The new Audi RS6 Avant arrives to take on the Mercedes-AMG E 63 S, complete with a very butch body makeover and 592bhp from its 4.0 litre petrol V8.
But the SQ7 and SQ8 are SUVs, and this new Audi RS6 Avant isn’t. So, thankfully, Audi has stuck with the tried and trusted recipe for the RS6 of a big petrol engine with lots of horses and four wheel drive.
The horses are provided by Audi’s 4.0 litre V8 delivering 592bhp and 592lb/ft of torque through an eight-speed tiptronic gearbox to all four wheels, enough to get to 62mph in just 3.6 seconds and on to 155mph. Or 174mph. Or 189mph. All depending on whether you take the stock car or add Audi’s Dynamic Package of Dynamic Plus Package.
There’s also a 48-volt mild hybrid setup and cylinder shutdown to harvest energy and reduce fuel consumption when half the horses are stabled for four-pot cruising, and at the other end of the equation there are new RS1 and RS2 modes for sharper everything and hooligan antics.
Standard suspension is clever air stuff, lowering the RS6 at speed and raising it when poodling, and you can opt for RS Sport Suspension with steel springs and adjustable dampers for more of an edge if you wish.
But if you were expecting the new RS6 to be a bit of a Q car, with all that power and ability wrapped up in a modest-looking Audi estate body, think again. The new RS6 Avant arrives with full, in yer face, butchness oozing from every pore.
The wheel arches stick out 40mm further on each side than a normal Avant, the alloys are 21″, the headlights are nicked from the A7, the grille is wider and flatter, the bonnet sports a power bulge and the front bumper has gaping holes to swallow enough air to feed the 592 horses.
Inside is a mass of Nappa leather and Alcantara, with an RS-ified infotainment, sports seats, ‘Audi Sport’ puddle lamps, RS monitor and aluminium flappy paddles.
You’ll have to wait until next year to get a new Audi RS6 Avant in the UK, and it’s likely to cost around £90k.