2020 Audi A6 Allroad Carves Out A Softer Area of interest


As a automobile individual, I contemplate myself terribly fortunate. My each day driver, a 2005 Audi Allroad, is the automobile I need to maintain onto for so long as I probably can. It’s a passenger automobile with the center of an SUV.

I’ve towed my race automobile as far north as Washington and east to Utah, and all factors in between. I’ve lapped Laguna Seca, saved tempo with Jeeps at OHV parks, and nonetheless routinely hoon it on the Bridgestone Winter Driving monitor in Steamboat Springs. With the odometer at present sitting at simply over 140,000 miles, it’s nonetheless as sturdy because the day I acquired it.

However because the miles proceed to click on over, I ponder with rising frequency simply how lengthy my luck will maintain out. After 2005, Audi pulled the Allroad from the U.S. market, and there was nothing else on sale that matched its distinctive character and quirky but succesful set of options.

(Full Disclosure: Audi offered a fully-fueled 2020 A6 Allroad for a visit to make this writeup occur.)

(Testing Circumstances: Metropolis driving, highways, and grime.)

No matter the way it did within the market the primary time round, the unique Allroad was a particular automobile for Audi and it impressed a fiercely passionate following. That is acquainted floor for the automaker. Halo automobiles whose affect will be felt for generations. Its popularity was constructed on massively boosted five-cylinder engines and insanely succesful automobiles that shattered information. Whereas the Q5 crossover would possibly transfer steel and become profitable, it’s the swing-for-the-fences outliers just like the Allroad that are seared into our recollections.

After a 15 12 months hiatus, the A6 Allroad has returned to U.S. shores, and maybe I can lastly declare a worthy successor. Would this mannequin really be a return to that stage of offbeat greatness? Or would the brand new Allroad merely pay lip service to its heritage? In brief, the reply is a little bit little bit of each.

Considered from head-on, it definitely seems to be the half, filled with daring angles and contrasting parts. Its immensely large grille is bisected by meaty strips of chrome. Baleen of a whale on the prowl for krill, threatening to eat you entire. Additional brightwork under the outsize face accentuates this visible drama. Aggressive and substantial, it actually seems to be the enterprise.

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If solely the remainder of the design lived as much as the promise of the entrance finish. The perimeters not solely lack the identical stage of drama, they’re lacking an id altogether. It’s virtually too clear, too unadorned with muscle.

There’s the Allroad-requisite unpainted physique cladding, however the colour of the fender flares are virtually indistinguishable from the fashionable Soho Brown Metallic paint. They’re fairly actually an afterthought, with an extra small strip of plastic on the rear door to finish the form.

In my assessment final 12 months of Audi’s different longroof, the RS6 Avant, I referred to as out parts of its styling for being too extroverted. The Allroad swings a little bit too far on the other finish of the pendulum. I can’t assist however suppose {that a} correct set of beefy fender flares would go a good distance in including a definite character with out taking manner from the timeless sophistication of the general form.

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However beneath that physique lies the A6 Allroad’s defining occasion trick: On the contact of a button, the usual air suspension can elevate the physique almost two inches greater, for a most floor clearance of seven.3 inches.

That is maybe the place the distinction to the unique Allroad is most profound, which supplied a formidable 8.2 inches at its most top. An inch decrease may not appear that huge of a deal, however it might probably imply the distinction between gliding over an impediment or introducing it noisily to the undercarriage.

In mild of this decrease floor clearance, I discovered myself second-guessing the route I’d deliberate. Might I take the identical trails that I’d been driving for years, or would I’ve to discover a completely different path? As I debated discovering one other course, I noticed that it wasn’t simply the peak that was completely different, but additionally the way during which I’d obtain it.

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The unique Allroad made this top adjustment straightforward with two seen switches on the console to boost or decrease the suspension. The simplicity of this setup enabled a extra impulsive driving type—see a path, elevate the automobile, carry on driving.

Conversely, the 2020 A6 Allroad encourages a extra methodical strategy. Pushing both of the Drive Choose buttons awakens the menu on the display above to disclose driving modes corresponding to Consolation, Dynamic, Allroad and Offroad. The varied modes alter issues like throttle response and steering enter along with suspension top. Dynamic lowers the suspension to a stance-envying, chin-scraping 4.9 inches whereas quickening the general reflexes.

Offroad, as you may think about, does the other, initially elevating the suspension to six.7 inches. One other push of one other button provides the ultimate 3/5 of an inch. This mode additionally modifications the soundness management to permit extra slip, and to robotically detect the kind of terrain and alter energy accordingly. A middle-locking e-diff can kick in when wanted, profiting from the Quattro all-wheel drive setup.

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Whereas climbing steep hills and navigating obstacles, I used to be by no means wanting for grip or energy. The A6 Allroad merely goes the place you level it, no questions requested. But regardless of this superior setup, the sense of spontaneity is gone.

No matter top, the A6 Allroad doesn’t keep in Offroad mode after the automobile is restarted, as a substitute reverting to the Allroad mode. Audi reps say that’s to satisfy Federal necessities which classify it as a light-duty automobile, however for many who do intend to take it past the pavement, be careful. That impediment you cleared in Offroad mode the night time earlier than could be the rock which punctures your oil pan in Allroad mode.

And therein lies the rub: Regardless of the title, the heritage, and the terrific traction, the 2020 A6 Allroad doesn’t specific the keenness to enterprise removed from the crushed path. The unique Allroad had kind of a brash incongruity going for it: A wagon which completely had no enterprise getting soiled, but someway, it seemed very a lot at residence doing so. The identical can’t be mentioned of the newest iteration. Even at its highest Offroad setting, the brand new one is extra reluctant to enterprise into the wilderness.

Keep away from getting it soiled, nevertheless, and the A6 Allroad excels as an excellent highway machine. Out on the freeway, decrease is healthier, and the air suspension delivers a improbable journey. Change it to that aforementioned Dynamic mode and the Allroad hunkers down on its haunches. On Status trims, Audi presents all-wheel steering as an choice, which sharpens these reflexes even additional and allows you to toss this two-ton wagon by the corners with shocking agility.

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Getting on top of things isn’t a problem, both. The A6 Allroad contains a model of the identical 3.0-liter turbo V6 that’s discovered underneath the hood of the S4 and SQ5. With 335 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque, it might probably shove a little bit bit if you put the hammer down. Audi estimates a 0-60 time of 5.1 seconds, and I imagine it. In order for you a stealth German wagon however abhor the gauche bark of a twin-turbo V8, the A6 Allroad will present a supremely comfy and swift journey for 5 (and all their baggage) from coast to coast.

With its decrease floor clearance and subdued character, the 2020 Audi A6 Allroad is lacking that essential spark which made the title iconic within the first place. Nevertheless highly effective and well-equipped it might be, it’s onerous to see this model engendering the identical fervency and fervour as did the unique. However perhaps that’s okay.

Maybe a extra refined and considerate iteration of this distinctive idea is simply the factor that’s wanted to allure a brand new technology of consumers—and to show that luck into true endurance.

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Image for article titled 2020 Audi A6 Allroad Carves Out A Softer Niche

Image for article titled 2020 Audi A6 Allroad Carves Out A Softer Niche

Image for article titled 2020 Audi A6 Allroad Carves Out A Softer Niche

Image for article titled 2020 Audi A6 Allroad Carves Out A Softer Niche

Image for article titled 2020 Audi A6 Allroad Carves Out A Softer Niche

Image for article titled 2020 Audi A6 Allroad Carves Out A Softer Niche

Image for article titled 2020 Audi A6 Allroad Carves Out A Softer Niche

Image for article titled 2020 Audi A6 Allroad Carves Out A Softer Niche

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