The third S model is the new 2013 Audi S6, which will be making its debut in both sedan and Avant wagon bodystyles but is only destined for sale in the U.S. as a sedan.
The new S6 is scheduled to go on sale in Europe in the spring of 2012 and should arrive in U.S. not long after.
It will come packing a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V-8 rated at 420 horsepower and 405 pound-feet of torque, the latter coming on from just 1,400 rpm. You may recall that the previous model came with a 5.2-liter V-10, however, the downsized V-8 not only offers similar performance, it’s also a whole lot more fuel efficient.
Average gas mileage is 24.25 mpg in the S6 and 24.0 mpg in the S6 Avant for the European combined cycle.
The force-fed V-8 will accelerate the S6 from 0 to 60 mph in only 4.8 seconds, while the S6 Avant is just 0.1 of a second off that pace. Top speed is an electronically limited 155 mph for both models.
2012 Audi S6 Avant
Drive is sent to all four-wheels via a seven-speed S tronic dual clutch transmission. The quattro permanent all-wheel drive system gets a self-locking center differential and torque vectoring feature. Speed adjustable steering is available as an option, as is Audi’s sport differential, which actively distributes power between the rear wheels.
The S6 and S6 Avant come standard with 19-inch aluminum wheels, with 20-inch wheels remaining an option. Standard brakes are internally ventilated steel units, though buyers can opt for carbon ceramic units.
Both cars also ride on an adaptive air suspension, which in its most hardcore setting can lower them by up to 10 millimeters.
2012 Audi S6
Also standard are xenon headlights, a head-up display, a 360 degree camera based parking assistant, and Audi’s MMI interface with Bluetooth connectivity.
Opting for the range-topping MMI Navigation Plus package gives you an eight-inch LCD display, hard-drive based entertainment system, WLAN capability and a 15-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system.
The S6 Avant, with its 59.33 cubic-feet of storage space, tips the scales at 4,300 pounds, while the S6 sedan is not much better at 4,177 pounds.
In the meantime, click here to follow our complete coverage of the event.