The Audi RS4 is arguably my favorite line of car…ever, with the B7 RS4 being my favorite iteration. The idea of having an awesome motor, in chassis that is both capable and practical, is a pretty simple concept that few automakers have grasped entirely. BMW M3s, for example, are great capable sports cars, which fall short in practicality for day to day use. Mercedes’ E63 wagons are practical and fast, however they lack the dynamics that make it a true sports car.
The RS4, too me at least, has always been the perfect balance of both sportiness and practicality. The previous generation B8 featured the legendary naturally aspirated 4.2L V8 that revved out past 8,000rpm, but still provided torque down in the range. It also featured a clever sport differential which allowed it too corner well, even though it was all wheel drive. It was also a very practical wagon, which could carry a bunch of stuff and people, and also looked ace. In my mind, it was the perfect car.
Fast forward to today, Audi has revealed the newest iteration of the RS4 dubbed the B9. It’s still a wagon, with ample space for 5 people and their stuff. It’s still fast, with over 444hp and a 0-60mph time of 4.1s. And it can still corner, thanks to a sport oriented suspension, drivetrain, and brake system. Only really shocker is the motor. It’s a V6
Yes, the 4.2L is gone…possibly for good. Replacing it is a Porsche derived 2.9L twin-turbo V6, similar to the one found in the new Panamera. Now, I knew that the 4.2s days were numbered given the recent trend of downsizing and emissions lowering, so I expected its demise. I’m sad to see it go, but happy to see it replaced with this motor. The Porsche 2.9L is a great motor, and is a worthy replacement to legend that is the Audi 4.2L. Might not rev as high, or sound as good as the V8, but it is very refined for everyday use and pulls hard when needed.
Unfortunately for me, and those in the United States, the RS4 will probably be nothing more than a dream. Audi hasn’t had an RS4 in the States since the B7, which was almost 10 years ago. Audi has not stated whether it plans to bring this beast stateside, so there is some chance. But, yea, I wouldn’t get my hopes up.