Spied by carscoops.com outside the Four Rings’ Technical Centre in Ingolstadt though, the S6 Avant is likely to re-write this albeit in the most subtle way as possible. Sporting no disguise or badging and appearing to be a regular A6 Avant equipped with the optional S line pack, the prototype S6 betrays its hidden identity thanks to the quad-exhaust outlets and rear diffuser.
Despite the non-assuming black paint, the S6 is however expected to gain a number of other exterior touches in production form, namely model specific alloy wheels, silver mirror caps, S line and S6 badging and chrome detailing.
Inside, expect the interior to receive equally minor additions in the form of S specific sport seats, aluminium inserts, an S badged sport steering wheel, drilled pedals, different graphics for the Virtual Cockpit Display instrument cluster and S unique upholstery.
The big change from the previous S6 and the indeed the RS6 will come underneath the bonnet, where the 4.0-litre TFSI V8 will make way for the RS5’s twin-turbo 2.9-litre TFSI V6 that produces 331kW/600Nm. With a rumoured 0-100km/h sprint time of 3.4 seconds for the RS6, the S6 is slated to complete the benchmark dash in less than five seconds, with a limited top speed of 250km/h.
An eight-speed Tiptronic gearbox is likely to replace the previously mentioned seven-speed S tronic, with the amount of twist, as ever, expected to go to all four wheels via Audi’s famed quattro all-wheel drive system.
Given the lack of disguise, the imminent Paris Motor Show and the fact that both the regular A6 sedan and Avant are already on sale in Europe, expect the S6 to debut before the French showpiece in both the aforementioned bodystyles.