Feast your eyes on this beautiful new station wagon launched yesterday evening in Berlin. It's the 2012 Audi A6 Avant.
Based on the recently launched 2012 A6 sedan, the new 2012 Audi A6 Avant is offered with a lineup of engines and drivetrains similar to those of the sedan. Europeans have a choice of two gasoline or four diesel engines. They range from a fuel-sipping (47 mpg) 177 bhp 4-cylinder 2.0-liter TDI diesel engine with a 6-speed manual transmission to a new 313 bhp twin-turbo 3.0-liter V-6 TDI diesel engine with an S tronic 7-speed transmission. According to Audi, the TDI A6 Avant hits 100 km/h (62 mph) in 5.4 seconds, making it a tad quicker than the one with the 300-bhp supercharged V-6 TFSI gasoline engine.
Audi says 20 percent of the body is aluminum, which saves up to 155 lb. when compared to the previous generation A6 Avant. Despite a decrease in weight, the new Avant offers increased interior space and can hold 20 cu ft of luggage, expandable to 59 cu ft with the rear seats folded down. The tailgate can even be opened hands-free by gesturing under the rear bumper at hidden sensors with a foot!
The 2012 Audi A6 Avant is available with front-drive or the latest evolution of the Quattro permanent all-wheel-drive system that features a crown-gear center differential and torque vectoring. A sport differential, which distributes the power in continuously variable proportions between the rear wheels, is optional on Quattro models.
The interior features the same look as the sedan, and includes many options such as Audi Connect, which uses an internal UMTS module Bluetooth online car phone to deliver the Internet to the A6 Avant. Special services are available in collaboration with Google. The graphics card in the navigation system, for example, integrates images and information from Google Earth with the navigation route. A Wi-Fi hotspot provides to mobile devices onboard.
The 2012 A6 sedan goes on sale in the U.S. later this summer, but at present there are apparently no plans to import the 2012 A6 Avant to this side of the pond. It's a shame. Station wagons are far better looking and really just as practical as SUVs. For instance, in Europe, the A6 Avant has a rated towing capacity of 4630 lb, about the same as the Audi Q5. Perhaps if enough Avant fans ask for the 2012 A6 Avant, Audi of America could be persuaded to change its mind.