In the third and final part of this series, we bring two big and very powerful cars- the Audi RS6 Avant and the Audi RS 7 Performance. These “practical” cars have some serious power packed up under their hood with their monstrous 3.9 litre V8s that can shame many sportscars out there.
So why on earth would you want 550 horsepower in an estate? What the hell will you do with a 550bhp estate? Valid questions, both, but then again why the heck not? Even with a hulking great V8 under that hulking great bonnet there’s nothing stopping you from taking the dog for a drive. The RS 6 Avant remains a very practical car for the wife to take the kids to school in. Or you can leave the wife, the kids, and the dog at home and proceed to demolish every road ever made. The expressway, the twisties slithering up a mountainside, a race track, a drag race; whether it is dry or wet, rough or smooth, gravel strewn or oil patched, the Audi RS 6 Avant ruthlessly decapitates every known bit of tarmac.
“The RS 6 Avant remains a very practical car for the wife to take the kids to school in. Or you can leave the wife, the kids, and the dog at home and proceed to demolish every road ever made”
This particular car, I hate it. It is the reason my drag racing trophies don’t include an overall first. Many months ago I rocked up at a drag race armed with my Sparco gloves, an app on my phone to hone reaction times, and a German hotrod rocking a Race Start mode complete with a complicated launch control sequence and a big ol’ chequered flag on the display. And I proceeded to get pasted by this car that doesn’t even have launch control! By a driver who had useless reaction times. He just stepped on it and went. Forget me, the Audi was so quick the reigning champ was rattled into making a jump start.
It says 250kmph limited on the spec sheet yet we filmed it doing 286kmph before we ran out of road. It is mental. Under 4 seconds to 100kmph. Quattro-enabled grip that launches so hard a beautiful imprint of your skull is left in the headrest. So much torque there’s no manual gearbox or even a twin-clutch auto in Audi’s parts bin can handle it. And all this on a near-5 metre long estate car, a genre that is supposed to be all about practicality and common sense.
I love this car! It’s all the car I’d ever want or need. It’s the coolest thing you could own. It looks cool as f***. Muscled and hunkered down on mahoosive rims. It is a car for every season and every reason. And as Aditya proceeds to demonstrate, it can also go very, very sideways.
“It looks cool as f***. Muscled and hunkered down on mahoosive rims. It is a car for every season and every reason. And as Aditya proceeds to demonstrate, it can also go very, very sideways”
Oh, you don’t have to drift the RS 6, you can just rely on its gargantuan grip levels, feel the mass squish the outside suspension, and make light work of a race track. Or you can observe a race driver doing what he is not supposed, or paid to do. The trick to all-round tyre destruction (of the heroic oversteer kind, not awful understeery squeal) is lots of speed – obviously lots of speed! – and using the generous mass and even more generous acreage to get the back end out of shape.
It all happens on the brakes, trailbraking to load up the nose, lighten the back end, steering just enough to get the nose pointing at the apex and carrying way too much speed for the tail to maintain any sense of decency or decorum. Result – the tail lets go and makes a determined effort to overtake the front. Aditya’s reaction – full opposite lock and full on the gas to let the quattro drivetrain do what it does: the fronts biting, gripping and ratcheting up forward momentum; the locking sport diff on the rear axle simultaneously bonfiring the rear tyres, torque vectoring the outside wheel and contributing to forward momentum. It is a breathtaking sight, this massive beast of an automobile completely crossed. And, provided you have the safety of run-offs, it is not very difficult to do. Did I tell you how much I love this car?
Into the pits and we swap to the RS 7, this one the Performance. Apparently there are people for whom 552bhp is not enough and so the Performance ramps it up to 596bhp. 0-100kmph takes 3.7 seconds so drag races are in the bag. Top speed, should you throw more money at option packs, can hit 300kmph. You can get it with carbon ceramic brakes. It is all too ridiculous for words.
Can you make out the 50 extra horses? On the back straight I close in ever so slightly on Aditya in the RS 6 Avant but that’s about it. Everywhere else 552bhp is enough. Then again enough is never enough for people who buy these cars, and for them Audi has just launched the RS 6 Avant Performance. Because, why the heck not!