Audi7

Audi A6 Avant

What the hell is wrong with wood pigeons?

Are they too fat to fly, just plain thick or a mixture of both?

Well they’re obviously stupid, hence the nickname birdbrain.

But surely they can’t be that dumb.

After all, other birds fly out of the way as soon as they hear a car coming, never mind see it.

Wood pigeons don’t.

They just sit there pretending that nothing is happening.

Usually they fly away at the last second before they do battle with a one and a half tonne car.

Sometimes they don’t move at all, often just standing by the side of the road, too idle to move.

Occasionally they don’t bother and the inevitable happens.

Last week I could see this stupid pigeon in the middle of the road and I said to myself: “Go on then, move.”

Well it did move, but only a second before it exploded into a mass of feathers as it hit the windscreen of the Audi A6 Avant I was driving.

Did I feel sorry for it? No not at all. These flying shit machines are the curse of the countryside, and in a lot of cities too, as they cover cars with crap.

My mate Honest has got a great picture of a car with a flat tyre, parked on the pavement under a tree near his house, that’s collected more parking tickets than it’s actually worth.

To add insult to injury it is totally splattered in pigeon droppings. It’s actually quite funny.

That’ll serve the owner right for parking on the pavement.

Anyway, as I said, no, I didn’t feel sorry for the pigeon one little bit.

The one thing I did feel sorry for was the pigeon’s victim, a wonderful Audi A6 Avant.

What on earth had this beautiful motor done to deserve being covered in dead pigeon?

To be honest, quite a bit, because it was a diesel with remarkably high CO2 emissions of 153g/km.

That figure comes despite Audi’s ranch of exhaust emissions controls which include an oxidizing catalytic converter, diesel particulate filter, exhaust gas recirculation and an SCR catalytic converter which reduces nitrogen oxide (NOx) levels to near zero.

That’s provided owners remember to refill their car’s Ad Blue tank. Hmm?

Apart from re-naming their motors with barmy numbers, then supplying a bewildering “explanation” of them (see my A4 review) Audi are on a roll at the moment.

All you need to remember with the numbers is that the higher they are, the more power it’s got.

The A6 Audi loaned to me, to give it its full name, was an Audi A6 Avant allroad quattro 50 TDI.

I’m sure you’ll have immediately understood that the number 50 is based on its 210kW power figure, rather than the 286hp produced by its 3.0-litre turbo.

It also punches out 620Nm (457lb) of torque which slams this near five metre (16ft 2in) monster from 0-62mph in 5.9s and on to a limited 155mph.

Speed like that is pretty much useless in this country so, obviously, that’s not the reason I said that Audi are on something of a roll.

Far from it, it’s the sheer beauty of their current crop of cars that is so impressive.

If you realised how blown away I was by the A4, the A6 Avant is even better.

Mind you, at £20,000 more than the A4 40 TDI quattro I drove it should be.

The first thing you notice about the A6, apart from its sheer size, is its elegance.

It looks classy and refined and you immediately expect a refined and extremely well dressed person to step out of the driver’s seat. Not me.

It may be an estate car but you expect the boss to be driving it rather than a mere sales rep.

The inside more than confirms the outside image.

As soon as you open the door you’re met by a wonderfully laid back gentleman’s lounge of dark leather, set in a mottled grey silver surround with just the occasional slash of bright silver switches and door pulls.

There’s none of the racy red double stitching or head rests imprinted with boasts about the car’s power and performance.

Instead it’s still double stitched, but that’s almost invisible, being the same matching colour of the seats and dashboard trim.

Oh no, this is a car for a squire, not a dandy.

The A6’s dashboard is made up of three main screens, all colourful and offering a choice of different views, so there’s enough there to keep you occupied for days rather than hours.

Turning to practical matters the A6 Avant is more than capable of mixing it with the biggest and best.

Its boot, which of course is opened electrically before you reach it, is a colossal 117cm (3ft 10in) deep, with sliding rails on both sides, a net pocket and a neat strap on the side for stopping tall stuff from moving about … and that’s before you’ve even folded down the rear seat backs.

You do that by pulling the handles on the side of the cavern, sorry boot, which sees them automatically spring forwards to form a near flat 200cm (6ft 7in) deep luggage area more than capable of carrying two sets of golf clubs, two electric golf trolleys and, dare I say it, a picnic hamper and your shotguns on your way to the skeet shooting range.

Needless to say this is all backed up by the silence and power of its V6 turbo.

Like the A4 you find yourself cruising along in silence, wondering how this massive four-wheel-drive car, with seven different driving modes, enough gadgetry to tackle a quarry, never mind towing a caravan, manages to average 37mpg.

Suddenly, the whole package of perfection that is the Avant allroad quattro sounds like a bargain at less than £60,000.

Mind you, if you start looking at the extras on offer, it could easily end up costing a hell of a lot more than that.

I’d be more than happy with an A4 Avant, never mind an A6.

Hey ho, it’s back to the real world now and it’s nowhere near as nice.

Especially if you were a wood pigeon.

Audi1

IMAGE RATING

Audi A6 allroad quattro 50 TDI.

REAR MIRROR MONSTER: Allroad version adds height to an already bruising huge six-bar grille. Scary monster.

BACKSIDE BEAUTY: Rounded, elegant and practical, with no sign of the exhaust tucked away above and behind the bumper, it’s actually quite pretty considering its size.

PLAYTIME PLEASER: Touchscreen 10.1-inch MMI with aerial view sat nav, four-zone climate control, adaptive cruise control with speed limiter, rear parking sensors with camera, trip computer, leather seats – heated, cooled and electric at the front –keyless start, auto folding heated door mirrors, auto dimming bi-xenon headlights, LED rear lights, phone charging tray, double-glazed windscreen, electric tailgate, eight speed auto box, 20in 10-spoke alloys, Bose sound system with Bluetooth, four USB ports (two in rear), SIM, SD, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

NAUGHTY NIGGLES: Barrage of hyper-active warning sounds that go off way too early. Yes, I can see that I’m nowhere near that parked car, now shut up.

TASTY TOUCHES: Enormous glove box is big enough to hold not one, but three, bottles of wine. Now I want one of these cars more than ever.

FAST OR LAST: Silent, swish and violently fast when pushed, it fulfils everything an Audi owner is looking for.

WONGA WONDA: It’s a massive car with a massive amount of kit for a less than massive price. Great value, no doubt about it.

WOULD CHANTELLE LIKE IT? Way too big for Chantelle, who’d feel a lot happier in her new car. She’s traded in her Fiesta for a Fiat 500.

Fact File here: