Audi will, later this year, launch a plug-in hybrid version of the A6 Avant estate boasting 367hp, but with tiny emissions.
Turbo petrol engine and electric motor
The A6 Avant 55 TFSI e quattro uses a combination of a 250hp 2.0-litre turbo petrol four-cylinder engine and a 105kW electric motor. Those two power sources combine for 367hp and 500Nm of torque. The electric motor alone can provide as much as 350Nm.
Power goes to all four wheels (well, this is a quattro) via a seven-speed S-Tronic automatic transmission. The TFSI e boasts some impressive performance figures - try 0-100km/h in 5.7 seconds, and a top speed - in hybrid mode - of 250km/h.
Of course, this car is rather more about its economy and emissions than its straight-line performance. That 105kW motor is fed from a 14kW battery stack. To fully charge that from a 7.4kW power source (say, a wall-mounted charging box at home, or an on-street ESB charger) takes 2.5 hours, and you can quick charge it too, from both ESB and IONITY charging points. When fully charged, the claimed WLTP electric-only range is 51km, and Audi claims CO2 emissions of just 44-48g/km. Fuel consumption is rated at 1.9-2.1 litres/100km - almost 150mpg.
Predictive energy use
In electric-only mode, the top speed is restricted to 130km/h, which is to try and help save a bit of electric range when running on high-speed Autobahns. It's a bit academic for Irish roads, we guess...
The A6 Avant uses Audi's 'predictive operating strategy' system. This takes inputs from the navigation destination, online traffic events, the customer's driving style, and the vehicle sensors such as the camera and radar to juggle and mix both electric and petrol power. The idea is to keep the A6 Avant TFSI e quattro as efficient as possible at all times, but also to make sure that if you're heading to a city or urban area, that you have enough charge left in the battery for zero-emissions running when you get there. To help with that, the air conditioning system uses a highly efficient heat pump that uses the waste heat from the electrical drive components.
Boot is a little smaller than standard
The packaging of the battery and a fuel tank has meant a reduction in boot space. A standard A6 Avant boasts 565 litres, but in the A6 Avant TFSI e quattro, that falls to a still-reasonable 405 litres. Fold down the back seats, and you have 1,535 litres to play with.
Although Irish prices won't be revealed for a while yet, we do know that standard equipment includes the S-line exterior package, Matrix LED headlights as well as sport suspension and sport seats. The Audi A6 Avant TFSI e quattro is available to order now, and first deliveries should begin by the autumn.