Car of the week: January 30th – Audi RS4 Avant

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I have always thought that the Audi Avant looks much better than the coupe.

There aren’t too many prestige cars you can say that about but, for some reason, the Audi design gives the Avant more presence.

I owned a 2.0 litre Audi A4 Avant Limited for a while and loved it but always craved the top-of-the-range RS4 Avant because it packs a real performance punch and looks stunning with a more aggressive stance.

So when I got a chance to try out the third generation of this car it was really a no-brainer that I would like it… and boy, did I.

Launched in 2000, the RS4 Avant has become a modern classic, an extremely desirable and superquick car offering high performance with the added versatility that comes with acres of space for luggage, pets and the dreaded mammoth shopping trips.

You don’t see many of them on the road in this part of the world, in fact I have never seen one, which for a car of this calibre is a little surprising.

The reason is that people generally prefer to buy big 4x4s because the cost of petrol consumption really isn’t an issue here and you wouldn’t take an Audi RS4 off-road unless you were insane.

With the RS6 Avant joining the RS4 here in the UAE, Audi are making a conscious effort to persuade people to think again if they are torn between buying an SUV and a high-performance estate car, particularly if off-roading is not a priority.

The selling point is that the RS Avants offer sports car performance, high-end luxury, stunning looks plus the all important space.

Maybe you do get a bit more room in an SUV but unless you go high-end, which is expensive, the performance does not match the Audi RS.

What Audi are offering is pace with space, room with vroom.

So, let’s start with the aesthetics.

The RS4 Avant sits lower than the coupe version and with the optional 20-inch titanium-look wheels, it looks awesome.

Inside, the it is sophisticated, ultra-modern, sporty and luxurious with nappa leather, carbon inlays, and lots of aluminium.

It has a leather, flat-bottom multi-functional steering wheel and the extremely comfortable seats have the RS4 logo inlaid on the headrests.

The instrument cluster is nicely designed and the infotainment system is top notch.

The car is bristling with automotive technology and the latest driver assists.

There are also different drive modes to give you a sporty or more relaxed experience depending on your mood.

The RS4 Avant is powered by a 4.2-litre V8 which produces 450bhp and torque of 430nm between 4,000 and 6,000 revs.

It delivers the power to the latest version of Audi’s legendary Quattro four-wheel drive system via a seven-speed automatic gearbox and reaches 0-100kmh in just 4.7 seconds.

The top speed is limited to 250kmh but this can be increased to 280kmh on request, as was the case with our test car which came fully loaded.

The driving experience is pure Audi RS – assured, exhilarating and hugely satisfying.

You get supreme German engineering, reliability, and stunning performance.

The RS4 is a magnificent motorcar but whether it can lure people away from their SUVs in the UAE remains to be seen.

Why Buy It

  • Prestige and great design
  • It’s very quick
  • Fabulous engine
  • Audi build quality
  • Versatile with loads of space

Why Not

  • Hard to fault this car but SUVs have the edge over the RS4 Avant in the UAE because estates don’t go off-road.

Audi RS4 Avant – Specifications

Manufacturer : Audi
Production : 2000 to present
Class : Sports estate
Body style : Four-seater
Layout : All-wheel drive
Engine : 4.2-litre V8
Output : 450bhp
Torque : 430nm
0-100km : 4.7 seconds
Transmission : Seven-speed auto with paddle-shifts
Kerb weight : 1,870kg
Top speed : 280kmh
Price : Dh319,100 as driven

Rating out of 10: 9

Here is the official Audi RS4 Avant advert

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