Audi A6 Avant estate (2005-2011)
"With its big boot and smooth ride, the A6 Avant is a great estate car that’s designed first and foremost to be comfortable."
- Huge boot
- Classy image
- High quality feel to controls
- Finding a parking space big enough
- Thirst of the petrol engines
- Rear seats don't fold completely flat
Audi's A6 Avant is a quality estate car with a spacious and well equipped interior. The Avant comes with a vast array of engine, gearbox and trim options. The 2.0 TDIe diesel is impressively efficient, while fans of high performance will love the incredibly fast S6 and RS6 models, although these both have a big thirst.
This generation of A6 has now been replaced. You can read our review of the latest Audi A6 Avant here.
MPG, running costs & CO2
The 2.0 TDIe diesel returns fuel economy of 53.3mpg and emissions of 139g/km, which compares favourably with the BMW 520d Touring and undercut the equivalent Mercedes-Benz. Even the 3.0 TDI A6 Avant returns 42.2mpg, despite featuring energy-sapping quattro four-wheel drive as standard. The high-performance S6 and RS6 models are powered by big V10 petrol engines, so will be very expensive to run.
Engines, drive & performance
On smooth motorways the A6 Avant soaks up road and wind noise. S line models sacrifice some of this for improved handling and performance, with lower suspension and beefed up looks. Some may find the impressively economical 2.0 TDI diesel a little underpowered, especially if towing is on the agenda. The 2.7 and 3.0 TDI diesels are best suited to the A6, offering safe and fast overtaking when needed, and smooth, economical progress the rest of the time.
Interior & comfort
One word sums up the A6 Avant driving experience: comfort. It excels at delivering its driver and passengers to the end of a long journey in limousine-rivalling comfort. That's thanks in part to the comfortable ride, but also to excellent seat design and a wide range of adjustment. There is one caveat, though, as the A6 Avant is a much better car when specified with air-suspension, which is a pricey option.
Practicality & boot space
The spacious boot isn’t the biggest in the executive estate class – that honour goes to the Mercedes-Benz E-Class Estate. Even so, there’s 565 litres of luggage space, and that can be extended to a massive 1,660 litres if the rear seats are folded. Roof rails are standard should you need more space.
Reliability & safety
The A6 Avant was included as part of the A6’s score in the 2010 Driver Power survey, where it ranked 14th out of 100 for build quality, although this was behind the BMW 5 Series and Mercedes-Benz E-Class. However, a 54th placing for reliability is disappointing, as problems with the A6 should’ve been ironed out, considering how long it has been on sale for.
Price, value for money & options
Standard equipment across all models is good, as even the cheapest versions offer alloy wheels, cruise control and climate control, as well as reassuring levels of safety equipment. It's worth paying a little more for SE specification over the entry-level car for the extra equipment, such as a leather interior.