Summary


The Audi A6 is a large executive vehicle available in saloon and estate (called Avant) body styles. This is the fourth-generation model, which first arrived in 2011. After a mid-life facelift in 2015, this A6 iteration was replaced by the current model in 2018.

In usual Audi fashion, top-spec performance versions of the A6 saloon and estate were called the S6. There was also the A6 allroad quattro model, which had a beefed-up estate body and improved ground clearance for off-road driving. Finally, the performance-focused RS 6 Avant completed the range, but that’s not covered on this page.

Available with a choice of several petrol and diesel engines, the fourth-generation A6 consistently received good to very good scores from the UK media during its time on sale – praised by Top Gear for its “unarguably lovely” interior which was both practical and sophisticated, and commended by Auto Trader for its “refined and really economical engines”.

While Audi S6 models also garnered praise for their straight-line speed and driving dynamics, the performance of the standard A6 models did not excite reviewers to the same extent, as a few motoring outlets suggested that the A6 wasn’t as engaging as some of its upmarket saloon rivals.

“If you’re in the market for an economical, spacious and quietly gratifying car then the Audi A6 is highly recommended”, concluded Autocar‘s Matt Saunders. “Those seeking a more engaging and rewarding drive should perhaps opt for the equivalent BMW 5 Series.”

No longer on sale, the fourth-gen Audi A6 holds an Expert Rating of 73%, based on 64 reviews published by the British automotive media.

    A6 highlights

    • Well-built upmarket interior
    • Plenty of safety features
    • Refined and economical engines

    A6 lowlights

    • Mercedes-Benz E-Class had more boot space
    • Larger wheel options hinder ride comfort
    • Not as engaging as some rivals

    Key specifications


    Body style: Large saloon and estate
    Engines: petrol, diesel
    Price when new: From £30,985 on-road

    Launched: Autumn 2011Last updated: Spring 2015
    Replaced: Summer 2018


    audi a6 (2011 to 2018)

    A6 (2011 – 2015)

    audi a6 (2011 to 2018)

    A6 (2011 – 2015)

    audi a6 (2011 to 2018)

    A6 Avant (2011 – 2015)

    audi a6 (2011 to 2018)

    A6 Avant (2011 – 2015)

    audi a6 (2011 to 2018)

    A6 Allroad Quattro

    audi a6 (2011 to 2018)

    A6 Allroad Quattro

    audi a6 (2011 to 2018)
    audi a6 (2011 to 2018)

    A6 (2015 – 2018)

    audi a6 (2011 to 2018)

    A6 (2015 – 2018)

    audi a6 (2011 to 2018)

    A6 Avant (2015 – 2018)

    audi a6 (2011 to 2018)

    A6 Avant (2015 – 2018)

    Media reviews


    Reviews, road test and comparisons from across the UK automotive media. Click any of the boxes to view.

    Auto Express

    +

    Model reviewed: Avant (2011-18)Score: 8 / 10“Not the most engaging to drive, but the Audi A6 Avant is one of the biggest and most efficient premium estates.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Score: 8 / 10“In the battle for supremacy in the corporate car park, the Audi A6 is a great choice. Its understated style, classy interior and host of tech on board make it a saloon car to aspire to.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Score: 8.2 / 10“The Audi A6 Avant is a large executive estate car with great performance and practicality, along with surprising economy.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: 2.0 TDI UltraScore: 8 / 10“Driven carefully, this unassuming Audi A6 estate is potentially a real efficiency hero, and should appeal to cost-conscious private buyers and fleet managers alike.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: S6Score: 6 / 10“The Audi S6 looks classy, sounds great and is a likeable car despite not having the most impressive chassis in its class.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Avant UltraScore: 10 / 10“Eco makeover transforms Audi A6 Avant Ultra estate, making it better than ever.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: S LineScore: 8 / 10“Audi A6 S line adds sporty looks and plenty of equipment, but stiff suspension is no good.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Ultra (2014)Score: 8 / 10“Flagship Audi A6 Ultra saloon sets bar high with quality build and impressive drive.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Ultra“The Audi A6 Ultra is a solid, refined, luxury car.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Score: 8 / 10“Audi’s executive saloon is better than it has ever been, and is set to take the market by storm.”
    Read review

    Auto Trader

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    Model reviewed: Score: 8 / 10“The Audi A6 saloon is more comfortable than the BMW 5 Series, but less fun to drive. It’s packed with impressive technology, including in-car Wi-Fi.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Score: 7.8 / 10“The Audi A6 is an excellent executive car – supremely refined, very spacious and available with some really economical engines that make it very appealing to company car drivers.”
    Read review

    Autocar

    +

    Model reviewed: S6Score: 8 / 10“Outstanding all-season ability and impressive everyday practicality, but lacking intimacy on challenging roads and beginning to show its age in certain areas.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Score: 8 / 10“The Audi A6 rises higher than any model before it and is now a real contender in the mid-size exec market.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Avant 2.0 TDI UltraScore: 8 / 10“If you’re in the market for an economical, spacious and quietly gratifying car then this variant of the Audi A6 is highly recommended.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: 2.0 TDI Avant“The new Audi A6 Avant doesn’t have quite the load-carrying ability of rivals, but it’s a frugal, decent drive.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: 3.0 TDI quattro 2011“The Audi A6 has much to recommend for quality, value and economy – it just lacks dynamic polish.”
    Read review

    Business Car

    +

    Model reviewed: 3.0 TDI SE Quattro S-tronicScore: 8 / 10“The quattro version of the A6 driven here is the best example of how far Audi, and the car industry, has come in the past seven years.”
    Read review

    Car

    +

    Model reviewed: S6 AvantScore: 8 / 10“No massive changes then, but the S6 Avant remains a rapid, refined and very likable superwagon.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: S6 (2015)Score: 8 / 10“The Audi S6 remains a very likable car. Interior quality is still deeply impressive and that engine is really quite special.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: 2.0 TDI Ultra (2015)Score: 8 / 10“A subtle round of updates for a subtle car but all of them well worthwhile, keeping the Audi A6 fighting fit against its 5-series nemesis.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: UltraScore: 6 / 10“The Audi A6 Ultra has an impressive set of numbers, from its list price, mpg, C02 and spec; but it’s not particularly fun or satisfying to drive.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Allroad (2012)Score: 8 / 10“It might be a bit flashier than the previous two generations, but the Allroad is a superb all-rounder for those rich country types, and less gauche than an SUV.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: S6 Avant (2012)Score: 8 / 10“In terms of pure fun, the S6 is easily beaten, but as an all-weather performance workhorse, few cars can compete.”
    Read review

    Car Keys

    +

    Model reviewed: Score: 8 / 10“The A6 is Audi’s lavish saloon cruiser that mixes interior luxury with intriguing power and driving dynamics.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: AvantScore: 8 / 10“The Audi A6 Avant is an attractive, practical and sophisticated car with lots of space and some impressive diesel engines.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: S6 4.0 TFSI quattroScore: 8 / 10“The Audi S6 Quattro is a carefully worked-out car for people who carefully work things out.”
    Read review

    Carbuyer

    +

    Model reviewed: S Line“The Audi A6 S line is the best trim to go for in the range. Its diesel engines are all economical and it costs less than similarly equipped rivals.”
    Read review

    Carwow

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    Model reviewed: Score: 7 / 10“It may be getting on a bit, but the Audi A6’s interior quality is top notch, with squidgy plastics and expensive trim pieces on show everywhere you care to cast your eyes – it feels and looks expensive.”
    Read review

    Evo

    +

    Model reviewed: S6Score: 7 / 10“The new Audi S6 swaps its predecessor’s thirsty V10 engine for a 4-litre twin-turbocharged V8 that combines strong performance with decent fuel economy – but can it deliver thrills?”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Score: 8 / 10“The Audi A6 offers a beautiful interior, mighty turbodiesels, comfort, refinement and space.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: 3.0 TFSI QuattroScore: 7 / 10“Big petrols are a very minority taste in mid-sized execs like the A6 these days, but the V6 TFSI motor is a gem thanks to its combination of stodgy, diesel-like low-down torque and an appetite for revs that would make any older TDI driver feel nostalgic.”
    Read review

    Fleetworld

    +

    Model reviewed: S line 2.0 TDI ultra“With low running costs and no sacrifices for the end user, the A6 ultra means even executive-level employees can contribute to carbon reductions without giving up creature comforts.”
    Read review

    Green Car Guide

    +

    Model reviewed: Avant 2.0 TDI (2016)Score: 9 / 10“If you’re looking for a large, stylish, and economical executive estate, then the Audi A6 Avant 2.0 TDI, capable of 56.5 mpg, should fit the bill.”
    Read review

    Heycar

    +

    Model reviewed: AvantScore: 7 / 10“The Audi A6 Avant is a strong contender in the large estate car market. It’s a bit more stylish than some rivals, has a sophisticated image, a brilliant interior and a competitive diesel engine.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Allroad (2012-18)Score: 8 / 10“Audi has always pitched the A6 Allroad – its all-terrain version of the A6 Avant – as an alternative to a full size 4×4. And it certainly looks the part.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Score: 7 / 10“The Audi A6 is a bit more stylish than some of its rivals, has an upmarket image, a classy interior and a competitive diesel engine.”
    Read review

    Honest John

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    Model reviewed: S6Score: 8 / 10“The Audi S6 offers a refined ride for a performance car and effortless performance from the 4.0-litre V8 engine.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Score: 8 / 10“The A6 Avant isn’t an overly exciting car to drive – enthusiasts will prefer the BMW 5 Series Touring – but it is a thoroughly capable and confident one.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Score: 8 / 10“Impressive cabin with a straightforward layout. Very quiet and refined on the move.”
    Read review

    Motoring Research

    +

    Model reviewed: S6 (2015)“Ultimately, the S6 just lacks the drama you’d want after blowing a heap of cash on a powerful V8 super saloon.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: (2015)“The 2015 Audi A6 may not look much different, but it’s more efficient and faster than before, making it more competitive against the BMW 5 Series and Mercedes-Benz E-Class.”
    Read review

    Motors.co.uk

    +

    Model reviewed: Score: 8 / 10“Brought to the market in 2011, the Mk IV A6 came with a longer wheelbase, an even sleeker design and a raft of safety systems that has helped move the A6 to the forefront of the executive saloon sector.”
    Read review

    Parkers

    +

    Model reviewed: Score: 8 / 10“The Audi S6 comes with a rather boisterous 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 engine producing 450hp and, while this is smaller than the 5.2-litre V10 engine found in the previous S6 car, it’s actually more powerful – producing 18hp more.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: AvantScore: 8.2 / 10“Top quality premium Audi A6 Avant estate offers high mpg or huge performance.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Score: 7.6 / 10“The A6 is similar to the A4 and the A8 and although it’s not ugly, it’s not going to wow you as a design classic.”
    Read review

    The Sun

    +

    Model reviewed: Avant Ultra S Line“The biggest compliment you can pay this Ultra is that it doesn’t feel much different to the standard engines. It might be a four-cylinder but you still think you’re driving a 3litre V6.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Avant“The Audi A6 Avant boasts outstanding fuel economy and best-in-class company car benefits.”
    Read review

    The Sunday Times

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    Model reviewed: Allroad 3.0 TDI quattroScore: 8 / 10“The Audi 6 Allroad is the Lara Croft of load-luggers.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Allroad QuattroScore: 8 / 10“The Audi A6 Allroad Quattro is an immensely likeable estate car with ‘lite’ off-road ability.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: S6 (2012)Score: 8 / 10“The S6 is a good, well-judged car that would make a great deal of sense in Italy. Here in Britain, however, it will be bought and driven extremely badly by people you wouldn’t want round for dinner.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Score: 8 / 10“At last, an Audi A6 that’s as good as a BMW or a Merc.”
    Read review

    The Telegraph

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    Model reviewed: Score: 8 / 10“Handsomely styled and beautifully built, it also promises very low fuel consumption and CO2 emissions if you go for the Ultra model.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Score: 7 / 10“The Audi A6 is a very capable and competent executive car choice. Spacious, comfortable and classy, it’s also very affordable to run if you choose the Ultra model.”
    Read review

    Top Gear

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    Model reviewed: S6 AvantScore: 7 / 10“The S6 Avant is supremely fast, very comfortable, clean and relatively efficient.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: S6 TFSI Quattro 4dr S TronicScore: 7 / 10“The Audi makes a great case for itself if you want comfortable, crushing pace with a bombproof interior.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: 2.0 TDI Ultra S Line 4drScore: 7 / 10“The mildly facelifted Audi A6 comes with a highly economical four-cylinder diesel engine and front-wheel drive.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: S6“The Audi S6 is an unarguably lovely product, and the materials and cabin tech have upped the everyday-premium game to new levels of luxury.”
    Read review

    What Car?

    +

    Model reviewed: Ultra 2.0 TDI (2014)Score: 8 / 10“The Audi A6 has always trailed the BMW 5 Series in dynamic ability, but this new Ultra engine is incredibly smooth and refined for a four-cylinder diesel.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Score: 8 / 10“The Audi A6 has always been a stylish and luxurious executive car, and this 2011 version does not buck that trend. Moreover, it substantially improves on previous models by being lighter and therefore better to drive and to ride in, plus it’s more efficient and easier on the pocket.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: S6“Given the Audi S6’s impressive refinement, brutal pace and sumptuous interior, you’re hardly settling for something that doesn’t feel worth the money.”
    Read review

    Model reviewed: Avant Ultra“The A6 Avant Ultra is one of the most accomplished cars that Audi makes – and that’s some achievement when you consider that the A6 is now more than three years old. “
    Read review

    Which?

    +

    Model reviewed: “An elegantly styled, beautifully crafted luxury choice, the Audi A6 has a lot of appeal.”
    Read review

    Safety rating

    audi a6 (2011 to 2018)


    No safety rating

    The fourth-generation Audi A6 was originally crash tested by Euro NCAP back in 2011 and awarded a five-star rating. However, this rating expired in January 2017 and is no longer valid as the car no longer meets the standards required for such a rating.

    Eco rating

    audi a6 (2011 to 2018)


    No eco rating

    The fourth-generation Audi A6 was not tested by Green NCAP during its production life as it pre-dated the organisation.

    Reliability rating


    The Audi A6 has a low reliability score, according to exclusive warranty data provided by our partners at MotorEasy. Please note that this score covers the current-generation A6, this fourth-generation model and the previous (pre-2011) versions.

    Over a quarter of all reported problems with the A6 relate to its electrical system, with an average repair bill of more than £450. Engine problems are (unsurprisingly) expensive, and are fortunately not too common, costing around £3,000. Petrol and diesel engines in the A6 are all used in many other Audi and Volkswagen Group (VW, SEAT, Skoda) models, so they are well proven.

    The most expensive warranty claims made relate to the car’s gearbox, with an average cost of over £3,100. If you’re looking at a used Audi A6, make sure any extended warranty cover you purchase covers all of these potential problem areas.

    Awards


    Trophies, prizes and awards that the Audi A6 has received

    2016

    • Company Car of the Year Awards – Best in Upper Mid-size Class

    2015

    • Auto Express Awards – Best Executive Car
    • Fleet World Awards – Best Executive Car

    2014

    • Auto Express Awards – Best Executive Car

    2020

    • Parkers Awards – Best Premium Executive Car
    • Red Dot Awards – Red Dot Design Award

    2011

    • Golden Steering Wheel Award

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    Audi A7 Sportback | BMW 5 Series | DS 9 | Genesis G80 | Jaguar XF | Lexus ES | Maserati Ghibli | Mercedes-Benz E-Class | Tesla Model S | Volvo S90 | Volvo V90

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