2018 Audi A6

2018 Audi A6 Sedan Review

The A6 isn't the freshest on the market, but it remains an excellent, well-rounded choice.
4.5 star edmunds overall rating
author
by James Riswick
Edmunds Editor

The 2018 Audi A6 should be suffering from diminished appeal. After all, it's been kicking around without a full redesign for six model years now while its prime competitors have been completely redone in the past year. It's old news. Well, that might be true in terms of attracting attention, but in the end, the A6's appeal has in fact diminished little. This well-rounded luxury sedan continues to deliver exactly what shoppers in this segment are seeking: room, features, luxury and performance in abundance.

And for 2018, there's even more on offer. Not only does the available 3.0T V6 get more standard power, even the base Premium trim gets treated to the full gamut of previously optional tech equipment. You no longer have to pay extra for things such as a proper USB port or Bluetooth audio, while navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are now standard in a segment where they are almost always optional.

The A6 still makes do with Audi's previous-generation MMI tech interface — the controller is of an older design and you can't get the nifty Virtual Cockpit gauge display available on Audi such models as the A4, A5 and R8. It's also less advanced than the interfaces of its newer Benz and Bimmer rivals. However, this version of MMI still works, and we wouldn't consider it a major demerit. 

Indeed, the entire A6's age shouldn't be held against it. Maybe it could have a few extra features and maybe its conservative styling is getting stale, but in terms of checking off luxury car boxes, few do it as well without major drawbacks.

Notably, we picked the 2018 Audi A6 as one of Edmunds' Best AWD Sedans and Best Midsize Luxury Sedans for this year.



what's new

For 2018, every A6 now comes standard with navigation, the larger MMI display, and keyless ignition and entry. LED headlights are now included on the Premium Plus trim, while the Prestige gets a top-view parking camera. Every variant of the 3.0-liter V6 engine now produces 340 horsepower and 325 pound-feet of torque. That output had previously been exclusive to the now-discontinued Competition Prestige trim. There is a new Competition package, however, that essentially bundles the same features.

we recommend

We think you'd probably be content with the base Premium trim now that the previously optional MMI Navigation Plus package is standard. Besides the obvious, it includes the upgrade MMI tech interface, a bigger display, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, a proper USB output and full Bluetooth connectivity. You can get more features with Premium Plus or Prestige, but we think you'll be plenty happy with the Premium. As to engine choice, strongly consider the base 2.0T. Its fuel economy is excellent with all-wheel drive and superlative with front-wheel drive.

trim levels & features

The 2018 Audi A6 is a midsize luxury sedan available in four trim levels: 2.0T Premium, 2.0T Premium Plus, 3.0T Premium Plus and 3.0T Prestige. The A6 2.0T has a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that produces 252 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. Front-wheel drive is standard, and it utilizes a seven-speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission. Optional all-wheel drive (Quattro) is available, and is paired with an eight-speed automatic. The 3.0T upgrades to a supercharged 3.0-liter V6 good for 340 hp and 325 lb-ft of torque. All-wheel drive is standard with that engine.

Highlights for the the 2.0T Premium and 3.0T Premium include 18-inch wheels, adjustable drive settings, xenon headlights, LED running lights, automatic wipers, auto-dimming mirrors, keyless ignition and entry, a sunroof, front and rear parking sensors, a rearview camera, tri-zone automatic climate control, eight-way power front seats (includes heating and driver four-way lumbar adjustment), driver-seat memory settings and leather upholstery.

Standard tech for the 2.0T includes Bluetooth, Audi's MMI electronics interface, an 8-inch display, navigation, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Audi Connect (includes 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot capability) and a 10-speaker sound system with a CD player, satellite radio and media player interface. Also standard is Audi's Pre Sense Basic safety system, which senses when a collision is imminent and warns the driver, tensions the seat belts and closes the windows.

The Premium Plus (2.0T and 3.0T) trim adds LED headlights, a blind-spot warning system, power-folding mirrors, four-zone climate control, a power-adjustable steering wheel and a Bose surround-sound audio system.

At the top of the line is the 3.0T Prestige. It has the above equipment plus a top-view parking camera system, a power trunklid, a head-up display, ventilated front seats, front passenger adjustable lumbar, a power rear sunshade and manual rear side-window shades.

From here, Audi offers a variety of optional packages to further equip the A6. Keep an eye out for the Driver Assistance package (adaptive cruise control, the top-view camera system but with added front and rear corner views, lane departure warning and intervention, and forward collision warning and mitigation with automatic braking) and the Comfort Seating package (individually contoured and ventilated front seats with passenger-seat memory settings and massage function).

There's also the Competition package that comes with 20-inch wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, a high-performance rear differential, sport front seats, upgraded leather upholstery, and various sporty styling flourishes inside and out.

trim tested

There are typically multiple versions of each vehicle, although many aspects are shared. The ratings in this review are based on our full test of the 2016 Audi A6 3.0T Quattro Prestige (turbo 3.0L V6 | 8-speed automatic | AWD)

NOTE: Since this test was conducted, the current A6 has received some minor revisions, including more power for the V6 engine. Our findings remain broadly applicable to this year's A6, however.

Edmunds Scorecard

Overall4.5 / 5.0

Driving

4.5 / 5.0

Acceleration5.0 / 5.0
Braking4.5 / 5.0
Steering3.0 / 5.0
Handling4.5 / 5.0
Drivability4.0 / 5.0

Comfort

3.0 / 5.0

Seat comfort4.5 / 5.0
Ride comfort3.0 / 5.0
Noise & vibration3.0 / 5.0

Interior

4.5 / 5.0

Ease of use4.0 / 5.0
Getting in/getting out5.0 / 5.0
Roominess5.0 / 5.0
Visibility3.0 / 5.0
Quality5.0 / 5.0

driving

edmunds rating
With even more power for 2018, the A6's 3.0T V6 remains a standout in the segment. The standard 2.0T engine is also more than sufficient. The A6's handling is also excellent, though driver engagement could be better.

acceleration

edmunds rating
In prior testing, the A6 3.0T reaches 60 mph in just a tick above 5 seconds, which is excellent for the class. Under normal acceleration, power delivery is remarkably smooth with undetectable shifts from the eight-speed automatic. It's also remarkably quiet.

braking

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Our test A6, fitted with summer-rated tires, stopped from 60 mph in 111 feet — a typical distance. During panic braking, the car remained very controllable and tracked straight with no drama.

steering

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The steering effort is very light at low speeds for easy maneuverability and increases only slightly at higher speeds. Switching to Dynamic mode gives it more appropriate weighting for spirited driving, but there's never much feedback.

handling

edmunds rating
The A6 tackles turns with confident aggression. This is one of those sedans that behaves like a smaller coupe when having fun on a twisting road. Newer German rivals really haven't topped it. Note that our test car came equipped with the sport-tuned suspension.

drivability

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The auto engine stop-start feature has a tendency to stumble when the driver demands a quick launch. Otherwise, the A6 is free of quirks and behaves exactly as you'd expect with minimal effort.

comfort

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The A6 is one of the sportier luxury sedans with some comfort-related compromises in the name of performance. We'd caution comfort-focused buyers against the optional Sport package, which drives the comfort score down with its stiffer suspension, bigger wheels and summer tires.

seat comfort

edmunds rating
The A6's seats are firm but well shaped for comfort after extended periods. The ventilated seats on the range-topping Prestige trim further enhance comfort on long road trips. The outboard rear seats are equally supportive and comfortable.

ride comfort

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With the optional sport suspension and 20-inch wheels, the suspension lacks initial compliance over smaller road imperfections but not to objectionable levels. If comfort is a priority for you, we recommend skipping these options.

noise & vibration

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Wind and engine noises are pleasantly silenced, but there's a noticeable amount of road noise. It's not tiresome, though, and may be a result of the summer tires that come with the optional Sport package.

interior

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The A6's interior gets high marks for its classy, understated design and high-quality materials. The wood trim is particularly attractive. We also like the roomy cabin.

ease of use

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The primary controls are thoughtfully placed, and Audi's MMI infotainment interface is intuitive and easy to use.

getting in/getting out

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The true sedan profile and large door openings mean getting in and out of the A6 is easy, even in tight spaces. Rear passengers won't need to stoop to gain access either.

roominess

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The front seats are spacious without feeling too big, and the armrests are well placed for big and small occupants alike. The rear seats comfortably accommodate adult-size outboard passengers with enough head- and legroom.

visibility

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Forward visibility is hampered slightly by thick roof pillars, and the short rear window forces heavy reliance on the standard rearview camera. The head-up display (standard on the Prestige trim) is easy to read and supplies navigation directions, too.

quality

edmunds rating
The materials and construction of the A6 are top-notch. The knobs and buttons have a satisfying heft, and all interior surfaces are attractive and pleasing to the touch. Yes, this Audi is getting on in years, but it gives up little (if anything) to newer rivals.

utility

The A6's 14-cubic-foot trunk is smaller than those of rivals, and indeed most midsize sedans. It's still deep, wide and easily accepts bulkier items, but others are still better. The low liftover height is appreciated.

technology

The A6 does not yet offer Audi's latest MMI interface, including the Virtual Cockpit all-digital gauge display. That's OK, though, for as impressive as that system is, the older version in the A6 is still feature-rich and easy to use.

edmunds expert review process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.