Saturday 22 October 2016
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Test Drive: 2016 Audi S6 Quattro Review

Test Drive: 2016 Audi S6 Quattro Review

The Audi A6 comes in a variety of models and engines.  It comes in a 4-cylinder turbo, a 6-cylinder turbo, and recently I showed you the 2016 A6 with the 3-liter turbo diesel.  Today, we jump to the pinnacle of the A6 line, the Audi S6 4-liter, the hot rod of the A6 family.

This is the 4th generation of the A6, which falls between the A4 and the A8 in the Audi sedan lineup.  You can essentially get the same car with the A7, except instead of it being a sedan, it is a large hatchback and it too comes in a performance model, the S7.

For 2016, the A6 has a mid-cycle refresh, which means they kept most of the car the same, but made some fairly minor changes.  You’ll notice the headlights and taillights are different, the front ladder-style grill is wider and is surrounded by chrome.  Overall the A6 has a wider stance, and for 2016 they improved the Audi MMI system, which stands for Multi-Media Interface.   MMI essentially runs everything from a large, color screen that slides out and rises up from the dash. The MMI operating system allows you to manage an array of systems including navigation, entertainment, interior comfort, even ride dynamics on the A6. 

For 2016, you also get the 4G LTE Audi Connect system free for six months.  Audi Connect is your onboard source for information about traffic, weather, directions and more, featuring Google Earth, Google Voice search, social media integration and a secure, high-speed Wi-Fi hotspot for up to eight devices.  Everything can be operated by the controllers in the center console or by voice command.

Among consumers, this is one of the most-liked systems in the auto industry. It looks a little complicated at first, but you’ll figure it out in short order, and you’ll love the colors and graphics of the center screen.  Finally, you get two USB ports for 2016, something Audi has not offered in the past.

My review vehicle is the S6 Quattro. Quattro means it has Audi’s terrific all-wheel drive system, which will certainly help you in bad weather, but it also helps you with stability, handling, and it distributes power to different wheels as needed for maximum power, especially upon heavy acceleration.

As mentioned earlier, you have three engine choices in the A6, but only one in the S6.  I like how Audi keeps everything simple by dividing in half.  For example, the 4- cylinder is a 2-liter, the 6-cylinders are all 3-liter engines, and my review vehicle this week is their V8, which is a 4-liter, and that brings us to the real meat of the S6.

Under the hood, you’ll find a 4-liter, twin turbo V8 that is putting out 450-horses, and that is up 30-horses from the 2015.  At the same time Audi raised the horsepower, they also squeezed out more miles per gallon.

All S6s come with a 7-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission that can be shifted from paddles on the steering wheel, or you can shift it from the gearshift on the center console. This combination of engine and transmission will propel the S6 from 0-to-60 in just over 4 seconds, which is pretty incredible for a car this size.

All S6 models come with a huge array of notable standard equipment like leather seating, power sunroof, power tilt wheel, steering wheel controls, rearview camera, navigation system, and as mentioned earlier, the MMI system, which gives you Bluetooth connectivity.  You get LED lights that are different for 2016 and Zenon headlights.

As you look at the interior, Audi is known for some of the most luxurious interiors available, and this one has very comfortable sport leather seats and you’ll notice the decorative inlays that gives this an interior look like no other luxury car.  You also get power seats for both front seat occupants.

This S6 has an optional $500 carbon fiber package that runs from the door panels, across the dash, and surrounds the large center console and it looks awesome.

The back seat of the S6 is roomy and has a comfortable fold-down armrest and the rear seat is heated.  The rear seat folds down for additional trunk space if you need to carry larger items.  Headroom for all five passengers is good, and trunk space is good as well.  The S6 even has a temporary spare, something that is getting harder to find.

This particular model has the S6 Sport package which gives you dynamic steering, a sport rear differential, and you’ll notice the black quad exhaust pipes.  It also has the Black Optic package, which is primarily the terrific 20” double-spoke wheels, and this vehicle has the upgraded Bose stereo system.

This S6 also has the Driver Assistance package, which for me would be a must-have option.  You get adaptive cruise control, Audi pre-sense system which will stop the car automatically if needed, blind spot monitoring, active lane assist which will correct the steering wheel if you drift out of your lane, and automatic high beam control.  You also get a top view rear-parking camera, a great feature for parking.

To summarize the 2016 Audi S6, it is beautiful on the outside, on the inside, and with 450-horses under the hood and the Quattro system, it is a true sports sedan which will stack up very nicely with BMW 550 and Mercedes E400.

Fuel economy considering the horsepower is good at 18-city, 27-highway, and 21- overall.  The S6 also has a 5-Star safety rating in every category.  This car comes with the auto stop/start system, which kills the engine when you stop, but keeps all the accessories running, including the air conditioner.  Thankfully, Audi allows you to turn this system off with the push of a button.

Sticker price on this S6 is just over $81,000 and that stacks up nicely with other vehicles similarly equipped.

Luxury and performance comes together in the 2016 S6 and I give it a Car Pro rating of 5 out of 5 Stars.

What I liked most:  Performance, handling, and good looks.

What I would change:  Expected air-conditioned seats at this price.    

MSRP: Base price $70,900, as equipped $81,275.

Fuel Economy:  EPA rated at 18 City/27 Highway, 18 Combined.

Fuel Tank: 19.8 gallons.

Dimensions:  194” long/82” wide/56” high.

Weight:  4486 pounds

2016 Audi S6 in a few words:  Luxury and performance come together in the S6.

Trailer Towing:  N/A 

Warranty:  4-year/50,000 mile bumper to bumper with roadside assistance, and first maintenance free.

Car Pro Rating:  5 out of 5 Stars.

Manufacturer’s website: Audi