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New look and technological update: the new Audi RS 4 Avant

The updated Audi RS 4 Avant has broken cover combining a new look with enhanced interior technology and now offering the option of upgrading to a Vorsprung specification. Its twin turbo VS V6 continues to deliver an impressive 450PS and 600 Nm of torque.

The Audi Sport-developed RS 4 Avant is expected to become available to order in the UK in November, featuring the latest Audi design language and equipped with the latest infotainment developments based around a new touch-screen MMI touch operating system. The first UK specification examples of the revised super-Avant will arrive in early 2020.

The redesigned RS 4 Avant is one of six new RS models launching between September and the end of the year which will lead to a final announcement during quarter four

The exterior

The front section of the new RS 4 Avant has been completely redesigned. The Singleframe is wider and flatter than its counterpart in the A4 model line, and in common with the RS 6 Avant and RS 7 Sportback the grille features the three-dimensional honeycomb structure in gloss black that characterises the RS model series.

To give it a clean look, the Singleframe is frameless - the new ‘eggcrate’ grille with the RS 4 emblem is inserted directly into the bumper with the large lateral air inlets and vertical flaps. The shape of the standard Matrix LED headlights with their darkened bezels has also been redesigned.

The wheel arches with their quattro blisters are each 30 millimetres wider than the A4 at the front and rear. Gloss black design elements positioned right next to the headlights also help to emphasise the width.

Gloss black, matt aluminium and carbon elements will be available to add individual accents to the inlay in the sill, the exterior mirror housings and the front and rear bumpers, and depending on the options chosen the Audi rings and the RS logo are also finished in black on the front and rear.

RS 4 Avant customers can select from eight paint colours, including the new solid colour Turbo blue and the new metallic colour Tango red. The Audi exclusive programme also includes many more customised paint finishes, for example Nogaro blue, pearl effect.

The interior

In the interior of the Audi RS 4 Avant, LED light guides trace the contours of the doors and the centre console—doing so in up to 30 different colours in combination with the optional ambient lighting package. The horizontal alignment of the instrument panel creates a sense of spaciousness. The driver and front passenger are welcomed by the illuminated door sill trims that bear the RS 4 logo.

The 10.1-inch MMI touch display is the control centre of the new operating system. It is located in the centre of the instrument panel and tilted slightly towards the driver. The touch-sensitive screen displays a high-resolution graphic animation of an RS 4 Avant to welcome the driver. The MMI touch display provides acoustic feedback and takes over the functions of the previous rotary pushbutton on the centre console. The driver can use the RS monitor to call up an overview of drive system component temperatures, maximum g-forces and information regarding tyre pressures and temperatures.

The driver can actuate the two RS1 and RS2 modes in Audi drive select directly via a new ‘RS MODE’ button on the flat-bottomed RS multifunction sport leather steering wheel. This automatically opens the RS-specific displays in the Audi virtual cockpit. The new aluminium shift paddles are considerably larger than before. Aside from the steering wheel and the illuminated door sill trims, the RS sport seats with optional honeycomb pattern and the shift gate also bear the RS emblem.

The drive

The new RS 4 Avant offers 450PS, enabling it to accelerate from zero to 62mph in just 4.1 seconds. The TFSI engine weighs just 182 kilograms, which is 31 kilograms less than the V8 engine in the previous 2012 RS 4. The twin-turbo V6 applies an impressive 600 Nm (442.5 lb-ft) of torque to the crankshaft in a broad engine speed range from 1,900 to 5,000 rpm.

The power of the 2.9 TFSI flows to the quattro permanent all-wheel drive system via the sporty eight-speed tiptronic. In regular driving, the system delivers more power to the rear axle.

On request, the RS 4 can assist the driver in many situations: more than 30 driver assist systems underline the all-round characteristics of the high-performance Avant. Many of the options are bundled in the ‘tour’ and ‘city’ packages. They include the adaptive cruise assist with stop and go function for automatic distance control, the intersection assist, the lane change warning and the kerb warning. The full complement of driving assistance systems is fitted as standard to the RS 4 Avant Vorsprung model.

The suspension

The five-link front and rear suspension enables the optimal absorption of longitudinal and lateral forces. With the standard RS sport suspension, the Audi RS 4 Avant is seven millimetres lower than the S4 base model with sport suspension.

The optional RS sport suspension plus with Dynamic Ride Control (DRC) enables even more agile handling. This integrated roll and pitch stabiliser consists of a special damper system that counteracts the movements of the vehicle body with no delay without the use of electronics. When the vehicle is turning into and traveling around a bend, the damper response is altered so that the vehicle’s movements around the longitudinal axis (roll) and around the transverse axis (pitch) are significantly reduced.

With the aid of Audi drive select, the driver can influence the damper response on three levels and thereby personalise the driving experience. The new generation of dampers with integrated valve is more compact and lighter. It also allows the damping forces to be spread even more widely between the comfort and dynamic modes as well as more precise suspension adjustment for high damping forces, which occur when cornering at speed in particular. The result: The RS sport suspension with Dynamic Ride Control (DRC) ensures a markedly comfortable ride refinement in the ‘comfort’ setting. In the ‘dynamic’ mode, it delivers impressively taut driving precision even when cornering at high speed.