Audi RS 4 Avant unveiled with 2.9 twin-turbo V6

Audi RS 4 Avant makes return at 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show

Powered by the 2.9-litre twin-turbo V6 from the recently revealed RS5 coupe, this latest junior super-estate has made its global debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show with the first deliveries scheduled for early 2018. The headlamps are neighboured by additional intakes that penetrate the flared front wheelarches, which are fairly subtle compared to those at the rear.

The power of the 2.9 TFSI biturbo is supplied to the permanent all-wheel drive via an eight-speed tiptronic transmission with optimised ratios.

Sadly, the RS 4 is still exclusively a wagon affair, the body style referred to as an Avant by Audi. The rear features a bespoke diffuser, a pair of oval tailpipes for the RS-specific exhaust and there's a spoiler for the trailing-edge of the roof, too.

That all adds up to promisingly appealing performance, with 62mph hit in just 4.1 seconds and on to 174mph (if you shell out for Audi to take off the restrictor by opting for the Dynamic Package), and economy improved (at least officially) to 32.1mpg. It may be less exciting than the business of going quickly, but a fuel-economy figure of 32.1mpg represents a big improvement over the outgoing auto and the 199g/km Carbon dioxide emissions figure beats the previous V8's by 17%. There are 19-inch forged aluminium wheels, with 20-inch rims optional, as well as an RS diffuser and the huge oval exhausts familiar from before. A rear-diff will be an option, as will RS Sport Suspension Plus with Dynamic Ride Control, ceramic brakes and RS-specific dynamic steering. Audi also offers a rear sport differential enabling torque division between the rear wheels for enhanced handling adjustability, and in the United Kingdom this feature is standard.

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Further helping the new RS4 in the handling stakes is a drop in weight. There are beefy sports seats, a flat-bottomed steering wheel and can be optionally trimmed in carbonfibre and aluminium. These include g-forces, torque and tire pressures.

The black interior underscores the character of the Audi RS 4 Avant.

The base price for Europe has been announced as €79,800, which £72,500 at current exchange rates, however the official United Kingdom price may differ.

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