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Audi A6
Audi has given details of the next-generation A6 saloon, which will become available to order in January. Like the TT sports car, the new A6 has a structure built in both steel and aluminum, the latter metal reducing weight by around 15% compared with what it would have been if only steel had been used.

A lack of weight is always an advantage, and in the case of the 176bhp 2.0 TDI turbo diesel it means that the A6 has impressive performance - top speed 142mph, 0-62mph in 8.7 seconds - while also managing 57.7mpg combined fuel economy and 129g/km of CO2 on the official EU test. The CO2 figure means that A6s fitted with this engine will be exempt from first-year Vehicle Excise Duty, and will cost £90 to tax in the following years.

Other engines available from launch are a three-litre turbo diesel in 201bhp and 242bhp forms and a 296bhp three-litre TFSI turbo petrol. The more powerful diesel and the 3.0 TFSI both have quattro four-wheel drive and seven-speed twin-clutch semi-automatic S tronic transmission. The 2.0 TDI and 201bhp 3.0 TDI are both front-wheel drive, and have a six-speed manual gearbox and Multitronic CVT automatic respectively.

A hybrid, using a two-litre TFSI petrol engine and an electric motor producing a total of 242bhp, and with predicted combined economy of 45.6mpg, will be added to the range after some delay, probably in 2013. It won't be the first Audi of its type, though, since a hybrid version of the Q5 SUV will be going on sale at some yet to be specified date next year.

The A6 will be sold in two trim levels with the familiar names SE and S line. All of them will be fitted as standard with leather upholstery, cruise control, front and rear parking sensors, satellite navigation, Bluetooth connectivity, split folding rear seats and automatic headlights and wipers. S lines also get larger 18" alloy wheels, xenon headlights, LED daytime lights, sports suspension, upgraded Valcona leather upholstery and various interior and exterior styling goodies.

The extensive list of optional extras includes heated and cooled seats with a massage function, acoustic window glazing, a 1200W 15-speaker Bang & Olufsen audio system, a television function on the Multi Media Interface, blind spot warning, lane departure warning, park assist and a night vision system with a thermal imaging camera "to highlight 'warm-blooded' road users in front of the car", as Audi puts it.

Prices range from £30,145 for the 2.0 TDI SE to £40,550 for the 3.0 TFSI quattro S line. Customer deliveries are due to begin next spring.

source: carkey.co.uk

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