What is it?
Audi’s answer to the likes of BMW M6 Gran Coupe and the Mercedes CLS63 AMG, the RS7 is essentially a sinister twin of the A7 Sportback. Armed with a sharp, fastback body, tasty-looking 20-inch mag wheels and many aggressive styling elements like the gaping airdams, the RS7 wins hearts on looks alone – but there’s definitely a lot more to this car than its high aesthetic appeal. This tarmac-scorcher packs a high strung 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 that churns out 560 hp – yes, that’s a supercar-rivaling figure there. There’s more supercar hardware; the RS7 comes with a sporty eight-speed automatic gearbox, all-wheel drive and a lowered suspension. The 2015 RS7 is a seriously fast piece of kit. At INR 1.4 Crores a piece, the RS7 doesn’t come cheap. However, the RS7 is as close as you’ll ever get to a car that has an Audi R8-like performance and almost A8-like luxury. Here’s our 2015 Audi RS7 Sportback Test Drive Review to give you a fair idea of this “everyday superhero”.
What all’s new with the Design & Styling?
Okay, the 2015 RS7 doesn’t break any new ground with its design. True, the exterior has been spruced up with LED Matrix headlamps, and a new front- and rear-end, but the nature of updates is as minute as these mid-life massages come. That said, the RS7 is still a looker and a quick glance is all it takes to register the dynamic character of this car’s design. A long hood, the very sporty C‑pillars and the sharply sloping rear-end lend a very racy look to this car. Of course, the new design elements add some more drama to the design. Among the most striking touches is the Singleframe grille with a black-painted honeycomb mesh that is characteristic of RS models. Even the bumper has been given a minor update. The new headlamps boast of LED fixtures and Audi’s Matrix LED technology. The turn signals come with dynamic display. The tail lights get a new motif. The RS7 offers four new paint schemes – Floret Silver, Glacier White, Mythos Black, and Sepang Blue.
On the inside, Audi has rather discreetly revised the instrument cluster. Also new are the air outlet controls of the vent nozzles, the shift paddles behind the steering wheel and the Quattro emblem on the instrument panel. The MMI is also new and now employs the modular infotainment platform being used by all latest generation Audi models.
What’s under the hood?
The 2015 Audi RS7 is powered by the same 4.0-litre V8 Bi-turbo TFSI motor that powered the pre-facelift. This motor outputs supercar-rivaling 560 hp and 700 Nm. Another highlight of this engine is the cylinder on demand (COD) system that shuts down four of the eight cylinders during partial load conditions. The V8 comes mated to an eight‑speed auto that directs power to all the wheels via Quattro system. Unlike the R8 (and many other cars with so much power on tap), the RS7 doesn’t get a dual-clutch transmission. Instead, it boasts of a traditional ZF-sourced torque converter automatic unit that comes from the A8 limousine.
Before you ask, straight-line performance is almost orgasmic! The RS7 is the uncrowned King of all traffic light GPs; yes, the RS7 is that fast! The power delivery is strong right from the word ‘Go’ as any sort of turbo lag is just conspicuous by its absence. The auto ‘box works efficiently and in most conditions, you will be hard pressed to question this non-DCT unit’s sportiness. Tipping the scales at almost two tonnes, the RS7 is a shade heavier than even the portly BMW M6 Gran Coupe, the Porsche Panamera Turbo and the Mercedes-Benz CLS63 AMG. Yet, the RS7 is quicker than all of these and can hit 100 km/h from standstill in merely 3.9 seconds. The India-spec 2015 RS7 has an electronically-nannied top whack of 250 km/h. Internationally, however, the RS7 can be bought with any of the three top-speed governors depending on the tire-wheel package. The most extreme option unlocks the car to 305 km/h! The 2015 Audi RS7 is not only supercar fast, it also sounds like one. There’s a fierce, almost menacing sound note – the exhaust pops audibly at upshifts, while easing off the throttle is marked by a raging crackle! While truly sporty, the RS7 trots almost effortlessly in the city. The RS7 is very maneuverable and tractable in the urban environment. What’s more, in city driving, with some ‘feather-footing’, you can average as much as 8 km/l. Brilliant, we say!
Around the corner?
While the RS7 offers absolutely gob-smacking straight-line performance, it is this car’s corner-carving prowess that leaves us slightly disappointed. Don’t get us wrong though, for the steering is really very precise. However, it offers little in terms of feedback. The situation is so bad that even on hitting a pothole, nothing is transmitted to your fingertips. So, ultimately you lack confidence while pushing this car into the corners. Talking of the electronics, the RS7’s torque vectoring system, along with the limited-slip differential, does make it easy to change your line mid corner. There’s some roll when in ‘Comfort’ mode, but switch to ‘Dynamic’ and all the roll and pitch is totally dialled out.Even the steering becomes a tad heavier in Dynamic mode, which does give you slightly more confidence in the corners. However, the steering weighs up in a very artificial manner, which, while not a deal breaker, is a slight put off.
It is the ride quality which is the biggest disappointment. We never expected a ‘magic carpet’ ride, but the ride gets really harsh and neck-tiring in Dynamic mode. Regular driving is best done in Comfort settings, where the suspension does get softer and more forgiving.
Should I Buy One?
On sale for north of INR 1.4 Crore, the 2015 RS7 is an expensive piece of kit. However, the RS7 offers gob-smacking, gut-wrenching, grab-ya-by-the-lapels performance while providing comfort and luxuries that are almost similar to those offered by equally priced luxobarges. And the icing on the cake comes from the latest updates, which work together to enhance the wow factor by making the design edgier, sharper, and fresher. The 2015 Audi RS7 is easily the best super sedan in its segment. Practicality of a four door sedan (ok, this one’s a notchback) and performance of a supercar; best of both worlds, anyone?
2015 Audi RS7 Sportback Photos
So, what do you think of our 2015 Audi RS7 Sportback Test Drive Review? Do share your thoughts in the comments section below. Stay tuned to Car Blog India for more test drive review like the 2015 Audi RS7 Sportback Test Drive Review we have here.