What is it?

A performance estate that still has loads of practicality, the RS4 has historically been the type of car that does pretty much everything that’s asked of it and still keeps surprising.

It’s little wonder why it has become such a mainstay of Audi’s RS range. But with the future looking more electric, can a ‘traditional’ petrol high-powered estate still cut it out in this day and age? We’ve been finding out.

Black Audi RS4 Avant main image

What’s new?

The latest RS4 continues on with a tried-and-tested Audi format. Namely, a big engine up front, power to all four wheels and a rock-solid interior in the middle. While the range-topping RS6 might now get hybrid assistance for its bruising V8 engine, the V6 in the RS4 continues on unassisted, aside from twin turbochargers.

The exterior has been given a bit of an overhaul compared to the previous RS4 with a sharper front end and larger air intakes while around the back things are chunkier than before. There’s also a more focused ‘Competition’ version for those who want an an even sportier experience.

What’s under the bonnet?

As we touched upon, the RS4 utilises a twin-turbocharged 2.9-litre V6 under the bonnet delivering 444bhp and 600Nm, which is sent to all four wheels via an eight-speed automatic gearbox and Audi’s quattro all-wheel-drive system. It’s a system designed to offer its best in all weathers, with Audi claiming a 0-60mph time of 3.8 seconds and a top speed of 155mph, or 174mph in derestricted Vorsprung models.

As you might think, efficiency isn’t the RS4’s strong suit but it’s not as terrible as you could expect with Audi claiming up to 29.1mpg and CO3 emissions of 210g/km, though that latter figure was generated through the older and less realistic NEDC testing setup.

Black Audi RS4 Avant engine
Black Audi RS4 Avant rear view

What’s it like to drive?

The RS4 is still a superb car to drive. There aren’t many modern performance cars left using a V6 engine, but in the RS4 it comes to the fore with rapid performance and really good responsiveness. The whole car feels remarkably light, too, but the quattro all-wheel-drive system ensures you’ve got the confidence to travel a little quicker in even very slippery conditions.

The ride is surprising, too. You can get the RS4 with adaptive dampers and they’re well worth optioning if you’re after the best possible ride. In comfort setting, the RS4 manages to soften off larger bumps remarkably well, though around town and at low speeds it can still feel a little unsettled - thank the large alloy wheels for that.

What’s it like inside?

The RS4’s interior has evolved over time but it’s still got a very impressive level of fit-and-finish which is, in fairness, what you’d expect from Audi. It’s not as tech-heavy as some of the brand’s latest products - and does without the dual infotainment screen - but what is there works well, it’s just starting to feel a little dated around the edges.

The steering wheel is a great shape, though, and there’s a dedicated RS button on there to help quickly access your desired driving settings. Plus, since it’s an estate, the RS4 offers loads of boot space and a decent amount of room for those people sitting in the back.

Black Audi RS4 Avant rear seats
Black Audi RS4 Avant interior

What’s the spec like?

The RS 4 acts as the flagship of the A4 range, so it’ll come as no surprise that it’s absolutely packed with standard equipment. There’s a 10.1-inch infotainment screen which isn’t the largest by current Audi standards as we mentioned, but feels better integrated into the dashboard than it did on the previous RS 4. You also get Audi’s Virtual Cockpit setup with smart-looking digital dials.

The Matrix LED headlights which come as standard are great, too, and provide loads of illumination at night. Of course, one of the best features of the RS 4 is its boot, too, which provides up to 495 litres of space with the seats in place or 1,495 litres with them folded down.


The RS4 is a car for all occasions. It’s practical when it needs to be but, when the mood strikes, it can transform into a car that’ll devour your favourite roads and leave even hot-blooded supercars left in its wake.

As a day-to-day performance car it’s one of the best. Sure, the days of the powerful petrol estate car might be numbered but, while they’re still here, the RS4 is a car to celebrate.

At Swansway Motor Group we offer the full range of new and used Audi cars, browse our current RS4’s in stock below.



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