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Audi celebrates 20 superb years of the RS6

The RS6 wasn’t the primary Audi RS automobile, and it is not the costliest mannequin within the wider vary. However maybe the RS would not perceive what’s higher than the ‘bahnstorming A6’. It has been twin-turbocharged for 20 years, making certain glorious efficiency and its sheer dimension has at all times assured family-friendly practicality. Mix these parts with a comparatively refined however very good-looking look – avoiding quite a lot of undesirable consideration – and it is simple to see why the RS6 has been so standard since 2002.

The present C8 era breaks with custom considerably, nevertheless, with its extra, erm, overt styling. This is not simply the opinion of a jaded journalist, both – even Audi admits it. “The place the C5, C6, and C7 generations of the RS6 stood as an influence station wagon in one other guise, the C8 makes a special impression: even odd individuals will instantly acknowledge that that is no odd A6”, reads the press. Leaving RS6s at all times decrease and wider than customary (and typically an excessive amount of to suit a much bigger engine), the present automobile is notable for a number of bespoke panels: solely the entrance doorways, roof and boot are shared with the A6.

Nonetheless, the RS6 remains to be doing what the RS6 has at all times executed, now aided in that effort by a 600hp gentle hybrid V8 (nonetheless twin turbocharged), all-wheel steering and the most recent era of Dynamic Trip Management (DRC). ) which is on the market on all RS6s. Consumers can get 22-inch wheels for the primary time with this C8, though that appears a bit inconsistent with the unique message – greater than half of latest European RS6s are ordered with tow hooks, based on Audi. β€œIt exhibits that prospects do not simply need a sporty drive, in addition they need to tackle on a regular basis challenges,” stated Stephen Reel, who’s answerable for creating each RS6.

As the present automobile has been on sale for a couple of years now, it is potential to pay Β£90k or barely much less for a C8 RS6. But when a white RS6 with 22-inch wheels is not your factor, how about this one? Grey paint and smaller wheels create a extra subdued look, just like older automobiles – it is yours for Β£98k from Stafford Audi.

However large birthdays aren’t about speaking concerning the right here and now, they’re about celebrating large achievements from that previous. And there is no doubt about it – the unique RS6 was an enormous achievement for Audi. The S6s already had it, albeit with not more than 340hp. And whereas the B5 RS4 had blown everybody’s socks off and the whole lot else within the vary, it wasn’t positive the A6 equal would have executed the identical. Then got here the C5 RS6 with a Cosworth-tuned twin-turbo 4.2 V8: 450hp and 413lb ft (whereas the M5 made 400hp and 369lb ft), unbeatable quattro traction, and the sort of understated, menacing magnificence Audi does higher than ever. One other layer cake would not have gone with every other wagon, would it not?

If not pretty much as good to drive because the E39 M5, the RS6 proved that the mega property was in demand. Shopping for a C5 in the present day is not with out threat, given the ferocious thirst and well-documented mechanical issues, however a very good, unique buy is appreciated because the dangerous ones go to waste. A run-out RS6 Plus, with 480hp and 174mph, is tough to seek out however extremely fascinating; As for normal Avants, Β£15k buys one like this with 100,000 miles and is alleged to have a full Audi service historical past. Or, for one thing actually uncommon, here is one of many saloons for a similar cash – one in all solely 270 ever made. It says one thing concerning the RS6’s inherent fashion that even the Misano Pink four-door can look so good 20 years on…

For the C6 era, the Audi RS6 bought actually, actually silly. As was the fashion on the time. Earlier than the recession each producer was making ridiculous automobiles. So, with its 6.2 V8 and M5 Touring to take care of the E63 that revs to eight,250rpm, Audi did simply that and provided the whole lot that labored nicely already. Extra capability (from 4.2-litre to five.0), extra cylinders (10 as an alternative of eight) and extra efficiency: 580hp and 479lb ft means 0-62mph in simply 4.6 seconds. β€œI do not know of any higher stuffed engine compartment than the one within the RS 6 C6” added Reil.

The 278kg dry-sumped V10 made the C6 RS6 a bit nostril heavy, however that might have missed the purpose. As our hero’s story suggests, β€œThe V10 wasn’t only a stand-in till its creator dreamed of one thing extra succesful; Its output was meant to be the standout function of the automobile, and but it nonetheless feels downgraded greater than a decade later. That Audi refuses to share it with one other mannequin and will not produce a extra highly effective engine for years says rather a lot concerning the V10’s legacy.” What could possibly be a larger cause for being?

It will once more take guts to select up a V10 RS6 in the present day, though the unique automobiles are arguably the most effective worth of all. This Mugello Blue Avant (there’s the odd saloon) has quite a lot of miles on it however rather a lot has been spent on it, which is encouraging. As with the 4 matching Michelins, it now makes 603hp and 555lb ft to manage – with a latest service and brake improve. Possibly attempt to negotiate a full tank into the Β£18,990 asking worth.

For a lot of, the third RS6 (or C7) stays the choose of the bunch, combining conventional understated appears with trendy tools and the V10’s considerably improved experience and dealing with. A smaller, lighter engine contributed tremendously to the 120kg saving, and the brand new 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 was mounted 15cm additional again than the 5.0 V10. This implies the burden distribution (for a lighter automobile, thoughts you) is 55:45, whereas it’s 60:40 for the automobile it replaces. Normal air suspension helped the experience (DRC remains to be optionally available), and even with much less energy than the C7 earlier than: the brand new eight-speed auto, 560hp and 516lb ft allowed it to hit 62mph in beneath 4 seconds.

Nonetheless, Audi being Audi and this being the RS6, it did not final that lengthy. The 2016 stays probably the most highly effective RS6 ever, with 605hp and 553lb ft of overboost. Efficiency will be purchased for over Β£50k in the present day, with nice automobiles like this 14k-mile Sepang Blue approaching Β£70k. Stuff with solely 560hp, nevertheless, will probably be happy to know that early C7s hover across the Β£40,000 mark. And it is nonetheless arduous to consider a extra full quick property for the cash, which has been the RS6’s USP for 20 years now. Lengthy could it proceed.

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