New Audi RS4: revealed
All-new Audi RS4 gets RS5's 450hp normally aspirated V8
There's certainly plenty of Technik underpinning the RS4's predictably impressive Vorsprung (0-62 in 4.7 seconds and a top speed limited to 155mph or 174mph 'on request') too. Every toy in the Quattro GmbH cupboard has been thrown at the chassis, which includes the latest crown gear differential running a default 40:60 front/rear split and torque vectoring as standard. As much as 70 per cent of the drive torque can be sent forwards or 85 per cent rearwards as the black boxes dictate. And if it's the latter you'll be wanting to make sure you opted for the Sport Differential, which on the S4 unleashes previously unheard of driftability. It should be standard, by all rights.
RS5, which does raise some cause for concern. The RS5 majors on the technology, but falls short dynamically in many respects, so we'll have to hope Audi has been listening and addressed some of the concerns; numb steering, snatchy drivetrain and unyielding damping among them. Options for the RS4 include ceramic brakes and Audi's cross-linked Dynamic Ride Control suspension, another RS hallmark.
If Audi is looking for inspiration to avoid RS5 style criticisms it could do worse than use the old RS4 as a blueprint. But then, why not just buy one of them instead? Looking at the specs it's surprising how close the old car runs the new one, being just 30hp down and a tenth slower to 62mph. And there was a manual version. Good ones are still making strong money - as much as £30K - and a quick browse of the classifieds reveals a plentiful supply.
It is, of course, a good thing that the RS4 is back. We just hope the spirit of the previous one has been captured and lives on.