Driven: Audi RS4 Avant & RS5 Sportback

Updated: Jul 2, 2020

Audi... A brand thats well known for making boring, reliable diesel cars for accountants and people with middle management titels.

But they are also known for making very fast family sized sedans and that's exactly what I got my hands on.

Fagard Automotive recently gave me the opportunity to drive both of the AUDI RS models they have for sale at the moment of writing this post: The sleek Audi RS5 Sportback and the all so practical Audi RS4 Avant.

At first glance both cars may look completely different due to 1 being a sporty 4 door coupe and the other a family wagon but looks can be deceiving; they are actually pretty much both the same car just in a different suit.

The specs:

  • 2.9L twin turbocharged petrol V6

  • 450hp - 600nm /444bhp - 443lb-ft

  • 0-100km/h - 4.1s

  • 250km/h - 155mph top speed

  • Audi Quattro AWD

Looking at those specs you would think it would be impossible to daily drive, but you couldn't be more wrong, compared to its rivals the BMW M3, Mercedes C63, and the Alfa Giulia Quadrifoglio its probably the most usable of the bunch. In comfort mode the car goes in to 'lazy' mode the springs are softer, the steering is less direct, the throttle is less sensitive, and the sports exhaust system quietens down to make it feel and drive just like a bog standard A4/A5 2.0L diesel.

Especially with the 8-speed triptronic automated gearbox you wont get that sudden jerking at lower speeds that you would in the M3 and it seems to always be in the correct gear unlike the C63.

Change your driving mode from Comfort to sport and the car become a whole other animal, the chassis stiffens up, the throttle becomes instant, the exhaust opens up a bit more, and the gearbox becomes more reactive.

You also have a 'Dynamic' mode on the car where it goes from 10 to 11, everything is set to maximum attack and the traction control slackens off just a little bit to let you play a little bit more. This is where the car really come alive, it no longer feels like a boring a 2.0L diesel but closer to a DTM racecar. 450hp under your right foot ready to show you what its made of propelling you from 0-serious speeding fine faster than you can read this sentence.

Although being a very good performance car a C63 or especially a M3 would maybe be a better choice if you are looking for a more 'special' feeling car as they will give you more of an experience but in trade do lose some 'daily' usability in the comfort section.

But these cars aren not just all bout the power, they are also about luxury and tech, which both are packed full of: To start off with as soon as you open the door you are welcomed with a 'AUDI SPORT' logo illuminated on the floor. You sit down in lovely alcantara and leather quilted sport seats to then look at your full virtual cockpit cluster which displays pretty much everything you want it to like your typical speed, rpm, range,... but also gibes you the possibility to display your full sat nav, driving modes and music station. Speaking of music... the car also comes with optional Bang & Olufsen surround sound system so you can bump out your tunes in the best of quality while driving 250km/h on the Autobahn

Audi's infotainment system can at times be quite tricky to figure out, the occasional difficult to navigate menues or not completely clear navigation system is only a minor inconvenience and wont take you long to get use to. My preference still goes to BMW's iDrive system.

The Audi RS5 and RS4 are not just sporty but also very practical, with 5 seats and full sized trunks you can really pack the car up with the whole family and go on roadtrip, although the RS4 does have the RS5 beat on bootspace you'll still be very surprised with how much you can get in both cars.

Styling on both cars is also more aggressive in comparison to the standard A4 & A5 the car gets wider arches frond and rear giving the car a more muscle look. the redesigned frond bumper to allow for better airflow and cooling and a more aggressive styled rear bumper with built in diffuser and 2 large oval shaped exhaust tips, 1 on either side really make the car stand out but still keep it subtle enough to the unknowing passer by.

Oh I should also mention that the RS5 is also available as a 2 door coupe as well but Audi does not make a 4 door sedan version of the RS4, you'll have to buy the RS5 Sportback if you want that.

My overall thoughts of the RS4/5: Both are incredibly good to drive cars but didn't leave me wanting more. They're definitely a better choice if you want a daily sports car with a lot of practicality but may be a let down on the sporty side of driving where the 8 speed triptronic gearbox and awd system will not be as good as the DCT/RWD setup on the BMW M3. I'd defiantly put this car on my shortlist though if I was in the market. I'd have it over the Alfa and the Mercedes C63 but it needs a little more spice for me to take one over an M3. Oh, and for those wondering what my choice is out of the 2 I drove? I'd have the RS4 because not much is cooler than a 450hp wagon with a roofbox and a dog in the back.

Photos shot with Canon 5D IV paired with a Sigma 50mm Audi RS4 solo shots are light painted with the Godox LC500

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