Audi renamed its models once again in 1995. For instance, the former 100 was now called A6, and the high-performance model, the Audi S4, was now the S6. Otherwise, the changes were mainly cosmetic, with new front sheetmetal.

The A6 competed with the Mercedes C280/E320, ES 300/GS 300, Infiniti J30, BMW 530i and 540i, Oldsmobile Aurora, Volvo 960, S90, V90, and Saab 9000. The A6 Quattro was the only car in this class available with all-wheel drive.

Year-to-year changes

1995

The 1995 Audi A6 was powered by the same 2.8-liter V6 as the Audi 90. It was available as a 4-door sedan or station wagon.

The A6 wagon had 7-passenger capacity, and standard features like tilt/telescope steering column and a right-side mirror that automatically rotates downward to aid in parking. A 4-speed automatic transmission was standard on the wagon and optional on the sedan. It had electronically adaptive shift logic that selects from five different programs, from Economy to Sport. Unlike the Audi 90s, the A6's interiors were roomy.

The S6 sported wider tires and fender flares, a larger front airdam with larger air inlets and dark, instead of bright, window-surround trim. The interior featured leather seats, a hands-off telephone, 4-position seat memory, wood trim and all of the expected luxury touches. The heart of this hot rod was Audi's old inline 2.2-liter 5-cylinder, in this case equipped with double overhead cams, four valves per cylinder and an intercooled turbocharger. Its 227 hp were channeled through a Quattro drivetrain. The S6 belonged in a class with the M-series BMWs, Mercedes E500, Saab 9000 turbo and Cadillac Seville STS.

1996

Audi has dropped the high-performance turbocharged S6 model from the U.S. market, leaving the company with the A6 as its only midsize car. The sole engine offered was Audi's proven 2.8-liter V6, also used in the smaller A4 model. The only transmission offered was a 4-speed automatic, as the 5-speed manual was dropped.

What separated the A6 from its competitors is Audi's optional Quattro system, now in its fourth generation. Thanks to improved electronic controls, the power delivery to all four wheels was seamless under all driving conditions. Even the front-drive A6 had unusual traction capabilities, thanks to Audi's ABS 5 system. The system incorporated an electronic locking differential for traction enhancement. Other clever A6 features included power windows that would go all the way up or down with one touch, plus pinch protection that reopens a window if it encountered anything -- like a baby's finger or a dog's nose -- in its path. The remote locking system was now run using radio frequency rather than infrared light, and the alarm system was improved too. Among the interesting options were a voice-activated cellular phone and a 6-disc CD changer mounted in the trunk.

After its discontinuation in 1996, the S6 was temporarily revived in 2002 for nearly two years, then revived again in 2006, and later got a bigger Audi S7 companion in 2012.

1998

The Audi A6's second generation began starting with this model year. The station wagon was now known as the "Avant"

Retail prices

4DR Sedan

Model year(s) Trim level Drive List price Destination charge Effective date
1995 A6 FWD $30,600 $445 October 5, 1994
1995 A6 AWD $32,100 $445 October 5, 1994
1995-1996 S6 AWD $45,270 $445 October 5, 1994
1996 A6 FWD $32,300 $475 September 1995
1996 A6 AWD $33,850 $475 September 1995
1997 A6 FWD $32,600 $500 Q4 1996
1997 A6 AWD $34,200 $500 Q4 1996
1998-1999 A6 FWD $33,750 $500 November 1997
1998-1999 A6 AWD $35,400 $500 November 1997

4DR Wagon

Model year(s) Trim level Drive List price Destination charge Effective date
1995 A6 FWD $33,170 $445 October 5, 1994
1995 A6 AWD $34,670 $445 October 5, 1994
1995-1996 S6 AWD $47,940 $445 April 17, 1995
1996 A6 FWD $34,000 $475 September 1995
1996 A6 AWD $35,550 $475 September 1995
1997-1998 A6 FWD $34,400 $500 Q4 1996
1997-1998 A6 AWD $36,000 $500 Q4 1996
1999 A6 AWD $36,600 $500 September 14, 1998

Gallery

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