Audi’s in-house performance division Audi Sport GmbH has raised the cloak of the new RS4 Avant at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show.
It’s the fourth generation of the mid-sized performance car and it’s returned to its roots somewhat. Although the previous two generations of RS4 used a 4.2-liter V8, the first cars had a 2.7-liter, V6 biturbo. The 2017 version is home to a 2.9-liter, V6 biturbo, driving an eight-speed tiptronic gearbox.
Don’t worry about it being shy on power though. The new engine totes the same 444hp as the previous car, but benefits from significantly more torque — up from 317lbft to 443lbft. It comes in much lower down the rev range too, at just 1900rpm, compared to 4000rpm in the older car.
The new RS4 Avant is also lighter than the old one by almost 200lb. As a result, you can rest assured that the RS4 will be a strong performer at any speed. It accomplishes the 0-60mph dash in just 4.1 seconds, and will hit a limited 155mph. An RS Dynamic package is available which raises the limiter to 174mph.
The lighter car sees improvements to fuel economy too. It has an official taring of 38.5mpg (32.1mpg US), 17% better than its predecessor. Of course that’s assuming you can resist using the tempting power resting beneath your right foot.
With standard RS sport suspension, the RS4 Avant sits fractionally lower than a regular A4. Large, 19-inch forged aluminum wheels are also standard fit, along with the traditional four-wheel drive “quattro” system.
There’s plenty of additional gadgets too. Dynamic Ride Control, ceramic brakes, dynamic steering and 20-inch wheels are all available. There’s also a rear differential with adjustable torque distribution, though lucky UK owners get this feature as standard along with Audi Virtual Cockpit.
The RS4 visually sets apart from the standard A4 Avant with wheel arches an inch wider, and huge air intakes on the front bumper. Classic RS oval exhausts, an RS roof spoiler and specific diffuser provide further visual impact. Inside you can find the usual high quality Audi materials, sports bucket seat, and a flat-bottomed multifunction steering wheel.
Of course, all the joy comes at a price. When it comes out next year, the RS4 Avant will be available at £61,625, before you take a trip to Audi’s famously expensive options list.