Gutsy engines and a smooth ride, plus the ability to get its tyres dirty if need be
Everyone on board can get comfy
Full of safety gear in case you crash
The regular A6 scored an 'average' for reliability in the 2012 JD Power customer satisfaction survey
It's big inside, but could be more practical
Leather upholstery, Bluetooth and parking sensors are standard
Like any Audi A6, the Allroad is an accomplished motorway cruiser, with a comfortable ride and plenty of overtaking power from all the engines on offer. The 3.0-litre diesel engines are smooth and quiet, too, but the petrol is noisier and needs to be worked harder for best effect. For the most fun, look to the bi-turbo BiTDI version which has serious pace. Otherwise, refinement is generally pretty good, but you do hear some wind buffeting from the large door mirrors. Head off to twistier roads, and there is a noticeable amount of body roll. That's because the A6 Allroad sits higher than the standard A6 Avant (estate) on which it is based. It still handles securely, though, with strong grip and traction.
There's plenty of space in the cabin, with lots of headroom and legroom in the back seats. However, shoulder space isn't that generous, so the Allroad is better for two in the back, rather than three. The boot is the same as the standard A6's, so it's marginally bigger than that of the BMW 5 Series, but much smaller than the Mercedes E-Class Estate's. The rear seats don't fold quite flat when you want to extend the boot and are heavy to lift back up. The dash is covered in materials of the highest quality, creating a feeling of real class in the cabin. On the flipside, there are quite a few buttons on the dashboard, making it tricky to find the one you want at a glance. The A6 Allroad comes loaded with standard kit. This includes full leather upholstery, sat-nav, Bluetooth, dual-zone climate control, parking sensors and a 4x4-style bodykit.
The A6 saloon achieved a 91% score for adult protection in Euro NCAP crash tests, and an impressive 83% for child protection, putting it up with the best in the class. Audi has performed no better than average in recent reliability and customer satisfaction surveys.
The A6 Allroad is an appealing car, with good practicality, a high-quality cabin and tough 4x4 styling. However, there are many other premium SUVs that offer beefier looks and a more rounded driving experience. Many of them will cost you less, too.