The handling of the RS4 broke into new ground for Audi and the Avant is just as good.
The estate weighs 60kg more than the saloon, with stiffer springing to compensate
In blue there are more than a few echooes of the original RS2. But this one is better to drive.
Ceramic brakes will be offered as an option on the Avant - the saloon's brakes tire quickly on track
The Audi A4 is an improvement over the previous version, but isn't good enough to topple the BMW 3-series
What's new? Family man and high street poser now get the opportunity to revel in the aural and dynamic marvels of Audi’s high revving, spine tingeling 4.2V8 RS4. The Avant continues a long line of super fast Audi estates and is practically identical to the Saloon save the additional luggage space.What's it like? We’ve been blown away by the saloon bodied RS4, so expectations are high for its new sibling. The Avant follows closely the pattern set by the saloon, mixing the intoxicating pleasures of a V8 whose tone can be sent from bassy warble to high tech scream at the prod of the throttle.There's also a chassis that finally delivers on Audi’s Quattro promise – secure, entertaining and for the first time in a long time not ludicrously uncomfortable. Weighing a little more than the saloon, and likely to be more fully loaded, the Avant runs slightly stiffer spring rates to compensate.Unloaded the ride is marginally firmer than the saloon, but only slightly so, and remains the best riding RS for some time.Should I buy one? As close as makes no difference the Avant matches the saloon for driving thrills, offers greater practicality and subjectively looks the more appealing. Don’t believe me? Just wait until you see one in blue and the connection with the original ‘fast estate’ Audi’s RS2 hits you and you’ll understand. So, yes, buy one now and buy it in blue.Jamie Corstorphine