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By Mark Jones

Road Test Editor

WATCH: New tricks give Audi RS 6 oomph to match the fun [video]

The addition of Launch Control helps station wagon catch up with Mercedes and BMW.

The Citizen Motoring gets to drive and road test new cars every week. This writer calls this work and get paid for doing so.

As an added bonus, every now and again, we get to play with a car like the Audi RS 6 Avant Performance. It’s not only a seriously fast car, but an all-round treat because of the fun factor that only a high-performance station wagon can offer in a world that is SUV-obsessed.

Watch video of Audi RS 6 on drag strip

I mean look at it. It’s not boxy. It doesn’t pretend to want to climb a mountain and go drinking brandy with you at Hennies. You won’t look like Jeremy Clarkson trying to get into a Lamborghini whenever you want to go to the shops either.

It’s not supercar sleek and slim. It weighs in at just over two tons. But offers you all the space and convenience that you and anyone in your family could want. That includes your two faithful rescue dogs your wife has named after your mother and her ex.

ALSO READ: Final encore Audi RS 6 Avant GT revealed as retro racing tribute

Serious piece of kit

But all jokes aside, this Audi RS 6 Avant with the word Performance added to its title is a serious piece of kit. For a people and mutt hauler, you get this grumpy, yet 100% natural soundtrack from a 4.0-litre V8 bi-turbo setup that offers you a full 463kW of power and 850Nm of torque. This is 22kW and 50Nm more than the non-Performance versions that are not offered locally.

This heady concoction runs down through a faster than before eight-speed tiptronic transmission to a permanent all-wheel drive Quattro system and mechanical centre diff that defaults to a 40:60 rear power bias. It also allows up to 70 percent to the front or 85 percent to the rear, depending on the traction available or drive mode you select.

For spirited, and somewhat beyond this, type driving, the Audi RS 6 Avant Performance offers carbon ceramic brakes, lightweight, forged, 22-inch alloys for less unsprung mass and improved brake cooling. The rims are shod with new high-performance 285/35 Continental Sport Contact 7 tyres.

ALSO READ: Boost turned-up as Audi prices RS6 Avant and RS7 Performance

Audi RS 6 Avant
Check out those 22-inch blades. Picture: Mark Jones

Hello Launch Control

This technical talk simply translates into a full-sized luxury vehicle that is way more agile and light on its feet than you would think. It’s now such a blast to drive fast in the twisties, and this is not something anybody would have said of an Audi RS 6 of the past.

What has also changed is the inclusion of Launch Control. It has made a measurable difference to the industry benchmark 0-100km/h times that this Audi RS 6 Avant Performance is now capable of.
The previous gen that did not offer this function and hit 100km/h in a slow, in fast car company, time of 4.59 seconds. Its natural rivals from BMW M and Mercedes-AMG were running times in the three-second bracket.

ALSO READ: Audi RS 6 set to receive “extreme” farewell in 2024

Excellent alternative

But now courtesy of the electronics allowing the car to build some boost before you let the brake go, this Audi RS 6 Avant Performance is right back in the hunt with a time of 3.61 seconds. And an electronically limited top speed of 305km/h. I am not sure how much faster you want to get your dogs to the park, or away from your wife, but this was more than enough for me.

Audi RS 6 Avant
The cabin is where all the action is. Picture: Mark Jones

The Audi RS 6 Avant Performance starts at a suggested retail price of R2 367 500. And you can easily dig deep into the optional bin and add another R700 000 to your bill if you so desire.

So, it’s not for free, but it is the last of this era of high-performance, large cubic capacity, fuel burners for Audi. And it also offers you something different with a character that is uniquely not sedan or SUV. These alone are a few good reasons to consider owning a car like this if you have the means.

Audi RS 6 Avant test results

Audi RS 6

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