Audi unveiled its A6 Avant last week. Avant is how the Germans call their station-wagon. It’s not imaginative, it’s exactly like everybody thought it would be. You have to look under the hood to find something new, and that is a new diesel engine. Not totally new actually, as the 3-liter V6 TDI has been around for a few years, but this new version has 2-turbochargers. Power? How about 313-hp? That’s more than 100-hp per liter! Audi hasn’t released a full spec sheet yet, and we don’t know how much torque this engine makes but I’m expecting around 450-lbs/ft.
Real-world fuel consumption shall be around 35-mpg, and that makes you understand why so many people are driving diesels in Europe. When it comes to big luxury sedans, like the Audi A8 or the BMW 7-series, diesel’s market share is more than 50% in Europe, taking more than 75% in France or Germany. If there was something surprising, it was that Maserati hadn’t launched a diesel yet. Its beautiful Quattroporte sedan would sell much better with a strong, clean and modern diesel, and that’s precisely what it’s about to get.
Car and Driver said it first. My guess is that Maserati will get a higher output version of the 3-liter V6 recently introduced in the Jeep Grand Cherokee. This engine is coming from VM, it could get 2 turbochargers and a trickier direct injection system to make it worthy of the Maserati name. I’m expecting more than 300-hp, and I’m expecting them as soon as next year.