Michigan residents have long known what the letter M in the middle of a license plate means: the car in question is one of the myriad of vehicles owned by an auto manufacturer, usually a camouflaged prototype or engineering mule. But there's a rare breed of M-plated cars that crisscross the country--cars that are uncamouflaged and up to production spec…for other markets. One of the newest one of those cars to be spotted is this 2013 Audi RS4 Avant, which showed up at a Virginia Cars and Coffee gathering.
QuattroWorld published a set of photos on Saturday after a reader tipped them off. As it turns out, an Audi RS4 Avant (reportedly in German-market spec and wearing nearly every available option) turned up at a Saturday-morning gathering just a few miles from Audi's Herndon, Virginia headquarters. The car looks exactly as you'd expect--it has the RS5's mesh grille up front and a slick deck spoiler out back. For an added dash of Audi snark, the RS4 Avant in question has a sticker at the top of the rear window that says "you just got beat by a wagon."
It's a bit cocky for a sticker, yes, but there aren't a whole lot of cars that could beat this Teutonic wagon. The RS4 uses the same running gear as the RS5 coupe, which means a 4.2-liter direct-injected and normally aspirated V-8 engine making 450 hp and 317 lb-ft of torque, all of which is sent through a seven-speed DSG gearbox and a quattro all-wheel drive system with a torque-vectoring rear differential. Top speed is a healthy 174 mph, provided the buyer opts to increase the limiter from its standard 155 mph. When it's time to stop, the RS4 Avant has optional carbon-ceramic brakes measuring nearly 15 inches in diameter--and the Cars and Coffee model reportedly had that option checkbox ticked.
There's only one question left, then: should it come here? Audi fans in the U.S. hoping can choose between the S4, S5, S6, S7, S8, TT S, or the hotter TT RS and RS5. But that leaves no wagon option, and the RS4 Avant isn't officially heading here (save for a winking, M-plated tester or two) at this point. You tell us--should Audi pull the trigger? Check out QuattroWorld's photos by going here and then let us know in the comments below.