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Plug-in hybrid joins the Audi A6 line-up

The opportunities to drive an electrified Audi are becoming ever more plentiful, with five plug-in hybrid models scheduled for introduction in the second half of 2019 alone.

The A6 55 TFSI e with a 362 bhp system output and the scope to travel for up to 32 miles under purely electric power is the latest in the line – the new hybrid saloon is expected to become available to order in the UK in November before arriving here in early 2020.

“Hybrid power is a particularly good fit for our customers in the executive class,” says Director of Audi UK Andrew Doyle. “There is of course a commuting element to their usage, but long distances are also traditionally covered by cars in this segment. The potential to make journeys of over 30 miles under pure electric power, and to travel for hundreds more thanks to the powerful TFSI unit, makes the A6 TFSI e exceptionally fit for purpose, even before the BIK and VED advantages that its strong efficiency focus bring are taken into account.”

The new A6 joins A7, A8, Q5 and Q7 variants which also go by the name of TFSI e. Like all these Audi plug-in hybrid models, it combines two drive systems, in this case a four-cylinder 2.0 TFSI petrol engine with 249 bhp and an electric motor integrated into the seven-speed S tronic with a peak output of 105kW.

Total system output is 270kW (362 bhp), and the full 369 ft lb of system torque is on tap from just 1,250rpm. The lithium-ion battery stores 14.1kWh of energy, and is positioned at the rear of the vehicle.

The A6 55 TFSI e quattro offers quattro all-wheel drive as standard, which helps the car to accelerate from rest to 62mph in 5.6 seconds and go on to a top speed of 155mph. Under purely electric power, it is capable of a top speed of 83mph. Its electric range, measured according to the WLTP procedure, is up to 32 miles.

The drive concept of the Audi A6 55 TFSI e quattro is designed so that customers can do most of their daily driving electrically. They can choose between the three drive modes “EV” for all-electric driving, “Hybrid” for the efficient combination of both drive types and “Hold” to conserve the electrical energy available at any given time.

In “Hybrid” mode the predictive operating strategy ensures maximum efficiency and the maximum possible amount of electric driving. It controls the drivetrain so that the last stage of the journey before getting to the destination can be covered in all-electric mode and the battery is charged up beforehand via the combustion engine where necessary. Journey planning is performed by the predictive efficiency assistant, which uses a large amount of information, including navigation, online traffic events, the driver’s style and the vehicle sensors such as the camera and radar. It plans the management of the drives and decides between freewheeling with the engine deactivated and coasting recuperation.

Customers can charge the Audi A6 55 TFSI e quattro at public charging stations up to an output of 7.4kW using the mode 3 cable supplied. This means it takes roughly two-and-a-half hours to recharge an empty high-voltage battery. Customers can use the MyAudi app to manage charging and pre-entry climate control even before they set off. The air conditioning system operates together with a highly efficient heat pump that uses the waste heat from the electrical drive components.

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