The Audi RS4 Will Make You Feel Like a Rally Driver

No twist nor turn is too challenging for the iconic performance-focused family car.

Automotive
3,720 Hypes 0 Comments

After driving the Audi R8 and the Audi RS3 for Hypebeast’s Open Road, we could confidently consider ourselves enrolled in the Quattro family. Addicted to the German automaker’s all-wheel-drive system, the subsequent abundance of grip, and the moreish turbocharged surge of power as we push through the rev bands, we thought we’d done it all. That was until we got our hands on the Audi RS4

With Audi’s RS line, we’ve come to learn that they are unequivocally cool cars. There’s power in understated, controlled insanity that the RS division possesses. By the way of a badge, the RS division indicates its willingness to be unhinged, understood within a crowd of fellow drivers on the road. So with this in mind, we were in no doubt of knowing what the RS4 would be like before we’d even started its engine.

But the story of our time with the RS4 starts earlier than us receiving the keys. Informed by the history lesson we received with the RS3, the RS4 doubles down on this as it is the direct descendant of a formidable car that truly kicked off the Quattro craze: the 1994 RS2 Avant. 

While it may not bear the same name, it is the godfather of Audi’s family-sized performance car lineage. It was arguably the original “Performance Wagon,” with bits borrowed from and designed by Porsche all while being big enough for five adults and the dog. In 1999, the first “B5” RS4 was launched – coming to the market with help from Cosworth, a company responsible for making triumphant British racers and rally cars like the Escort RS Cosworth and Sierra RS Cosworth; the stuff of your dad’s dreams. Following this came a duo of V8-powered RS4s that ran from 2005 to 2016, until the V6 was introduced for the car in 2017. 

This takes us to today’s turbocharged V6 RS4, which is only available in the Avant body style (making it the spiritual successor to the RS2). With such pedigree comes plenty of high expectations, ones dripping in rally-ready goodness that might convince you that you’ve become the next Colin McRae. 

On our excursion to the wet, windy, winding roads that trickle across England’s Cotswolds district, the Audi RS4 ripped through leafy villages with its ASBO-warranting presence. Firing in second and third gear around tight corners, undulating hills and bleak straights, the setting was just right for a car that feels at home on the rally track. Luckily, the Cotswolds provides such a playground, making it the perfect environment to test this car. 

The four-wheel-drive system’s ability to hook up to even the slippiest of roads was no surprise, nor was the power delivery. What took us was the RS4’s nimble nature; strapped into the bucket seat and hurling forward towards hairpin bend after hairpin bend, you forget that this is a car that manages 30 miles per gallon and is, essentially, a car for families and taxi drivers in its sans RS form as the A4.

Simply unflappable, there was nothing that would throw the RS4 off its pace – that being a rather fast, 444 BHP, 0-62 in 4.1 seconds, 174 MPH one. And while speed and poise are found in abundance, plenty of technological trickery has been inputted to make the RS4 fun, because all that grip doesn’t instinctively equate to joy as much as it does safety. 

With the traction control switched as far off as it’ll legally let you, the rear of the car suddenly feels less obedient. Steering, which is electronically emphasized in such a way that it doesn’t make the car feel like such a handful, becomes lighter. Coupled with the flappy paddle Tiptronic gearbox and the car is now officially set up like the backroad blaster it was born to be. 

This is where the RS4 comes alive. We were reminded of an episode of Top Gear, when Jeremy Clarkson raced an RS4 Saloon down a hill as rock climbers descended it. He found that while that generation of the car was able to stick to the road, if you give it enough encouragement you could have fun with it. 

Thankfully, that Jeckyl and Hyde spirit is not lost in the new generation RS4, a car that’s perfectly happy to take you to the shops as it is escaping from them on a spaghetti string of muddy, puddle-laden tarmac. 

In short, for those who want to live out their supercar fantasy but need space for the kids, look no further than the Audi RS4 Avant.

Read Full Article

What to Read Next

Sean Wotherspoon Delivers a Closer Look at His Upcoming adidas Orketro Collaboration
Footwear

Sean Wotherspoon Delivers a Closer Look at His Upcoming adidas Orketro Collaboration

Hinting that “drop day is just around the corner.”

ERL and Salomon Release Radium Pro and Aksium 2.0 Ski Goggles
Fashion

ERL and Salomon Release Radium Pro and Aksium 2.0 Ski Goggles

Take to the slopes in Venice Beach style.

Gucci and adidas Surprise Drop Technical Après-Ski Boots
Footwear

Gucci and adidas Surprise Drop Technical Après-Ski Boots

Inspired by the Three Stripes’ archive and infused with Gucci’s nostalgic joy.

Wästberg Sheds Light on Second "Holocene" Collection
Design

Wästberg Sheds Light on Second "Holocene" Collection

Launching new pieces by Ilse Crawford, David Chipperfield, and Ingegerd Råman.

The New Balance 57/40 Is Readied With GORE-TEX Uppers
Footwear

The New Balance 57/40 Is Readied With GORE-TEX Uppers

Arriving in “Black” and “Brown” colorways.


REdDUO's "Loads of Lines" Collection Produces Sustainable Blankets
Design

REdDUO's "Loads of Lines" Collection Produces Sustainable Blankets

Blurring the lines between coziness, ecoconsciousness, and art.

Take a Look Inside AMBUSH®'s HONG KONG WORKSHOP
Fashion 

Take a Look Inside AMBUSH®'s HONG KONG WORKSHOP

Expressing its vision of the future and celebrating the ultramodern nature of the city.

Form Us With Love Launches New Brand "Unit Systems"
Design

Form Us With Love Launches New Brand "Unit Systems"

Designed to cater to ever-changing spaces.

Kid Cudi's Custom Givenchy Uniform Has Been Transformed Into a T-Shirt That You Can Buy
Fashion

Kid Cudi's Custom Givenchy Uniform Has Been Transformed Into a T-Shirt That You Can Buy

Only 300 exist and each costs $650 USD.

Wong Kar-wai x Heaven by Marc Jacobs Celebrates the Director's '90s Masterpieces
Fashion

Wong Kar-wai x Heaven by Marc Jacobs Celebrates the Director's '90s Masterpieces

Featuring iconic quotes and scenes from ‘Chungking Express,’ ‘Fallen Angels,’ and ‘Happy Together.’

More ▾
 
We got you covered. Don’t miss out on the latest news by signing up for our newsletters.

By subscribing, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.