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New Audi S6
Tuesday, 21 March 2006
A refined flow of power in conjunction with superlative comfort and an elegantly understated appearance: this is the new Audi S6. It is the sporty top version in the luxury-class family of models comprising the Audi A6 saloon and A6 Avant, which took the market by storm following their launch in 2004 and have since garnered countless accolades worldwide from both customers and experts within the trade.

Audi has always used the letter "S" to denote its unrelenting quest for sportiness. In the S models, sportiness is the overriding principle, flanked by comfort, aesthetic appeal, elegance and uncompromising quality. All S models traditionally feature very high-performance engines, quattro permanent four-wheel drive and a distinctive S-specific design. The new Audi S6, the latest product to embody this philosophy, is upholding and building on this legacy in order to redefine the benchmark yet again in its segment. The appearance of the S6 will coincide with the launch of the S6 Avant, the estate-car version that combines the exemplary versatility and variability of the A6 Avant with the decidedly sporty character of the new Audi S6.

The prices in Germany, inclusive of VAT, will be EUR 79,800 for the S6 and EUR 82,000 for the S6 Avant.

Drivetrain

In response to the challenge to deliver supreme performance that can always be summoned up with ultimate refinement, the new Audi S6 will be powered by a newly developed ten-cylinder V-configuration engine. This engine, a virtually identical version of which is likewise fitted in the new Audi S8, makes maximum use of its resources: from a displacement of 5.2 litres, it develops an output of
435 bhp (320 kW) at 6,800 rpm, and its peak torque of 540 Nm is achieved between 3,000 and 4,000 rpm.

More than 500 Nm are available between 2,500 and 5,500 rpm, meaning that the lightweight 220-kilogram engine guarantees superior pulling power in every driving situation.

This pioneering engine gives the Audi S6 the road performance of a high-calibre Grand Touring. The Audi S6 saloon is capable of racing from 0 to 100 km/h in
5.2 seconds, and the S6 Avant takes a mere one-tenth of a second longer. The speed is governed electronically when the needle reaches 250 km/h.

Thanks among other things to its compact design, the ten-cylinder concept is ideal for achieving a sporty performance. FSI direct injection technology, which uses the principle of homogeneous combustion, enables a high compression ratio. Audi has drawn here on the extensive experience it enjoys in the field of motor sport.

The R8 racing car, a pioneer of direct injection, took part in the Le Mans 24 Hours five times, winning on four of those occasions – proof indeed of the efficiency and high performance of this technology.

The advantages of the Audi S6 are clear to see:

  • Substantial engine torque at low revs
  • Sporty behaviour thanks to engine speeds of up to 7,000 rpm
  • Highly spontaneous response, short reaction time
  • Shorter shift points, swifter gear changes
  • Typical, gutsy sound when accelerating
  • Perfect synthesis of sporty driving pleasure and comfortable long-distance  suitability

The S6 is equipped with a six-speed tiptronic transmission. The ratios of this widely used transmission are shorter than on the A6, and its management function has been optimised for even swifter gear changes.

The new S6, too, naturally transmits its power to the road by means of quattro permanent four-wheel drive.

In its new generation, with asymmetric/dynamic torque split, quattro makes the already decidedly dynamic character of this car even more agile. A centre differential normally distributes 40 percent of the power to the front and
60 percent to the rear wheels. This slight emphasis on the rear end ensures particularly dynamic handling.

If the surface conditions change – for instance if they become wet or slippery, or if the car is driven onto a different type of road surface – this purely mechanical differential responds without any delay; depending on the requirements at any given moment, it can divert up to 85 percent of power to the rear wheels or as much as 65 percent to the front wheels.

The drivetrain concept of the new S6 constantly ensures that the immense power of the V10 engine is translated efficiently into propulsion on the road – where other cars are electronically governed, the S6 streaks ahead in unruffled style without any restrictive intervention by the engine and brake management systems.

Chassis

As a reflection of its explicitly sporty character, the suspension settings of the S6 have been made firmer, even compared with the A6 sports suspension, but at the same time this assures a high standard of comfort for long-distance driving. The Audi S6 is always conspicuously nimble; meanwhile, driving stability and traction have been further optimised.

The principal components of the chassis feature intelligent lightweight aluminium construction, resulting in decisively lower unsprung masses.

The Audi S6 is equipped ex works with 19-inch cast aluminium wheels of a 5-arm wing design. The wide tyres have the format 265/35 R19, a further feature differentiating them from the Audi A6 / A6 Avant. An 18-inch brake system assures supreme braking performance and is resistant to fading even under high loads. It features four very large-size ventilated brake discs.

The servotronic steering has been configured for a more direct response than that on the basic A6 model.

Design

The models in Audi's S range have traditionally epitomised consistent sports appeal. This applies in equal measure to the new S6 / S6 Avant, which now dynamically hones the visual impact made by the A6 / A6 Avant.

The S6 cuts a supremely athletic figure out on the roads – yet is free from any hint of aggression. The most striking differences compared with the A6 are to be found at the front end. The eye-catching single-frame grille displays the S6 emblem, and in this instance has double-design vertical aluminium-look struts. There is an air inlet beneath the grille. A spoiler lip at the front end of the car provides additional negative lift.

Another innovation in the front bumper is a pioneering development: the separate LED daytime running lights, each of which consists of five white light-emitting diodes and consumes only a minimal amount of energy. When these light strips are switched on, the effect is utterly distinctive: they make it incredibly easy to identify the new Audi S6, and the low-down position of the daytime running lights gives the car a dynamically flat appearance. Xenon plus headlights are provided as standard; Audi adaptive light, the dynamic cornering light, is optional. The rear light units incorporate LED brake lights as standard, and the S6 Avant in addition has tail lights using LED technology.

The wings are flared by 14 millimetres in the area of the wheel arches. The door trim strips are likewise of wider dimensions, to accentuate the “S” characteristics, and are painted in the body colour. Other striking differentiating features are door sill trims bearing the S6 logo at all four doors, the rear spoiler integrated subtly into the luggage compartment lid – whereas the S6 Avant has a roof spoiler – aluminium-look exterior mirrors, the V10 emblem at the front beneath the side turn indicators, and an S6 logo on the rear end. The vehicle's tail end also displays a colour-contrasting diffuser in the bumper and the four ellipsoidal tailpipes of the exhaust system.

Equipment

In the same way as the body's styling, the interior of the new Audi S6, too, reflects a character of dynamic elegance and high quality – from the organically flowing driving area to the integrated MMI operating concept.

A new generation of sports seats is fitted. They have integral head restraints and pronounced lateral supports, and are upholstered in Alcantara/Leather. The front seats are electrically adjustable in multiple directions as standard, and include a lumbar support.

The three-spoke multifunction leather sports steering wheel with the S logo is trimmed in smooth leather and displays a colour-contrasting double seam with a special stitch pattern. The shift paddles, which are mounted to the steering wheel (in other words, they move as it is turned), have an aluminium-look finish. The selector lever has an aluminium finish and is trimmed in smooth leather.

The trim inserts are in carbon. The material on the instrument panel represents a further innovation in the S6: it correspondingly exhibits an anthracite-coloured metallic surface characteristic. Anthracite is also the predominant colour featured on the other sections of the instrument panel. The centre console, on the other hand, is in black.

The Driver Information System with 3.5-inch colour display has an additional digital speedometer in the new S6. The MMI Multi Media Interface, which has a high performance yet is also straightforward and intuitive to use, provides information via a high-resolution 7-inch colour display. The MMI furthermore integrates the extended-specification radio system with double tuner and the DSP sound system with ten speakers and a CD changer in the glove box.

Audi is likewise innovative when it comes to phoning in the car: the new optional telephone system combines all the advantages of a built-in phone with those of the mobile phone preparation. The mobile phone is connected up to the vehicle's own GSM module by means of Bluetooth interface.

This renders an adapter-type connection unnecessary and the driver can leave their mobile phone in their pocket while on the move. Operation of the Bluetooth car phone is likewise via the MMI system. A handset in the centre armrest can also be supplied as an option.

Safety

Whereas the high standard of active safety offered by the new Audi S6 stems principally from its superior engine power, pioneering quattro permanent four-wheel drive and ESP with two-stage deactivation, the sporty top model in the
A6 range also boasts a full complement of passive safety systems. This model comes complete with a package of restraint systems that are perfectly matched to the highly rigid aluminium body, including two full-size front airbags, side airbags for the front seats and large-area Audi sideguard curtain head airbags. Side airbags for the rear seats are available as an optional extra. All five three-point belts in the Audi S6 of course operate in conjunction with belt force limiters. There are belt tensioners for the front seats as standard. Audi backguard provides protection in the case of a rear-end impact.

 
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