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The B9-generation Audi RS4 Avant gets a facelift two years on from the current generation model’s debut, gaining updates to its exterior, interior and though its powertrain and headline figures remain as before, efficiency has been improved.
Visual changes at the sharp end include headlamps with a revised design for the LED daytime running lights, while Audi’s present-day Singleframe signature has been revised to go ‘without a frame’ to give the RS4 a clean look, says Audi. Together with the revised headlamps, the new grille has a wider, lower appearance, and the front bumper design with air inlets and vertical flaps has been simplified.
The RS4 Avant’s shape in profile remains intact, with the boxy front and rear wheelarches carried over from the pre-facelift car. Gloss black, matte aluminium and carbon styling packages continue to be available for the B9 RS4 facelift, with the accents applied to the side mirror covers, sill inlays and sections of the front and rear bumpers.
Powertrain continues to be the firm’s 2.9 litre biturbo V6 petrol unit producing 450 hp from 5,700 rpm to 6,700 rpm and 600 Nm of torque from 1,900 rpm to 5,000 rpm. These are transmitted to all four wheels via an eight-speed torque converter automatic with lock-up clutch and quattro permanent all-wheel-drive with a self-locking centre differential. A sport differential on the rear axle is optional for even more dynamic response.
Torque split is 40:60 front to rear in normal driving, and can divert up to 70% of drive to the front axle or up to 85% to the rear axle when slip is detected. The RS4 engine is rated at 9.2 l/100 km for fuel consumption on the revised WLTP cycle, corresponding to CO2 emissions of 208 g/km; this represents a 17% drop in consumption compared to the previous model, says Audi.
Acceleration through the 0-100 km/h benchmark takes 4.1 seconds and an electronically limited top speed of 250 km/h – figures identical to those for the pre-facelift car. Also as before, an optional RS dynamic package raises the allowed maximum to 280 km/h.
The RS4 chassis employs a five-link setup front and rear, and the standard RS suspension rides 7 mm lower than the S4 with sport suspension. RS sport suspension plus with dynamic ride control (DRC) is optionally available, which counteracts pitch and roll with cross-linked dampers connected to a central valve via two separate oil lines. The RS sport suspension offers varying damping rates via the Audi Drive Select controls.
In addition to suspension modes, this also gives the driver a choice of modes for the engine and transmission, engine sound, power steering, the quattro sport differential and air-conditioning, which is offered in five presets – comfort, auto, dynamic as well as two user presets, RS1 and RS2. The second of the two presets also enables the switching of stability control intervention.
Rolling stock on the 2020 RS4 Avant is a set of 265/35R19 tyres front and rear with a new 19-inch five-spoke design in a matte bronze finish, with 20-inch wheels and 275/30 tyres also available. Steel brakes measuring 375 mm and 330 mm front and rear are standard, while 400 mm RS ceramic front brakes are optional.
Infotainment is handled by a 10.1-inch MMI touch display which takes over from the now-omitted rotary control, while the Audi virtual cockpit can offer the driver information including tyre pressure, torque, power output, engine oil temperature, lap timings, acceleration measurements and g-force. The optional head-up display can also display RS-specific shift lights.
The new infotainment operating system gains natural language control for better everyday phrase recognition, while Audi connect and connect plus offers online and Car-to-X services. Accommodation in the RS4 Avant takes 495 litres in the luggage compartment with the seats up, and up to 1,495 litres with the rear seats folded.
The facelifted Audi RS4 Avant comes in a selection of eight exterior paint colours, with new hues comprised of Turbo Blue and a metallic Tango Red as seen here. Optional finishes from the Audi exclusive palette include Nogaro Blue pearl effect, which harks back to the original fast Audi estate, the RS2 Avant. Pricing for the 2020 RS4 Avant starts from 81,400 euros (RM372,987).