2016 Audi RS7 Performance

560bhp RS7/RS6 not fast enough? Enter the 605bhp RS7 Performance that’ll do 200 in 12 seconds

By Shahzad Sheikh

Watch our video review of the 2016 Audi RS7 Performance by clicking below

For our review of the Audi RS7 click here now. And for a review of the RS6 Avant click here.

Meet the 2016 Audi RS7…. wait for it… Performance. It’s like the regular RS7 that we know and love already, but with the performance turned up to 11 (on a dial of 1-10).

How have they done that? They took the same 4.0-litre V8 BiTurbo, tweaked the turbos, engine management and exhaust valves to increase the power from 560bhp to 605bhp. Torque is 516lb ft but goes up to 553lb ft on overboost.

2016 Audi RS7 Performance

That’ll give you a 0-100kph acceleration time of a staggering 3.7 seconds – two-tenths quicker than before and a tenth snappier than the Mercedes AMG GT S supercar, and about the same as a Hellcat Charger.

It’ll hit 200kph in 12.1 seconds and the top speed could be 250kph, 280 or 305kph depending on which option box you tick on.

2016 Audi RS7 Performance

It still has the 8-speed paddleshifts tiptronic, and of course Quattro all-wheel drive with 60% of the drive sent to the back wheels. Plus sports differential with torque vectoring. You can have adaptive suspension or the RS Sport Suspension.

Visually it’s very hard to tell the Performance from the regular RS7, there are tweaks to the front bumper air intakes and rear diffuser with standard sports seats.

Prices start at AED511,600 ($139,396) which ain’t cheap. But there is simply nothing like it really.

2016 Audi RS7 Performance

What’s it like to drive

You might need a neck brace. And there need to be public health warnings on the windows for the passengers – ‘Ride at your own risk, high g-forces can cause nausea or unconsciousness’!

For one you have undeniable gob-smacking and shockingly brutal acceleration that hooks up deep and hard immediately thanks to Quattro All-Wheel-Drive and catapults you like a rocket rollercoaster whether you want it to or not.

2016 Audi RS7 Performance

And then you have the tarmac-sucking grip that’ll slingshot you through corners whilst you’re still contemplating meeting your maker because, well, that cornering velocity should not have been possible in a five-door family hatch with Executive-level kit, comfort and quality. Just not.

Okay yes, the lack of steering feel – although it weights up nicely and is fairly accurate – does let it down when you really go searching for the unstinting confidence to really hurl this thing about to its true potential, but if you trust it, it will reward. On power, there is hint of understeer creeping in, but hold for the apex and then boot on unwinding lock and you’re good to go.

2016 Audi RS7 Performance

It’s tremendously capable and unshakeably efficient. And perhaps that’s the only criticism that could be levelled at it. It’s perhaps too good at putting down the power. Admittedly 99.9% of the time, that’s got to be a good thing.

But around town you have to hold it on a tight leash. It can be a little frustrating (although it will of course happily do the comfy town cruising thing with ease, despite a slightly firm ride, so it’s very easy to drive normally). But if you know horses are there and you want to hear those sport exhaust tailpipes rumble, crackle and even lightup and pop the unburnt fuel on overrun, you have to head out of town to exploit the performance and grip.

2016 Audi RS7 Performance

 

With cars like the Hellcat Charger you can hoon anywhere and everywhere all the time. Although it has to be said, the Hellcat is a constant take-me-to-jail red flag. The Audi is a lot more subtle and most people simply won’t realise the sort of punch it packs.

Verdict

So it’s a have your cake and eat it car. You get a sophisticated executive-level family mover, an easy distance-devourer and a fearsome street-racer all in one package. What’s not to like?

2016 Audi RS7 Performance – The Specs

Price: AED511,600 ($139k)
Engine: 4.0-litre V8, 605bhp @6100rpm, 553lb ft @2500rpm
Performance: 0-100kph 3.7secs, 305kph, 9.5L/100km
Transmission:  8-speed auto, Four-wheel drive
Weight:  1930kg

Let us know what you think of the 2016 Audi RS7 Performance below

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