Audi rounded out its A6 model line with the new 1999 Avant station wagon last summer, and late this spring it will introduce the new TT coupe. Expected this fall as a 2000 model is a 2.7-liter bi-turbo engine rated at 250 horsepower (hp) in the S4, a high-performance version of the A4.
The TT goes on sale in the late spring of 1999 in a front-wheel-drive version, powered by a 180-hp 1.8-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine priced at $30,500. A quattro model goes on sale later in the summer. A roadster version is expected, along with a 225-hp version of the coupe early next year.
The A6 Avant takes on the sedan's 200-hp 2.8-liter 30-valve V-6 engine and five-speed automatic transmission with Tiptronic for clutchless manual shifting when so inclined. This is not your '50s station wagon, either in the way it looks or in the way it drives. The A6 Avant is equipped with the quattro all-wheel-drive system as standard equipment. All A6s now include lockable head restraints on the front seats. Both the A6 sedan and Avant wagon get some new standard equipment for 1999, such as additions to the warm and cold weather packages, a larger right outside mirror and lockable head restraints for front seats. Side airbags are available to protect rear-seat passengers. A rear-facing children's bench seat is an option that turns the Avant into a seven-seater with its own head restraints and safety belts. Audi has announced that it will introduce an A6 with a 4.2-liter five-valve V-8 engine in 1999.
A 1999 A4 1.8T Avant joined the A4 family last fall, which also includes the A4 2.8 Avant sport wagon, the A4 1.8T sedan and the A4 2.8 sedan. The new 1.8T comes standard with a five-speed manual transmission and an optional five-speed automatic with Tiptronic. For 1999, all Avants come equipped with Audi's quattro all-wheel-drive system as standard equipment; there is no longer a front-wheel-drive A4 2.8 Avant. The A4s also get a larger right outside mirror and lockable head restraints for front seats.
The A8 luxury sedan shows up with some minor changes in 1999, including additions to its warm-weather package and a larger right outside mirror for improved visibility.
The Cabriolet was dropped from the U.S. lineup in 1998. The TT Roadster is the next convertible Audi has in store for the U.S. market early in 2000 — one more reason to look forward to the next century.