Patrick Rall's picture

Audi unveils the redesigned 2012 A6

Last night, Audi pulled the sheets off of the redesigned 2012 A6, which is expected to make its public debut early next year (perhaps the 2011 Detroit Auto Show) and along with the standard gas and diesel engines; there will be a hybrid version shortly after the initial launch.

As you can see in the image below (or click here for a gallery of the 2012 Audi A6), the new A6 receives a front end facelift that features some styling cues from the 2011 Audi A8 – especially in the headlight area. While the 2012 Audi A6 is very similar the outgoing model, especially along the sides of the car, the biggest improvements are not noticeable to the naked eye. A combination of aluminum and high strength steel components help the A6 to feature a strong, rigid chassis with a surprisingly low curb weight – under 3,500lbs in the 2.0 TDI model. Overall, the use of high strength and lightweight materials allow the 2012 A6 to weight around 15% less than the same car with a traditional full steel construction.

Inside, the 2012 Audi A6 is fitted with all of the luxurious, high quality materials that you would expect from the Audi brand wrapped up in a cockpit-style package that wraps around the driver and front passenger. A hideaway touch screen controls the state of the art sound as well as offering controls over other vehicle systems, like the advanced Quattro AWD system. To give the new A6 an extra touch of class, the dash, center console and door panels offer real wood inserts. Like all new Audi models, soft touch materials are everywhere; from the dash to the door panels to the center console and there are even pads on the sides of the shift hump/center console.

The information provided for the 2012 Audi A6 is for the European market so we could see a slightly different engine lineup but at launch in Europe, there will be 2 gasoline engines, 3 diesel engines and a late-availability hybrid setup. The base model gasoline engine is a 2.8L V6 making 204hp and 206lb-ft of torque and the premium gas mill is a supercharged 3.0L V6 that packs 300hp while yielding 27 miles per gallon. The front wheel drive 2012 A6 models that come with the 2.8L V6 can pick between a 6-speed manual or “multitronic” CVT transmission and when that same engine is mated to the Quattro AWD system, the S-tronic 7-speed dual clutch automatic transmission is standard. The supercharged 3.0L gasoline engine comes strictly in Quattro form with the S-tronic transmission and for some sporty-shifting fun, Audi offers steering wheel mounted paddle shifters.

The smallest and most efficient engine for the 2012 Audi A6 is a 2.0L, 4-cylinder diesel that provides 177hp and 280 lb-ft of twist but more importantly this tiny diesel could offer 48 miles per gallon. The downside for this 4-cylinder diesel is that it only comes mated to a front wheel drive setup but buyers can pick between the standard manual transmission or the multitronic CVT. For those diesel fans who want a little more power, there is a pair of 3.0L oil burners that offer 204 and 245 horsepower, respectively. For the smaller of the two 6-cylinder diesels, the CVT is standard with late availability for the manual gearbox and with the 245hp diesel option, Quattro AWD and the S-tronic dual clutch transmission are standard.

The first of the 2012 Audi A6 sedans are expected to hit European dealerships in “early 2011” and shortly after the initial launch, Audi will roll out the 2012 Audi A6 Hybrid. Powered by a 2.0L, 211hp 4-cylinder gasoline engine and assisted by an electric motor that offers 45 horsepower and 155lb-ft of torque, sending power through a modified 8-speed automatic transmission to the front wheels. This new hybrid luxury sedan is expected to offer fuel economy in the 38mpg range, with the electric motor capable of speeds of 37mph without the aid of the gasoline engine but more importantly (to some drivers), the Audi A6 Hybrid still offers some fun-to-drive factor. The Audi A6 Hybrid is able to dash from 0-62 in just 7.3 seconds and reach a top speed of 147mph.

Click here for a gallery of company-provided images of the 2012 Audi A6 and for a look at the full (and very long) press release from our friends at AudiForums.com, click here.


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