2019 Lexus IS Series vs. 2019 Audi A6

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

Both the IS Series and the A6 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front and rear seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, blind spot warning systems, rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, its standard front crash prevention system, and its headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the IS Series the rating of “Top Pick” for 2018, a rating granted to only 100 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The A6 has not been tested, yet.

Warranty

Lexus’ powertrain warranty covers the IS Series 2 years and 20,000 miles longer than Audi covers the A6. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the A6 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Lexus vehicles are better in initial quality than Audi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lexus 8th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 21 more problems per 100 vehicles, Audi is ranked 25th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Lexus vehicles are more reliable than Audi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lexus first in reliability, above the industry average. With 42 more problems per 100 vehicles, Audi is ranked 13th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Lexus vehicles are more reliable than Audi vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Lexus first in reliability. Audi is ranked 7th.

Transmission

An eight-speed automatic is standard on the Lexus IS Series, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a seven-speed automatic is available for the A6.

Suspension and Handling

For better maneuverability, the IS Series’ turning circle is 2.2 feet tighter than the A6’s (34.2 feet vs. 36.4 feet). The IS Series AWD’s turning circle is 1 foot tighter than the A6’s (35.4 feet vs. 36.4 feet).

Chassis

The Lexus IS Series may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 550 to 700 pounds less than the Audi A6.

The IS Series is 10.1 inches shorter than the A6, making the IS Series easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The IS Series 300 RWD offers available computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The A6 doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

The IS Series has .2 inches more front headroom and 3.5 inches more front legroom than the A6.

Ergonomics

The IS Series has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The A6 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

Model Availability

The IS Series is available in both rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive configurations. The A6 doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Recommendations

The Lexus IS Series outsold the Audi A6/S6 by over two to one during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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