After two days of being wined, dined and double-yellow lined by Audi, we've come to the end of our far-coast dunk into the carnival tank of automotive journalism. I suppose we should tell you all about it, considering that doing so is the whole point, isn't it? Let's take a look at our notes, shall we?
Audi's deliberate march up-market continues with its 2005 A6. (Scratch that, too grandiose.) The Audi A6, progeny of supernerds and artisan coachbuilders, offers an intoxicating confluence of luxury and road manners. (Better.)
Six-speed automatic transmission, with tiptronic. Stick with Sport mode, which keeps pretty busy shuttling between gears two and three. On twisty routes, like Marin County's Route 1, kickdowns are often inopportune, like at the apex of a curve. Smooth as silk on the highway. Tiptronic is fun, as always, but non-essential. Watch out for CHP radar nests. Stop and chat at a bakery in Tomales, CA. More coffee, please. Back in car. More cornering. When's lunch?
Standard V6 is smooth and responsive, if slightly whiny. Optional 4.2 liter V8 is the show; it talks like a '88 Camaro IROC Z and pulls like a bungee cord. Can't wait for when Audi lets the V10 loose (hopefully) next year in the S6. Rarow.
Brakes? Check. Handling? Check. Fit and finish? Double check. Blah Blah Blah. Another near-perfect interior, as well fitted as a Breitling chronograph. How the hell do you open the glove box? Oh, that button on the dash? Clever. Where's the e-brake? Oh, that button on the console. Clever. Ask tall guy about leg room — a-ok.
Bottom line: We'd have lurid dreams about this car if we were advertising VPs, or architects, in our peak earning years. The V6 version is an under-recognized value player in the luxury realm. The V8 is dead on the mark. E-Class? Player, please.
Purty maids all in a row, San Francisco, CA.
The 3.2 liter V6 at rest, after miles of being subjected to our sub-par turning-and-acceleration calculus on Marin County's switchbacks.
The A6 brigade, Tomales, CA
The A6 4.2 liter V8, after a random reunion with grandma.
At last, the money shot, Goat Rock beach. North of Petaluma, CA