Audi A4 vs Audi A6: Performance, Tuning, and Reliability
Trey is an automotive enthusiast and has a huge passion for Volkswagen and Audi vehicles of all kinds. His enthusiasm started with the MK5 GTI, and he has massively expanded his knowledge over the years. When Trey is not delivering high-quality and in-depth content, we can usually find him working in his garage on his modified Genesis coupe. Trey created VW Tuning several years ago, and he is the primary visionary behind the content.
We’ve written about the Audi A3 vs A4 & the Audi A5 vs A6, we figured we would tackle the Audi A4 vs A6. Unlike some of the other comparison articles we’ve written, the Audi A4 vs A6 have many differences. We’ll be going over price, size, performance, common problems, reliability, and more. In this post, we will not only be highlighting the A4 and A6, but also the Allroad’s for both to show price and size difference.
Audi A4 vs A6 – The Basics
The Audi A4 was first introduced in 1994 and is still in production today. The A4 is a compact executive car that is positioned between Audi’s A3 & A5. Since the A4 has had 5 different generations and has been around for almost 3 decades, we’ll cover the last two generations. The 4th gen, or the B8/B8.5 A4, was built on the MLB platform, while the 5th gen, or the B9 A4, was built on the MLB Evo platform. Since the A4 has been around, there have been many different body types: 4-door sedan, 5-door Avant, 2-door cabriolet (convertible), and an allroad. There is only one sport variant for the A4 and that is an S4.
The Audi A6 was first introduced in 1995 and is still in production today. The A6 is an executive car that is positioned between the A5 & A7. Like the A4, the A6 has been around for nearly 3 decades and also has 5 different generations. The 4th gen, or the C7 A6, was built on the MLB platform, while the 5th gen, or the C8 A6, was built on the MLB Evo platform. Since the A6 has been around, there have been a few different body types: 4-door sedan, 5-door Avant, and an allroad. There are two sport variants for the A6 and those are an S6 and, one of our favorite Audi vehicles, the RS 6 Avant.
Audi A4 Generations
- B5 A4 (1994-2001)
- B6 A4 (2001-2006)
- B7 A4 (2004-2009)
- B8/B8.5 A4 (2009-2016)
- B9 A4 (2016-2023)
Audi A6 Generations
- C4 A6 (1995-1997)
- C5 A6 (1998-2004)
- C6 A6 (2005-2011)
- C7 A6 (2012-2018)
- C8 A6 (2019-Present)
Audi A4 vs A6 Price
In this portion, we will be going over brand new 2022, as of this writing, model prices and used prices for the A4 and A6.
New Audi A4 Price
In this portion, we will be going over the new A4 2022, as of this writing, model year prices. There are 2 different engines for the A4: 40 TFSI, and 45 TFSI. A Premium A4 40 TFSI quattro® starts at $39,900, a Premium Plus A4 40 TFSI quattro® starts at $44,600, and lastly, a Prestige A4 40 TFSI quattro® starts at $50,200. While a Premium A4 45 TFSI quattro® starts at $42,000, a Premium Plus A4 45 TFSI quattro® starts at $46,200, and lastly, a Prestige A4 45 TFSI quattro® starts at $50,900. The A4 Allroad only features one engine and it is a 45 TFSI. A Premium A4 allroad starts at $45,500, a Premium Plus A4 allroad starts at $49,700, and lastly, a Prestige A4 allroad starts at $55,400.
New Audi A6 Price
In this portion, we will be going over the new A6 2022, as of this writing, model year prices. Like the A4, the A6 also has two different engines: a 45 TFSI, and a 55 TFSI. A Premium A6 45 TFSI quattro® starts at $55,900, and a Premium Plus A6 45 TFSI quattro® starts at $59,800. While, a Premium A6 55 TFSI quattro® starts at $59,800, a Premium Plus A6 55 TFSI quattro® starts at $63,700, and lastly, a Prestige A6 55 TFSI quattro® starts at $69,500. The Prestige trim only features the 55 TFSI engine. Also, like the A4, the A6 also has an allroad version. It has only one engine: a 55 TFSI. A Premium Plus A6 allroad 55 TFSI quattro® starts at $66,900, and a Prestige A6 55 quattro® starts at $72,400. A premium S6 starts at $74,800, while a RS 6 Avant starts at $116,500.
If you are curious about the trim differences with Audi’s, here is an article we wrote about the different Audi trims.
Used Audi A4 & A6 Price’s
When it comes to used Audi A4s vs A6s, pricing is pretty much consistent with new prices. With that, we mean that since the A6 is larger than the A4, it tends to be a bit more expensive. Since both models have been around for a while, we will be basing prices on all the most popular generations for each model. A used B8/B8.5 A4s price ranges from $6,995 – $30,998* with an average price overall of $18,995, depending on model year and mileage. A used C7 A6s price ranges from $8,000 – $54,070* with an average price overall of $30,995, depending on model year and mileage. The A6 is more expensive on the new and used side. So, is the Audi A6 worth the extra money?
*At the time of writing this article, we believe we are in a market where used vehicles are inflated, so consider that when seeing the used prices above.
General A4 & A6 Topics
A4 vs A6 Size
Below are some basic details about the size and weight differences seen between the 2022 Audi A4, the 2022 Audi A4 allroad, the 2022 Audi A6, and the 2022 Audi A6 allroad.
Audi A4 vs A6
Given the A4 is a compact executive car and the A6 is an executive car, the A6 is larger in all dimensions. The only difference, aside from the A6 being larger, that sticks out to us is cargo space. The normal A4 to the A6 is only a 1.7″ difference. However, this is why we included the allroad’s, because of the increase in cargo space. If you are someone that needs more cargo space, we wanted to highlight that that allroad’s are a viable option for not that much more money.
Audi A4 vs A6 Performance
For consistencies sake, we will be using the 2022 A4 and 2022 A6 performance specs.
Engines, Drivetrain, & Fuel Economy
As stated above, the A4 has two different engine options: 40 TFSI (2.0T TFSI), and 45 TFSI (2.0T TFSI). Both engines can be found in Premium, Premium Plus, and Prestige trims. Also, Quattro®, Audi’s AWD system, and a 7-speed S Tronic dual-clutch automatic transmission come standard on both engines. The 40 TFSI quattro® engine puts out 201hp and 236 lb-ft of torque, and the 45 TFSI quattro® engine puts down 261hp and 273lb-ft of torque. The A4 allroad features the same 45 TFSI as the regular A4.
The 40 TFSI engine gets 26mpg in the city and 34mpg on the highway for a combined mpg of 29 with a 15.3gal fuel tank. The 45 TFSI engine gets 24mpg in the city and 31mpg on the highway for a combined mpg of 27 with a 15.3gal fuel tank. Lastly, the 45 TFSI on the A4 allroad, gets 24mpg in the city and 30mpg on the highway for a combined mpg of 26 with a 15.3gal fuel tank.
The A6 also has two different engine options: 45 TFSI (2.0T TFSI), and 55 TFSI (3.0T TFSI). Both engines are found be found in the Premium and Premium Plus, but the Prestige trim only gets the 55 TFSI. Also, Quattro®, Audi’s AWD system, and a 7-speed S Tronic dual-clutch automatic transmission come standard on both engines. The 45 TFSI quattro® engine puts out 261hp and 273 lb-ft of torque. While the 55 TFSI quattro® engine puts down 335hp and 369lb-ft of torque. The A6 allroad features the same 55 TFSI as the regular A6, but only offers Premium Plus or Prestige trims.
The 45 TFSI engine gets 23mpg in the city and 32mpg on the highway for a combined mpg of 26 with a 19.3gal fuel tank. The 55 TFSI gets 21mpg in the city and 30mpg on the highway for a combined mpg of 24 with a 19.3gal fuel tank. And lastly, the 55 TFSI in the A6 allroad gets 21mpg in the city and 28mpg on the highway for a combined mpg of 23 with a 19.3gal fuel tank.
A4 & A6 Reliability and Common Problems
Is the Audi A4 reliable? The A4s reliability rating, according to RepairPal, is 3.5 out of 5. Therefore the Audi A4s reliability is average placing it at 14th out of 31 luxury midsize cars. Used Audi A4s we advise avoiding are 2009-2014 model years. Average annual ownership costs for an A4 are about $739, which is the average cost for all luxury midsize cars.
Common problems seen in A4s are excessive oil usage (2011), HPFP (high-pressure fuel pump) failure, faulty pistons (2012), engine misfires due to premature ignition coil or spark plug failure, and PCV valve failure. We have seen tons of A4s last 200,000 miles or more. Check below for specific A4 generation common problem posts we have written.
The 7 Most Common Audi A4 B5 Engine Problems
The 7 Most Common B7 Audi A4 Engine Problems
The 5 Most Common Audi A4 B8 Problems
The 6 Most Common Audi A4 B9 Engine Problems
Is the Audi A6 reliable? The A6s overall reliability is above average, according to RepairPal. They have the A6 rated at 3.5 out of 5, which is above the average luxury full-size car reliability rating of 2.5 out of 5. This places the Audi A6 8th out of 30 luxury full-size cars. Used Audi A6s we advise avoiding are 2000, 2003-2006, 2011, 2013-2016, and 2019. Average annual ownership costs for an A6 are about $913, which is the below the average cost for all luxury full-size cars of $976.
Common problems that are seen in A6s are as followed: Instrument cluster failure, faulty torque converter, premature water pump or thermostat failure, ABS control module failure, common oil leaks, and CV boot/joint failure. If an A6 is properly maintained, we’ve seen them last up to 150,000 and others even last up to 300,000 miles. However, once it hits 100,000 miles, you will have to replace many engine components for longevity purposes.
A4 vs A6 – Which is Better?
When it comes top which model is better, we feel this is rather subjective. It’s hard for us to say which model is better for every consumer. However, we feel that the A4 does provide the most value if you don’t need a full size sedan. They both have a 5-star safety ratings and similar tech and safety features. The A4 gets better gas mileage, but the A6 offers a more powerful 3.0T TFSI engine. The A4 is more sporty, while the A6 has a dull exterior. The interior in the A4 is more simplified, while the A6’s finishes and tech are more advanced. So when it comes to which is better, it comes to what’s most important to you as the consumer.
Audi A4 vs A6 Conclusion
In conclusion, we know that purchasing a vehicle, a luxury vehicle at that, is a big purchasing desicion. So, we hope the information provided above helps in your decision. In short, the A4 is a more compact sedan, gets better gas mileage, and provides a bigger bang-for-your-buck. The A6 is a larger sedan, with more powerful engine options, and better reliability. There is also an allroad option for both the A4 and A6, so if you’re looking for more cargo space, choose the allroad. If you happen to have first-hand experience with either, let us know in the comments below. This won’t only assist us in our research, but also it will assist future readers in their purchasing decisions.