More powerful and faster than any RS6 and RS7 to date: new Audi RS6 Avant performance and the RS7 Sportback performance are bursting with extras that sharpen the models’ appearance and make for a more emotive driving experience. The potent 4.0-liter V8 biturbo TFSI engine now has an engine power of 463 kW (630 PS) and a maximum torque of 850 Nm. From December 8, the RS6 Avant performance and the RS7 Sportback performance are available for 135,000 euros each. Yet less is sometimes more: reduced insulation between the engine compartment, the interior, and the rear of the vehicle ensures the Audi RS6 Avant performance and the RS7 Sportback performance will thrill customers with an exciting, next-level sound experience – the reduction also makes the car eight kilograms lighter. The RS6 Avant performance has a total unladen weight of 2,090 kg whilst the RS7 Sportback performance weighs 2,065 kg. At Audi, ‘performance’ means more power. For example, larger turbochargers and an increase in boost pressure from 2.4 to 2.6 bar in the 4.0-liter V8 biturbo TFSI engine that both the Audi RS6 Avant performance and Audi RS7 Sportback performance boast, allow an increase of 30 PS in engine power and 50 Nm more torque compared to the base versions. This means a total increase in power from 441 kW (600 PS) to 463 kW (630 PS) and in maximum torque from 800 to 850 Nm. The performance models sprint from 0 to 100 km/h in 3.4 seconds, 0.2 seconds faster than the RS6 / RS7 base versions.
New high-performance Continental “Sport Contact 7” 285/30 tires, which are part of the new lightweight wheel, play a key role in reducing weight. The tires offer consistently better grip on both dry and wet roads and reduce understeering when cornering at speed, making for overall more precise handling across the entire speed range. Additionally, the brake path is up to two meters shorter with the new wheels when braking from 100 to 0 km/h.The new RS6 Avant performance and RS7 Sportback performance roll off the line on standard 21-inch aluminum cast wheels in a ten-spoke star design and 273/35 tires. For an even sportier appearance, 22-inch lightweight wheels are also available, alongside the standard 22-inch aluminum cast wheels – in burnished glossy metallic black, matte gray, matte black, or matte neodymium gold. Inspired by motorsport, the airy 5-Y spoke design aids brake cooling and the lighter rims are manufactured in a high-tech forging-milling process. The new lightweight wheel is around five kilograms lighter than the 22-inch aluminum wheel on the current RS6 Avant or RS7 Sportback – this 20-kilogram weight reduction in unsprung masses improves the throttle response. The Audi drive select dynamic handling system lets the driver control the vehicle’s character. Six profiles are available: efficiency, comfort, auto, dynamic, as well as two customizable RS-specific RS1 and RS2 modes. But experience of the driving modes in the performance models is much more unique. For example, the coasting mode now only activates automatically in the efficiency profile, which means in speed ranges up to 160 km/h, it switches off the combustion engine and coasts with no fuel consumption or drag torque from the engine.
In the interior, the familiar RS design packages in gray and red have been expanded to include the color blue. The steering wheel rim in Alcantra black features contrasting stitching in Mercato blue, whilst the floor mats, the side of the center console, and the selector lever cuff also come with blue contrasting stitching. The seat belts are full-surface ocean blue with the decorative inlays in a carbon twill structure with optional blue accents. The selector lever knob and the side of the center console are made with Dinamica microfiber, which consists of around 45% recycled PET fibers and the sports seats feature high-quality Valcona leather upholstery perforated with honeycomb stitching with contrasting stitching in Mercato blue. Another distinguishing feature is an entrance LED in the front doors that projects the lettering “RS performance” onto the ground next to the car. Customers can use the new “Audi Exclusive Customizer” visualization tool to design their vehicles in thousands of individual combinations and thus create their own personal special edition. They can choose from a wide range of individual paint finishes as well as leather and stitching colors; the tool uses a 3D model to visualize the customization process.
Customers can order RS design packages in the three available color variants with optional additional features: decorative inlays, door armrests and center armrest in Dinamica microfiber. An added benefit of this equipment variant is the seat center panel with a gray, red, or blue inlay, whilst the customer’s chosen color shows through the perforated sports seats and the seat backs feature RS embossing in matching colors. The displays of the standard 12.3-inch Audi virtual cockpit plus offer new features including a blinking shift indicator in manual transmission mode which changes the rpm display from green to yellow to red, blinking in a manner identical to that used in motorsport, to indicate the optimal time to change gears. Plus, Launch Control, which fully exploits the acceleration potential of the RS6 Avant performance and the RS7 Sportback performance by signaling the ideal moment to accelerate off the line, with new traffic light icons.
The RS6 Avant performance and RS7 Sportback performance in the C8 generation continue Audi’s long-standing sport strategy of plus and performance models. It all began with the RS6 Avant plus in the C5 generation, shortly before the series was discontinued in 2004, quattro GmbH (now Audi Sport GmbH) launched a special limited series of 999 units with a subtle upgrade in power. The engine power climbed by 30 PS to 480 PS and the model bore the distinction of being the first Audi to officially go faster than 250 km/h. Audi Sport throttled the RS6 plus to 280 km/h, making it the fastest sport wagon. Without the engine control unit, it reached a top speed of more than 300 km/h. In the C7 generation, “plus” became “performance” – the Audi RS6 Avant and RS7 Sportback performance rolled off the line in 2016, with a slightly tweaked engine, the power rose to 605 PS, 45 PS more than in the base model. The overboost function increased briefly to 750 Nm in “dynamic” driving mode and depending on equipment, the speed was limited at 250, 280 or 305 km/h. The plus variant in the C6 generation hit the market in 2008 and was limited to 500 units. Unlike its predecessor, it did not feature any additional power; the V10 kept its 580 PS. But Audi limited the top speed of the special Avant and Sedan to 303 km/h; the only faster vehicle at the time was the R8.
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