AUDI has let loose a new, boosted version of its ferocious RS5 Coupe at the Geneva Motor Show, with two fewer cylinders, but two more turbos.
Neckarsulm’s latest BMW M4 and Mercedes-AMG C63 fighter uses a 2.9-litre twin-turbo V6 petrol engine to produce the same 331kW as the old one, but makes a significant torque leap to 600Nm – well up on the 430Nm produced by the superseded 4.2-litre atmo V8.
Audi claims the downsized engine – smaller even than the closely related 3.0-litre turbo V6 used in the new Audi S4 and Audi S5 – was developed in-house from the ground up, though it has already been seen in Porsche-engineered guise within the bay of the Porsche Panamera 4S producing lesser outputs of 324kW/550Nm.
Power in the RS5 now hits harder than before, with the V6 coming on song sooner than the peaky V8, which made its maximum figure at a mighty 8250rpm. Full torque from the V6 is available across a wide band – between 1900-5000rpm – compared with the old car’s tighter window from 4000-6000rpm.
The RS5 will now hit 100km/h from zero in 3.9 seconds – 0.8 seconds faster than before. Fuel use drops to 8.7L/100km from the V8’s 10.5L/100km.
Only an eight-speed torque converter auto is on offer; its RS-specific calibration feeding power through a 60:40 rear-biased quattro all-wheel-drive system.
Kerb weight drops by 60kg to 1655kg via an aluminium intensive construction. A carbonfibre roof is optional.
Handling upgrades include a wholly revised rear suspension, which Audi says delivers a significantly more comfortable ride – even on standard 19-inch wheels.
Audi’s designers drew inspiration from the Audi 90 IMSA GTO race car for the RS5’s revised styling. It is 15mm wider than the regular production model, and heavily features the honeycomb insignia now typical of RS models. Buyers can even select an exclusive paint colour dubbed Sonoma green.
Interior upgrades include Alcantara trim for the flat-bottomed steering wheel and gear selector lever, RS sports seats and RS-specific displays for the digital dashboard.
Australian buyers can expect the new RS5 to land before the end of the year, with pricing to be announced closer to its arrival. The previous model sold for almost $180,000.