Automotive Performance Information
Automotive Performance Information

Sunday, May 18, 2008


Delicious—580 horsepower…in a wagon!

Power wagons have never really caught on in the U.S. Too bad, since Audi is taking the craft of wagon-roiding to an unforeseen—unfathomable, really—level with the 2009 RS 6 Avant, Audi’s most powerful production car ever.

No Excuse for Being Late to School

The RS 6 Avant is powered by a twin-turbocharged version of Audi’s Lamborghini Gallardo–derived V-10 with direct injection. We’ve heard about this mill for a long time, but now we know just how potent it will be: 580 horsepower at 6250 rpm and 479 pound-feet of torque, the latter available over what may be the fattest torque plateau in the business: 1500 to 6250 rpm.

As with every hi-po Audi, the RS 6 Avant will feature Quattro all-wheel drive, which, in this case, directs 60 percent of the engine’s torque to the rear wheels in its basic setting. The only transmission will be a modified, quick-shifting six-speed Tiptronic unit.
Steering and suspension components, including three-stage dampers, have also been retuned to accommodate the superwag’s heightened performance potential.

So how fast will it be? Audi claims 0 to 62 in 4.6 seconds—only 0.3 tick off the last R8 we tested—with a top speed predictably set at 155 mph.

Sexy Bod, Big Brakes

The RS 6 Avant’s speed is complemented by added sex appeal. The interior is gussied up in much the same way the S6 sedan is, and the body wears numerous aero mods, including a new front clip and a diffuser-endowed rear bumper.

Each of the widened fenders is filled with standard 19-inch wheels and powerful disc brakes or, as an upgrade, 20-inch wheels around a set of those increasingly popular and fantastically fade-resistant carbon ceramic brakes. The headlamps feature an underscoring of LEDs to tell the world that this ain’t no ordinary A6.

Sedan? Yes. U.S.? No.

Yes, an RS 6 sedan will be available eventually, but not until sometime after the Avant’s European introduction in April 2008.

Want one? Pack up the family and find an EU address, because Audi has no intention of bringing either RS 6 variant to North America. To say that we’re disappointed is an understatement.


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