By on August 10, 2009

The process of writing a car review often feels like creating a “Mad Lib.” TTAC readers old enough to have taken a long road trip in the pre-GameBoy era may remember Mad Libs; they are little booklets with blanks for nouns, verbs, proper names and so on. One person comes up with the nouns and verbs, another person writes them into the blanks, and hilarity ensues. Car and Driver appears to be almost entirely written by Mad Lib nowadays, but those oh-so-seductive English big-format car rags aren’t above doing a little fill-in-the-blank action themselves.

One of the most common English tropes is the “(proper noun) package (verb)s this car.” Eager to demonstrate their Princess-and-the-pea powers of discrimination, EVO or CAR will solemnly swear that, although the BMW 514d xDrive six-speed estate wagon with M Package is an unspeakably horrible car, the addition of the Dynamic Badge Coloring option group “completely transforms the on-road experience.” A variation on the theme: the recommendation of a Byzantine equipment choice, with the solemn assurance that only this particular example fails to offend the reviewer’s selective palate. “The Cayman is only truly enjoyed as a 2.7 litre non-PASM car with sport springs, 18″ wheels, adaptive seats, embossed floormats, and short-throw shifter.”

With this in mind, then, I’m almost embarrassed to explain why I’m only going to assign three stars to the Audi A6 3.0T Quattro. Car and Driver, Mad-Libbing their way through another low-speed Hocking Hills crawl retold to readers as an impossible series of derring-do accomplishments, gave this Audi the top spot above the 535i, Jag XF, Infiniti M45, and Mercedes-Benz E350. It wasn’t this A6 3.0T, however. C/D’s test car had the “Prestige” equipment level, Sport package, and rang the register to the tune of $59K. Ours was a “Premium Plus” with standard suspension, more than six grand cheaper.

What do you get with “Premium Plus”? Well, you get a button on the console that says “Navigation.” Press it, and you’ll be told that “Navigation system is not installed.” Hmm. The screen between the tach and speedometer, which displays a full selection of colorful information in the “Prestige,” is recast as a Space Invaders-style monochrome readout more fitting to a base-model Rabbit. There’s no backup camera, no high-end sound system, and the car is started with the turn of a switchblade key. A Ford Taurus Limited is considerably better-equipped, and it’s twenty grand cheaper.

Some of that price difference is eloquently explained in the driving experience. I ran the car around Nelson Ledges Road Course for a day. I was well pleased at the Audi A6 3.0T Quattro’s absolutely trustworthy handling, even on the all-season tires fitted to our tester. It’s possible to do some very stupid things, like trail-braking the “Kink” at 110 mph to point the big trapezoid grille at the inside curb, without upsetting the Audi’s fundamental nose-heavy composure. The brakes are acceptable. Even if they aren’t quite up to the challenge of repeatedly stopping the car from triple-digit speeds, they’re better than what you’d find on the equivalent Bimmer.

The supercharged V6, denoted by the “3.0T” badge on the trunk and the nifty little faux-carbon-fiber “Supercharged” insignia on each fender, is merely okay. On the road, it feels characterless. The powerplant never quite as strong as Audi’s rambunctious direct-injection V8, which it’s meant to replace. Over the course of ten laps of Nelson Ledges, heat-soak makes its presence known. Each successive exit onto the front straight feels softer. If you’re in the market for an A6, or for the S5 coupe, do yourself a favor. Get the V8 while you still can. It’s infinitely superior to this blown six, in sound, power, feel and feedback.

Alternately, you might consider saving up another ten grand past the price of an A6 4.2 and picking up a base A8. The difference between the A6 and A8 isn’t readily apparent on paper, so I’ll try to explain it here. The A6 is a very good “regular car,” while the A8 is a German D-class sedan. There is an extra layer of liquid-feeling insulation in every one of the A8’s controls, from the steering wheel to the shifter.

The A6 is shaken by bumps which fail to trouble the larger car. The A6 is quiet; the A8 is relaxing. The A6 tracks down the freeway very well, but the A8 feels as if it could follow the dotted-white line by itself. Open and close the door on both cars, and you will know immediately which one you prefer.

To make the A6 the victor of their mid-size sedan test, C/D had to ratchet-up the “Gotta Have It” score. It’s ironic. The Audi mid-sizer fails to exude any sense of “Gotta Have It” whatsoever. It’s a pleasant, handsome, somewhat anodyne automobile, nearly completely devoid of passion. With a V8 and the Prestige equipment, it has a powerful sort of techno-presence. As a mid-liner V6, let’s just say that “the (noun) fails to stir the (noun).”

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72 Comments on “Review: 2009 Audi A6 3.0T Quattro...”


  • avatar
    paulie

    Ouch.

  • avatar

    The last time I test drove an A6, circa 2006, it was considerably noisier than other cars in the glass. Espcially road noise. Have they fixed that?

    On the other hand, the extra ambient noise plus perhaps the best-sounding V8 in the segment gave the car a bit more character than some other premium midsize sedans. Sounds like they’ve “fixed” both of these.

    As noted in the review the interior is certainly much nicer in an A8. Both cars feel nose-heavy to me, though.

    Among the current generation A6s, TrueDelta only has a partial result for the 2006. Results for this and other recent VWs and Audis suggest that VAG might have turned a corner 2-3 years ago. We’ll have more conclusive result as participation in the survey grows.

    http://www.truedelta.com/reliability.php

  • avatar
    Jeff Waingrow

    Turns out, this guy Jack’s some hell of a reviewer. I think I sold him way short in the past, thinking he was just a juvenile speed demon. Here, he writes with clarity and avoids resort to cliches and limp rhetorical crutches. Boy, I’m impressed. And I think I now have quite a good picture of the A-6 too.

  • avatar
    drifter

    $60k grand for a pimped up Passat? Taurus SHOW will walk all over it. A8 seems like the ultimate poser mobile.

  • avatar
    SherbornSean

    Michael,
    Funny you should note that the A6 is noisy. I got into my wife’s ’05 Saturday night, and thought the same thing. And I’m coming from a 6 year old Accord and a 10 year old Caravan.

    As far as reliability, maybe Audi got it together 2-3 years ago, but the ’05 has electronic “issues” every couple of months. But it is a beautiful car.

    Thanks for a great review, Jack. On a side note, I hate the Audi naming convention lately. Firstly, the model number should be the same as the engine size. Don’t sell me a “3.2″ with a 3.1 liter engine. And secondly, if it’s supercharged, call it an “S”, not a “T”, because the dealers aren’t smart enough to know the difference and will try to sell it as a turbo.

  • avatar
    BEAT

    NOISY.

    $60,000 for that price I rather buy 1 Ralliart Lancer and 1Honda Hybrid car my daily driver.

    and the rest of the money to buy some shirts and jeans take my family to dinner for a month without listening to an annoying sound while driving.

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    I love my Audi. Would I spend 60 grand to get the new A6 3.0T when my 2004 A6 S-Line is just as fast, looks better (my opinion) and only cost me 23 grand with 65,000km on the odometer? Nope. I’ll stick with my bi-turbo C5. Would consider an A3 S-Line though…or the A8 if I could afford it.

  • avatar
    NickR

    What do you get with “Premium Plus”?

    Crackers?

    Judging from an admittedly small sample size (my bosses A4) the trick to finding happiness with an Audi is to a) get your employer to pay for it and b) get the version with the absolute fewest number of electronic gadgets possible.

    I don’t know what it is with German cars these days, but they seem to be becoming the 21st century equivalent of the British car. Not that the British are willing to relinquish it without a fight.

  • avatar
    noreserve

    I had an A6 3.2 base car as a loaner last year when my A8 (04 CPO – I’m no baller) was in the shop (imagine that). I was not impressed with the A6. I had to check the tire pressure to verify that they weren’t overinflated, as the ride was that harsh. I wasn’t unfairly comparing it to my A8 – that would be unfair, even though the used A8 was significantly less expensive than the new $50K “base” A6. I was comparing it more to my 08 Accord V6 sedan. The Accord rides and accelerates better than that embarrassing 3.2.

    The A6 didn’t have nav, backup camera, parking sensors, premium audio – just like you state. Mine had the misfortune of an anemic 3.2 V6 and CVT that yours would easily outclass. If you came away that unimpressed from their spanking new 3.0T offering, they’re in trouble. And why the stupid “T” when it’s not a turbo?

    Too pricey and not luxurious or well-equipped enough was my overall impression. How many people want to pay that kind of money for that kind of ride and lack of bells and whistles? I agree with the A8 recommendation. Skip the A6 and go with a loaded CPO A8 (06+ when reliability of all Audis seems to greatly improve).

    And drifter, if you want “ultimate poser mobile, it’s surely not the understated A8. An S-Class or 7-series are positively garish in comparison.

  • avatar

    I’ll never understand what people have for/against Audi’s.

    Everyone on these sites claims the Audi A8L has a better interior than my S550 – which I think is bullshit, but then, the Benzes and BMW’s get ranked much higher than their Audi counterparts.

    the Lexus models get ranked higher than their Audi counterparts.

    I guess it takes more than a set of LED running lamps to make a good car.

  • avatar
    BEAT

    10 wrong things about the Audi Old and New.

    1. Oil Sludge
    2. Electrical problems
    3. Heavy
    4. Wanna be fast but it is not
    5. No one below 40 really buys them including me.
    if you see a young man driving an Audi it must be his father’s car.
    6. LED lights is all it got to make your head turn.
    7.Noisy engines
    8.Expensive to fix and expensive to buy
    9.No throttle response very sluggish
    10 It used to be father of all Rally Car but what on earth happened.

    If you have an Audi did you fixed your on 16,000 – 32,000 – 45,000 miles etc etc
    Cam seal problem, Overhead oil gasket seal problem, steering wheel problems,brake problems. I think the car was made in China with German parts.

    tsk tsk tsk!

  • avatar
    carguy

    Nice review Jack. I felt much the same way about the A4. Sure footed but not crisp handling, a somewhat disappointing engine and the general feeling that the whole experience never quite justified the price tag.

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    @BEAT

    I would have to disagree. I’m under 40, own a 2004 A6 S-Line. It hits 100km/h in 6.3 seconds (plenty fast) and have never had any issues with it aside from a lose front seat, which was fixed under the Audi Certified warranty that came with it. Being Audi certified it came with a complete service history. The only thing that went wrong with it before I bought it was a flat tire.

    My father has a 2000 A6 2.7T. He has put about 120,000km on it and the only thing that has ever gone wrong with it is the battery in his remote key died and had to be replaced. The guy, honestly, could buy any car he wants. He buys my mother a brand new convertable every two years. Right now she has a BMW. He REFUSES to sell the 2000 A6. He loves it.

    A co-worker of mine has owned 5 Audi’s. He never had any major problems with them either.

  • avatar
    John R

    The “Gotta Have It” score is a crock of [explicative].

  • avatar
    Viceroy_Fizzlebottom

    For this price you would be better off with a slightly used S6

  • avatar
    Brock_Landers

    I was really hoping that the new 3.0 TFSI would be serious competitor to BMW’s N54 engine. I haven’t driven it, but this review certainly doesn’t point that way. Even the old V8 got its behind kicked by the N54 in S5 vs 335i comparisons. Seems that this engine in S4/S5 will have no chance against the twinturbo bimmer.

  • avatar
    johnthacker

    Seems that this engine in S4/S5 will have no chance against the twinturbo bimmer.

    Except it does seem to be winning magazine comparisons against the 335i, such as that one in German, and this one from Australia.

    It certainly isn’t going to sound as nice as the V8. It may not feel as fast, either, as Jack noted. But when it comes to actual performance numbers or on the track, it actually is faster than the 4.2L V8 and than the 335i. (More power integrating under the curve, peak is slightly lower.) Perhaps it’s continuing the Audi tradition of being stealth?

    One the plus side, the 3L supercharged V6 engine is five thousand cheaper than the V8 on models with both, and gets considerably better mileage, enough to avoid the gas guzzler tax, help Audi avoid CAFE taxes, etc.

    But if you don’t like the way that it drives, you don’t like the way it drives.

  • avatar
    BEAT

    You said No Major problems. That’s what I meant but you still have issues for a car worth $60,000.

    especially if a commuters drives 60 miles a day to work. They need a reliable car.
    that’s why people buy expensive cars to avoid small issues.

    One good car manufacturer that can prove that to Audi is the Toyota (Corolla).
    Audi shouldn’t be getting those issues in a car of that quality and reputation but unfortunately Audi have issues.

  • avatar
    Scott

    Any sufficiently complicated mechanical device is prone to small operational or maintenance issues. A five-year-old car has suffered one small non-critical problem, that was quickly repaired with no cost, and I’d guess minimal disruption, to the owner.

    Please point me to the car manufacturer whose autos have absolutely no problems, major or minor, for the first five years. Thanks.

  • avatar
    Brock_Landers

    Well if you read those tests, in direct comparisons of the engines Audi doesn’t seem to win anything. I don’t know what black magic BMW used to create the N54, but it gets better gas milegae than 3.0TFSI, has broader torque curve – Audi 420Nm 2500-4850rpm, BMW 400nm 1300-5000rpm, Audi’s redline is 6500rpm, BMW is rev-happy to 7000rpm etc.

    Anyway this gen A6 has been in production for many years, in few totally new genereation should be expected? So 3 stars is a nice score to get in 5 star scale.

  • avatar
    Power6

    10 wrong things about the Audi Old and New.

    I don’t agree with all of your list, but I think the appeal of Audi has faded over the years. The high points of an Audi used to be the build quality and the AWD system. But these days every car has optional AWD and German cars aren’t built as well and everything else is built much better.

    I grew up with Audis in the family. With all the shortcomings my family’s ’89 80 Quattro was a great machine. The 325i BMW was faster and so was the Maxima SE. But there was still a charm to the slow and soft Audi with its Torsen-center/locking-rear diffs, superior comfort, and heated everything. It had such a solid feel, supreme confidence on the highway or a rutty dirt road and everything in between. The chassis was so well built and protected from the elements, as long as you could afford to fix the inevitible broken power windows, worn out bushings, bad synchros etc. you could run the car forever.

    A 20v turbo-5 S4 was like a dream machine to me. Now everyone else has caught up and the Germans don’t build ‘em as expensively as they used to. Still love the sound of that S4 V8 though.

    No one below 40 really buys them including me.

    I see a lot of kids with the older turbo A4s, many times they appear a little hopped up, seem to be pretty popular.

    Audi still has great interiors. My mom switched to BMW with her last car (325ix) and the interior is all black and cheap plastic. The AWD system is all open diffs too(I think the newest x-drive is more sophisticated), but these days you have traction control systems replacing trick diffs. My new WRX gets VDC in place of the old rear LSD.

  • avatar
    wsn

    # Scott :
    August 10th, 2009 at 12:30 pm

    Any sufficiently complicated mechanical device is prone to small operational or maintenance issues. A five-year-old car has suffered one small non-critical problem, that was quickly repaired with no cost, and I’d guess minimal disruption, to the owner.

    Please point me to the car manufacturer whose autos have absolutely no problems, major or minor, for the first five years. Thanks.

    ———————————————-

    Your argument is flawed. Of course, no car is perfect. But that doesn’t mean buyer shouldn’t expect relatively better cars.

    If a $60k Audi A6 has 200% more problems (typical, according to JDP or CR) than a cheaper Lexus GS or Infinity M, then there is something wrong with Audi. Their production process simply sucks.

  • avatar
    BEAT

    Power6 I read from your previous posting that you almost drove every single car out there for the past 15 years but you never drove the one that Americans really like Honda and Toyota.

    These cars are very cheap to buy and very reliable and durable. I had 1993 Honda Civic it started to made problems on 145,000 miles
    The Audi starts it’s problems after you drive them out of the dealer’s lot that is not worth $60,000

    SEARCH The Net and count how many Audi complaint about their beloved Audi cars.

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    @BEAT

    Yes, I said no major problems. What I did mean is NO PROBLEMS. They have been bulletproof reliable for me and others I know. I know that there are poeple who have a lot of issues. There are also people on audiforums.com who have 200,000 miles on their C5 A6s with only regular maintenance as their trips to the shop. I know the 2.0T A3 gets horrible initial quality ratings. I also know a guy who had a BMW 330i and had it in the shop every other month, so issues are not limited to Audi for sure. Price really has no bearing on how reliable a car should be. By that rational a Koenigsegg should never break down when, in fact, they break every thousand km. You are paying for luxury/performance which leads me to this point..

    The 60,000 price should get you a more exciting car. The new A6 3.0T does not really do it for me. If I had a choice, my 2004 A6 S-Line with 65,000km on it or a brand new A6 3.0T, I would stick with my ’04. Looks better, handles better and can be chipped for 600 bucks resulting in 350+ hp.

  • avatar
    Power6

    Power6 I read from your previous posting that you almost drove every single car out there for the past 15 years but you never drove the one that Americans really like Honda and Toyota.

    I think you have me confused with someone else ;-) I haven’t driven everything out there and I have driven plenty of Hondas and Toyotas.

    These cars are very cheap to buy and very reliable and durable.

    This is plenty true, but not always only what people are looking for in a car purchase.

    I think the lesson here is that one shouldn’t buy an Audi and assume that it is as reliable as a Honda just because it costs more.

    SEARCH The Net and count how many Audi complaint about their beloved Audi cars.

    Besides the fact that I would probalby never buy a new Audi, at least in this stage of my life, I don’t really pay much attention to Internet anecdotes, they don’t really stand up statistically. Most every car is reliable enough so that whether you like it and take care of it is more important than what particular problems it has. I would rather spend twice money and time fixing a car I like than motoring trouble-free in a car I don’t (within reason of course, but how many real stinkers are there?)

    That said I am sure a Honda is more trouble free than an Audi…so what is your point?

  • avatar
    KnightRT

    Excellent review, Jack.

    I’m very keen on the rear styling of these more recent Audis. The S5, which always seemed slightly awkward in pictures because of the way the midsection dips, has a gorgeous stance in person. I imagine this A6 is much the same. Count me with the others who wish the 3.0S was a peer to BMW’s N54, though.

    Confidential to Farago: there’s an ‘is’ missing in the engine paragraph.

  • avatar
    BEAT

    My point is I will never buy a $60,000 car even If I have the money to buy 4 of them.

    You said “I think the lesson here is that one shouldn’t buy an Audi and assume that it is as reliable as a Honda just because it costs more”.

    Well that’s problem people do buy them because of the name and the country of origin. They expect a lot for a German car that will never break down but they do. it is a typical consumer behavior. The more expensive the better.

    it is not statistics it’s just how many Audi owners complaint about their Audi’s and there are a lot of them.

  • avatar
    johnthacker

    If I had a choice, my 2004 A6 S-Line with 65,000km on it or a brand new A6 3.0T, I would stick with my ‘04. Looks better, handles better and can be chipped for 600 bucks resulting in 350+ hp.

    I understand other reasons to choose something different, but this doesn’t make sense. The 3.0 supercharged engine already makes 333 hp, and it too can be chipped for 350+ hp. In fact, some of the tuners are claiming up to 435 HP for the 3.0S, though I’m fairly certain that’s more than just an ECU flash. Of course something that’s been out longer will have more mods, but the 3.0S should be easy to tune.

  • avatar
    johnthacker

    Well if you read those tests, in direct comparisons of the engines Audi doesn’t seem to win anything.

    Except for 0-60mph / 0-100km/hr or quarter mile or lap times.

    I don’t know what black magic BMW used to create the N54, but it gets better gas milegae than 3.0TFSI,

    Not in the EPA test it doesn’t, though I suspect it’s all in how you drive it anyway. The 3.0S in the S4 (manual or DSG) gets better gas mileage than the 335i (manual or automatic), much less the 335xi, considering how AWD affects mileage.

    Heck, according to the EPA, the 3.0S in the A6 gets better gas mileage (18/26) than the 335i (17/26), despite that extra weight.

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    it is not statistics it’s just how many Audi owners complaint about their Audi’s and there are a lot of them.

    Same for BMW, same for Mercedes, same for nearly every single american brand. Problem with that statement is that people will complain when something goes wrong, but if they are happy with their car, they won’t take the effort to report it. Sometimes the love for a car overshadows any flaws. The guy I know whos BMW was in the shop all the time once said “Its annoying but I love the car, its totally worth it.”

    Also, in the 2009 JD Power owner satisfaction survey, the Audi A6/S6/RS6 beat the Honda Accord and Civic. Not to say its more reliable, but if its not, people loved the A6 so much that it did not bother them…which says a lot about Audi I think.

    Comparing the Civics and Toyotas against Audi is apples and oranges. One is for people who just want a reliable car to go to work in. The other is for the enthusiast who enjoys driving and wants room for golf bags too.

  • avatar
    noreserve

    # Flashpoint :
    August 10th, 2009 at 11:07 am

    I’ll never understand what people have for/against Audi’s.

    Everyone on these sites claims the Audi A8L has a better interior than my S550 – which I think is bullshit, but then, the Benzes and BMW’s get ranked much higher than their Audi counterparts.

    the Lexus models get ranked higher than their Audi counterparts.

    I guess it takes more than a set of LED running lamps to make a good car.

    Audi’s interior quality is the benchmark in its class – has been for the past decade. They are not cheaping out with the current models either. I test drove an 05 S-Class when I was looking at the 04 A8. The Mercedes was a huge step down. There was nothing in that interior that came close to the A8. Cheap feeling switchgear that didn’t belong in a $30K vehicle, let alone a $70K one. The S-Class at the time did not impress me in the least. That throttle response was also crazy – had to give it a 10-lb boot before it would get out of its own way in a parking lot. Guess you get used to it.

    Anyhow, I wasn’t sure if you are saying that Mercedes and BMW are ranked above Audi in interior – show me that reference if so. BMW for driving dynamics, sure, but not by a large margin. Mercedes has been ranked above all in electrical problems for their W220 (“…Consumer Reports classified the W220 model’s reliability as “poor,” its lowest rating, and declared it one of the “least reliable luxury cars.”).

    Fast forward to the current gen S-Class (W221 from 06) and, yes, the interior is much-improved. I’ve driven a friend’s and found its interior to be very comparable to the A8, but still not quite there. I’ve driven the newer A4/A6 as well and they are still put together with incredible craftsmanship. BMW, like Mercedes, cheaped out – example being their 3-series. I had an 01 330i that was noticeably better quality inside than that of the current version.

    I never considered the horribly styled BMW 745Li when it came out, even though I had just come out of the previous gen 740iL. It was only when the 750Li came out that the rear end of that thing was palatable to me. Fast forward again to the current gen 7-series and we have a Lexus rear for some reason. First the Japanese ape the Germans, now it’s anybody’s guess. Even with Audi’s gaping maw, it is still a better looking line of vehicles than its competitors. Reliability has improved as well – for all of the German marques since the 05/06 time-frame.

  • avatar
    sean362880

    I’ve driven an ’06 with the 4.2 and an ’08 with the 3.2 S-line package. MUCH preferred the 4.2. The tip-in is so slow on the V6 you have to stomp the throttle to make any forward progress. It’s OK with the transmission in “S”, but regular “D” is worthless. By all means, get the V8. A low-mileage ’08 with the 4.2 is around $40-45k (YSE car of the week?)

    Agree that the interior is brilliant. No other word for it.

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    I’ve driven an ‘06 with the 4.2 and an ‘08 with the 3.2 S-line package. MUCH preferred the 4.2. The tip-in is so slow on the V6 you have to stomp the throttle to make any forward progress. It’s OK with the transmission in “S”, but regular “D” is worthless

    My 04 S-Line is exactly the same. D mode is a big fuel nanny. Sport mode turns the car into a different beast all together. Fast as heck. I vote YSE car of the week to be the 2004 A6 S-Line. I paid 25 grand, with 2 year warrenty and 65,000kms on it. For that I get performance near equal to the current 3.0T, except with sport suspension. And better looks. Interior is top of the line, no rattles, very solid. My sister’s fusion has 50,000kms on it and you would swear the dash is about to rattle itself right off.

  • avatar
    drifter

    BEAT :
    August 10th, 2009 at 11:28 am

    I think the car was made in China with German parts.

    Eastern European, not No Chinese.

  • avatar
    ZCD2.7T

    An interesting group of comments, this. A few points regarding Audi to spur further discussion:

    -Anyone who’s paying attention would know that Audi’s quality and reliability has gotten better overall every year for the past 10, which isn’t something that either of its German competitors can claim. Audis reliability is now well above the industry average, and above BMW and MB.

    -Audi has stuck to its design theme of elegant exteriors and logical, beautifully put together interiors over that same time period. BMW (Bangle??)and MB (COMAND)? Notsomuch.

    -Audi introduced quattro AWD to the mass market, and has stayed with it, even when it wasn’t “cool” to do so. Why do you think that BMW and MB (not to mention every other manufacturer) now offer (inferior) AWD systems on many of their models?? Audi and the market forced them into it.

    -Audis are always smooth and refined, but not to the point of blandness, like many recent MB models. That’s not boring or anodyne, it’s a harbinger of good engineering and design, and an indication that Audi knows what it represents, and knows what it wants to be.

    -Audi introduced arguably the world’s best sports car, the R8 on its FIRST try at a sports car. Yes, it’s based on a Lamborghini, but it’s its own vehicle, with performance, styling and quality matched by few other cars. Don’t forget, either, that without Audi’s influence, the Gallardo and the Murcielago would be typical Lamborghinis, with parts falling off of them everywhere they went. Instead, they’re among the most compelling pieces in all of automobiledom, they stay together and the company is more successful than it has ever been. Apart from the amazing M1, name a BMW or Mercedes sports car of the past 30 years, let alone one that set the sportscar world on its ear, worldwide.

    -Audi offers a compelling mixture of design, quality, safety and performance, which is one reason that they handily outsell BMW and MB in Germany, and why their market share continues to rise in the US.

    Anyone who’s paying attention will realize that Audi’s on the way up. BMW and MB know, and they’re paying attention. Watch what happens in the next 3 years or so – it’s gonna be great stuff.

    Oh, and BTW, suggesting than an an A6 is somehow less worthy because it’s not as nice as an A8 is the very definition of the word ludicrous.

    (IMHO, of course.;-)

  • avatar
    urS4red

    “Viceroy_Fizzlebottom :
    August 10th, 2009 at 11:58 am

    For this price you would be better off with a slightly used S6″

    Just traded my A5 for a 2007 S6. 15000 miles on the odometer.

    Cost less than a new A6

  • avatar
    hreardon

    The A6 has always been an odd duck in the US market. The current model is, how shall we say it…it’s the nice girl who you wouldn’t mind taking to the prom, but only after the hottie turned you down and you’ve resigned yourself to self-fulfillment after the party has ended.

    The A6 is a handsome car, but it isn’t beautiful (interior, though, is a different story). It’s competent, but not exciting. It’s poised, but sloppy at the margins.

    In short – it doesn’t have the panache of a new Jag, the spirit of a 5-series, or the value of a Lexus or Infiniti. I am an unabashed Audi fan, but even I would not buy an A6. In fact, not only would I not buy an A6, were I given one I would turn, sell it and buy something else (*cough* S5 *cough*).

    I’m sincerely hoping that the next generation A6 outperforms this model in both looks and handling to put it on the radar for more people. It’s a great car…just, well, a bit….blah.

  • avatar
    lukasz_kluj

    drifter :

    Eastern European, not No Chinese.

    What exactly is your problem with Eastern Europe?

    Poland is among biggest automobile producers in Europe and Fiat Panda build here is said to be most reliable in it’s class. Also the beloved 500 is build in Poland (a top priority product for Fiat). Not to mention Skoda’s from Czech Republic that became today’s real ‘Volkswagen.’

  • avatar
    Brock_Landers

    johnthacker – I referred to your linked Australian test about the mpg numbers – in real life conditions N54 was considerably more frugal.

  • avatar
    niky

    Audi’s interiors are just loads better than Mercedes’ interiors… which seem to have fallen a notch or two ever since the ChryCo thing… I’ve been on the inside of an S500 and was… slightly underwhelmed. It’s a far cry from the Mercs of yesteryear, where interior quality was a given… like the revs on a Honda or RWD on a Beemer.

    Against BMW… they’re a step ahead, from a model-to-model point of view, but both seem to cheap out on appointments and materials for lower end models, and pour on the love for the higher-spec ones… at least Audi’s MMI is more intuitive than BMW’s i-Drive.

    That said… aside from the rare RS8 or R8… and despite the fact that BMW stubbornly refuse to recognize the revolting repulsiveness of run-flats… I’d still go for a BMW 3-series or 5-series over their Audi counterparts.

  • avatar
    schhim

    Can you get heatsoak on a supercharger? I thought it was something that only happens to turbo’d engines.

  • avatar
    BEAT

    Yes Audi is a great car but BMW still one of the best selling car in Europe compared to Audi.

    Audi is not even on the list for best selling car in Europe. The Ford brand is still the number 1 seller in Europe no doubt about that including Fiat, Renault and VW.

    Yes Audi interior is great for those people who live inside their car but not me.
    Interior is only second nature and handling, horsepower and realibility comes first. I don’t even care if it’s an old Honda CRX. As long it doesn’t choke up over taking 5 cars on 95 and with AC too.

    To Those who drive an Audi. Have you driven a BMW M3 Alpine Edition?

    By the way I dated a Polish girl.

  • avatar
    noreserve

    ZCD2.7T :

    Oh, and BTW, suggesting than an an A6 is somehow less worthy because it’s not as nice as an A8 is the very definition of the word ludicrous.

    (IMHO, of course.;-)

    I agree with most of what you say above, although some of it rings with a bit of an Audi marketing slant. I do like Audi, but I think the price of the A6 for what you get is ridiculous. I was actually comparing the crappy ride (non-sport even) with my Accord. The brand-new A6 I drove was simply unacceptable from a ride standpoint – far too harsh for that class vehicle. And saddled with a pathetic sounding/performing V6 that had no business being put in there. The lack of bells/whistles in that $50K car was astounding to me. I know that BMW/Mercedes are also ridiculously overpriced as well. Used baby, used.

    A friend of mine had an 01 (I believe) A6 2.7T with the manual transmission and sport package. What a rare vehicle. The shifter was rubbery and the power delivery from that turbo was quite interesting, but I did like that one. In black too.

    I think that the A6 is a very nicely-styled model that simply needs a competitive engine to be a contender with BMW. I thought this new 3.0T was supposed to be the ticket. I’ll have to drive one to see, but it is hard to beat that V8 torque/sound.

  • avatar
    ZCD2.7T

    noreserve: I do like Audi, but I think the price of the A6 for what you get is ridiculous….Used baby, used.

    I like Audis, too, but not enought to be blinded to their faults. For example, though I much prefer the styling and interior quality of the Q7, we bought an MDX because it’s a much better value, and because the 3.6 in the Q7, while powerful and responsive, is just plain too loud for that class of vehicle.

    I disagree regarding the ride quality and performance of the A6 3.2, but I respect your opinion. Published figures would suggest that the 3.2 is at least as quick if not quicker than a V-6 Accord, but I’m sure the power delivery is quite different, given that Audi aimed for torque and flexibility, while Honda has always aimed for high HP, often resulting in soft low-end torque.

    Finally, I must admit that I’ve bought 2 of our 3 Audis used (CPO), because they’re great values in that situation, but that’s true of all the luxury makes.

  • avatar
    th009

    BEAT: Yes Audi is a great car but BMW still one of the best selling car in Europe compared to Audi.

    Audi is not even on the list for best selling car in Europe. The Ford brand is still the number 1 seller in Europe no doubt about that including Fiat, Renault and VW.

    @BEAT, you are seriously out of date here. 2009 first-half sales by brand (not group) in Europe show:
    1. VW – 849K
    2. Ford – 664K
    3. Opel – 561K
    4. Fiat – 571K
    5. Renault – 527K
    6. Peugeot – 506K
    7. Citroen – 442K
    8. Toyota – 363K
    9. Audi – 327K
    10. Mercedes – 304K
    11. BMW – 290K
    12. Skoda – 248K

    Audi was behind Mercedes and BMW in 2008 still, but has picked up market share this year, while BMW and Mercedes sales have dropped over 20%.

  • avatar
    BEAT

    The Best selling cars Europe for 2008 and 2009 and Audi is not on the list.

    Where on earth did you get that list? oh Please why do always people wants to proved that I’m wrong? I don’t get that

    You should buy another magazine the only High end car that on the top 10 is BMW for European cars. Mercedez is not even on the list

    Ford cars has 2 of them on the list for the past years.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Top_10_best_selling_cars_in_Europe

    BMW is always on the list because a lot of Europeans prefer the BMW 3 Series.
    Funny about your list I went to 20 web site not a single Audi was included even or listed on the top ten best selling cars in Europe BMW is always on the list.

    You even kicked out the BMW on the tenth spot and put Audi and Mercedez which is very funny. All the list I saw not even a Benz or Audi were inlcuded

    Please don’t tell me the best selling car in the world is the Ford F-150.

  • avatar
    ZCD2.7T

    Mr. Baruth:
    “To make the A6 the victor of their mid-size sedan test, C/D had to ratchet-up the “Gotta Have It” score.”

    Not true.

    Actually, if you eliminate the “Gotta Have It” score, and the A6 wins the comparison numerically 196pts. to 195 pts for the 535i.

    Take away “Fun to Drive” score as well, and the A6 still wins, 175pts to 173pts.

    Just sayin’

  • avatar
    Brauron

    ZCD2.7T, your comments are better than the review they comment on.

    The writer, unfortunately, is engaging in a classic fallacy of reviewing other people’s reviews. Instead of letting CD calibrate his expectations of the A6, he should have confronted it in its own terms. For the record, CD was impressed with the A6 not just in the “gotta have it” category, but in terms of interior design and quality, MPGs, quietness, etc.

    I’ve personally owned several Audis. Never had a serious maintenance issue (though the back wheels fell off my Honda…not once, but twice).

  • avatar
    th009

    BEAT: Where on earth did you get that list? oh Please why do always people wants to proved that I’m wrong? I don’t get that

    That list is from the Automotive News (http://www.autonews.com/) data center, generally considered to be more authoritative than Wikipedia.

    When you say things like “BMW still one of the best selling car in Europe compared to Audi” and “The Ford brand is still the number 1 seller in Europe no doubt about that” you are just asking for a correction.

    As to why BMW shows better on the Wikipedia list? Mainly because nearly half of BMW’s sales are for the 3-series.

  • avatar
    Power6

    Where on earth did you get that list?

    You claimed some stuff about best selling brands in Europe and then toted out some stats about best selling models. th009 pulled out the correct stats for the discussion point that you started.

    oh Please why do always people wants to proved that I’m wrong? I don’t get that

    HINT: The answer to your question lies in why you would ask such a question at all…

  • avatar
    jmhm2003

    I gave up on C&D about 6 years ago after religiously reading it for 25+ years. I still have them all in boxes. But now I realize, that the “gotta have it” part applies to how much money the automaker must give C&D to get the top ranking. C&D has “gotta have” this much money to get the winning position. It’s the same thing as Motor Trend’s “COTY”, but a bit more subtle. Sweet African Jesus, they totally suck.

  • avatar
    Ringer

    Nelson Ledges? Giving that suspension a workout, eh? It’s a fun, fast track, but the surface actually beat a steering wheel shimmy out of my car last year. The car arrived at the event with a vibration at highway speeds that wheel re-balancing couldn’t fix, and it left driving perfectly.

  • avatar
    V6

    A6, E-Class, 5-Series, GS etc, I don’t find any of them appealing. I would probably take the 5-Series I guess, though it will be replaced soon.

    They all lack something for me, I like the smaller models and the larger ones but these mid-sized luxury cars are so blah

  • avatar
    ZekeToronto

    V6 wrote:

    …I like the smaller models and the larger ones but these mid-sized luxury cars are so blah

    +1

    Couldn’t agree more. As partial as I am to Audis at the moment, I’d take just about anything else in their lineup ahead of an A6 (and with the possible exception of an M5 that holds for the other luxury makes as well). The mid-models have always struck me as neither fish nor fowl … too big and heavy to be as athletic as the “compact” series, but too small to be true freeway/distance monsters like the full-size lines.

  • avatar
    BEAT

    First of all Power6 I never said the best selling BRAND IN EUROPE.
    I wrote The Best Selling Cars in Europe.
    Your friend wrote the Best Brand of Europe not me.

    Wikipedia and Aumotive magazines what difference does it make. they all written by humans?

    Ford Brand are still number 1 in Europe. Yes in marketing prespective they have 2 car models that are on the Top Ten Best Selling “Cars” in Europe.

    HINT: Being cynical is bad for the health and you should meet my friend he knows Power5.

  • avatar
    ZCD2.7T


    ZekeToronto :
    August 12th, 2009 at 2:52 am
    V6 wrote:
    …I like the smaller models and the larger ones but these mid-sized luxury cars are so blah
    ————————-
    +1
    Couldn’t agree more. The mid-models have always struck me as neither fish nor fowl … too big and heavy to be as athletic as the “compact” series, but too small to be true freeway/distance monsters like the full-size lines.
    —————————

    Counterpoint: In my mind, the reason for buying a 4 door sedan is so that one can carry 4 adults in comfort. The small German sedans fail on that point because of their small back seats, though the new A4 is closest – my 6’2″ 200 lb. frame almost fits back there.

    By contrast, the larger sedans are too large to ever feel wieldy, though they’re unmatched for highway/autobahn burning.

    All of this makes the mid-sizers “just right” for me.

  • avatar
    th009

    @BEAT, you wrote, to quote: “The Ford brand is still the number 1 seller in Europe no doubt about that including Fiat, Renault and VW.” (emphasis added)

    Clearly you wrote about brands, and Ford is the #2 brand in Europe, as you saw in the numbers I posted.

    And BMW’s European sales are below those of Audi for this year as well, again using the Automotive News data. (If you want to compare 3-series specifically to the A4/A5, then say so.)

  • avatar
    ZekeToronto

    ZCD2.7T wrote:

    All of this makes the mid-sizers “just right” for me.

    I guess like most compromises, some will see it as the best of both worlds … and some as the worst :-)

  • avatar
    Power6

    Your friend wrote the Best Brand of Europe not me…yadayada…HINT: Being cynical is bad for the health and you should meet my friend he knows Power5.

    Is cynicism as unhealthy as diversionary condescending argument tactics and lack of self-awareness? ;-) Eh I guess we all have our shortcomings, whether we know it or not ha.

    You mustn’t know what Power6 means, its a deep reference and doesn’t involve the Japanese cars that you love so much, or your favorite number one in all of Europe Ford.

  • avatar
    gaspassoregon

    I drove the a6 3.0T about 6 months ago, and thought it was head and shoulders better than the 04 2.7T A6 i had for 2 years. Wind noise was much more comparable to the 5 series wagon I replaced the 04 with. The 04 was loud for the price.

    I preferred the interior styling of the 04 much more because of its restrained, subtle but elegant layout. The ’09 is less over the top than the previous (’06-08) generation with the crazy number of buttons, but the generous use of plastic I found to be a disappointment.

    I thought the driving dynamics were much improved, with a stiffer ride and tighter handling than the 04 (much more bmw-like). I really loved this new engine, however. It gives one the option to drive it like you stole it as well as grandpa cruise with the family to avoid the carsickness complaints. I can also only assume that with a set of snow tires that this thing would have been even more unstoppable heading up to the mountain, as the 04 had been. Better than the 535xi? Dunno but certainly more comfortable than my 5 series was. Much more comfortable, much more usable back seat.

    Ultimately, 2 deal killers arose for me- in this economy, driving up in the shiny, new, large expensive car felt a bit gauche; I could’ve lived with that, but even with very low money factors, the ABYSMAL residuals led to lease payments that were insane.

    Would I buy one used? We’ll see. I think Audis are great lease babies/only owned under warranty cars. My buddy bought a low mileage 03 a6 2.7t, it went through 20K in repairs (fortunately carmax made good on the warranty, but not without over a month of loss of service, causing rental car hassles) in one year. You better really love these newer electronic driving machines to keep them beyond 3-4 years, in my opinion.

  • avatar
    BEAT

    Japanese cars adored not only by me but millions of Americans just like the way you love your Audi A German car.

    Diversionary tactics was never been on my mind the people who commented on my postings are the one who are condescending arguemental person. Ford by the way is great. it is an American icon. Like your beloved Audi from Germany love by an American.

    Power6 I think is a microprocessor and of course it doesn’t involved Japanese cars or Audi.

  • avatar
    frizzlefry

    @gaspassoregon
    I agree with you what you said. My 04 A6 2.7T S-Line is an awesome car, but I would not have bought it (got it with 65000km) without it being Audi certified with 2 year warranty. If it’s good the first two years, I’ll likely keep it. It’s a good sign that it will last. My father’s 2000 A6 2.7T has 120,000kms on it and has proved VERY reliable. He is actually taking it in next week due to a ABS warning he is getting. First problem he has had with it.
    @BEAT
    Ford is far from great. I was leasing a 2004 Focus. Often, I had to apply excessive brake pressure to stop the car, so much that my butt would lift off the seat. I had it in 8 times and they could never fix it. Then, I had to stop in an emergency and the brakes failed and I rear ended someone. So I googled the brake issue and found a TSB for it that ford never distributed to the dealership. The brake booster in the ’04 focus losses vacuum in high altitudes (I live in a high altitude city) resulting in “excessive brake pedal force to safely stop vehicle” (Ford’s own words). I demanded to be let out of my lease and to be compensated for repairing the damages from the accident. Ford refused, even though they acknowledged that the brakes did not work properly even after the TSB was applied, and would only let me out of the lease if I agreed to a new lease on a 2005 Focus. Effectivly giving them an additonal year’s worth of my money in lease payments. I did not have the money to fight them in court (they said they would sue me if I refused to make lease payments) so I agreed. And the 2005 HAD THE SAME PROBLEM! So after I had the TSB applied to the ’05 Focus that Ford strong-armed me into, the brakes were better after stopping a couple of times but I still had to pump them before driving to rebuild the lost booster vacuum or else the car’s stopping distance would be double for the first 10 stops or so. Also, I had to put up with it for a year first, took Ford that long to broaden the TSB to the 05 model. In the end, the same TSB needs to applied to the 05, 06 and 07 models. What really bothers me is that this is a safety issue Ford knew about but never bothered to fix at the plant. They waited for someone to bring it in to have it fixed, either before or after they had an accident. IF the dealership even knows about the TSB, no dealership in my city did. If anyone has a Focus and wants to look up the TSB, the TSB number is 06185
    Point being, even if every Audi had lots of minor issues and problems with the electrical system or windows or seats or whatever else that seems to affect their reliability rating, I am positive that a fresh off the lot Audi will be able to stop safely and not try and kill me.

  • avatar
    BEAT

    The 1896 Ford Quadricycle. Have you seen that piece of engineering?

    It’s an American Company that’s why I called it Great and the world’s 4th largest car manufacturer. I drove a 1978 2 door Ford Cortina 2.0 double weber carb with headers.

    It was a tank, durable and was fast.
    sorry to say about your Focus. People from Laconia, New Hampshire must up in flames for buying a Focus.

  • avatar
    ponchoman49

    Why does every god forsaken car manufacturer think it is cool to slap on huge over sized grilles, squinty windows, bloated overall shapes, chrome strip at the bottom of the side doors where it does nothing but collect road debris and curb chips and does nothing whatsoever in protecting the upper part of the doors from other cars parked alongside yours and “my tires are bigger than your tires absurdity”. Are they all sharing the same designers today or what? Note to said designers: COME UP WITH SOMETHING DIFFERENT. YOUR CARS ARE ALL STARTING TO LOOK TOO MUCH ALIKE!!!!!!

  • avatar
    ohsnapback

    Audi is way overpriced, unreliable, ugly exterior designed garbage.

    That’s a pretty basic yet complete and accurate review of Audi.

  • avatar
    drifter

    +1 ohsnapback
    Audi is way overpriced, unreliable, ugly exterior designed garbage.

  • avatar
    ZCD2.7T

    —————–
    ohsnapback
    —————–

    Thank you for your intelligent, insightful, well-reasoned, fact-based commentary, sir.

  • avatar
    Carlson Fan

    The 2005 TT we leased was the only new car I’ve ever owned that started falling apart within the warranty period. Only car I’ve owned period where a piece of the interior fell off onto the parking lot after I opened the door up. That was right after the dealer fixed the manufacturing defect. Geez imagine that, a manufacturing defect with a german car. Still it did have an awesome interior and I liked driving it but no way did I want it in my garage after the factory warranty had expired. So we dumped it at 36 months.

  • avatar
    ZCD2.7T

    FWIW, the C&D article is now on-line. Here’s the results chart that Mr. Baruth apparently mis-read:

    http://www.caranddriver.com/var/ezflow_site/storage/original/application/6104364845c9aaef384556fea8b89a83.pdf

  • avatar
    urS4red

    “Audi is way overpriced, unreliable, ugly exterior designed garbage.”

    My God, James Joyce could learn from you.

  • avatar
    Roosterman

    Uh, I’m not sure how many different cars and makes the reviewer of the article has driven, but C&D has it fairly accurate on their assesment.   MotorTrend put the Audi #2 and the BMW 535i first.  C&D put the Audi first, BMW second.   I have personally driven ALL the competitors cars- with the exception of the Jaguar- mainly because it doesn’t have an all wheel drive option. We only drove AWD cars and I think it really only fair to compare AWD variants of each make.   So, lets compare apples to apples here- IMHO you CAN’T compare the AWD 2009 A6 3.0T to ANY rear wheel drive competitor- they are completely different cars.  I know all the magazines and reviewers do, but its simply ridiculous.  Drive different versions of the same car back to back and you will see what I mean.  Almost all of the competition offers AWD  versions of their cars- HOWEVER, when you add this option- the price ratches up even more, cornering, gas mileage, braking and straight line performance all go down compared with their RWD variants.    This is fact!  So, having driven a 2009  MB C350 RWD, C300 AWD, E350 RWD, 2009 Lexus GS350AWD, 2008 BMW 535xi, 2009 335xi, Infiniti G35XS, M35XS, 2009 Audi A4 3.2, A4 2.0, A6 3.0T, 2007 S6, and finally 2008 A6 3.2,  here is the assessment:
    The new Audi A6 3.0T, for the money, is the most complete car in its category. It is NOT the best car in any one category, but when you factor in cost, AWD, performance, mileage, warranty, and luxury accessories  it is a VERY good all around car. (AND it has one of the largest trunks in any these cars listed) one thing I’m not sure about yet is reliability- the jury is still out on that.    I’m a 3 series BMW guy, never owned an Audi before- 328i, 325i, 325iT and recently 330i.  For the most part these have all been reliable cars, good mileage, very good handling, and pretty good performance.  I am hoping that the Audi doesn’t turn into an unreliable POS like I fear.  I like BMW, don’t get me wrong.  But when you get into the 5 series territory, the pricing and styling (or lack thereof) is a SERIOUS turnoff.  for instance, a comparably equipped 2009 BMW535xi fully loaded, like our prestige package A6 would be well over $60,000- probably close to $65,000. A fully loaded A6 prestige (if purchased new AND at FULL retail) is $56,500.  Now, of course, we purchased ours used with 4000 miles from a dealer (it was their car) for mid 40′s- A substantial savings.   

    All the comments about handling, power, comfort and noise- its all crap.  Look, I’ve driven all thes cars. Yes, the mercedes is very quiet, very composed, but also feels like a tank.  The BMW handles very well, is extremely quick and very comfortable inside, but is very lacking in outer styling- and its user controls leave much to be desired- even worse than our Audi- IMHO.   

    I’ve heard so many comments about the lack of power of the V6 3.0T.  I feel I have to comment on this too. Having driven an AWD 335xi, 535xi, M35x, G35x, and GS350, performance in every day driving you won’t notice much of a difference. In fact, I would challenge any of you in a drag race with any of these cars mentioned (well, maybe not the 335xi- its much lighter)- it would come down to reaction time and thats it!!!!  I’ve seen numbers for the A6 from 0-60 from 5.5 seconds all the way up to 6.0(there’s no way its only 6 seconds) I’ve seen numbers for the 535i at 5.3 seconds, G350AWD at 5.5 seconds, the G35x at 5.6, etc. When you are talking tenths of seconds, it comes down to reaction time. the point is… the the fact that the A6 at a hefty 4200 pounds with  a little 3.1 L engine puts out 300 hp, 310 ft lbs of torque at 2500 rpm and manages sub 6 second 0-60 and 14 second quarter mile is amazing.  I’ve driven all the other competitors- there were only two other cars that felt just as fast and handled just as good (or perhaps better) the G35xs and the 535xi- both very fast, very agile cars.  The M35x was not as fast as the A6- the M45x “might’ be as fast, but VERY rare, and VERY expensive.   We REALLY considered a used 2007 S6 with low miles (say less than 30K), for about the same price as a new/used 2009 A6.  Ultimately we chose the A6 for two reasons- one- we could get a new or “slightly” used 2009 A6 for the same money as a used 3 year old (only 1 year left on warranty) S6 AND I was concerned about long term maintenance costs of owning a basically an exotic car with a V-10, 15.2 inch 6 piston brakes, and 265 series 19 inch rubber- I would imagine both routine maintenance as well as larger jobs on the S6 would be quite a bit more expensive than the A6.  I’m used to pricing for work done on 3 series BMW’s, which BTW is no more costly than owning a camry or accord- trust me I know.   

    So, I hope this car works out- so far so good.  I like the power and the sound personally- there is NO WAY this car only does 0-60 in 6 seconds, I know 6 second cars- this is much faster AND it handles fine for what it is- a very large 4000 lb luxury car.  Besides, once we upgrade the ECU, lower it with H&R springs, add thicker sway bars and put lightweight forged 19′s on it- the handling and power department will be handled no problem. Right now MTM has a chip and power pulley upgrade putting the new S4 to 435 hp and 400 lbs of torque- this is the same engine in the A6.  That will probably put this car into S6 territory and for MUCH less money.  I’m sure that soon APT and other Audi tuners will also have upgrades available.  I hope my evaluation has been helpful to some of you… I just don’t like reading reviews that give a car bad marks for things that aren’t a problem. If you want to be picky- the controls are hard to learn, and some of the ergonomics are funky… BUT ALL german cars are that way- ALL of them- get into any BMW or Mercedes and you will quickly see this-  German Engineers may be good at making quick, good handling solid built cars, but that doesn’t mean they are alway easy to use- this is NOT just an Audi thing. Cheers, Niels.


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