In-depth Reviews

Audi A6 saloon (2004-2011)

"The Audi A6 is one of the oldest cars in Audi’s line up, but its practicality, interior space and build quality means it’s just as desirable as it has ever been."  

Carbuyer Rating

4.0 out of 5

Owners Rating

4.0 out of 5

Read owner reviews
Price
£38,680 - £78,755

Pros

  • Excellent diesel engines
  • Exceptional interior
  • Spaciousness

Cons

  • High load lip for boot
  • Poor ride quality in sporty S line trim
  • BMW 5 Series boasts better fuel economy

The Audi A6 has been on sale since 2004, and had a mid-life update in 2008. Even so, it's still one of the most comfortable and desirable cars in the executive class. It’s one of the most spacious too, easily accommodating five adults on long journeys. The range is extensive, from the entry-level and fuel-efficient 2.0 TDIe diesel to the high-performance, V10 twin-turbo RS6. The former is the economy champion in the range, while the latter is as quick as many supercars. Go for SE trim for a decent level of standard equipment and the best resale values. Quattro four-wheel drive is available with the larger engines in the line-up.

This generation of A6 has now been replaced. You can read our full review of the latest Audi A6 saloon here.

MPG, running costs & CO2

Larger diesels are not much more expensive to run

The 2.0 TDIe diesel's economy and emission figures of 53.3mpg and 139g/km sound good in isolation, but the BMW 520d saloon launched in 2010 is even better, as is the Mercedes-Benz E200 CDI. The larger 2.7 and 3.0 V6 TDI diesels are better suited to the heavy A6 than the 2.0 TDI, although they're not as economical. However, they don't use anywhere near as much fuel as the high-performance S6 and RS6 models.

Engines, drive & performance

Steering is accurate and brakes are strong

The A6 is very good at covering large distances. The car’s suspension is set-up for comfort and the driving position is good, while the steering is accurate and brakes are strong. Four-wheel-drive quattro versions offer good grip on slippery roads, but the A6 doesn’t handle quite as well the BMW 5 Series or Jaguar XF.

Interior & comfort

Suspension is soft and supple

Thanks to soft and supple suspension, the A6 is very comfortable. Excellent seats offer a wide range of adjustment, and because the car measures nearly five metres in length, there's plenty of space for passengers to stretch out. Whether you are riding in the front or back, leg, head and shoulder room are all impressive, while double glazed windows on flagship versions mean comfort is boosted even further.

Practicality & boot space

There are split-fold seats as standard

The A6 saloon boasts the biggest boot in the executive class, with 546 litres of space. There are split-fold seats as standard and large storage areas elsewhere in the cabin.

Reliability & safety

Front, side and curtain airbags come as standard

It’s a testament to Audi’s build quality that the A6 ranked in 14th position for quality on the 2010 Driver Power survey. The A6’s overall position in the Driver Power top 100 at 32 is a significant improvement on the 2009 result of 52nd place. With a full five stars in the Euro NCAP crash test, the A6 is a safe car, and gets front, side and curtain airbags as standard. Electronic stability control is also standard.

Price, value for money & options

Equipment levels are good

The Audi A6 undercuts equivalent BMW 5 Series and Mercedes-Benz E-Class models on a like-for-like basis. Equipment levels across all models are good, with standard versions offering alloy wheels, cruise control and climate control, as well as reassuring levels of safety equipment. It's worth paying a little more for SE trim over the entry-level specification for the extra equipment, such as a leather interior.

Next Steps

Which Is Best?

Cheapest

  • Name
    40 TFSI Sport 4dr S Tronic [Tech Pack]
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £38,680

Most Economical

  • Name
    50 TFSI e 17.9kWh Quattro Sport 4dr S Tronic
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £53,590

Fastest

  • Name
    S6 TDI 344 Quattro 4dr Tip Auto
  • Gearbox type
    Semi-auto
  • Price
    £60,855

Recommended

Audi A6 saloon review
Audi A6
Audi A6
19 May 2022

Audi A6 saloon review

Top 10 best large executive cars 2022
BMW 5 Series driving
Best cars
15 Mar 2022

Top 10 best large executive cars 2022

Most Popular

Electric MG 4 to arrive in September
2023 MG 4 - UK front
MG
4 Jul 2022

Electric MG 4 to arrive in September

Engine management light: top 5 causes of amber engine warning light
Engine management light: top 5 causes of amber engine warning light
Car technology
22 Jun 2022

Engine management light: top 5 causes of amber engine warning light

Best new car deals 2022: this week’s top car offers
Facelifted Volvo XC60 driving - front
Deals
1 Jul 2022

Best new car deals 2022: this week’s top car offers

Tips & advice

View All
Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide
Car dashboard symbols and meanings
Tips and advice
23 Mar 2022

Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide
Electric car charging station
Tips and advice
5 Nov 2021

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?
PCP vs HP
Car buying
17 May 2022

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?

Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Tips and advice
20 Jun 2022

Average speed cameras: how do they work?

Best cars

View All
Top 10 best car interiors 2022
Peugeot 208 hatchback
Best cars
25 Jun 2021

Top 10 best car interiors 2022

Top 10 best electric cars 2022
Ioniq 5
Best cars
25 Apr 2022

Top 10 best electric cars 2022

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2022
Nissan Leaf front
Best cars
3 May 2022

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2022

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2022
Audi RS 3 driving - front view
Hot hatches
24 Jun 2022

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2022