At the beginning of 2019, I've been kindly given by Autokauth to photograph and drive the new Audi RS4 Avant with an upgrade by ABT Sportsline. As it's going to be more common than ever, power-wagons are a good business and of course, they come up with an amount of advantages you don't get with a sedan or coupé. But what makes them better compared to a regular standard station-wagon?
The visible difference
Well, we've to agree that this car might be very outstanding in a traffic jam. It's wider, lower and indeed, more aggressive in its look compared to a regular Audi A4. Even the "normal" RS4 looks very great in my own opinion. But this is absolutely next level. Loads of carbon components are all around the car. From a front-splitter with added canards to side-skirts all to the rear with a massive diffuser and two massive pipes each side. The air outtakes behind the front wheels are mentionable as well. And you may have seen the huge gloss black 21 inch wheels which look insanely good on the Audi in my honest opinion. Even I'm not the biggest fan of black rims at all. Beside the amazing stuff you'd better not scratch any of these parts due to very expensive repair costs. And as a driver you aren't keen on to scrape the splitter while parking the car either. You definitely need to give them a lot of attention and shouldn't loose your mind on them. Unless you don't care at all and got the necessary money for repairs.
Beside that, the RS4 is a bit of an understatement in that shade of grey. Not only petrolheads will notice the car properly due to the remarkable details mentioned above.
Differences under the body shell
The Audi doesn't just look powerful, it truly is. ABT Sportsline upgraded the stock V6 engine from 450hp up to 530hp and from 600NM up to 680NM. You will pass the 100km per hour speed already after less than 4 seconds. Speechless.
You need to think about it; this car weighs around 1.8 tons! You need to make up your mind. This Audi has got so much usability, space and comfort and still runs (it literally runs) on 100km/h as fast as a Porsche 911 (991) GT3. Truly impressive. To head on, I have to admit that the power wagon has got a superbe agility I haven't expected at all. It handles very well and instantly follows the exact path you just thought a blink before.
The RS4 shares the drivetrain and chassis with the current RS5 model. I already had the opportunity to drive both of them. And in case of that, I would personally choose the RS4 Avant. The main reason is the usability of the whole car. Both got very similar driving performance, I couldn't feel any differences. Of course I didn't drive the cars on a racetrack. But honestly, how many Swiss people visit some racetracks several times a year? The car has even four doors compared to the RS5 and a lot more space in the boot and because the Audi is only available with the Quattro drivetrain, it isn't any problem to drive through the alps up to some ski resorts.
So, no worries at all. The car performs very well on twisty roads and didn't disappoint me. You really get to know that this car is pure german engineering.
To the Interieur
The inside is packed full of luxury. As expected, there's leather and alcantara with some contrast stitching all over the place. Beautifully done!
The Infotainment system is easy to handle like in every other Audi nowadays. You can choose between several driving modes and change the setting of the digital dashboard and ambient light with it. A lot of gadgetry fur sure, but it makes fun and doesn't just impress the driver. I'm pretty sure about that.
For sure everybody has to make up his own personal opinion about the Audi RS4-R by ABT. In comparison with a 140'000 CHF budget, this might be a very good option for a family whip with daily usability and way enough space for holiday trips. It is a huge amount of money, I have to admit but you definitely get a lot of car for that. At the end you just need to be lucky to buy one of the 50 units worldwide. At least ABT builds another 50 cars with less power and a slightly different, not so aggressive look on the exterior. A bit of a joke in my opinion but you still get to see these very rarely.
You have enough money to spend, then go for it.