New Audi RS 6 Avant
Another unveiling at Frankfurt: this time, the new Audi RS 6 Avant, with a 580bhp V10 twin-turbo engine and permanent quattro four-wheel drive. The V10 engine of the RS 6, based on the Audi S6 and S8 powerplants but redeveloped for higher performance, uses its FSI direct injection and twin turbochargers to ensure an impressively constant stream of power and torque. The mighty peak torque of 650Nm is available from 1500 right through to 6250rpm, helping the RS 6 Avant to reach 62mph from rest in just 4.6 seconds.
According to Audi, the RS 6 “redefines the term ‘high performance’ in the business class”. With its 580bhp, the new car is the most powerful model in the current Audi range and – with the exception of pure racing cars such as the Le Mans-winning Audi R10 TDI – the most potent Audi of all time. Yet despite the performance, the new Audi RS 6 will at first be available only as an Avant, with the 1660-litre luggage space of an estate delivering on the promise of “excellent suitability for everyday use”.
The RS 6 Avant’s six-speed tiptronic gearbox achieves exceptionally short shift times, with ratios adapted accordingly. In its basic setting, the centre differential of the quattro four-wheel drive distributes 40 per cent of the power to the front and 60 per cent to the rear wheels – a marginally rear-biased setup which should give dynamic handling characteristics.
Meanwhile the sports suspension with Dynamic Ride Control (DRC), which is familiar from the current RS 4 (but consistently enhanced, says Audi), aims to give a good balance of performance and comfort. The new Audi RS 6 Avant will be launched to the market in April 2008.
Text: Charis Whitcombe
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