Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0
  • Dashboard is modern and high quality
  • Dominated by touchscreens
  • Easy to get comfy, but will take some getting used to

The A6 Avant’s interior is lifted straight from the A6 Saloon, and takes influence from the larger A7 Sportback and A8 models, meaning it’s dominated by a dual touchscreen set-up (plus digital Virtual Cockpit where fitted) and a simple design that looks and feels very modern.

The first thing that strikes you is just how well-built the A6’s cabin feels. The materials used throughout feel solid and plush, with leather used on the dash and plenty of pleasant metals and Alcantara suede depending on the trim level.

On Sport models, you can also specify wood trim (none of the shiny stuff) for an extra feel of premium-ness. If you do stick with piano black trim on some surfaces, be prepared to spend a lot of time polishing fingerprints and marks out of it – with the same applying to all those touchscreens.

It’s easy to get comfortable behind the wheel, with plenty of adjustment in the steering column and supportive seats, although smaller drivers may feel a little hemmed-in – the window line is quite high.

All of the car’s main functions are controlled via Audi’s MMI Touch infotainment system, dominating the dashboard with a big, bright touchscreen, complemented by a second screen lower on the centre console that looks after ventilation and some seating controls, as well as acting as a touchpad for handwriting recognition.

It takes a little getting used to as you can scroll on the screens with a gentle touch, while other selections require a firm prod of the screen with vibration and ‘clicking’ feedback. Once you’ve spent some time configuring the screens to your preferences and learning where all the menus are, it’s a slick and intuitive set-up.

More functions can be controlled via the Virtual Cockpit digital dials, which displays everything from navigation and media to phone calls and the trip computer. This isn’t standard, though, with entry-level cars coming with a more traditional analogue dial cluster.

Visibility is good though, with a large glass area allowing a good view out of the A6 at all angles. 

Comfort

  • Impressively comfortable cruiser
  • Depends on the suspension fitted
  • Refinement is very good 

The A6 Avant has some tough competition when it comes to comfort. The Mercedes-Benz E-Class Estate excels in this area, while BMW’s 5 Series Touring manages to blend being good to drive yet very cossetting at the same time.

The good news is that the A6 Avant manages to provide a comfortable and relaxed ride, but it doesn’t quite beat its two main competitors in the areas in which they excel.

This all hinges on the suspension set-up you’ve got on the A6. We’re yet to try an A6 with standard springs, instead trying one fitted with adaptive suspension and another with air suspension. There are four suspension set-ups available:

  • Steel springs – standard on Sport
  • Sports suspension (lowered by 10mm) – standard on S Line
  • Suspension with electronically regulated damping control (lowered by 10mm) – an optional extra
  • Adaptive air suspension – an optional extra

With adaptive suspension and the Drive Select system set to Comfort, the A6 shakes off bumps in the road very well indeed and, in combination with smaller wheels, it provides a very relaxed drive. It’s not quite as comfy as the E-Class, however the trade-off is greater body control – making it a better all-rounder than the Merc.

Specifying the air suspension might be tempting on higher-spec models, but don’t choose this with larger wheels fitted. They offset the benefits in ride quality, making the A6 Avant nice and floaty in some situations and crashy and fidgety in others. We’d save the extra cash and go for the regular suspension with adaptive damper control instead.

Whether you choose the standard cloth seats or optional leather upholstery, the A6’s seats are comfortable and supportive, with a large range of adjustment available, so most drivers will be able to get comfortable.

Refinement is particularly impressive in the A6, with very little wind or road noise making its way in to the cabin, with the diesels remaining very hushed indeed at all speeds.