Audi will unveil its Allroad Quattro SUV concept later this month at the North American Auto Show in Detroit.

The new concept car is based on the A6 Avant that becomes available to order this week, and features the latest Audi adaptive air suspension, a new Piezo-injected V8 TDI engine and numerous technological advances.

For the new allroad quattro concept, the lines of the new A6 Avant body shell have been given a harder edge with new bumpers, flared wheel arches, visible ribbed stainless steel under-body protection and a special treatment for the now familiar Audi single frame grille. Imposing 19-inch alloy wheels and LED front and rear lights also add to the visual appeal.

The new 4.0-litre V8 TDI engine is boosted by two turbo chargers and incorporates common rail fuel injection with state-of-the-art Piezo injectors. The power unit is light weight and complies with EU4 emissions regulations through the use of a particulate filter.  Output is 282bhp and 479lb/ft of torque. As a result, the allroad quattro concept can sprint from rest to 62mph in 6.4 seconds, dispatch 50-70mph in 4.9 seconds and power on to an electronically governed top speed of 155mph.

The allroad quattro concept features a modified version of the latest adaptive air suspension first used by the A8 saloon, with electronically controlled four-mode adjustable damping and variable ride height. The lowest 160mm setting benefits on-road agility by dropping the centre of gravity, and reduces wind resistance and fuel consumption for motorway cruising in the process. The maximum height setting of 210mm gives the best possible ground clearance on rough terrain and steep inclines.

When driving in inhospitable, muddy conditions, or even just on salt and water-soaked winter roads, the allroad quattro concept ensures that visibility never suffers, thanks to an innovative coating of hydrophonic molecules covering the exterior window glass and mirrors that repels both water and dirt.

The interior features a new version of the MMI Multi Media Interface with a larger 8.9-inch monitor and even higher pixel resolution for optimum clarity. The MMI unit also includes a 3D off-road navigation system incorporating compass and longitudinal/lateral angle display.

Other features that could eventually filter through to other Audi models include the Audi road vision system, a system that incorporates an optical sensor able to recognize the condition of the road and its surface. The system informs the driver of potential hazards such as loose gravel or black ice, and also gives the ESP electronic stabilization program and the adaptive cruise control additional, crucial parameters for even better proactive control.

The Audi lane assist system induces vibrations through the steering wheel to inform the driver should he or she inadvertently stray across the lane divider lines on a carriageway. Audi side assist, in turn, incorporates radar sensors monitoring the area behind and next to the car to detect vehicles approaching the allroad quattro, or driving in its blind spots. The driver is informed by a warning light mounted in the exterior mirror on the appropriate side of the car.

A high centre console incorporates subdivided storage compartments between two-piece armrests. These can be completely retracted into the floor, and the rear seats tilted forward at the touch of a button, to create a completely flush load area. The fully retractable load cover is also housed within the floor to remove all clutter.

Despite its near-production appearance, Audi insists there are “no definite plans” to make the car a production reality.