Audi RS6 bows with a 441 kW mild-hybrid V8 punch

The initiator of the fast estate when it unveiled the iconic RS2 Avant in 1994, Audi has expanded on its range of hot wagons by unveiling the all-new RS6 Avant.

Supplementing the RS4, the A6 Avant-based RS6 rates as the most powerful iteration of any ‘standard’ previous derivative by packing the same twin-turbocharaged 4.0 TFSI V8 engine as its predecessor, albeit now mated to a 48-volt mild-hybrid system utilising a  belt alternator starter that can store as much 12 kW within the lithium-ion battery pack.

Further equipped with cylinder deactivation, the twin-blown V8 produces 441kW/800Nm, which translates to a limited top speed 250 km/h, 0-100 km/h in 3.6 seconds and 0-200 km/h in twelve seconds. As with all fast Audis, the RS6 sends its twist to all four wheels through and eight-speed Tiptronic gearbox.

Visually, the RS6 exterior differences versus the regular A6 Avant is prominent with a more aggressive RS bespoke bodykit, a gloss black Singleframe grille, the same bonnet as the RS5, standard Matrix LED headlights with black surrounds, a redesigned rear facia, RS specific LED taillights with dynamic indicators, a gloss black diffuser, dual oval tipped exhausts and standard 21-inch, 10-spoke alloy wheels with 22-inch RS five-spoke V alloys being optional.

Sitting 20 mm lower to the ground than the A6, the RS6’s changes underneath its skin consists out of a sports tuned Electronic Stability Control (ESC) system, a five-link design for the front and rear suspension, the RS sports air suspension, carbon ceramic brakes, recalibrated power steering and the Audi Drive Select system with six modes; Efficiency, Comfort, Auto, Dynamic and two new selections; RS1 and RS2 with the latter altering the ESC.

Inside, the interior comes with a RS take on the 12.3-inch Virtual Cockpit Display, brushed dark matte aluminium inserts, a perforated leather wrapped, RS flat-bottom steering wheel, perforated RS badged sport seats trimmed in Valcona leather with a honeycomb pattern, illuminated Audi Sport door sills and aluminium gear shift paddles. Despite its sport credentials, Audi still claims a boot capacity of 565-litres, although this expands to 1 680-litres with the 40/20/40 split rear seat folded down.

At present, it remains to be seen if the RS6 will come to South Africa, especially as the regular A6 sedan is not offered with the Avant not expected anytime soon.

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