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Audi A6

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  • bmwcccbmwccc Posts: 234
    Auditor, i will go check the fax. Thanks in advance for the help. Lets keep up the chatter on this inc. test drives etc.

    Later
  • auditorauditor Posts: 63
    bmwccc: I just sent you the 5 pages, again. Let me know if you got them.
  • auditorauditor Posts: 63
    Mark:

    I've read and reread your very much appreciated detailed explanation of air suspension in message #208, plus your comments in other of your messages about the pluses of sport suspension in, for example, an A6 4.2V8.

    One further question: Can a 2005 A6 4.2 V8 equipped with sport suspension also have air suspension, or are the two somewhat redundant "systems" or "setups" incompatible?
  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,093
    It is my understanding, thus far, on the subject of the air suspension and sport suspension that there are "two variables" that, at this time I can ONLY speculate on: wheel/tire system and f+r anti-swaybars.

    On the sport suspension set up, Audi traditionally has done the following:

    1. lower ride height (usually 20mm sometimes, rarely, as much as 35mm lower) and of course stiffer springs.

    2. roll bar diameter -- on the A6 vs sport A6 the roll bars are 20% larger on the sport suspension than on the standard suspension

    3. "strut damping" 'improvement' to provide less jounce and quicker recovery from spring compression and expansion

    4. at the very least lower profile tires (the so called "plus zero" size change or "plus one" size change (often accompanied by a change to a higher performance tire --UHP or MAX, "summer only" tires).

    These steps are sometimes further enhanced with the swapping out of the comfort seats for sport seats which contribute to the driver's butt staying in place in, shall we say, twisty driving feats. And, sometimes even further changes to brake pads and/or the entire braking system accompany all this engineering magic.

    The above is "as it is today and as it has been for some time." However, these "static" changes do not exactly track when the subject of the current A8, allroad and RS 6 are included in the discussion.

    The RS 6 does, as you may know, all the above and it does NOT have an air suspension, but it does have the ability to further control roll articulation via an "X" design of the "shock absorbers." During cornering where body roll would normally happen the appropriate "shocks" are stiffened reducing body roll dynamically, more precisely and appropriately for the g forces being generated than merely the anti-sway bars and bushings could ever do. The RS 6 system is a passive-dynamic system. It has no intelligence no active brain that causes changes in the suspension system.

    The A8 (and the somewhat similar system in the allroad) has struts and springs and anti-swaybars just like a normal car. Additionally it has four air-filled bladders that can be pumped-up or decompressed. Add air and one thing happens, subtract air and the opposite happens.

    Generally speaking what this "thing" that happens is, is as follows: ride height starts at level 1 and can be increased in steps to levels 2,3 & 4. Each step changes the dynamic capabilities of the car and if set on full-auto mode, the ride height will raise and lower in response to certain speed related trigger points. But do not confuse this active suspension trait with a so-called "active suspension." For example, if the suspension is set to level 3 and a certain speed in attained the suspension will lower itself to level 2 (decreasing the coefficient of drag and stiffening the springs). This ride height change happens gradually perhaps taking a minute -- this is not a change that happens in response to entering a curve such as the RS 6 suspension. Indeed, if the curve would be entered at the threshold speed of the suspension (to lower itself) and the corner is being negotiated, the suspension will actually "pause" until the curve has been negotiated and the chassis is returned to a more or less flat attitude. At higher speeds yet the suspension will again lower itself to minimum ride height, maximum stiffness and all the accompanying attributes such ride height and spring compression carry, will be realized. It is a good system. It is not an active handling in on-line, real-time, big-time show-time (say that really fast) speed.

    Think of this system, as good as it is and with many benefits as a major evolution of automatic load leveling (remember when you used to put all your luggage in the back of your Caddy and it would level itself out?) Indeed, the Audi will compensate for the rear load by raising the rear end, just like your father's Cadillac.

    What I do not know is if, in the air-suspension model, the associated hardware (as listed in #1 - #4 above) is set to the same level of sporty minded-ness. With the air suspension, for example, are the roll bars automatically 20% thicker (they we're NOT on my allroad, I had to buy the sport anti-sway bar from Audi). Are the tires plus sized and up-rated to a grippier status? Are the other potential associated changes in the "plain old" sport mode faithfully carried out with the air suspension?

    I do not know.

    I read a lot of articles, web sites and other car-info, and I have been unable to get clarification on this aspect.

    So, as usual, I'll give my opinion and qualify it as such: I believe the ride height at level 1 of the "new '05 A6" air suspension will be ~ the same as the sport suspension. I believe the sport suspension will have the edge (when ordered as the "Sport Package") over the air suspension at level one, assuming the air-suspension does not come with plus sized wheels and tires and thicker anti-roll bars and sport struts.

    The current set-up of the air suspension as I understand it on the A8L is further sported-up in the "S8" version (I know, I know, we're talking futures). So I draw the conclusion that the sport suspension is, despite the similar ride height comparison to level 1 of the air suspension, still the sportiest of the two (and lower in cost for obvious reasons).

    I have had ZERO problems with my air suspension'd allroad (a 2003 model). If I could have purchased the car with just a sport suspension -- for less cost -- I would have, due to the limited value I perceive in this feature.

    I like to keep the suspension as low as it will go, for the performance improvements it supplies, most of the time. And, if I were told "you must keep it in level one" -- well, that would be fine with me.

    Assuming I move forward with the new A6 for 05, I will order the sport suspension, period. I will further clarify: knowing what I KNOW at this juncture, I would get the sport suspension over the air suspension even if they were the same price. My opinion would changed, ONLY, if I found that the air suspension had the other sporty attributes mentioned above.

    If I had a magic wand, I would want the RS 6 suspension (and brakes and seats) over either of these choices, however.

    I hope this helps.
  • bmwcccbmwccc Posts: 234
    Hey Guys, just went on Audi's site for the 5oth time but noticed a new link named: Explore the 2005 A6. (Not the On the Horizon one though!)

    On this micro site shows some new screen saver and wallpaper photos. This is such a nice car, I am really liking the front grill and like the rear much better than the 04'. The interior is super nice as well.

    Anyway, a question I have for you guys back east that have seen some of the cars or paint chips is what color is the car that shows the 2 rear shots? Some sort of Gray i think?

    They are also saying 0-100 kmp in 6.1, does that usually translate to 0-60 in 5.9-6.0?????
  • boomsamaboomsama Posts: 362
    0-62 in 6.1 i suppose? Probably something like what you said
  • hjcanterhjcanter Posts: 31
    I think that color is the oyster gray. I might go with the beige though. I like the lighter color interior.
  • bmwcccbmwccc Posts: 234
    Auditor

    Thanks for sending over those spec sheets. I think you are going to be right about the $ difference being narrowed with a loaded 3.2 vs. the 4.2 having the same features standard.

    I called my dealer and they have no idea when they are getting the new A6's to the showroom, I am going to test drive a couple 04's anyway. S4 for sure to feel the V8, A6 4.2 04'to feel the room etc.

    Did you check out there new micro site they have added? Check on a previous post I put a day or two ago.

    Thanks Again!
  • auditorauditor Posts: 63
    bmwccc:

    Let me know how the '04 A6 4.2 you test feels to drive, as well as how it sounds. Also, whether it was one with sport suspension or not. (You may recall from some of my earlier posts that I'm considering getting an '05 A6 4.2 with air suspension so that I can use the comfort setting in the city, but then be able switch to the lower, dynamic (more sporty) setting when I'm on less bumpy streets or roads.

    While I'm waiting for all the '05's, I may go test an '04 A6 4.2 (w/o
    sport suspension), too, along with an '04 A8L (w/air suspension) just to see if air suspension is worth waiting for.
  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,093
    If you want to see if the air suspension is worth it, take a new allroad V8 out for a long drive; try the air suspension at the four settings and see what you think.

    You might also take an A8L out for a long drive -- my belief is this (both cars back to back) will give you a sense of what the suspension will do -- remember the A8L has a much longer wheelbase, the allroad may be a more accurate representaion -- just a thought.

    I cannot for the life of me think that this suspension is worth the premium I have heard it will command. But that is because I use mine so rarely.

    I have tried recently to determine if the differences justify the cost -- I have gone from level 3 to level 1 over a variety of surfaces and at equal to or less than 50MPH. The suspension on level 3 loses some "precision" -- the car bounces more, but I guess one view of the increased bounciness is that it is softer. It makes me feel the car is a little "sloppy" in the handling department and I think the ride quality actually deteriorates even though I suspect it could translate into some perceived softness.

    I have not deliberately run it into pot holes at the various settings, I just can't bring myself to do that, even in the interest of science.

    Remember that the tire/wheel system is a big component of ride quality.

    I am coming to the conclusion that the sport suspension and the air suspension are mutually exclusive. In any case, I am coming to think that the sport suspension and level 1 of the air suspension, even if they are at similar ride heights and spring compression are NOT the same and that the anti-roll bars and struts are stiffer on the sport model.

    Please let us know your impression of the long allroad and A8L test drives.
  • auditorauditor Posts: 63
    bmwccc:

    Let me know how the '04 A6 4.2 you test feels to drive, as well as how it sounds. Also, whether it was one with sport suspension or not. (You may recall from some of my earlier posts that I'm considering getting an '05 A6 4.2 with air suspension so that I can use the comfort setting in the city, but then be able switch to the lower, dynamic (more sporty) setting when I'm on less bumpy streets or roads.

    While I'm waiting for all the '05's, I may go test an '04 A6 4.2 (w/o
    sport suspension), too, along with an '04 A8L (w/air suspension) just to see if air suspension is worth waiting for.
  • auditorauditor Posts: 63
    Mark:

    As usual, you've got another good idea. Before reading your latest message, I had arranged to test an '04 A8L and an '04 A6 4.2 (won't
    know if it has sport suspension or not till I get there) first thing tomorrow (Wednesday) morning. Once I've driven those two cars, I'll see if I can persuade the dealer to let me try an '04 Allroad 4.2 as well.

    Report on my experiences to follow later tomorrow.
  • auditorauditor Posts: 63
    I can't seem to get the "Explore the new 2005" microsite to open.

    When I click on it, I just get the Home page screen with the picture and music to come up again. Maybe you can tell me if there's a trick to opening that new microsite.

    FYI, for a really in-depth article plus many, many pix of the '05 A6, go to www.germancarfans.com, click on the Audi tab at the top of the page, scroll just to the bottom of the Audi News Articles section and click on Audi News Archive on the right side of the page, then scroll down to the "New Audi A6 - In Depth" article on 4-8-04 and open it up. There's 10+ pages and well over 100 pix to keep you drooling!!
  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,093
    As a diehard netscape user, I may or may not be able to help you.

    In either of the two big web clients, Netscape or Explorer, you have the ability to enable or disable POPUPS -- my guess is that you have them disabled.

    There is a feature that allows you to enable them for a particular website or temporarily for all sites -- you pick.

    I have a tool bar that says "pop ups" allowed or blocked. When this happens to me, I simply reload and say popups allowed and usually this cures the problem.

    Luck.

    Netscape forever, Explorer never!

    Again, screaming voice in the wildnerness, I know, I know.
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,551
    Mark (or anyone) -
    Does the order guide (or any other official Audi publication) specify final drive and 6th gear (Tiptronic) ratios for the 4.2L and 3.2L?
    Thanks,
    - Ray
    Glad to see that AWD versions will likely have 21.1 gal fuel tanks . . .
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,551
    Mark –

    Thanks.

    My concerns are: The (now infamous) Passat W8 was introduced in Europe – and to the motoring US press with a 3.0:1 final drive. When actually introduced (that’s really much too strong a term – when available) in the US the final drive had been changed to 3.5:1. This is a rather substantial change. Apparently, this change was based largely on feedback from the US press.

    The 3.5:1 certainly improved lower speed acceleration (the classic & hallowed 0-60 times), at some expense in highway fuel economy.

    With an 18% greater spread in ratios from the new, improved 6 speed Tiptronic, I am very curious to see what the choice of final drive will be for the US. Personally, I am much more concerned with highway / freeway driving range on a tank (hence, glad to see 80L vs. 70L) than 0-60 times. I expect that with 300+ hp (will our version also be 335?) and 420 Newton-metres of TQ (309.7345132743363 Pound Feet???), the 4.2 V8 will move the new A6 with respectable vigor. The 0-100 KM time of 6.1 sec. quoted by Audi is “sufficient” for my entertainment.

    I will be very interested to see the final US configuration, when it does arrive . . .

    Cheers,
    - Ray
    Also wondering when the first ’05 A6s will arrive at US dealers . . .
  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,093
    . . I have been diligently looking for information pertaining to the final drive ratio and the gear ratios of the 6 forward speeds in the new A6 tiptronic (and also I am looking to differentiate between the V6 and V8.)

    The European version will, almost certainly, have a higher final drive ratio. Both 5th and 6th gears are likely to be "overdriven" (6th is certain, 5th could be a 1:1). As you noted, the reasons to lower the final drive for the US market would be to assure that the new 3.2L V6 could "show" a 0 - 60 number of less than 7 seconds.

    The cost of doing this, as you correctly pointed out, would be that gas milage will be lower.

    In the US market, this is not as much of an issue since we do have lower gas prices [by far when compared with Europe]and I read that the FSI engine CAN use regular (unconfirmed, only read it from one source) and achieve its advertised power.

    Moreover, long high speed stretches are more and more difficult here in the US, so the stop light drag strip numbers are THE key numbers.

    I am, at this point, concerned that the final drive ratios I am likely to find will be NOT for the US market.

    I'll tell you whatever and wherever I get this info, however. Then you can extrapolate or interpolate or whatever, any way you want.
  • auditorauditor Posts: 63
    Mark, bmwccc, et al:

    Tested an '04 Allroad 2.7T Tiptronic (no 4.2 Tip was available) and an '04 A6 4.2 with sport package (sport seats, suspension, and performance tires) this morning.

    My goals were to see the effects, if any, of the Allroad's air suspension at Level 3 (comfort setting)and Level 1 (sport setting), and the 4.2's sport suspension, etc., on both bumpy streets and smooth roads.

    The Allroad was both quick and very responsive but,
    frankly, I didn't feel much difference between the
    higher (comfort) setting and the lowest (sport) setting. The 4.2 felt noticably faster and a bit more precise in handling; and it sounded great!!
    To my surprise, the sport suspension in the 4.2 was not at all harsh.
    Unfortunately, the roads near the dealer were not
    as rough as those in downtown Phila. so, to some extent, the test was not as complete as I'd hoped.
    Guess I'll just have to try the same tests closer
    to home, preferably when the '05's are available.
    Till then, though I'm still looking to get an '05 4.2 V8, I'm now on the fence about air suspension vs. sport suspension,and leaning toward the latter.
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,551
    "sport suspension in the 4.2 was not at all harsh. "

    Interesting. What size make and model were the tires?

    Thanks,
    - Ray
    Agreeing that top tires can make an enormous difference in both handling and ride . . .
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,551
    From the R&T test of the Audi A8L:

    Trans ratios:
    1: 4.17 mph at max. rpm: 39
    2: 2.34 mph at max. rpm: 70
    3: 1.52 mph at max. rpm: 107
    4: 1.14 mph at max. rpm: 130 (at 6200)
    5: 0.87 mph at max. rpm: 130 (at 4700)
    6: 0.69 mph at max. rpm: 130 (at 3750)

    Final Drive: 3.32

    Curb Weight: 4440
    [A6 4.2 2004: 4024 - Source: AudiUSA]

    Rpm @ 60 mph: 1700

    0 - 60: 6.7 sec. {AudiUSA quotes: 6.3)
    0 – 100: 16.3
    SS Quarter Mile: 15.0 at 95.7mph

    EPA: 17 / 24

    Now since internal trans. gear ratios are typically much more difficult to change than the final drive ratio, I’d expect that the new A6 with the 6 speed Tip. will keep these ratios.

    Assuming that Audi is able to keep the weight for the 2005 4.2 reasonable – in fact, I hope that it will maintain the same 10% or so less than the A8 – I’d “extrapolate or interpolate or whatever” that Audi will likely utilize the same final drive as the A8, the same ratios in the 6 speed Tip., and that the acceleration will be better than the A8L. And the EPA estimates will also be better. Based on the 0 – 100KM time (6.1 sec.) that Audi quotes for the European version, I’d guess (not even enough real data here for a Fearless Prediction, I suppose) something like 14.6 - 14.7 @ 98.5 in the quarter. And EPA 18 / 26.

    That level of performance would be acceptable to me – further assuming that the pricing for a well equipped A6 V8 comes in substantially below the $62K+ that Caddy is apparently going to charge for a V8 STS with AWD . . .

    - Ray
    Wondering if the old RS6 “Sound Enhancing Exhaust System” (Optional, at $950 – but sounded worth it to me!) could somehow be adapted to the new A6 V8???????
  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,093
    In my previous posts, I suggested that the air suspension did not impart a pillow ride. And, the added spring travel that level 2 has over 1 and 3 has over 2 only caused a slight improvement in ride quality -- to the detriment of "performance" with respect to the suspension.

    I am not at all surprised that the sport suspension set up on the A6 4.2 was not harsh. I might go so far as to call it firm or firm-er, but my experience has, frankly, always been the opposite with Audi's sport set ups (the springs, struts and roll-bars are key to the handling -- but the wheel/tires (particularly the tires) can really have a huge impact).

    The tires, if they are quiet and supple, lend a quality of ride that, although "firmer", is, in some ways "less jarring" than the non-sport set up.

    The new A6 being 34% stiffer will only make the ride and handling improve (and even more so with the sport set up). For the money, I'd go with the sport set up. And, I would want to know if it is possible to have both the air suspension and the sport set up. Of course, I would then want to know one further thing, do you plan to raise and lower the suspension regularly and frequently?

    If the answer is "seldom" or "rarely" well you might have answered your own question.

    Finally, do you plan on keeping the car beyond the warranty? The air suspensions do have more moving parts and mechanical complexity -- and I can only assume associated cost. And, to repeat, I have had no issues with my air suspension, but I would not "trust" it without the Audi warranty -- the cost of repair, I assume, could be frightening!

    Keep up the test drives.

    P.S. the only sport suspension I have read about that is claimed to be HARSH is the BMW X5 sport set up. I have no personal experience with it to confirm this journalists comments though (Car and Driver, as I recall).
  • bmwcccbmwccc Posts: 234
    Auditor

    This is not a pop-up. And the good news is you are hitting the correct link. It did that to me several times, get out of the Audi site completely and jump back in a try it. That is how I was able to view it several different times.

    Let me know what you think of the color of the A6,i think it is the Oyster Gray.
  • bmwcccbmwccc Posts: 234
    Auditor

    Also try to hit the button 4 or 5 times in a row and it finally pops up.

    let me know if that worked
  • mkladymklady Posts: 2
    Test drove an Audi A6 3.0 Quattro sedan for first time today. Have been looking for a new car for about a month. Liked everything about the car except wish the 3.0 had more horse power.

    Dealer has a 2004 3.0 demo car with 5600 miles on it which has an MSRP of $44,000 marked down $5,000 because of the mileage. Demo car has premium package, upgraded stereo with satellite radio, onstar, heated seats, and 17" wheels. I love the inside look and good handling of this car - but concerned if acceleration is enough.
    Anyone out there who has an A6 3.0 who can give me some feedback? Don't think I can afford to bump up to the 2.7T or I would do so. Having trouble finding a car with mix of luxury and sportiness in my price range ($400 to $500 a month for lease) Any other suggestions of other cars to check out? Thanks in advance for your help!
  • mkladymklady Posts: 2
    Sorry - forgot to mention that I need feedback on the A6 3.0 Quattro ASAP. There is someone else interested in it (saw person at dealership and spoke with them briefly) but dealer said that since he had been working with me first he would hold it for me until tommorrow to do official paperwork. I think I want the car but am looking for reassurance since I never considered Audi cars before and am a little concerned about acceleration. Thanks again!
  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHPosts: 16,688
    Don't buy any car unless you've driven it yourself. Only you can decide whether it has enough acceleration, find out for yourself.

    Don't let them stampede you either, good A6s aren't that hard to come by.

    2000 BMW 528i, 2001 BMW 330CiC

  • markcincinnatimarkcincinnati Posts: 5,093
    The inventory levels of A6's -- including the sweet Slines (if you can take an automatic) -- are fairly high right now. I see, in my crystal ball, deep unhealable discounts coming within 60 days -- you'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll be amazed!

    Come one come all -- the discounts are coming, the discounts are coming.

    And, yes, there are discounts every year -- but this year is special. Since 1997 (when the 98's came out) there has not been a new, known to be coming and when, A6 in the pipeline. Now that there is one, folks who may have been considering a new Audi are really considering a NEW Audi (an '05). There will be, this year, deeper discounts and better deals. Now, funny thing, you have to be in the timing mode -- for as the new models begin to trickle in, but there is not abundant inventory, the dealers will have to balance their sales efforts and incentives.

    They would like to have "just enough" inventory, that is.

    What I am seeing at my local dealerships (we have two Audi dealers in Cincy) is an inventory build up (especially of Slines and 3.0's -- and the beginnings of some pretty agressive discounts or lease deals). My guess is, the Fed just did us a favor yesterday. The cap costs will most likely be reduced, which, even with lower residuals, should effect the lease prices on these brand new leftover models.

    I noticed, too, that my dealer has put several of these 04 A6's in service as "loaner cars" -- quite possibly because of the way the Audi Advantage may compensate them for customer transportation during service and repair visits.

    I would think, however, the next 60 days, if you watch the dealer's lot REGULARLY and FREQUENTLY will be THE time to buy or lease a brand new A6, just so long as you won't feel shortchanged 60 days down the road when the new glitzy A6's come to the same lot. . . .
  • auditorauditor Posts: 63
    Ray:

    The 2004 A8 4.2V8 I test drove yesterday had 17 inch 5-spoke forged alloy wheels (with a shiny chrome finish) Continental ContiSport Contact 255/40
    -17 YR speed rated tires. The wheels were those shown in picture D on p. 44 in the 2004 Audi A6 brochure.
  • auditorauditor Posts: 63
    Chris:

    I hit the Explore the 2005 A6 button several times in a row as you suggested but still can't egt it to open. Maybe you can post the link to it if you open it again, and I'll type that in to see if I can go to it directly. In the meantime, I looked in my copy the the 2004 A8 brochure
    and saw an oyster grey metallic (a very handsome, dark grey) - if you're
    seeing a really dark metallic grey, that must be it. And, the 3 pages I
    faxed you about the 2005 A6 lists oyster grey metallic as the only grey
    available (at least initially) for 2005.

    If you do any test drives (with or without you Dad) this weekend, let us know what you drove and what your reactions were!!
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