While some of us are daydreaming of the RS6 Sedan’s return, Audi is updating its BMW 5 Series competitor at the other end of the lineup. The A6 Sport 45 TFSI might not have the most exciting name in the segment, but the new base A6 is a bit more appealing for the 2021 model year. The Four Rings are adding more power and some cosmetic trinkets to lure in more buyers, although given the SUV-hungry state of the market, there aren’t going to be that many.
The turbocharged 2.0-liter gasoline engine has been massaged to deliver an extra 13 horsepower for a grand total of 261 hp. Torque stays the same, at 273 pound-feet (370 Newton-meters), channeled to the Quattro all-wheel-drive system through a seven-speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission. Audi doesn’t say whether the performance has improved, but we’ll remind you the 2020 A6 45 TFSI needed 6.1 seconds to hit 60 mph (96 km/h) and topped out at an electronically capped 130 mph (209 km/h).
Aside from fiddling with the TFSI engine, Audi is throwing in a black optic package as standard equipment to sweeten the pot. As its name suggests, it’s all about black accents, specifically for the front grille and air intakes, side mirror caps, and the window trim. Inside, a black headliner now comes as standard, while the Fine Grain Ash natural wood inlays replace the Walnut natural wood inlays.
With a starting price of $55,400 before the mandatory $1,045 destination fees, the new A6 Sport 45 TFSI commands a $500 premium over its predecessor. You can also opt for a Sport package bringing 20-inch alloy wheels and a stiffer suspension setup, while the three-zone automatic climate control system and power heated front seats are standard.
On the safety side, the new entry-level A6 has adaptive cruise control (with traffic jam and turn assist), along with the Audi Side Assist system with rear cross traffic assist. Lastly, the Ingolstadt-based marque also includes vehicle exit warning as standard equipment.
The 2021 Audi A6 Sport 45 TFSI will begin to reach dealers in the United States towards the end of the year.