the subtle soft-roader
The New Audi A6 Allroad Is an Off-Road Station Wagon We Crave
It’s a good time for station wagon lovers who like to dally off the beaten path. On Wednesday, Audi announced that it’s gearing up to release the fourth generation of its wagon-slash-crossover, the A6 Allroad Quattro. The all-wheel drive wagon has always had an off-road leaning, but some of its new features may help push the new versions’ owners a little farther down the road less traveled.
The new A6 Allroad boasts a few updates to the adaptive air suspension, which should further make the vehicle feel as capable on the dirt as it does on tarmac. Depending on the vehicle’s speed and the setting the driver has selected, the suspension and ride height can adapt to handle various types of terrain. In Auto and Comfort modes, the A6 will cruise at a standard ride height of 5.5 inches, though it can actively adjust that; for example, once it goes past 75 miles per hour, it drops 0.6 inches to reduce drag. Once the opportunity arises to turn off the highway and head down into a dusty holler, the driver can drop the speed below 50 mph and select Off-Road mode, which increases ground clearance nearly 1.2 inches higher than standard. If the path gets a little hairier, the highest clearance mode can be selected, so long as the car is below 22 mph; in that case, the ride height rises another 0.7 inches, allowing a total of nearly two extra inches of clearance than the standard mode.
The A6 Allroad offers additional features to assist with light off-roading, too. There’s a display option on the MMI infotainment system that allows the driver to see how far the vehicle is tilting in real time; this is paired with dedicated sensors to alert the driver when the vehicle is at risk of tipping over. There’s an adaptive braking system which assists with off-road hill descent by stabilizing each wheel to control sliding when going down loose slopes. And, of course, every Allroad comes with standard all-wheel-drive.
All threee powerplant options are torque-laden 3.0-liter turbodiesel engines, each offering a different amount of power: the base model has 227 horsepower and 369 pound-feet ofb torque, the middleweight has 281 hp and 457 lb-ft, and the top-of-the-line option has 344 horses in its stable and 516 pound-feet of twist. That heads to the wheels through an eight-speed automatic no matter which version you buy. If camping with a trailer is in the summer vacation plans, the new Allroad is rated to pull up to 2.5 tons behind it.
In addition to the usual array of paints, interior fabrics, trims, and for the new wagon. To commemorate the model’s 20th anniversary, the carmaker is also offering the “20 Years Allroad” model, which will be offered in three special color options: Soho Brown, Glacier White, and Gavail Green, an original color option from the first allroad of 1999.
Sadly, Audi’s press release makes no mention of this new A6 Allroad quattro being sold in the US, and the only-diesel-engines powertrain lineup suggest this version will only be automotive forbidden fruit for Americans (Audi stopped selling oil-burners here in the wake of Dieselgate). That said…we have seen previous models of the A6 Allroad come here in the past, so here’s to hoping.