WITH INTRODUCTIONS to new Audi A7 complete, its sportier derivatives are being rolled out. As ever, the hottest version is the RS 7 Sportback. But the 2019 model could be offered in hybrid form for the first time.
What is the Audi RS7 Sportback?
The Audi RS 7 Sportback (coupé) is the sportiest variant of the four-door A7 Sportback. It will be Audi’s most performance-focused model this side of the R8 supercar when it goes on sale next year.
Like the standard A7, the RS 7 will likely be an impressive all-round executive car, with a high-grade interior and relative comfort for longer journeys.
The combination of a beast of an engine, adaptive suspension and all-wheel drive should also make it very quick point-to-point, too. If rumours of a plug-in hybrid version are correct, the 2019 RS 7 could also be surprisingly frugal for such a fast executive car.
What engines will the Audi RS 7 Sportback come with?
Like its predecessor, the new RS 7 is expected to have a 4-litre turbocharged V8 petrol engine under the bonnet. Power figures aren’t known yet, though a healthy leap above its predecessor’s 542bhp output is almost a given.
If a hybrid option is offered it will be the first application in an ‘RS’ Audi. But anyone imagining it’ll no more than a good-looking Prius should think again; expect another increase in power and torque resulting from the electric motor assistance. The hybrid system would likely be derived from the petrol-electric setup found in the Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid, from sister company Porsche.
The new RS 7 Sportback will be available exclusively with quattro all-wheel drive, with the only transmission option expected to be an eight-speed automatic.
What tech will the Audi RS 7 Sportback have?
Being the range-topping RS model, the Audi RS 7 Sportback will be fitted with many high-end features. Adjustable air suspension is anticipated to come as standard, and the interior will also be graced with Audi’s suite of touchscreen interfaces and digital dashboard displays.
An array of optional extras are expected to be available too, ranging from dynamic sports suspension and an increased top speed limiter, to premium stereo systems and ‘Audi Matrix’ laser headlights.
When will the Audi RS 7 Sportback go on sale?
The RS 7 is expected to be revealed in full next year, at either the Geneva Motor Show in March or the Frankfurt Motor Show in September. If it’s unveiled at the latter, it will almost certainly go on sale in 2020.
How much will the Audi RS7 Sportback cost?
Prices won’t be confirmed until a later date. However, it’s expected there won’t be a massive increase over the outgoing RS 7 Sportback’s £87,610 starting price.
What will the Audi RS7 Sportback’s rivals be?
With Mercedes-Benz no longer offering a full-on AMG versions of its CLS four-door coupe, the Audi RS7 Sportback’s closest rivals are all conventional saloons. The BMW M5 and the Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG are the Audi RS7’s most direct competitors, with the Tesla Model S being a potential all-electric alternative.