Audi A6 2.4 SE - AUDI A6 Car Review

Review

Added: 16 Sep 2007
Last update:

WITH more than a score of A6 variants packed into the Audi line up - and that's just the saloon models - it's inevitable that the high profile, high powered versions steal the glory.

At the top of the tree is the 429bhp S6 with a mighty V10 powerhouse. While at the cheaper end of the market is that middle manger's favourite, the tax-friendly 2.0-litre TDI which looks the business but will squeeze around 40 miles out of a single gallon. But languishing largely unnoticed a little further up the range is a V6 treasure - the 2.4-litre SE which is not only pretty economical but has a harmonious petrol engine that boasts the sort of refinement that few diesels can match.

Priced at £25,525, it is only slightly dearer than the base two-litre petrol version yet the V6 lifts the big saloon into an altogether different class. With 177bhp to call on its is no slouch and will knock off the 62mph dash in a shade over nine seconds. Top speed is 140mph - not so far behind the albeit electronically limited 155mph maximum of the super-powerful S6. But the best bit about the 2.4 is its effortless progress matched to a smooth automatic transmission which really takes the hassle out of both motorway and city driving.

Unlike some of its Quattro brethren, the 2.4 is driven just by its front wheels. In normal road circumstances you can barely detect the difference between the all-drive and front drive systems. If anything, the front drive is a shade more responsive and possesses sharper handling thanks to carrying less weight and having less inertia. Only when the going gets slippery do you wish it was a Quattro.

Despite the large body, and the A6 is one of the biggest saloons in its sector, economy is a strong point especially if you take it at a reasonably leisurely pace. The official average figure is 29.4mpg which is just a few mpg worse than the 2.7 diesel or the 3.0-litre diesel. So unless you are a high mileage user or a company car driver where the tax comes into play, the merits of petrol could outweigh those of diesel in this case. The tank holds more than 15 gallons so the range is almost 500 miles.

Audi usually score highly in interior design and that of the A6 is no exception. With a cleanness of style and an uncluttered appearance together with the use of high quality plastics and fabrics the effect is impressive. It out-does archrivals Mercedes - a trifle messy and old-fashioned - and BMW too which tends towards being austere and bare.

Legroom front and back is more than ample and the boot can absorb no less than 546 litres of luggage, making it one of the largest in its sector.

Just as elegant as some of the more expensive A6s, the 2.4 V6 is a serious contender if you want to match refinement and luxury with reasonable economy.

FAST FACTS

Audi A6 2.4 SE 4dr

Price: £26,975

Mechanical: 177bhp, 2,393cc, 6cyl petrol engine driving front wheels via 7spd automatic gearbox

Max speed. 140mph

0-62mph: 9.2 secs

Combined mpg: 29.4

Insurance group: 15

CO2 emissions: 229g/km

BiK rating: 32%

Warranty: 3yrs/ 60 miles, 3yrs paint, 12yrs anti-rust

Words: Jonathan Smith

Keywords: AUDI, A6