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Audi RS6 (2007)

Published: 18 June 2007

Audi RS6: the lowdown

Ever happy to play the powerful saloon game, Audi is continuing to shoehorn enormous engines into docile saloons, this time in the form of the forthcoming RS6. CAR Online caught the RS6 on a thrashing around the Nurburgring back in April, and today’s sighting appears to show that Audi is nearing the finished product.

So remind me, what’s in store for the RS6?

The majority would argue that the S6, with 429bhp, is powerful enough, but Audi doesn’t seem to agree. Two ultra-responsive turbos will be added to the Lambo-derived 5.2-litre V10 from the S6, resulting in an eye-watering 530bhp. The turbos will make sure that the RS6 isn’t short of twist. The smaller turbo will be tuned for low-revs response, while the bigger blower takes over at higher engine speeds for overtaking wallop. No definitive figures are out yet, but the V10 should be good for at least 500lb ft. That means blistering acceleration in any gear and a BMW M6-rivalling 0-62 dash of around 4.5 seconds and a 155mph top speed. Limited by electronics, naturally.

Sounds pretty inviting, but the S6 was a bit of a lukewarm letdown

True, but the S6 featured a detuned version of the Lamborghini V10, whilst the RS6 is going all out for hell-raising power. Quattro, Audi’s inhouse tuning division, is responsible for making the RS6 as nutty as it is, so judging by recent experiences in cars like the RS4, our hopes are set higher this time round. Naturally, the RS6 will put the power down through all four wheels, and torque will be biased 60:40 to the rear of the car, to make for a more involving driving experience.

Surely the RS6 is getting more than just oodles of power?

It sure is. Audi is working on a range of tweaks to reign in that grunt. Hefty carbon ceramic brakes lurk beneath the wheels and there are numerous improvements to the chassis, suspension and aerodynamics designed to improve roadholding. An improved version of the adaptive magnetic damping system from the TT will suspend the RS6, and we hear there will be a rear diffuser to stick the car to the road plus tweaked, ultra-responsive steering.

Can’t wait. When are we likely to see the car in the UK?

The disguise on this car was minimal when it was snapped testing in Germany, so this suggests that this Audi hotrod isn’t far from finished. The RS6 is likely to arrive in UK showrooms next year, but expect to see the finished product at the 2007 Frankfurt Motor Show in September. Naturally, there will be an Avant version, designed for the speed freak with a family. The RS6 should start at around £65,000 when it reaches forecourts, so it isn’t cheap. Let’s just hope it provides the thrills to match the price tag.