Audi is making good on its promise to reinvigorate its lineup of RS models. Following the five-cylinder TT RS and RS 3, Audi’s high-performance onslaught continues at the Geneva auto show with the arrival of a new RS 5. Packing quite a bit more punch than its 354-hp S5 sibling, the twin-turbocharged RS 5 is poised to finally put Audi in the conversation with the BMW M4 and Mercedes-AMG C63. More importantly for us, all signals point to the RS 5 returning to the U.S. market after a brief hiatus.
The guts of this new Audi RS 5 coupe come from Ingolstadt’s new 2.9-liter twin-turbo V-6, which it claims to have revised from start to finish. It chugs out 444 hp and 443 lb-ft of torque, the latter available from 1,900 rpm all the way to 5,000 rpm. That’s quite the wave of torque to ride (125 lb-ft more than in the last-gen RS4 Avant). Audi says the RS 5 will sprint from 0 to 62 mph on 3.9 seconds, so expect about 3.8 seconds to 60 mph, which is right on par with the 503-hp Mercedes-AMG C63 S. Shifting duties belong to an eight-speed automatic transmission juicing all four wheels with power, although biased 40/60 in favor of the rear wheels. Audi promises that with the optional performance exhaust, the car’s growl will bring to mind the highly revered B5 RS4 of old.
On the handling side, the Audi RS 5 can be had with a rear differential to go along with the standard RS sport suspension. You’ll also be able to tick boxes for adjustable suspension (Dynamic Ride Control), ceramic brakes, and RS-tuned dynamic steering.
Visually, the RS 5 cranks up the aggression on the medium-heat S5. Twenty-inch wheels are available, looking extra large with the car’s lowered ride height. Up front the RS 5 gets much wider air ducts on the front fascia, complete with more sinister gloss-black and carbon-fiber trim. (There’s an available carbon-fiber roof, too.) Inside there’s tons of red accent trim to go along with the Alcantara detailing, honeycomb-pattern leather seats, and advanced infotainment tech.
While Audi has yet to actually confirm the RS 5 for the U.S., it’s all but a sure thing given the RS 5’s previous stints in the States, and we can look forward to it sometime in 2018. Expect a similar four-door RS 4 version to be revealed later this year for Europe and most likely an RS Q5 as well.