6
This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.

XCAR: Audi RS 7: Is it the perfect car?

About Video Transcript

XCAR: Audi RS 7: Is it the perfect car?

5:55 /

Any Audi with RS in its name is as crazy as a crazy thing. We took an RS 7 out to see how the latest superpowered supercoupe is on the road.

In 2009, Audi released the Sportback concept. It was a 4-door coupe akin to the Mercedes CLS albeit with Audi's typical design flare. It previewed 2 cars, the A5 Sportback which is more practical take on the A4-derived A5 Coupe and the A7 Sportback, a more stylish take on the A6. It's the kind of car you go for if you want a halfway house with practicality between a saloon and an estate but wants style neither can provide. The A7 is a fine-looking car and since its 2010 launch Audi saw fit to inject some spice into the mix. In 2012, a 414-brake horsepower 4-liter twin turbo V8 S7 was launched. It's very brisk but not brisk enough for Audi because it's just released this, the indecently powerful RennSport 7. It shares its engine with the S7 but the wick has been turned up somewhat. It's got a dizzying 553-brake horsepower and is beyond silly. That number may seem familiar to you because this car shares an engine with the RS6 which means it can hit 62 in just 3.9 seconds, and if you take the right options box you can hit 189 miles an hour, big, big speed. It's also worth noting that the engine in here as well as being shared with the RS6 is also shared with the V8 Bentley Continental GT, which means it sounds pretty damn awesome. You know what? The RS7 is a massively confidence-inspiring car, and I say that because the Quattro 4-wheel drive system, it means you do have the extra safety net. Each wheel has 140-brake horsepower to deal with, but that can be shuffled around, thanks to Audi's really smart torque vectoring system, so the power is where you need it when you need it, which means you can go into a corner quite hot, and if you go in a little bit too hot the car will sort you out. There are 2 main criticisms leveraged against big fast Audis and that's the ride and the steering. Now the RS6 upon which this is based rides incredibly well, but its steering has been criticized for being a bit numb in feeling this so how does its bigger, most stylish brother stack up? Thankfully it rides incredibly well. Now what we've got here is the standard air suspension. You can spec it with steel springs and dynamic ride control which has lots of iron filings to stiffen up the corners and what have you, but on the standard suspension it's really lovely and comfort mode is very, very floaty. It's a very comfortable place to be. Having naught to 60 in 3.9 is faster than a Porsche 911, and that's quite something in a car this size. It really is otherworldly. Its gearbox works seamlessly. It just changes from gear to gear to gear. It's an 8-speed Tiptronic and it is really, really genuinely good, but the steering isn't that engaging. If I'm honest, it's not the most responsive I suppose. It does feel a little bit numb which is a great shame. It is the car's Achilles heel if it's going to have one, but to justify it to an extent, fast Audis as far as I'm concerned aren't about all-out dynamic, incredible driving and sideways antiques and all of that. Now for that you get an M car. Fast Audis are about big, easy, direct speed. And for that kind of purpose, steering like this is fine. Now this is obviously the first RS7, but this is the first time that there'd been so many RS's available. You can have the RS3, which is the old shape. You can have the RS4, the TT RS, the RS5 in all of its many guises, the RS6 and now the RS7. This being released in 2013 actually makes this almost something of a milestone car. You see 2013 is the 30th anniversary of Quattro and that's an Audi thing. You will only ever find an RS car with the Quattro system on it because Audi firmly believes that it will make it the most capable vehicle available, and I can't help but agree. As far as lineage goes this thing has a pretty awesome grandfather. Of course the original Audi Quattro, the one that beasted Group B. The one that was a king of the road and the lineup just has stunning powerful cars all the way along it. There hasn't really been a properly duff one ever. As lineage goes the RS7 is in very, very, very good company and happily it can match up to all its 4 bests. Audi's done it again. So as well as being able to best the Porsche 911 to 62 and being able to keep up with most things flying out of Italy at the moment, it's also achingly beautiful. In standard trim the A7 is just stunning. Its strong shoulder line and swooping back really do make it stand out in a crowd and Audi has of course tweaked it to put it in RS form. So its giant grills and vents and massive wheel arches make it kind of look like a car we're going to be driving in the future, and then at the back there's 2 giant oval exhausts penning in a massive splitter. It's stunning. It's meaty and it's angry. The RS7 is a type of car you look out when you see other cars in its performance and price set you would think no. It doesn't have the mentalness of an AMG nor the driving precision of an M car. What it does have though is something Audi does wonderfully, easy speed. You put your foot down and off you go to the horizon as many times as you see fit in perfect comfort. It also offers that halfway house between saloon and estates. You get practicality as well. In short, the RS7, yes please.

New releases

Denon AVR-S500BT receiver offers much for little
1:39 December 22, 2014
While the AVR-S500BT is one of Denon's least expensive receivers its features line up is surprisingly generous, and movie and music...
Play video
Outrageous style for new Nissan Murano
5:01 December 22, 2014
The new Nissan Murano may take its looks to the extreme, but we found it a very comfortable and accommodating driver.
Play video
Smarter driver: Are older drivers less dangerous?
1:40 December 22, 2014
Conventional wisdom holds that elderly drivers are more dangerous. But Brian Cooley tells you why that may not be the case.
Play video
Car Tech 101: MPGe explained
2:59 December 22, 2014
Brian Cooley drills down on the new metric for rating MPG in cars like the BMW i8, Nissan Leaf and Chevy Volt.
Play video
On the road: 2014 BMW i8
5:37 December 22, 2014
With its sculptured skin, gullwing doors and plugin-in hybrid drivetrain, BMW looks to the future with its new i8.
Play video
Tracking Santa with help from Microsoft, Google
2:55 December 22, 2014
Bridget Carey highlights Santa-tracking tools for Christmas Eve, how you can browse department-store window displays on Google Maps,...
Play video
Top 5: Car Tech of 2015
3:25 December 22, 2014
Brian Cooley offers up his top five car technology trends to watch in 2015. Are fuel cell cars on the list? Find out.
Play video
Panasonic LX100 advances the advanced compact
2:34 December 22, 2014
The company's pricey enthusiast compact raises the bar across the board among its peers.
Play video