Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2006 Audi A6 VS 2006 BMW 5 Near Scottsdale, AZ

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2006 Audi A6

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VS

2006 BMW 5

Safety Comparison

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For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Audi A6 are height adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW 5 Series doesn’t offer height adjustable seat belts.

To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All Wheel Drive is standard on the A6. But it costs extra on the 5 Series.

Both the A6 and the 5 Series have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four wheel antilock brakes, traction control and electronic stability systems to prevent skidding.

For its top level performance in frontal and side impact tests, and acceptable performance in rear impact tests, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety rates the A6 Sedan as a “Silver” Top Safety Pick, its second highest rating, granted to only 8 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The 5 Series Sedan doesn’t qualify for the IIHS’ top ratings.

Engine Comparison

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The A6 has more powerful engines than the 5 Series:

Horsepower

Torque

A6 3.2 DOHC V6

255 HP

243 lbs.-ft.

A6 4.2 DOHC V8

335 HP

310 lbs.-ft.

525i Sedan 3.0 DOHC 6 cyl.

215 HP

185 lbs.-ft.

530i 3.0 DOHC 6 cyl.

255 HP

220 lbs.-ft.

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

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To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Audi A6 uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended for maximum performance). The 5 Series requires premium, which can cost 25 to 50 cents more per gallon.

The A6 has 2.6 gallons more fuel capacity than the 5 Series (21.1 vs. 18.5 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

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The A6 stops shorter than the 5 Series:

A6

5 Series

80 to 0 MPH

227 feet

231 feet

Road & Track

Tires and Wheels Comparison

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For better traction, the A6 has larger tires than the 5 Series (245/45R17 vs. 225/50R17).

The A6’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) which provides a stiffer sidewall than the 5 Series’ standard 50 series tires.

The A6 has a standard full size spare tire so your trip isn’t interrupted by a flat. A full size spare isn’t available on the 5 Series, it requires you to depend on a temporary spare, which limits mileage and speed before replacement.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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The A6 offers an optional driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads. The 5 Series’ suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the A6 is 2.1 inches wider in the front and 1.4 inches wider in the rear than on the 5 Series.

The A6 4.2 Sedan handles at .84 G’s, while the 530i Sedan pulls only .82 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The A6 3.2 Sedan goes through Road & Track’s slalom faster than the 530i Sedan (61.6 vs. 60.7 MPH).

Passenger Space Comparison

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Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the A6 Sedan is rated a Mid-size car by the EPA, while the 5 Series Sedan is rated a Compact.

The A6 Sedan has 1 inch more front headroom and .9 inches more rear legroom than the 5 Series Sedan.

The A6 Avant has .4 inches more rear headroom and .9 inches more rear legroom than the 5 Series Sports Wagon.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

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The A6 Sedan has a much larger trunk than the 5 Series Sedan (15.9 vs. 14 cubic feet).

The A6 Avant has a larger cargo area with its rear seat up than the 5 Series Sports Wagon with its rear seat up (33.93 vs. 33.6 cubic feet).

The A6 Avant’s liftgate lifts up in one piece, completely out of the way of loading and unloading, while sheltering the cargo loading area. The 5 Series Sport Wagon’s tailgate’s top part raises up, but the bottom part lowers, getting in the way of loading and making an uneven surface for sliding cargo.

Ergonomics Comparison

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Consumer Reports rated the A6’s headlight performance “Good,” a higher rating than the 5 Series’ headlights, which were rated “Poor.”

To improve comfort and visibility, the A6 has standard pull-out visor extensions that block glare better. The 5 Series doesn’t offer any similar feature.

The A6 offers optional automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The 5 Series has an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

Economic Advantages Comparison

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Insurance will cost less for the A6 owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the A6 will cost $24 to $340 less than the 5 Series over a five year period.

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