The first Audi RS4 came in estate form only and despite its wide-tracked stance, curvaceous flared arches and 380hp twin-turbo V6, it was never a big seller and is a rare sight.
That was the B5-gen car. The second RS4 to arrive – known by its internal Audi codename as the B7 RS4 – is perhaps the first one to be truly feted by fans. This landed in 2006 and its soulful 420hp 4.2-litre naturally aspirated V8 ensured its status as a sought-after future classic, let alone handling that could easily hold a candle to the mighty BMW M3.
After a few years off, the RS4 name badge returned in 2012, still with a 4.2-litre naturally aspirated V8, but it was more comfort-oriented and heavier as a result. Fortunately, it had more power, too – 450hp – so performance wasn’t affected. And it now revved to a spine-tingling 8,500rpm, several hundred revs more than you could squeeze out of the B7’s engine.
The most recent RS4 – the B9 – return the RS4 to the twin-turbo V6 layout, this time with 2.9 litres of displacement and 450hp. It might have lost the revvy insanity of the V8, but the torquey shove from those two turbos is hardly without appeal…