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Audi A6 gets a freshen-up

Stylish: Audi's new-look A6 is distinguishable from the current model by its revised headlights, grille and tail-lights.

Audi has pulled the wraps off a subtly improved version of the A6

26 Apr 2001

AUDI has released the first images of its new-look A6, due to go on sale in Germany next month.

Audi Australia spokesperson Anna Burgdorf says the local arrival date of the car is yet to be finalised, but she suggests it will be in the last quarter of this year.

The newcomer gains a handful of cosmetic upgrades, as well as a range of new engines.

The most obvious visual changes to the new model are a double radiator grille - formerly standard only on the V8 - and clear-lens headlights.

While the contour of the light unit remains unchanged, the light module has increased in diameter from 60 to 70 millimetres - Audi says this improves light output by 37 per cent.

In addition, all Audi A6 models can now be supplied as an option with particularly high-intensity xenon headlights with washers and automatic dynamic headlight range control.

The tail-lights have also been revised and rear visibility is improved by a larger door mirror on the passenger's side, which is now the same size as the driver's door mirror.

Visible exhaust tailpipes are another key differentiating factor - their number and arrangement vary depending on the engine version.

The range of petrol engines has also been extended: Audi now offers the A6 with two completely new petrol engines - a 2.0-litre inline four-cylinder engine with 96kW and a 3.0-litre V6 with 162 kW.

The 2.4-litre V6 has been upgraded and now develops 125kW and 230 Nm, while the 2.8-litre V6 has been dropped. The engine lineup is topped by the potent 4.2-litre V8 which produces 220kW in the A6 4.2 and 250kW in the S6.

Audi's continuously variable automatic transmission - known as multitronic - will be available in Germany with all front-wheel drive versions of the A6.

Audi says the new A6 sets new standards in noise reduction thanks to a new wiper system, revised door seals and thicker glass in the side windows. Rolling noise has also been reduced.

All quattro versions of the A6 the five-speed tiptronic transmission. A new feature of this transmission is an additional sporting shift program. In the "S" position the transmission changes up later and down earlier.

Another new feature in the A6 is the steering wheel with tiptronic function - as pioneered by Porsche with its 911.

New additions to the front suspension include a forged aluminium pivot bearing and a weight-reduced lightweight steel wheel hub. These help to reduce the unsprung masses at the front axle by about 5kg - or 35 per cent.

Optional speed-dependent Servotronic steering, which regulates steering effort depending on speed, is claimed to convey precise steering sensitivity with maximum feedback from the road at high speeds and offer more assistance when parking.

All new Audi A6 models are equipped with a hydraulic brake assist system which helps the driver by automatically increasing brake pressure in emergency braking situations.

Inside, there is revised trim and instrumentation and new steering wheels. They are more elaborate in design and are said to be more pleasant to grip. In addition, an air sensor detects high levels of pollutant in the outside air and automatically prevents it from entering the cabin.

Once the air quality improves, the sensor automatically reactivates the supply of outside air.

But the new-look A6 will not be the first car on Audi Australia's launch pad as the all-new A4 will make its debut in late June.

The pint-sized A2 will be the third new Audi to land here over the next 12 months, bowing in the first quarter of 2002.

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