Audi S and RS models

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The original Audi "S" car: the Audi S2, produced from 1990-1994
The original Audi "RS" car: the Audi RS2 Avant, a joint venture between Audi and Porsche from 1994-1995. All subsequent RS models would be solely produced by quattro GmbH.

Audi S and RS models are a range of high performance versions of certain car models of the German automotive company AUDI AG. These cars primarily focus on enhanced "sport" performance.[1] Production of Audi "S" cars began in 1990 with the S2 Coupé, whilst the first "RS" car appeared four years later in 1994 with the Audi RS 2 Avant.

Today's S and RS models are based on the A model with the same number (e.g S4/RS4 is based on the A4), but the "Ur-S4" from '91-94 was based on the Audi 100/200 later named A6 and the first S2/RS2 generation from '90-95 was based on the Audi 80/90 platform later replaced by the A4.

S models[edit]

Detail of the "S" vertical emphasis lines on the front grille of a B6 S4

Numerous "S" models, from most of Audi's mainstream model ranges have been produced over the years. These cars are recognisable by their "S*" badges, and vertical emphasis lines on their front grilles.

All Audi "S" models are equipped with Audi's 'trademark' quattro four-wheel drive system as standard.[1] Unique internal combustion engines, along with larger, more powerful brakes, stiffer suspension systems, additional exterior body styling, and carbon fibre interior trims set them apart from their related "siblings" of their respective model range.

Like their related 'mainstream' brethren, all Audi "S" cars are still assembled by AUDI AG, and they are manufactured at their relevant factories on the same production lines alongside their other standard or 'lesser' models. [1]

In the past, some Audi S models competed directly with BMW M and Mercedes-AMG models, such as the B6 Audi S4 4.2 FSI versus the BMW M3 and Mercedes-Benz C32 AMG.[2] Since 2010 however, Audi S models have been positioned more as optional engine trims. For instance the base Audi A4 (B8) engine is the 2.0 TFSI turbo four-cylinder, and with the discontinuation of the 3.2 FSI V6, that makes the Audi S4's 3.0 TSFI V6 the performance option (the B8 Audi S4 3.0 TSFI positioned closer to the E90 BMW 335i than the BMW M3). The Audi A6 (C7) no longer has a V8 engine upgrade in the non-S range, with the discontinuation of the C6 Audi A6 4.2 FSI that was offered from 2004–11, one must go to the C7 Audi S6 4.0 TFSI.[3]

Audi "S" models should not be confused with the Audi "S line" models, which feature leather trim, S-line badging, sports steering wheel and sports suspension.

RS models[edit]

quattro GmbH, AUDI AGs high performance private subsidiary, creates even higher performance versions, known by their "RS" badging. The "RS" initials are taken from the German: RennSport - literally translated as "racing sport".

RS is Audi's highest performance 'top-tier' trim level, positioned distinctly above the "S" ("Sport") specification level of Audi's regular model range. All "RS" cars pioneer some of Audi's latest and most advanced technology and engineering prowess, therefore, "RS" cars could be described as "halo vehicles". Audi RS cars are some of the most powerful vehicles ever offered by Audi. The Audi RS6 5.0 TFSI quattro, for instance, is more powerful than the physically larger Audi S8 5.2 FSI quattro.[1]

Available for limited time and only in select markets, on a restricted model range, these "RS" models are wholly designed, developed and produced in-house by Audi AG's high performance private subsidiary company, quattro GmbH, at its Neckarsulm factory,[2] whereas Audi "S" models are produced at the same assembly line as regular Audi models. "RS" model also usually have a wider bodyshell (sometimes informally referred to as 'widebody') to allow for a wider front- and rear-axle track than regular Audi and Audi "S" models.

Unlike Audi "S" models whose interiors well-furnished in order to retain the feel of sport luxury, the interior of Audi "RS" models are often spartan by comparison as the emphasis is more on track performance than luxury. The 2008 Audi RS4 sold in Europe had lightweight racing-style front seats and roll-up windows for the rear doors, although its counterpart sold in the United States has luxurious power-adjustable front seats and power windows for all doors.[4]

Audi "RS" models are considered direct competitors to similar-sized hardcore sport models from BMW M and Mercedes-AMG, whereas the Audi "S" models (as of 2010) have been positioned more as engine upgrades. Taking the 2012 model year for example, the Audi RS5 competes directly with the BMW M3 whereas the Audi S5 competes with the BMW 335i, while the Audi RS6 competes with the BMW M5 and the Audi S6 competes with the BMW 550i. However the Audi RS6 (C6) was never exported to the United States due to emissions regulations, leaving the Audi S6 (C6) as the top performing trim to compete against the BMW M5 (E60) in that market.[5]

There used to be only one RS model in production at a time, but recently[when?] Audi has revised its policies and decided to make more than one RS model at a time, claiming that "customers want them, then why not give it to them".[citation needed]

Model range[edit]

The following Audi "S" and "RS" high performance models are being, or have been produced, or are speculated to be in future production:

Current models[edit]

(In model range order)

Audi
model name
VW Group
platform
Typ
code
engine type max. motive power specific power car body style(s) start
year
Audi TTS quattro A5 (PQ35) 8J 1,984 cc I4 TFSI 200 kW (272 PS; 268 bhp) 100 kW (136.0 PS; 134.1 bhp) 2-dr, 2-seat compact Coupé,
2-dr, 2-seat compact Roadster (convertible)
2008
Audi TT RS A5 (PQ35) 8J 2,480 cc R5 TFSI 250 kW (340 PS; 335 bhp) 100 kW (136.0 PS; 134.1 bhp) 2-dr, 2-seat compact Coupé,
2-dr, 2-seat compact Roadster (convertible)
2009
Audi S3 MQB 8V 2.0 I4 TFSI 3-dr, 5-seat hatchback,
4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan)
2014
Audi S3 Sportback MQB 8V 2.0 I4 TFSI 5-dr, 5-seat hatchback
Audi S4 quattro B8 (PL48)
(Audi MLB/MLP)
8K 2,998 cc V6 TFSI 245 kW (333 PS; 329 bhp) 81.7 kW (111.1 PS; 109.6 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan),
5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon)
2008
Audi RS4 quattro B8 (PL48)
(Audi MLB/MLP)
8K 4,163 cc V8 FSI 331 kW (450 PS; 444 bhp) 5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon) 2012
Audi S5 quattro B8 (PL48)
(Audi MLB/MLP)
8T 2,998 cc V6 TFSI
4,163 cc V8 FSI
245 kW (333 PS; 329 bhp)
260 kW (354 PS; 349 bhp)
81.7 kW (111.1 PS; 109.6 bhp)
62.5 kW (85.0 PS; 83.8 bhp)
2-dr, 4-seat mid-size coupé
2-dr, 4-seat cabriolet (convertible)
4-dr, 4-seat fastback
2007
Audi RS5 quattro[3] B8 (PL48)
(Audi MLB/MLP)
8T 4,163 cc V8 FSI 331 kW (450 PS; 444 bhp) 2-dr, 4-seat mid-size coupé
2-dr, 4-seat cabriolet (convertible)
2010
2013
Audi S6 4G 3,993 cc V8 TFSI 309 kW (420 PS; 414 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan),
5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon)
2012
Audi RS6 MLB 4G 4.0 V8 TFSI 5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon) 2014
Audi S7 4G 3,993 cc V8 TFSI 309 kW (420 PS; 414 bhp) 4-dr, 4-seat fastback 2012
Audi RS7 4G 3,993 cc V8 TFSI 412 kW (560 PS; 553 bhp) 4-dr, 4-seat fastback 2013
Audi S8 4H 3,993 cc V8 TFSI 382 kW (519 PS; 512 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan) 2012

Former models[edit]

(In chronological order of production end - oldest first)

Audi
model name
VW Group
platform
Typ
code
engine type max. motive power specific power car body style(s) production
year(s)
Audi S2 B3 8B 2.2L l5 20vT 162–169 kW (220–230 PS; 217–227 bhp) 2-dr, 5-seat Coupé,
5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon),
4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan)
1990–1994
Audi S4 ("Ur-S4") C4 4A 2.2L l5 20vT 169 kW (230 PS; 227 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan) 1991–1994
Audi RS2 Avant B4 8C 2.2L l5 20vT 232 kW (315 PS; 311 bhp) 5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon) 1994–1995
Audi S6 ("Ur-S6") C4 4A 2.2L l5 20vT
4.2 V8
169 kW (230 PS; 227 bhp)
213 kW (290 PS; 286 bhp)
4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan),
5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon)
1995–1997
Audi S6 Plus C4 4A 4.2 V8 240 kW (326 PS; 322 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan),
5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon)
1996–1997
Audi RS4 Avant B5 (PL45) 8D 2.7 V6 T 285 kW (387 PS; 382 bhp) 5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon) 2000–2001
Audi S8 quattro D2 (PL62) 4D 4.2 V8 250–265 kW (340–360 PS; 335–355 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan) 1996–2002
Audi S4 quattro B5 (PL45) 8D 2.7 V6 T 195 kW (265 PS; 261 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan),
5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon)
1997–2002
Audi S6 quattro C5 4B 4.2 V8 250 kW (340 PS; 335 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan),
5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon)
1999–2002
Audi S3 quattro A4 (PQ34) 8L 1.8 I4 20vT 154–165 kW (209–224 PS; 207–221 bhp) 3-dr, 5-seat hatchback 1999–2003
Audi RS6 quattro C5 4B 4.2 V8 40vT 331 kW (450 PS; 444 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan),
5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon)
2002–2004
Audi RS6 Plus quattro C5 4B 4.2 V8 40vT 353 kW (480 PS; 473 bhp) 5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon) 2004
Audi S4 quattro B6 (PL46) 8E 4.2 V8 40v 253 kW (344 PS; 339 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan),
5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon),
2-dr, 4-seat Cabriolet (convertible)
2003–2005
Audi RS4 quattro B7 (PL47) 8E 4,163 cc V8 FSI 309 kW (420 PS; 414 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan),
5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon),
2-dr, 4-seat Cabriolet (convertible)
2006-2008 (sal),
2006-2007 (Avant),
2007-2008 (Cab)
Audi S4 quattro B7 (PL47) 8E 4.2 V8 40v 253 kW (344 PS; 339 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan),
5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon)
2-dr, 4-seat Cabriolet (convertible)
2005–2008,
2006-2009 (Cab)
Audi S6 5.2 FSI quattro C6 4F 5,204 cc V10 FSI 320 kW (435 PS; 429 bhp) 61.5 kW (83.6 PS; 82.5 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan),
5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon)
2006–2011
Audi RS6 5.0 TFSI quattro C6 4F 4,991 cc V10 TFSI 427 kW (581 PS; 573 bhp) 85.6 kW (116.4 PS; 114.8 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan),
5-dr, 5-seat Avant (estate/wagon)
2008–2010
Audi S8 5.2 FSI quattro D3 (PL63) 4E 5,204 cc V10 FSI 331 kW (450 PS; 444 bhp) 63.6 kW (86.5 PS; 85.3 bhp) 4-dr, 5-seat saloon (sedan) 2006–2010
Audi S3 quattro A5 (PQ35) 8P 1,984 cc I4 TFSI 195 kW (265 PS; 261 bhp) 98.3 kW (133.7 PS; 131.8 bhp) 3-dr, 5-seat hatchback 2006–2012
Audi S3 Sportback quattro A5 (PQ35) 8P 1,984 cc I4 TFSI 195 kW (265 PS; 261 bhp) 98.3 kW (133.7 PS; 131.8 bhp) 5-dr, 5-seat compact estate/wagon 2008–2012
Audi RS3 Sportback quattro A5 (PQ35) 8P 2,480 cc R5 TFSI 250 kW (340 PS; 335 bhp) 100.8 kW (137.0 PS; 135.2 bhp) 5-dr, 5-seat compact estate/wagon 2011–2012

Future models[edit]

Audi
model name
VW Group
platform
Typ
code
engine type car body style(s) expected availability
Audi S1 PQ25 8X 2.0 I4 TFSI[4] 3-dr, 5-seat supermini 2014

Audi S line[edit]

"S line" badge in front grille

Audi produce a specification of optional sports trim packages to their mainstream models, known as the S line. This is merely a trim specification which allows customers to effect a sporty appearance in their mainstream Audi model. Whilst the specific S line trim parts are designed and produced by quattro GmbH at its Neckarsulm factory, these mainstream cars are still manufactured and assembled by AUDI AG at their relevant factories on the same production lines alongside their other standard models.

Cars with S line trim are not to be confused with the specific high performance offerings - the "S" models (made by AUDI AG), and the "RS" models (made by quattro GmbH); Audi cars with S line trim bear identical performance figures to their counterparts with base or SE trim levels.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Audi of America Press Site 25 Years of Audi Quattro 22 February 2005
  2. ^ quattro GmbH - Investor Relations for Audi AG
  3. ^ "RS 5 Coupé < A5 < Models < Audi UK". Audi.co.uk. Archived from the original on 8 November 2010. Retrieved 2010-11-25. 
  4. ^ http://www.autocar.co.uk/car-news/scoop/hot-220bhp-audi-s1-supermini-breaks-cover

External links[edit]