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Audi A6 e-tron Avant at charger.jpg Audi
Audi pegs A6 e-tron Avant’s overall range at more than 430 miles.

Audi Reveals A6 e-tron Avant

The stylish new 5-seater previews plans for a range of A6-badged BEVs to be based on the Premium Platform Electric architecture and is set to go into production in 2023.

Audi unveils the 469-hp A6 e-tron Avant ahead of a planned public debut for the luxurious electric-powered wagon concept at the upcoming 2022 Beijing auto show.

Following the A6 e-tron sedan concept revealed at the 2021 Shanghai auto show, the stylish new 5-seater previews plans for a range of A6-badged battery-electric vehicles based on the Premium Platform Electric (PPE) architecture and going into production in 2023.

Audi is developing the PPE architecture in partnership with Volkswagen-owned sister company Porsche.  It offers a high degree of flexibility in terms of ride height, making it suitable for what the German automaker describes as lower-slung sedans and wagons as well as higher-riding CUV and SUV models.

Production versions of the A6 e-tron sedan and Avant BEVs will launch after facelifted versions of the 3-year-old e-tron quattro and e-tron Sportback. Those models are expected to be rebadged Q6 e-tron and Q6 e-tron Sportback, respectively.  

Despite featuring the A6 name, the A6 e-tron Avant is not intended to replace its internal-combustion-engine namesake. Rather, it has been conceived to exist alongside gasoline, diesel and plug-in hybrid versions of the traditional midrange model, offering buyers a more practical electric-powered alternative to the likes of the Mercedes-Benz EQE, Porsche Taycan Sport Turismo and Tesla Model S.

The smooth-surfaced styling (pictured, below) draws heavily on that established with the A6 e-tron sedan through to the trailing edge of the front doors. Key elements include a blanked-off grille, distinctive front air-duct symmetry and slim-line digital-matrix LED headlamps. The A6 e-tron Avant also receives a relatively long hood, prominent sill scallops and large wheelhouses accommodating 22-in. wheels.

AudiAudi A6 e-tron Avant front 1.4.jpg

The rear end features muscular haunches over the wheels, an angled tailgate boasting an integrated spoiler and a full-width OLED light bar between the taillights.

Aerodynamic efficiency was a priority for the Audi design team, headed by Marc Lichte. At 0.22, the drag coefficient, aided by developments such as virtual door mirrors and an almost completely flat underbody, matches that of the A6 e-tron sedan.

At 195.3 in. (4,961 mm) long, 77.2 ins. (1,961 mm) wide and 61.0 ins. (1,549 mm) tall, the new Audi concept is 0.8 in. (20 mm) longer, 2.9 ins. (74 mm) wider and 3.4 ins. (86 mm) taller than the existing ICE-powered Audi A6 Avant, which is based on the widely used MRA (Modular Rear Architecture) platform first introduced in 2007.

Previewing one of the more powerful drivelines planned for the A6 e-tron (pictured, below), the all-wheel-drive Avant concept features two electric motors, one mounted up front under the hood and another located within the axle at the rear, delivering a combined 469 hp and 590 lb.-ft. (800 Nm) of torque.

AudiAudi A6 e-tron Avant schematic.jpg

Audi is yet to provide a target weight figure for the upcoming BEV, but it claims high-performance versions, which appear set to take the RS name in production, will boast a 0-62-mph (100-km/h) time of “well under four seconds.”  

Milder versions of the 5-seater will be capable of accelerating to the same mark in under seven seconds, the automaker adds.

The electric system supported by the PPE platform operates at up to 800V. As with existing e-tron models already on sale in various markets, this allows the A6 e-tron Avant’s 100-kWh battery to charge at up to 270kW on a high-powered DC system. Audi claims a 10-minute charge provides a 186-mile (300-km) extension of range under optimal charging conditions, suggesting it compares positively to existing gasoline models in this respect. Overall range is more than 434 miles (700 km).

As already alluded to with the unveiling of the A6 e-tron sedan at the 2021 Shanghai motor show, Audi’s latest concept showcases a new five-link front and multi-link rear suspension. It features air springs with self-leveling properties, as well as adaptive damper control – a setup expected to be mirrored closely on the upcoming production model.

Audi officials reveal to Wards that proposals for a more rugged version of the A6 e-tron Avant are under development. While not officially confirmed for production, it could take the A6 e-tron Allroad name into production, they say.  

TAGS: Powertrain
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