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Audi's pursues sleeker looks instead of increased load capacity for its new A6 Avant

Audi is pursuing sleeker looks over a huge load capacity with the next-generation A6 Avant, spied here during winter tests.

The new model gets a rakish tailgate and sloping roofline that are likely to leave its load bay some way short of the Mercedes E-class, currently the estate to beat.

See pics of the Audi A6 Avant in testing

The new A6 saloon hits UK showrooms in April and this Avant version is expected to follow by the end of the year. Audi says it has designed, engineered and specified the new A6 to deliver class-leading quality, comfort and refinement; outstanding spaciousness and efficiency; generous equipment levels, and low costs of ownership.

The wider use of aluminium in the car’s aluminium and steel hybrid construction has made the saloon version of the new A6 the lightest car in its class, and 80kg lighter than the last one. It’s 12mm shorter overall than the outgoing car, but better packaged so that it grants occupants more leg-, shoulder- and head-room, trends expected to be adopted in the Avant.

Read Autocar's first drive of the new Audi A6 saloon

UK buyers will be offered the choice of 175bhp 2.0-litre, 201bhp 3.0-litre and 242bhp 3.0-litre TDI commonrail diesel engines, alongside only one range-topping petrol option: the 296bhp 3.0-litre TFSI.

The powerplants come with efficiency-boosting technolgies such as electromechanical power steering, intelligent on-demand ancilliaries and automatic start-stop, contributing to fuel economy and CO2 improvements of more than 20 per cent in some cases versus outgoing versions of the car.

See all the latest Audi A6 reviews, news and video


Read our review

Car review

The Audi A6 rises higher than any model before it and is now a real contender in the mid-size exec market

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