No S6 owner went without. Standard kit includes 19in alloy wheels, bi-xenon headlights that track corners, leather seats and tinted glass. Among the plethora of options available were carbonfibre interior trim, larger 20in wheels, a rear blind and an uprated sound system. Today, though, the best option is a full service history. Many S6 sellers claim their car has one, but reserve judgement until you’ve checked every last stamp and invoice.

How to get one in your garage

An expert’s view

Martin Adams, Founder and Director, Unit 20

“The S6 is a very good car that suffered in the shadow of the RS6. Its 5.2-litre V10 is erroneously linked to the dry-sump V10s in the RS6 and Lamborghini Gallardo, but it shares little with them. It’s reliable but parts are expensive, meaning the ‘cheap’ S6 you find may not be so cheap to own. There are 10 spark plugs, 10 coil packs and 10 injectors, and the plugs alone cost £240. Each front brake disc costs around the same. Rust isn’t an issue but serious dings and dents can be expensive to sort. Interiors are robust and reliable but these cars are now up to 15 years old, so the tech is dated.”

Buyer beware

Engine: Oil services are every 10,000 miles or 12 months. Valves are prone to carbon fouling that can only be fully eradicated with expensive dismantling. The four timing chains are at the back of the engine, making removal and replacement very expensive. The chains are reliable but the plastic guides and tensioners can fail. Injector problems are common on older cars and replacing all 10 isn’t cheap. On the test drive, feel for running issues at speed – the variable-length manifolds have a tendency to break up inside.