You aren’t supposed to be able to have your cake and eat it too.
But the latest generation RS4 Avant resoundingly proves that old saying wrong.
Rip-roaring V8 performance and sports car dynamics sure to please enthusiast drivers are on offer. Then there’s easy-to-live-with everyday practicality and a load-lugging wagon body, all topped off with Audi’s impeccable finish throughout.
While it’s more affordable than its predecessor, its attractions don’t come cheap, and nor do the plentiful options.
Our test car’s options included the dynamic sports package ($7200) with 20” alloys shod with 30-series rubber, sports exhaust, and dynamic ride control. Dynamic steering ($2300) was also fitted.
The RS4’s V8 is a true delight, pulling with gusto right through the rev range to its redline. Maximum torque develops between 4000 and 6000 rpm. The note from the sports exhaust sounds the business too, especially with Audi Drive Select in dynamic mode. The seven-speed twin-clutch gearbox delivers quick positive shifts.
RS4 carves up corners feeling well-hunkered down, nicely balanced and lively. There’s plenty of grip too. Steering is responsive and nicely linear, but lacks for sufficient road feel despite having plenty of ‘weight’ in it (almost too much in dynamic mode). The enormous discs and eight-piston front callipers provide excellent stopping power. A ceramic front brake option can be had for $13,500.