THE 2012 Audi A6 takes the German luxury sedan price barrier and smashes it. However, don't get the idea you'll be buying some 'stripped-out' vehicle.
The Audi A6 is filled with an alphabet soup of electronic aids and luxury features.
AutoWeek describes the car as "a delightful combination of plush luxury and sporting drive character".
"The Audi A6 is priced slightly above the average Japanese equivalent," says ATL Automotive's Sloane Jackson. "When that difference is worked into the monthly payments, it's not only negligible, but a better purchase dollar for dollar when you factor in what you're getting."
Throw in three years' free servicing and maintenance package and it's easy to see why the A6 makes even more economic sense.
Its imposing presence continues the long tradition of Audi design excellence. The previous generation won the 2005 Car of the Year award in its first year of production. Motor Trend credits it "with a smooth, powerful engine, excellent transmission and elegant looks inside and out".
A keyless entry allows you to sit in the cosseting driver's seat with near-infinite electronic adjustability.
Safety is built into the A6's award-winning aluminum hybrid chassis backed by a multi-airbag complement which earned the sedan a place as one of the 2012 Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Top Safety Picks.
Rear passengers are not left wanting as the standard full-leather interior boasts ample leg room.
The sedan's 'toys' are controlled by the Audi's Multi Media Interface. Beautifully laid out switchgear gives you access to key entertainment and driving features via its large pop-up 6.5-inch screen and certain voice commands. There's a secondary screen in the centre of the driver's binnacle, if you crave even more information.
The Audi's 2-litre unit produces 180 hp and 320 Nm of torque. This torque is available between 1500 - 3900 rpm due to modern technologies such as direct-injection and turbocharging. Acceleration is always brisk with the fantastic eight-speed multitronic transmission, especially in sport mode. More importantly, the A6 boasts an excellent fuel economy of up to 44.1 mpg.
The standard model is more than enough for those seeking to blend a family car with corporate comfort. However, if you must have all the options, the no-holds-barred three-litre supercharged four-wheel drive version is available. The 3.0 TFSI produces 310 hp and 440 Nm of torque It produces more power, more torque and is quicker from 0-100 km/h than the BMW 535i and the Mercedes-Benz E350.
A finalist for 2012 Motor Trend Car of the Year, the A6 redefines the driving experience and puts the world on notice that the company aims to take the number one premium automaker spot by 2018.