Ingolstadt - Audi’s A6 has seriously raised its technological game, with a fully digitised interior, hybrid powertrains across the range and enhanced dynamics through technologies like rear-wheel-steering - but unsurprisingly there are no surprises on the design front.

This fully redesigned A6, now in its eight-generation if you count its earlier 100 ancestors, looks exactly as you’d have expected it to. Its shape is a conservative evolution of the outgoing silhouette with a few new creases thrown in for good measure, and you’ll see some influence from the latest A7 and A8 in the wide-grille frontal design and 3D-style connected taillights at the back.

But the big story is inside, where Audi’s second largest sedan has inherited its almost-buttonless cockpit from the A7. 

The standard MMI ‘touch response’ operating system consists of two vertically-stacked touchscreens. The top one, which blends seamlessly into the black dashboard inlay, contains all the infotainment menus while the bottom one has all your ventilation functions for controlling the weather inside. 

As in the A7, the operating system allows up to seven drivers to create their own user profiles by configuring as many as 400 parameters. 

Navigation is standard, but buyers can opt for the smarter MMI Navigation Plus, which uses a self-learning algorithm to generate ‘intelligent’ route suggestions based on your regular movements.

The A6 also gains a few optional semi-autonomous driving gizmos, such as the Garage Pilot and Parking Pilot systems, which the driver can activate outside the vehicle via a smartphone app, and the Adaptive Cruise Assist which supplements the adaptive cruise control with steering intervention to keep the vehicle in its lane.   

Like the new A7 and A8, all engines will be mated to Audi’s 48-volt mild-hybrid system, which can recover up to 12kW of energy during deceleration. 

European markets will get just two engines to start with, but be sure that many more will follow. First out the starting blocks, then, is a 3-litre TFSI V6 turbopetrol rated at 250kW and 500Nm, and a 3.0 TDI turbodiesel with 210kW and 620Nm on tap.

For improved cornering dynamics, the A6 gets the option of all-wheel steering, while the steering rack itself gets a more direct ratio.

The new A6 is due to go on sale in South Africa in the first quarter of 2019, with variants and pricing to be announced closer to the time.

See the new A6 in motion in the video below:

IOL Motoring