Update: ‘Audi A6 Avant e-tron RS’ section updated.
In March 2022, Audi revealed its vision for a pure electric station wagon with the Audi A6 Avant e-tron show car. Like the A6 Sportback e-tron from April 2021, the A6 Avant e-tron is a near-production concept, and when it gets to dealers, it will compete with the BMW i5 Touring that’s coming out in Spring 2024 and the Nio ET5 Shooting Brake that’ll debut in Summer 2023.
The Audi A6 Avant e-tron gets the overall design of the sedan version, but with subtle changes to the lights, grille inserts, and bumpers. The highlight is the long roof, which makes it a more practical car.
At the Audi Annual Media Conference 2022 on March 17, 2022, Oliver Hoffmann said that the A6 Avant e-tron’s design is close to production. Hoffmann is a member of Audi’s Board of Management responsible for Technical Development. Citing Audi designer Wolf Seebers, CAR magazine reported in April 2022 that the production version will be around 90% similar.
I’m as thrilled as you are about the Audi A6 Avant e-tron concept – a fantastic car, and it’s really super-close to the production version, as you saw in the video.Oliver Hoffmann, Member of the Board for Technical Development, Audi (Audi Annual Media Conference 2022 on March 17, 2022)
Compared to the gas-powered A6 Avant, the A6 Avant e-tron concept is much longer and lower. The car’s dynamically sloping roofline, the positive length, width, and height differences, and what seems to be a shorter front overhang make it sportier and noticeably more dramatic. The two generously-sized outlets of the striking rear diffuser complement the electric station wagon’s powerful stance. Finished in ‘Neptune Valley’ paint, the longer rear quarter glass and wider D-pillar suggest there’s ample cargo space behind the rear seats (A6 Avant: 565 liters/20.0 cu ft).
In terms of interior design, the Audi A6 Avant e-tron will follow the A6 e-tron. Audi has given a fair idea of the latter’s interior with a sketch of its concept version. Accordingly, we expect the A6 Avant e-tron to have a sleeker and cleaner dashboard than the current A6 Avant.
Audi will apparently use a large free-standing infotainment display instead of a traditional dashboard-integrated compact display. We believe that the free-standing display will integrate climate control and convenience features. Like in the Q6 e-tron, it may come installed with the CARIAD-developed E³ 1.2 software platform, which will support over-the-air (OTA) software updates.
The infotainment system of the A6 Avant e-tron will have a Volkswagen Group app store co-developed by CARIAD and HARMAN. A part of CARIAD’s One.Infotainment system, this app store supports many popular third-party apps, such as Yelp, Spotify, TikTok, Amazon Music, and Webex by Cisco. Customers will be able to use their favorite mobile services and enjoy mobile entertainment through native apps, without needing to connect their smartphones.
Complementing the large central display and running the same software would be a fully-digital instrument cluster. Expect the same new-generation steering wheel that Audi uses in the Q4 e-tron.
The A6 Avant e-tron could feature the next generation of Audi’s virtual mirrors. The two displays between the A-pillar and the front doors clearly indicate the usage of digital side mirrors in future Audi electric cars. Lastly, the company may extensively employ sustainable materials that are recycled, reusable, and cruelty-free across the cabin.
The Audi A6 Avant e-tron measures 4.96 meters in length, 1.96 meters in width, and 1.44 meters in height. Its drag coefficient is just 0.02 units above that of the A6 Sportback e-tron (0.22 Cd) – 0.24 Cd. Despite the similar dimensions to the current A6 Avant, expect the space levels in the electric version to be from a segment above.
|Dimension||A6 Avant e-tron concept||Audi A6 Avant||Difference|
|Length||4.96 m (195.3 in.)||4.94 m (194.5 in.)||0.02 m (0.8 in.)|
|Width||1.96 m (77.2 in.)||1.89 m (74.4 in.)||0.07 m (2.4 in.)|
|Height||1.44 m (56.7 in.)||1.47 m (57.9 in.)||-0.03 m (-1.2 in.)|
Underpinning the A6 Avant e-tron concept is the PPE platform co-developed with Porsche. The electric station wagon has a five-link axle modified for EVs in the front and a multi-link axle in the rear. It features an air suspension with adaptive dampers.
The A6 Avant e-tron concept sports two motors, one mounted to the front axle and one mounted to the rear axle, generating a combined power of 350 kW (469 hp) and a combined torque of 800 Nm (590 lb.-ft.). The A6 Sportback e-tron concept can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in less than 7 seconds, and Audi says that the value of the Avant only deviates “slightly.”
The Audi A6 Avant e-tron boasts 800-volt charging technology. Its battery pack, which is a 100 kWh unit, can be charged with up to 270 kW. Just 10 minutes of DC fast-charging can deliver a range of more than 300 km (186 miles). DC fast-charging from 5 to 80% takes less than 25 minutes. Audi hasn’t disclosed the range achievable in the variant with a full charge yet. It has just said the A6 e-tron family models, depending on the selected drive system and power output, will have a WLTP range of up to 700 km (435 miles).
The Audi A6 Avant e-tron concept made its public debut at the 2022 eCarExpo in Solna (Stockholm), Sweden, held between April 29, 2022, to May 1, 2022. That was a good choice, as the Swedes have a soft corner for station wagons and are quickly adopting electric vehicles. YouTuber Peter Esse has released a walkaround video detailing the A6 Avant e-tron concept.
Source: Youtube/Peter Esse
Moreover, the Swedish Audi subsidiary confirmed the launch of the production A6 Avant e-tron in the announcement preceding the showcase. It noted that the series-produced car derived from the A6 Avant e-tron concept will arrive in 2024. Previously, the company said that it plans to launch the A6 e-tron sedan (production version) in 2023.
On April 29, the A6 Avant e-tron concept makes its first public premiere. The display takes place at the eCarExpo electric car Fair in Stockholm during the Valborg weekend. The concept car offers a preview of the launch of the series-produced car coming in 2024. With a range of up to 70 miles and a charging capacity of up to 270 kW, it is an exciting trade fair novelty for all electric car speculators who have asked for an electrically powered station wagon.Audi Sweden announcement on April 4, 2022 (translated)
More recently, Oliver Hoffmann has confirmed that Audi is committed to wagons and indicated that a pure electric A6 Avant e-tron is coming to showrooms. Audi’s R&D boss told Top Gear in September 2022 that the A6 Avant e-tron concept clearly envisions Audi’s upcoming PPE platform-based electric cars.
In the meantime, Audi is showcasing the A6 Avant e-tron concept around the world. Most recently, it flew the electric wagon to China to display it at Auto Shanghai 2023 which opened on April 18, 2023. Earlier, the company displayed the show car at various European internal events, in the Netherlands, Portugal, Latvia, and more. Audi should continue to exhibit the concept in various locations around the globe to generate excitement for the production version.
Audi A6 Avant e-tron RS
It’s not hard to guess that a full-blown RS performance with zero-emissions would be in the pipeline. Except that we’re not guessing. Hoffmann told Topgear on March 18, 2022, that when the brand presents the A6 e-tron, Audis will “also include some performance versions of it.”
Spy pictures suggest a go-fast variant of the pure electric A6 e-tron is already under development. These images have shown a test mule with a lowered body, performance brakes featuring red calipers, and large wheels wrapped with low-profile tires. There’s no way of telling whether this prototype is an S variant or an RS variant just yet, but it certainly seems to be one of them.
What’s also certain is that the styling will be subdued compared to gas-powered performance heroes of the present, as there’ll be no huge functional grille in the front or special exhaust pipes at the back. In the EV world, there are generally fewer tell-tale signs of performance variants.
Audi says that the “strongest representatives of the (A6 e-tron) series” will be “high-performance models” that take less than 4 seconds for a 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph) sprint. Notice the plurality in the language here. It’s safe to assume that the company is talking about not one but two Audi RS 6 e-tron models, a Sportback coupe, and an Avant station wagon.
Audi A6 marketing boss Niko Martens has suggested that the next-gen RS 6 may come in ICE and electric variants, with the latter possessing “an even sportier possibility,” as per the April 2022 CAR magazine report. The British publication expects the electric RS6 to sport an 800+ hp dual-motor powertrain and arrive in 2025.
Now, will Audi introduce the electric station wagon in America? With the company already offering the A6 allroad quattro and RS 6 Avant in the country, we don’t see a reason why they should not!
Also Read Audi E6 (Audi A6 e-tron) Sedan: Everything we know
The Audi A6 Avant e-tron would be the first series electric station wagon from a luxury automaker. This model would show the four-ringed brand’s unshakeable commitment to customers in Sweden, Norway, Germany, and several other countries where station wagons continue their meaningful sales contribution despite the sharp rise of SUVs. The new e-tron model would build on the A6 Avant’s core strengths, which are high practicality and performance, and add eco-friendliness to the long and ever-growing list of its attractions.