The 2001 Audi A6 serves as a sharp and handsome executive car in the hotly contested luxury sedan market. The A6 provides the mid-price option in the Audi lineup. An alternative to the BMW 5 Series and the Mercedes-Benz E-Class, the A6 features a modern style that effectively blends luxury with sporty driving characteristics.
The A6 comes in four flavors. Quattro (Audi’s all-wheel-drive system) marks a huge selling point for Audi in the U.S., with 80 percent of Audi’s total U.S. sales coming from Quattro models.
Body Styles: sedan, five-door wagon
Engines: 2.8-liter V-6, 2.7-liter V-6, 4.2-liter V-8
Transmissions: six-speed manual, five-speed automatic
Models: Audi A6 2.8 sedan, Audi A6 2.8 Avant wagon, Audi A6 2.7T sedan, Audi A6 4.2 sedan
All 2001 Audi A6s now come standard with head-protecting side-curtain airbags. These airbags deploy to cover the side windows of the vehicle to protect the head in the event of a crash or rollover. Curtain airbags already came standard for the A6 4.2 but previously only provided options for the A6 2.8 and 2.7T.
A lateral skid control system called the Electronic Stabilization Program now comes standard on the 2.7T and 4.2 A6 sedans in the 2001 model. This feature remains an option for the 2.8 sedan.
The A6 4.2 sedan comes standard with steering-wheel-mounted controls for the sound system.
The A6 may not have the stunning aesthetics of the A4, but it maintains Audi’s unmistakable styling and character through the elegantly swept greenhouse and muscular fenders. The most recent update stylistically to the A6 carries over from the 2000 model, when a larger hood debuted to accommodate the 4.2 A6’s new V-8 engine. Some feel that the vehicle looks dumpy from certain angles but looks often lie in the eye of the beholder. Many love the A6’s smooth and flowing shape.
The A6 2.7 measures 192 inches in length, slightly longer than the Lexus ES300 and roughly the same size as the Acura 3.2TL. The A6 4.2 stretches even longer at 193.4 inches. The 2001 Audi A6 rides a wheelbase of 108.7 inches with 16-inch tires, rack and pinion steering, and independent front and rear suspensions.
The A6 seats five occupants with an elegant interior that showcases leather-trimmed seats with wood trim on the doors. The dashboard has eye-catching white on black control gauges. The red instrument lighting used by Audi can sometimes be too much for the eye. Space in the A6 trunk seems abundant and perfect for bulky items or cargo. Additional space opens up by folding down the rear seat.
Standard features for the 2001 Audi A6 include air-conditioning, a sound system with an AM/FM radio, cassette and CD players, cruise control, a tachometer, tilt steering, and a power-adjustable driver’s seat.
Performance & Handling
The base sedan and Avant wagon contain a standard 2.8-liter, V-6 engine. The base model uses either front drive or the Quattro all-wheel-drive system. While Quattro remains optional for the 2.8, the system comes standard for all other models. These other models include the 2.7T sedan with a 2.7-liter, V-6 engine and the 4.2 sedan with a 4.2-liter, V-8 engine. The Quattro system constantly monitors the grip of all four tires, automatically feeding power to the tires with the most adhesion to the road surface whenever it detects that one or more tires loses traction.
Steering and handling in the 2001 Audi A6 proves smooth and responsive. The A6 drives with a very balanced feel. The suspension sometimes feels too soft. Cornering remains precise. The 2.8 V-6 doesn’t provide much in the way of power for a weighty car like the A6, but it adequately accelerates at highway speeds once it gets going. Passing at highway speeds may require full throttle. The 2.7T offers better acceleration than the 2.8 and almost compares to the 4.2 but at a fraction of the cost. Downshifting may be required on grades.
The Audi A6 comes standard with a four-wheel anti-lock braking system, front and rear airbags, and dual front side-mounted airbags. NHTSA or IIHS crash test ratings remain unavailable for the 2001 Audi A6.
EPA Fuel Economy
Audi A6 2.8: 16/22 mpg city/highway
Audi A6 2.7T: 16/22 mpg city/highway
Audi A6 4.2: 15/23 mpg city/highway
- Engine options
- Nice interior
- All-wheel drive stability
You Won't Like
- Exterior styling
- Non-linear steering
- Rear seat in 4.2
Thrills and comfort in the lap of luxury.
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