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ByDave Stopher

Nov 25, 2019 #A6, #Audi

New executive class hybrid promises strong performance and the potential for near-silent running for up to 32 miles

  • Hybrid executive saloon expected to become available in the UK in November
  • 2.0 TFSI combined with a 105 kW electric motor, quattro drive as standard
  • System output of 270kW (367 PS), electric range of up to 32 miles
  • Predictive operating strategy for maximum efficiency and many trips using electric power

The opportunities to drive an electrified Audi are becoming ever more plentiful, with five plug-in hybrid models scheduled for introduction in the second half of 2019 alone. The A6 55 TFSI e with an impressive 367PS system output and the scope to travel for up to 32 miles under purely electric power is the latest in the line – the new executive class hybrid saloon is expected to become available to order in the UK in November and to quietly touch down here in early 2020.

“Hybrid power is a particularly good fit for our customers in the executive class,” says Director of Audi UK Andrew Doyle. “There is of course a commuting element to their usage, but long distances are also traditionally covered by cars in this segment. The potential to make journeys of over 30 miles under pure electric power, and to travel for hundreds more thanks to the powerful TFSI unit, makes the A6 TFSI e exceptionally fit for purpose, even before the BIK and VED advantages that its strong efficiency focus bring are taken into account.”

The new A6 joins A7, A8, Q5 and Q7 variants which also go by the name of TFSI e. Like all these Audi plug-in hybrid models, it combines two highly efficient drive systems, in this case a four-cylinder 2.0 TFSI petrol engine with 252PS and an electric motor integrated into the seven-speed S tronic with a peak output of 105kW.

Total system output is 270kW (367PS), and the full 500Nm of system torque is on tap from just 1,250rpm. The lithium-ion battery stores 14.1kWh of energy, and is positioned at the rear of the vehicle.

The A6 55 TFSI e quattro offers the advantage of quattro all-wheel drive as standard, and its steadfast control helps the car to smoothly accelerate from rest to 62mph in 5.6 seconds and go on to a top speed of 155mph. Under purely electric power, it is capable of a top speed of 83mph. Its electric range, measured according to the WLTP procedure, is up to 32 miles.

The drive concept of the Audi A6 55 TFSI e quattro is designed so that customers can do most of their daily driving electrically and therefore with zero local emissions and in near silence. They can choose between the three drive modes “EV” for all-electric driving, “Hybrid” for the efficient combination of both drive types and “Hold” to conserve the electrical energy available at any given time.

In “Hybrid” mode the predictive operating strategy ensures maximum efficiency and the maximum possible amount of electric driving. It controls the drivetrain so that the last stage of the journey before getting to the destination can be covered in all-electric mode and the battery is charged up beforehand via the combustion engine where necessary. Judicious journey planning is performed by the predictive efficiency assistant, which uses a large amount of information, including navigation, online traffic events, the driver’s style and the vehicle sensors such as the camera and radar. It plans the management of the drives and decides between freewheeling with the engine deactivated and coasting recuperation.

Customers can charge the Audi A6 55 TFSI e quattro at public charging stations up to an output of 7.4kW using the mode 3 cable supplied. This means it takes roughly two-and-a-half hours to recharge an empty high-voltage battery. Customers can use the MyAudi app to manage charging and pre-entry climate control even before they set off. The air conditioning system operates together with a highly efficient heat pump that uses the waste heat from the electrical drive components.

The impressive performance capability of the Audi A6 55 TFSI e quattro will be reflected in its styling by features such as lowered sport suspension, Matrix LED lighting, privacy glazing and a black styling package taking the S line sports specification as its basis.