The 2018 Audi RS5 Produce 450 BHP & 174 MPH

Audi dropped the RS5 from the official line-up back in 2015, it seemed an odd decision to make, but it hasn’t lasted long – the 2018 Audi RS5 made its debut at the Geneva Motor Show in March of this year, so they must have been developing the new model pretty much since the last one stopped – why didn’t they just run the old model for a bit longer?

Although Audi say that the new V6 engine has been developed from the ground up, it is in fact based on the V6 that made its debut in the Porsche Panamera 4S, but pretty much everything else is all new, apart from the chassis.

Is the 2018 Audi RS5 the modern-day Audi 90 IMSA?


1. Modern Day Audi 90 IMSA?
2. All-new 450 HP V6
3. Choices Choices
4. Definitely European

The 2018 RS5 will compete against the BMW M4, Mercedes-AMG C63 and the Cadillac ATS-V, although it must be said that the Audi is the only one with all-wheel drive. Speaking of which; the system splits the power with a 40:60 front to back bias, so you should get the characteristics of a rear-wheel drive car, but with the advantages of all-wheel drive built-in.

As for the Cadillac being in competition, well … generally speaking, the American brands tend to lose out against the Europeans in a number of areas, but the often most criticized aspect is the interior – very little competes with the luxury / sport European interiors.

Audi say that the design has been inspired by the Audi 90 IMSA GTO that dominated the U.S. sports car racing scene in the early 90’s, we can’t see it ourselves – most sports cars back then were all angular and sharp-corners, whereas the Audi RS5 is all curves and swooping lines.

The 2018 RS5 will be built on the modular, longitudinal-engine MLB Evo platform which it shares with the Audi A4, Q5, Q7, next-generation A6, A7 and A8 – it’s a busy platform.

All-new for the 2018 RS5 from Audi – a 450 BHP V6

And now to the exciting bit – the all-new 2.9 liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine will make 450 horsepower and 443 pounds of torque – no, it won’t sound like a V8, but it’s certainly packing the same punch and will still achieve 27 miles to the gallon according to Audi.

It will of course run through the Quattro all-wheel drive system, and as we’ve already mentioned, there will be a 40:60 front to rear split in the power. The only transmission available will be an 8-speed automatic Tiptronic system – we like manual transmissions in sports cars, but these new multi-speed automatics do such a great job, and they are a vital tool in helping manufacturers achieve good gas mileage, which of course, benefits our pocket anyway.

Quoted zero to sixty figures are 3.9 seconds, and when the optional Dynamic package is fitted, the RS5 will achieve 174 MPH – none of the piffling 155 MPH electronics here.

There’s also an option for a sports rear differential, which should make the large sedan a little more nimble – perfect for hooning those twisty mountain sections.

Choices Choices

And talking of optional extras – there will be options for a full RS Sport suspension package featuring adaptive dampers, carbon ceramic brakes and dynamic steering. We also know that there will be a myriad of technology that you can pick from, Audi haven’t yet confirmed what is standard or what is going to cost extra, but a fully-loaded flagship is more than likely going to have the full range; pedestrian detection, pre-collision warning with automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning with steering assist, adaptive cruise-control, rear cross-traffic alerts, rear-view camera, traction control, touchscreen infotainment, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Bluetooth, USB … you must remember that as well as being the A5’s faster brother, the RS5 is still about luxury.

The interior looks to be a great place to be; all the details touches have been incorporated, the leather upholstery is beautifully put together with contrast stitching and the seats are just perfect – a great deal of support without feeling like you’re sitting in a race car. Audi have absolutely nailed it.

We hope that some of the more intrusive (or active) technology can be switched off – part of the joy of owning something like this is using it to its potential – all four hundred and fifty of them. When active safety technology starts interfering, it becomes annoying, especially when you know it’s only there to please legislators.

Definitely European

As regards the pricing, we only have a Euro price at the moment – as we say, it hasn’t actually been confirmed one way or the other if we’ll actually get to see the 2018 Audi RS5 over here – we really hope so, but it’s a waiting game.

The Europeans will be paying in the region of €80,900 for the new RS5, which at current rates would equate to around $87,405. It’s about five-thousand dollars more expensive than the competition, but then it is completely brand-new.

Is it $5,000 better? Only time will tell, and to a certain degree, you’re buying into the brand as much as anything else – the question you have to ask yourself is which brand would you rather be associated with?

The 2018 Audi RS5 will be launching in June 2017 for Europe, if and it’s a big IF, it comes over here, we won’t see it for another few months yet – more likely to be toward September. Seeing as Audi are playing their cards close to their chest, we’d speculate that we won’t see it, at least not until next year, maybe even as a 2019 Model Year. We hope that we’re wrong though.

Do you think that the 2018 Audi RS5 will make it to the American shores this year? Have Audi done the right thing by dropping the V8 in favor of the V6? Should they have made it more powerful? Why not leave a comment for us and let us know your thoughts – we’d appreciate that.

2017-05-11 by Luke Widmeyer