Audi and Volkswagen are making three letters very common for this model year – TDI. TDI stands for turbo diesel injection. But this isn’t the diesel you remember from the past. This is “clean diesel”.
And my tester this week wanted to make that abundantly clear. Audi/Volkswagen have emblazoned Clean Diesel on the side of the press vehicles this year. We are almost walking billboards for this technology.
My clean diesel chariot this week was a good one. The 2014 Audi A6 has many new changes for this model year. One is the aforementioned clean diesel turbo technology, but also there’s a new 8-speed transmission, increased fuel economy and increased power.
On the looks, the A6 was already one of my favorites. To me, it’s what a luxury sedan should look like. The A6 has a somewhat aggressive appearance with refined styling. Xenon headlights make it extra sexy during night driving. For sure, all Audis, and the A6 specifically, have a distinctive look both in the daytime and at night, and that’s a plus in my book. Whether coming or going, you know an Audi when you see it.
Under the hood rests a 3.0-liter 6-cylinder TDI engine. It makes 240 horsepower and 428 lb.-ft. of torque. The high amount of torque has everything to do with the sweet clean diesel turbo. It engages with little to no lag, right off the line. For a sedan with “only” 240 horsepower, the A6 feels and performs a lot more aggressively than others.
For a sedan with “only” 240 horsepower, the A6 feels and performs a lot more aggressively than others.
The 8-speed tiptronic transmission is modern and efficient. With optional paddle shifters, it throws shifts around in a calm, subdued manner.
Inside, the interior is special. Audi never disappoints when it comes to comfort, luxury and technology. Comfortable leather seats provide an excellent ride for driver and passengers. The cabin of the A6 is quiet. Despite the distinctive diesel engine sound (although it’s much toned down) none of that permeates the cabin. Passengers will enjoy comfortable seats, ample legroom and headroom and plenty of technology.
Audi never disappoints when it comes to comfort, luxury and technology.
The interior technology is the best of any car in this segment. While the infotainment system can be awkward and cumbersome to manage, once you master it, you appreciate the technology at your fingertips. There’s even a package that includes in-car WiFi. All the navigation is Google-Earth based and runs through a seven-inch touchscreen.
Other cutting-edge technology found in the A6 includes adaptive cruise control with start/stop technology, lane assist, pre sense collision avoidance, and even a night vision camera when backing up and driving at a low speed.
A retractable glass sunroof runs the length of the car allowing for plenty of ambience and natural lighting. A 14.6 cubic foot trunk is on the small side compared to other competitors. Rear seats can fold flat to add to the cargo room however.
By adding the diesel technology, Audi improves the overall fuel economy for the company and for this sedan (remember CAFÉ). The Audi A6 with TDI has an EPA rating of 24 mpg/city and 38 mpg/hwy. In a week’s worth of driving I averaged 27 mpg. I sipped only a half a tank of fuel during my time with the Audi, which included an impromptu road trip.
I sipped only a half a tank of fuel during my time with the Audi, which included an impromptu road trip.
All together there are six different trim levels for the A6, most that don’t feature diesel. All trims come with either a turbo engine or a supercharged engine. Only the Premium and Prestige trims have the TDI offering.
My tester came with several options including the driver assistance technology package, the sport package and the black optic package (which adds 20-inch wheels, a titanium finish and high gloss black paint). The black optic package has a price of $1,300 and adds an extra amount of sex appeal and sleekness to the A6. All totaled my tester had a final price of $67,295.
Competing against the likes of Cadillac, BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Lexus can be difficult.
Competing against the likes of Cadillac, BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Lexus can be difficult. Audi holds it own against any competitor by offering a sedan that is both stunningly beautiful, full of technology and combines it with an incredible driving experience that is both fast and fuel efficient, all thanks to those three marvelous letters – T-D-I.
Photo Credit: Audi