the integration of the mild-hybrid system and the vehicle sensors, the S models realize a fuel saving of up to 0.4 liters in real driving conditions and can coast for up to 40 seconds with the combustion engine deactivated.

On that basis, the S TDI models combine impressive driving dynamics with high efficiency, low fuel consumption and low emissions. All S TDI models have homologation to the Euro 6d temp emission standard. The WLTP values correlate to an NEDC fuel consumption for the Audi S6 sedan of 6.3 or rather 6.2 liters of diesel per 100 kilometers (37.3 or 37.9 US mpg) and CO2 emissions of 165 or rather 164 grams per kilometer(265.5 – 263.9 g/mi), depending on the tires/wheels used. The figures for the S6 Avant are 6.5 liters per 100 kilometers (36.2 US mpg) and 171 g/km (275.2 g/mi), and 6.5 liters/100 km (36.2 US mpg) and 170 g/km (273.6 g/mi) for the S7 Sportback.

Concentrated high tech: the engine
The 3.0 TDI is notable for its power delivery and high efficiency. Its displacement of 2,967 cm3 develops 257 kW (349 hp) of power. Its specific output is 117.9 hp per liter of engine capacity, and its specific torque is 235.9 Nm (174.0 lb-ft) per liter.

The V6 TDI weighs only around 190 kilograms (418.9 lb) and has concentrated high tech to offer in every department. Its common rail system injects fuel at a pressure of up to 2,500 bar. Crankshaft, pistons, connecting rods and oil management meet high-performance requirements, and sophisticated measures have been taken to reduce friction in the crankshaft and camshaft drive. The cooling circuits of the crankcase and cylinder heads are kept separate so that the engine oil warms up rapidly from a cold start – the heads have dual-section water jackets. The coolant flow is directed to the oil cooler, the EPC, the BAS and the compressor case of the turbocharger as needed.

The exhaust turbocharger, with a turbine wheel measuring 50 millimeters (2.0 in) in diameter, generates a relative boost pressure of up to 2.4 bar. Its variable turbine geometry (VTG) is optimized for low-loss flow. The external low-pressure exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) only draws off the exhaust gas after the particulate filter so that the full mass flow can power the supercharger, significantly increasing its effectiveness. Operation of 3.0 TDI is ultra-refined.

Dynamic cornering and high agility: Dynamic all-wheel steering makes its entrance in a S model
As on every S model from Audi, quattro permanent all-wheel drive comes as standard. In normal driving conditions, its self-locking center differential distributes torque between the front and rear axle in a 40:60 ratio. If one wheel encounters slip, most of the drive torque goes to the axle with the better traction. In the extreme, 70 percent can flow to the front wheels and 85 percent to the rear wheels. For sports driving, wheel-selective torque control enhances sporty handling: It brakes the two wheels with reduced load on the inside of a bend slightly before they lose grip.

The standard-fit progressive steering already comes with sports ratios in its basic configuration; the greater the steering lock, the more direct the steering is. Its S-specific electro-mechanical servo assistance filters out disagreeable bumps but communicates useful information to the driver.

Compared with their predecessor models, the new large S models offer even better transverse dynamics. On request, Audi can supply dynamic all-wheel steering – this combines dynamic steering with a variable ratio of 9.5:1 and 16.5:1 at the front axle with separate rear-axle steering that is operated by spindle drive and track rods. At speeds up to 60 km/h (37.3 mph), the rear wheels turn as much as five degrees in the opposite direction to the front wheels. This reduces the turning circle by up to 1.1 meter (3.3 ft). At medium and high speeds above 60 km/h (37.3 mph), they are turned by as much as two degrees in the same direction as the front wheels. This makes the S models much more maneuverable and agile at low speeds, and provides more directional stability at high speeds and when changing lanes.

The S sport suspension developed specially for the new S models comes with damping control as standard, highlighting these vehicles’ sporty character. It lowers the body of the S6 by 20 millimeters (0.8 in), and by 10 millimeters (0.4 in) in the case of the S7. This gives both S models the same low ride height. Adaptive air suspension – the air suspension version with adjustable damping – makes its first appearance on S models as an explicitly comfort-oriented alternative. It can be set to three modes and includes a “lift” position for poor roads and automatic leveling. In the “auto” mode the body is lowered by a further 10 millimeters (0.4 in) at speeds of 120 km/h (74.6 mph) upwards, and in the “dynamic” mode the vehicle remains always at this low ride height.

For even sportier road behavior, quattro drive can be supplemented with the sport differential on the rear axle. On bends taken dynamically, the sport differential veritably pushes the car into the bend, producing a high level of agility. The driver can adapt the sport differential’s control strategy via Audi drive select. The sporty road behavior is also aided by the five-link-design axles, which are made largely from aluminum. Two subframes connect the links with the vehicle body – the elastokinematics are firmly tuned.

All chassis components are controlled by the electronic chassis platform (ECP). It coordinates the shock absorbers’ action at intervals of milliseconds. The ECP collects comprehensive information about the movement of the car and the data from the chassis control systems involved. From these, it calculates and precisely coordinates the optimal function of these components in an integrated handling controller. Drivers of the new S models experience this progress in the form of precise handling and high transverse dynamics. As well as the dampers, the EPC controls the dynamic all-wheel steering and sport differential. The driver can configure the effect of these modules in the Audi drive select dynamic handling system. It comes with an S-specific setup and offers the diverse modes “comfort”, “auto”, “dynamic”, “efficiency” and “individual.”
Strong support: the optional ceramic brake system
The six-piston brakes on the new S models are big on performance. Their calipers are made from aluminum, painted black (or optionally red) and adorned with S logos. At the front, six pistons on each wheel grip steel brake discs measuring 400 millimeters (15.7 in) in diameter; the rear discs measure 350 millimeters (13.8 in) across. As an option, Audi can fit a six-piston ceramic brake system made from light, abrasion-resistant carbon fiber ceramic with 400 millimeter (15.7 in) discs at the front and 370 mm (14.6 in) discs at the rear. The complete ceramic brake system weighs nine kilograms (19.8 lb) less than its steel counterpart, so it significantly reduces unsprung masses with the effect of further enhancing driving dynamics, especially when cornering. Electronic Stabilization Control ESC provides even more precise control than in the previous model. The driver can switch it to a Sport mode or shut it down completely.

The new Audi S6 Sedan, S6 Avant and S7 Sportback are fitted with 20-inch wheels with 255/40 tires as standard; 21-inch versions are optionally available. Torus absorbers – foam layers bonded into the tires – eliminate annoying droning frequencies so that these tires provide high acoustic comfort despite their size. In conjunction with the wheel range available from Audi Sport GmbH, 20-inch Performance tires can be ordered for even better grip and handling characteristics.

Presence: the design of the S models
The S models are characterized by their striking, distinctive design and sophistication – outside and inside alike. The new Audi design language further emphasizes their even more sporty look. A dynamically styled front trim, wide sills and a wide rear diffuser with four tailpipe trims infuse the S models with on-road presence. Distinctive S trim elements in dark chrome and aluminum on the radiator grille lamellas, the front blade, the side air inlet, the exterior mirrors and the rear diffuser proclaim their sporty characteristics at a glance.

On the S6, the horizontal splitter in aluminum look creates an enormous feeling of width at the front. It links the two air inlets and ends with the two winglets at the air ducts. At the rear, the S6 features an integrated spoiler that visually extends the trunk lid, subtly emphasizing its sportiness. Aluminum applications in the diffuser link the four S-specific tailpipe trims. These also underline the width of the vehicle.

On the S7, the wide, low Singleframe grille features lamellas in aluminum standard and a corpus in dark chrome matt. The air inlets are enlarged, with very bold contours, and their honeycomb-structure inserts come in titanium black. The blade running through them is in a gleaming aluminum look, as are the exterior mirror housings in aluminum. Other features that distinguish the four-door coupé from the S6 models are the funnels in the air inlets and the angular trim strips on the side sills.

Side-on, the sporty appearance of all three cars is enhanced by the large wheels, which are typical features of the S models. A diffuser insert in dark chrome matt adds the finishing touch to the lower rear end. The four tailpipe trims are in gleaming chrome.

“Designer loft”: interior design with sporty-sophisticated aesthetics
Inside, the typical S model look awaits the driver: black color schemes, sophisticatedly sporty inlays, color-contrasting stitching as well as model-specific equipment details that ramp up the sporty driving experience even further.

The seats range, too, underlines the sporty overall impression. As well as the sport seats with embossed S logo, customers who want an overtly sporty style can choose highly contoured S sport seats with integrated head restraints, embossed S logo and rhombus pattern. For out-and-out comfort, Audi offers multi-adjustable customized contour seats optionally with ventilation and massage. The seat upholstery, always with contrasting stitching, is available in a combination of leather and Alcantara or in the Valcona top-end leather grade. Customers have a choice of the colors black, rotor gray and arras red. A variety of leather packages are available for customizing the interior further. Instead of the standard inlays in brushed aluminum, fine grain ash is available as an option. Other S-specific equipment details include a dedicated graphic layout of the standard-fit Audi virtual cockpit with rev counter flashed up centrally. Another option is a steering wheel with flat-bottomed rim. The footrest and pedal caps are in stainless steel, and when the driver climbs in they are greeted by illuminated aluminum sill trims with S logo.

Perfectly equipped for long distances: the comfort equipment
With the S6 Sedan, S6 Avant and S7 Sportback, Audi offers a sporty full-size model for every purpose: the classic Sedan, the practical Avant or the four-door Coupé. All models come with comprehensive comfort, connectivity and driver assistance equipment. As such, they expertly blend sportiness with long-distance capability.

Compared to the product line’s A models, the S models come with an extended range of standard equipment: This includes 20-inch rims in an S-specific wheel design, or MMI navigation plus including Audi virtual cockpit with 12.3-inch display. As a standard feature there are also Alcantara sport seats in the S6 and super sport seats in the S7. Four-zone automatic air conditioning completes the standard specification.

The new Audi S models are excellent cars for long-distance driving – among other reasons thanks to their rigid body structure which largely suppresses noise interference, their advanced aerodynamics and aeroacoustics, as well as their spacious interiors and luggage compartments. Depending on body version, the latter have a capacity of 530 liters (18.7 cu ft) (S6), up to 1,390 liters (49.1 cu ft) (S7 Sportback) and up to 1,680 liters (59.3 cu ft) (S6 Avant).

The new large S models will be making their debut in European markets in summer 2019. The starting prices in Germany are: EUR 76,500 for the S6 Sedan, EUR 79,000 for the S6 Avant and EUR 82,750 for the S7 Sportback.

For the United States, Asia and Middle East: the S6 and S7 models with 2.9 TFSI
In overseas markets – to reflect local customer preferences and driving profiles – the S6 and S7 will be available as the 2.9 TFSI with an output of 450 hp and 600 Nm (442.5 lb-ft) of torque. Like the TDI models, the V6 gasoline version will be equipped with both the EPC and the 48-volt MHEV system, for more performance and efficiency.

The equipment, data and prices stated here refer to the model range offered for sale in Germany. Subject to change without notice; errors and omissions excepted.

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