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Audi S6 Avant

Audi was fairly constantly re-structuring their model lineup in early and mid-1990s, and in 1995 began selling the fifth generation 100 model as the A6. Wanting to keep a sports-sedan in their lineup, the company made small revisions to what had been badged as the S4, and began reselling it as the S6 - the S4 would eventually become a completely separate member of the lineup, based on Audi's A4.

Audi S6 Avant 1995

For 1995, the S6 was powered by a 2.2 L turbocharged five-cylinder engine producing 230 PS (169 kW/227 hp) at 5900 rpm and 326 Nm (258 ft.lbf) at around 1950 rpm. The powerful engine gave the S6 surprisingly good performance, it had a top speed of 243 km/h (151 mph) and went from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 6.1 seconds; 160 km/h (99 mph) was reached in 17.5 seconds. The vehicle came standard with a six speed manual gearbox (5 speed only in the USA), and Audi's Quattro all-wheel-drive system. It was available as both a sedan and an "Avant" (station wagon) to European customers, but only as a sedan in North America (except as a 1995.5 model,) Asia and Australia.

Audi had made a high-performance, 4.2 L V8 available as an option in the first generation European S4s, and made the decision to continue to do so with the S6, making a 290 PS (213 kW/286 hp) version of the 4.2 available as an optional upgrade over the 5-cylinder. Unlike the turbocharged version, the V8-powered S6 was shipped with automatic transmission by default, but kept the Quattro four wheel drive. A 6-speed manual gearbox was available as an option.

An even more powerful and very limited-production S6 Plus, powered by another version of the V8 (later to be seen in the Audi S8), was briefly available to European customers. Developed by Quattro GmbH, it was available for sale only during the 1997 model year. Only 952 cars were produced in total - 855 Avant (Estate) and 97 Limousines. Audi's performance division reworked key parts of the engine and increased the power output to 326 PS (240 kW/322 hp). During this process they also made revisions to the suspension, brakes and transmission. With so much power on tap, the S6 Plus could reach 100 km/h (62 mph) from a standstill in less than six seconds, making it compareable in terms of accleration to vehicles like the Porsche 944 Turbo.