The new Audi RS7 Sportback Performance is so powerful that driving this car is not for the faint-hearted.
I buckled up in the driver’s seat and stared almost unbelievingly at the long empty stretch of road ahead. No, I was not on a race track or a runway. It was just an unused stretch of road.
There was not a single soul to be found anywhere. No stray dogs or bovine creatures sauntering aimlessly. Just my luck. The car was still on “N” mode and the four-litre V 8 turbocharged petrol engine was silently humming away, keeping in check the horses within it.
I tapped the accelerator, the engine growled and the twin exhausts let out a roar, signalling in a way that all was well. I shifted the gear to the Drive mode and stepped on the accelerator. The engine screamed, the horses screamed and I too screamed.
I felt all the world’s G forces pushing me back into my seat. Everything around me suddenly became blurred, as the car ate up the road like a ravenous beast. I was driving the Performance version of the Audi RS 7 Sportback.
This is a more powerful variant of the RS7 that is Audi’s way of throwing down the gauntlet before the BMW Ms and the Mercedes-Benz AMGs. Audi has squeezed in a lot more horses in the Performance version -- compared to 560 in the Sportback, there are as many as 605 in this.
Though the engine produces the same 700Nm of torque, it now gets an overboost function that temporarily enables the driver with another 50Nm. The overboost helps the engine to belt out a total of 750Nm from 2,500-7,500rpm, while peak power of 605hp comes in at 6,100rpm and lasts till 6,800 revs.
Coming back to the drive, as I see the road in front coming to an end, I slam the brakes. I can feel the vice-like grip of the ventilated disc brakes in the front and rear, bringing the car to a halt within seconds. The tyres screech, leaving behind their print on the tarred roads.
The Audi RS 7 Sportback Performance is a dynamo with impeccable manners. For record’s sake, the car does 0-100kmph in 3.7 seconds and can achieve a top speed of 305 kmph. To achieve top speed one needs to purchase Audi’s Dynamic Plus package.
The RS 7 Sportback Performance also gets Audi’s trademark Quattro setup. This car is well behaved to a great extent, and even when you put it though a corner at high speed it will not bring its tail out.
• Engine: 3,993cc, V8, Turbocharged, Petrol
• Transmission/ drive train: 8-Speed, Automatic
• Power: 605hp @ 6,100-6,800rpm
• Torque: 700Nm @ 1,750-6,000rpm (Over boost - 750Nm @ 2,500-7,500rpm)
• Price: Rs 1.60 crore (approx; ex-showroom)
A four-corner adaptive air suspension caters to a very seamless ride experience which is complimented by a smart damping control setup. The engine has also been mated to an 8-speed automatic gearbox which is silky smooth.
Audi has added its Cylinder On Demand (COD) to the RS 7 Sportback Performance. When needed, all 8 cylinders of the engine run at optimum performance. However, while in the city or driving casually, the COD will utilise only 4 cylinders.
This improves fuel efficiency, but not the way commuter cars do. This car gives you just about 10.56 km per litre of petrol. And the more you floor the accelerator indiscriminately, the worse the fuel average.
Compared to the RS 7 Sportback, the interiors and exteriors of the Performance version are more or less the same. But the steering now gets the addition of a toggle for drive modes (auto, comfort, dynamic and individual) while on the outside only 21 inch rims are available unlike the 20’s optional on the standard version.
The Performance version of the Audi RS 7 Sportback is a bold statement from the manufacturer to take on the performance cars from the stables of its competitors.
If you have the money, and are one of those rich blokes interested is testing your driving skills on the race tracks anywhere in the country, it is the right car for you.