2020 Audi A6 vs. 2019 Ford Taurus

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/12/11

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Audi A6 have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The Ford Taurus doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

The A6’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Taurus doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

Both the A6 and Taurus have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The A6 has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The Taurus’ child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.

The A6 has standard Pre Sense City, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Taurus offers an available collision warning system without the automated brake feature that would prevent or reduce the collision if the driver fails to react.

The A6 has a standard Secondary Collision Brake Assist, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Taurus doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

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

The Audi A6 has Daytime Running Lights to help keep it more visible under all conditions. Canadian government studies show that driving with lights during the day reduces accidents by 11% by making vehicles more conspicuous. The Taurus doesn’t offer Daytime Running Lights.

A passive infrared night vision system optional on the A6 Prestige helps the driver to more easily detect people, animals or other objects in front of the vehicle at night. Using an infrared camera to detect heat, the system then displays the image on a monitor in the dashboard. The Taurus doesn’t offer a night vision system.

The A6 Premium Plus/Prestige has a standard Top and Corner View Cameras to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Taurus only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

Both the A6 and the Taurus have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.

A significantly tougher test than their original offset frontal crash test, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety does 40 MPH small overlap frontal offset crash tests. In this test, where only 25% of the total width of the vehicle is struck, results indicate that the Audi A6 is safer than the Taurus:

A6

Taurus

Overall Evaluation

GOOD

ACCEPTABLE

Restraints

GOOD

GOOD

Head Neck Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Peak Head Forces

0 G’s

0 G’s

Steering Column Movement Rearward

0 cm

4 cm

Chest Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Hip & Thigh Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Hip & Thigh Injury Risk R/L

0%/0%

0%/0%

Lower Leg Evaluation

ACCEPTABLE

MARGINAL

Tibia index R/L

.38/.47

1.19/.41

For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard front crash prevention system, and its headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the A6 its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2019, a rating granted to only 55 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Taurus was not even a standard “Top Pick” for 2016.

Warranty

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The A6 comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Taurus’ 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

The A6’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the Taurus’ (12 vs. 5 years).

Reliability

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J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 22 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ford is ranked 16th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Audi 11 places higher in reliability than Ford.

Engine

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The A6 45 TFSI’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 19 lbs.-ft. more torque (273 vs. 254) than the Taurus’ standard 3.5 DOHC V6. The A6 55 TFSI’s standard 3.0 turbo V6 hybrid produces 19 lbs.-ft. more torque (369 vs. 350) than the Taurus SHO’s standard 3.5 turbo V6.

As tested in Motor Trend the A6 55 TFSI 3.0 turbo V6 hybrid is faster than the Taurus SHO 3.5 turbo V6:

A6

Taurus

Zero to 60 MPH

5 sec

5.4 sec

Quarter Mile

13.5 sec

14 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

102.7 MPH

100.4 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/12/11

On the EPA test cycle the A6 55 TFSI gets better fuel mileage than the Taurus AWD (22 city/29 hwy vs. 17 city/24 hwy).

On the EPA test cycle the A6 45 TFSI Auto gets better fuel mileage than the Taurus AWD with its standard engine (24 city/32 hwy vs. 17 city/24 hwy).

Regenerative brakes improve the A6’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Taurus doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the A6’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Taurus doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Environmental Friendliness

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In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Audi A6 higher (5 out of 10) than the Ford Taurus (3). This means the A6 produces up to 16.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Taurus every 15,000 miles.

Transmission

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A seven-speed automatic (SMG) is standard on the Audi A6, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the Taurus.

The A6 offers a standard sequential manual gearbox (SMG). With no clutch pedal to worry about and a fully automatic mode, an SMG is much more efficient than a conventional automatic but just as easy to drive. The Taurus doesn’t offer an SMG or a conventional manual transmission.

Brakes and Stopping

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The A6’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs standard on the Taurus are solid, not vented.

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the A6 has larger standard tires than the Taurus (245/45R19 vs. 235/60R17).

The A6’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Taurus SE’s standard 60 series tires. The A6 Prestige’s optional tires have a lower 35 series profile than the Taurus Limited’s 45 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the A6 has standard 19-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the Taurus SE. The A6 Prestige’s optional 21-inch wheels are larger than the 20-inch wheels optional on the Taurus.

Suspension and Handling

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The A6 offers an available 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 Taurus’ suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the A6’s wheelbase is 2.2 inches longer than on the Taurus (115.1 inches vs. 112.9 inches).

The A6’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (55% to 45%) than the Taurus’ (60.7% to 39.3%). This gives the A6 more stable handling and braking.

The A6 Prestige handles at .93 G’s, while the Taurus SEL pulls only .81 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The A6 Prestige executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 2.7 seconds quicker than the Taurus SEL (24.9 seconds @ .75 average G’s vs. 27.6 seconds @ .64 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the A6’s turning circle is 3 feet tighter than the Taurus SHO’s (36.4 feet vs. 39.4 feet). The A6’s turning circle is 3.1 feet tighter than the Taurus’ (36.4 feet vs. 39.5 feet).

Chassis

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The A6 is 8.5 inches shorter than the Taurus, making the A6 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The design of the Audi A6 amounts to more than styling. The A6 has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .28 Cd. That is significantly lower than the Taurus (.32 to .33) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the A6 get better fuel mileage.

Cargo Capacity

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With its sedan body style, valet key, locking rear seatbacks and remote trunk release lockout, the A6 offers cargo security. The Taurus’ non-lockable folding seat and non-lockable remote release defeat cargo security.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the A6 (except Premium) offers an optional power trunk, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button, or optionally by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The Taurus doesn’t offer a power trunk.

Towing

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The A6’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the Taurus’ (3500 vs. 1000 pounds).

While the Taurus SHO is not recommended to tow, any A6 can tow a minimum of 3500 pounds.

Servicing Ease

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The engine in the A6 is mounted longitudinally (North-South), instead of sideways, as in the Taurus. This makes it easier to service and maintain, because there are no rear spark plugs and the accessory belts are in front.

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Audi service is better than Ford. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 46% lower rating, Ford is ranked 24th.

Ergonomics

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Unlike the driver-only memory system in the Taurus Limited/SHO, the A6 offers an optional passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

The A6’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge - which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The Taurus does not have an oil pressure gauge.

The A6 Prestige has a standard heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Taurus doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The A6’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Taurus’ parking brake has to released manually.

The A6’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Taurus’ passenger windows don’t open or close automatically.

If the windows are left open on the A6 the driver can close them all at the outside door handle or from a distance using the remote. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Taurus can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The A6’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The Taurus’ power mirror switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

The A6’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Taurus’ standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The A6’s available headlights were rated “Good” by the IIHS, while the Taurus’ headlights are rated “Poor.”

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The A6 Premium Plus/Prestige has standard headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The Taurus doesn’t offer headlight washers.

To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the A6 offers optional adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The Taurus doesn’t offer cornering lights.

The A6’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Ford only offers heated mirrors on the Taurus SEL/Limited/SHO.

When the A6 is put in reverse, the passenger rearview mirror tilts from its original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirror into its original position. The Taurus’ mirror doesn’t automatically adjust for backing.

The A6 has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning is only available on the Taurus SEL/Limited/SHO.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Audi A6 offers an optional wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The Taurus doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

Economic Advantages

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/12/11

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the A6 is less expensive to operate than the Taurus because typical repairs cost much less on the A6 than the Taurus, including $88 less for a muffler, $370 less for a timing belt/chain and $147 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/12/11

J.D. Power and Associates rated the A6 third among midsize premium cars in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The Taurus isn’t in the top three in its category.

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

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