Audi's 2020 A6 - a tech leader among midsize luxury saloons, now with an electric motor integrated into its seven-speed S tronic transmission delivering output to either two wheels or four depending on the driving requirements.
Our Car was the A6 50 TFSI e with a 2.0 TFSI petrol engine and a 105kW electric motor which can be plugged into a domestic AC 7kW wall box giving a full charge for the lithium ion battery in around two and a half hours or through an AC 2.3kW 3-pin standard socket charge in approximately seven hours.
The 2020 A6 range is available with one of two engines, a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder (248 horsepower, 273 lb-ft of torque). The V6-equipped version comes with an electrically assisted and turbocharged 3.0-litre V6 (335 hp, 369 lb-ft of torque). Both power units are paired to a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission with an electric motor is integrated which can deliver output to either two wheels or four depending on the driving situation.
Inside the A6 has a dual-touchscreen infotainment system, this features the climate controls on the lower screen while audio, phone, navigation and vehicle apps are on the upper screen, new standard equipment includes lane departure warning, heated mirrors and high-beam assist.
Using these screens can seem overwhelming on this configurable system, but the controls are intuitive and after a short time start to predict your requirements, plus they can be assigned tasks on virtual buttons - see next paragraph.
The A6 comes in three trims the basic Premium, the Premium Plus trim which includes all the equipment from the Premium trim but includes the Virtual Cockpit, Audi's futuristic configurable high-resolution instrument cluster, a Bang & Olufsen audio system, and a 10.1-inch navigation screen, among other features. The top trim is the Prestige which features a head-up display, power soft-closing doors, dual-pane glass to reduce interior noise, and LED taillights. An array of optional extras include the Driver Assistance package which adds adaptive cruise control, lane centring, traffic-sign recognition and more - and with the optional ‘Executive package’ there are ventilated front seats, four-zone climate control and a power-operated boot.
The front seats are super comfortable, the driving position allows you good access to all the relevant controls, while steering wheel adjustment is great, and Individual Contour front seats. Rear seats are roomy and provide plenty of leg room, additionally they are well proportioned to take the largest of child seats, perfect for keeping young kids safe and secure.
The boot is deep, so large boxes or items should fit fine and a low ‘lift over’ height useful when loading heavy items.
The ride is superb, small bumps are shrugged off while heavier deeper potholes don’t make their presence felt in the cabin. This car handles well, tracking is sublime, braking from 60mph to stop in just a shade over 100yds without a hint of drifting. The A6 takes long corners with ease and ‘grippy’ when negotiating tight or sharp turns making it a pleasure to drive.
Now for the Clever Tech from Audi, and there’s stacks of it. The “Hybrid” mode of the A6 uses a predictive operating strategy to ensure maximum efficiency and the highest possible proportion of electric driving.
With a choice of three drive modes: “EV” for all-electric driving, “Hybrid” for the efficient combination of both drive types, and to conserve the electrical energy available at any given time there is a ‘hold’ mode perfect for the ‘Green’ driver.
The predictive efficiency assistant is responsible for anticipatory planning at each stage of the journey and is able to call on to a large bank of information during the decision-making process, including navigation information, online traffic events, driving characteristics and data from vehicle sensors such as the camera and radar.
Then there is the myAudi app, available on iOS and Android, enables the driver to pre-set the most cost-effective home charging plans for the car, taking advantage of off-peak electricity supply periods. This smart app can even adjust the climate control via a smartphone to make sure the car is warm or cool.
The app can also look for charging points across the country with access to a sophisticated route organiser, tit can take into account things such as the battery’s real time charge, even the traffic conditions and then put them into the route planner and predict when and where optimum charging should happen on any given journey.
This clever app still has more, it can be used to access billing points as part of the e-tron charging service activating charging rather than the payment card held by subscribers to the service granting access to numerous charging points operated by a total of 18 suppliers across the UK, consolidating all costs incurred on one monthly invoice.
All this tech may appear bewildering but it’s just the contrary – it is easy to use, and in our words the Audi A6 50 TFSI e we tested “ it helps the A6 look after its passengers”.
We loved the Audi A6 50 TFSI e plug-in hybrid Saloon it is smart, clever, built with the future in mind, kind to the environment, easy to drive, packed with safety features and a great family car – Five stars from Femalefirst.
Prices from £52,790 with a choice of Sport, S line, Black Edition and Vorsprung specification options