‘Sleeper’ Audi RS4 B7 Reveals the Supercharged Beast Within!

Supercharged RS4

What could be better than a pristine Audi RS4 B7? How about a supercharged pristine Audi RS4 B7 making 500 horsepower?

The 4.2-liter V8 ranks as one of the greatest Audi engines and one of the best small-displacement V8s of this century. Stock, it churns out 414- horsepower and 317 lb-feet of torque. For whatever reason, the owner of this RS4 decided that wasn’t enough and installed a supercharger. The result is a 500-horsepower, all-wheel drive brute that weighs just shy of 3,800 pounds.

Performance stats for the stock RS4 B7 are 0 to 60 mph in about 4.6 seconds and a top speed of 185 mph. Those numbers put the RS4 in the middle of any number of sports cars from that era and are still fast today. With the supercharger, 0 to 60 in the low four-second range and a top speed of around 200 mph don’t seem like that big of a stretch.

Supercharged RS4 B7

Looks Like an A4, Goes Like Hell

The original RS4 was a master of understatement. There are a number of changes to the A4 bodywork like flared fenders to house 19-inch wheels, a small rear spoiler, and a more aggressive front facia. The result enhances the look of the already timeless B7. It looks tailored next to the A4’s off-the-rack appearance. Visually, the biggest difference is under the hood. I’m not sure how Audi stuffed a 4.2-liter V8 under the hood of an RS4. There isn’t room for a tennis ball, let alone a supercharger.

Incredibly this modified RS4 looks stock. The owner paid serious money for the supercharger work. It’s a first-class job, and the results are incredible. Audi’s 4.2-liter V8 sounds slightly lumpy off idle, doing a convincing impersonation of a small-block V8 with a German accent. At full throttle, it bellows fury. There’s little drama thanks to the all-wheel-drive. The RS4 digs in and launches like a sprinter out of the blocks.

To see how well it works, watch the video.

Photos & Videos: CarsinSixty

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Mark Webb is fascinated by anything automotive and particularly loves cars that are unusual or have a good story. He’s owned a variety of cars from 60’s muscle, Japanese imports, and oddities like a VW Thing and Porsche 924. After 20 years in the automotive and tech industries, he’s a walking encyclopedia of car info and is always on the lookout for his next project or a good road trip.

Audi A4 Buyer’s Guide (1996-2016)

2007 A4

Known as the B5, the first-generation A4 saved Audi in the U.S. market. Borrowing the same platform as the Volkswagen Passat, it offered a mix of turbocharged four-cylinder and natural aspirated six-cylinder engines. Audi’s Quattro all-wheel-drive was an option and could be ordered with a five-speed manual and a five-speed Tiptronic gearbox licensed from Porsche. For those looking for more performance, an S4 model included a twin-turbocharged version of the 30-valve 2.8-liter V-6 and made 250 horsepower.

Second Generation B6 (2002-2004)

2002 A4

The most noticeable thing about the second-generation Audi A4 is the Bauhaus styling. But real changes occurred under the skin. Audi moved the A4 to the larger, stiffer, and lighter B6 platform. A CVT transmission replaced the Tiptronic gearbox. The V6 engine increased to 3.0-liters of displacement with an output of 220 horsepower. And in 2003, Audi decided to get rowdy and stuff its new 339 horsepower, 4.2-liter V8 under the hood.

Third Generation B7 (2005-2008)

2007 A4fourth-generation A4 arrived in 2009, sharing the A5’s platform. Five inches longer than the old model, it outgrew the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class. The wheelbase stretched six inches and the car more closely resembled its A6 bigger brother. A revised interior with improved infotainment systems also reflected the A6, and Audi Drive Select became an option. The 3.2-liter V6 became the standard engine until a revised 2.0-liter four-cylinder debuted. The six-speed manual and CVT carried on, but Quattros received a new eight-speed automatic in 2011. The biggest change occurred with the S4. A supercharged 3.0-liter V-6 making 333 horsepower replaced the 4.2-liter V8. Equipped with an optional seven-speed S-Tronic dual-clutch automatic gearbox, it offered better performance, fuel economy, and was easier to service.

What to Look For

In terms of repairs and reliability, the Audi A4 has a few troublespots, most of which are minor with a couple of exceptions. According to Repair Pal, the most common issues are oil leaks from the valve cover and timing chain tensioner gaskets. Other things to watch include:

  • Ignition coil, spark plug, or spark plug wire failure
  • High-pressure fuel pump issues
  • Carbon build-up on FSI and TFSI engines
  • Water pump and/or thermostat failure
  • Misc. vacuum leaks and sensor failures

All of the above issues are common on many cars, not just Audis or the A4. Moving over to the S4, look for the same issues. Thermostat failures seem to be more common, but the biggest worry is the timing chain. Replacing it is an engine-out repair. Parts average about $1,200 to $1,400 and labor runs $4,000 or more.

S4 B7 Timing Chain

For this reason, you’ll occasionally stumble across an S4 at a fire sale price. Those cars are best avoided unless you have the money or skills to do the work yourself. Otherwise, the repair cost will likely exceed what you paid for the car.

What to Buy

There aren’t any specific models to avoid except for a cheap V8-powered S4. But if you’re looking for the sweet spot between usable performance, features, and operating costs, a later B7 or B8 with the 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder and Quattro AWD is hard to beat. They provide modern amenities and are not far off the pace of the V6. However, two golden rules apply when buying an A4 or any older premium car:

  1. Buy the best car you can afford.
  2. Get a pre-purchase inspection or PPI.

Look for cars listed by reputable dealers or from an owner with a comprehensive history. Check the vehicle history using a service like Carfax or AutoCheck. Condition matters much more than mileage. No matter how good the car looks, take it to a knowledgeable Audi mechanic and get a PPI. A bad A4 is a problem child that will test your sanity. But when you find a good one, you’ll have a great car that does many things well and is enjoyable to drive all year.

Photos: Audi USA & Reddit 

Click HERE to join the AudiWorld forums!

Mark Webb is fascinated by anything automotive and particularly loves cars that are unusual or have a good story. He’s owned a variety of cars from 60’s muscle, Japanese imports, and oddities like a VW Thing and Porsche 924. After 20 years in the automotive and tech industries, he’s a walking encyclopedia of car info and is always on the lookout for his next project or a good road trip.

Audi B5 RS4 Packs 470-HP Punch to Overcome Its Flaws

2001 Audi RS4 Avant

In spite of its flaws, the first RS4 holds up against the modern era of high performance in part because of its lack of high-tech features.

Following the end of the RS2 Avant in 1995, Audi fans had a long wait until the team at Ingolstadt developed a proper successor. After four years, one arrived: the RS4. While the United States received the B7 version between 2006 and 2008, Europe has enjoyed all four generations of one of the hottest Audis ever built, including the current B9 RS4 Avant.

Which begs the question: what of the B5 RS4 Avant? Does it hold up as well today as it did at the turn of the millennium? JayEmm on Cars seeks the answer with a modded 2001 RS4 Avant.

2001 Audi RS4 Avant

“Although they were certainly quick as standard,” said JayEmm, “posting a sub-5-second naught to 60 time, one of the things that made these cars was just how tunable they are. And this particular example is not standard.”

The 2.7-liter turbocharged V6 that once made 370 horsepower, thanks to tuning and a freer-flowing exhaust, it makes 470 horses. The RS4’s been lowered, and has front brakes from a Volkswagen Phaeton to better stopping power. This is also one of 530 B5 RS4s to come over to the United Kingdom, and one of 400 in right-hand drive. Its styling, meanwhile, doesn’t scream performance, unlike nearly Audi on the showroom floor now. But is owning an B5 RS4 worth it?

2001 Audi RS4 Avant

“I’ve been tempted by the S and RS4 of this generation a number of times in the past,” said JayEmm. “But there’s one really big reason I was always put off of them […] What’s put me off buying one of these in the past is the absolutely extraordinary running costs. For whatever reason, nearly everybody I talk to that owns, or has owned, one of these cars is always trying to put something right with it.”

That said, the RS4 Avant offers a few things newer ones don’t, like a six-speed manual. The ability to shift one’s own gears is a throwback to how things were in the 2000s: few electronics, more mechanicals, more connectedness. Today’s Audis, meanwhile, seem to handle everything for the driver, which might not be as fun as thought.

2001 Audi RS4 Avant

“Because this car is becoming something of a classic, with a price to match,” said JayEmm, “it becomes ever more difficult to justify it as merely a daily proposition. Yet still, the car has a lot going for it. If you ignore for a moment the fact you could get a much more modern, much more capable, much better-equipped car for the same or less money now, this is really quite a nice thing.”

Click HERE to join the AudiWorld forums!

Cameron Aubernon’s path to automotive journalism began in the early New ’10s. Back then, a friend of hers thought she was an independent fashion blogger.

Aubernon wasn’t, so she became one, covering fashion in her own way for the next few years.

From there, she’s written for: Louisville.com/Louisville Magazine, Insider Louisville, The Voice-Tribune/The Voice, TOPS Louisville, Jeffersontown Magazine, Dispatches Europe, The Truth About Cars, Automotive News, Yahoo Autos, RideApart, Hagerty, and Street Trucks.

Aubernon also served as the editor-in-chief of a short-lived online society publication in Louisville, Kentucky, interned at the city’s NPR affiliate, WFPL-FM, and was the de facto publicist-in-residence for a communal art space near the University of Louisville.

Aubernon is a member of the International Motor Press Association, and the Washington Automotive Press Association.

RS 4 Cabriolet Drops the Top, Raises the Performance

2008 Audi RS 4 Cabriolet

High-performance 2008 RS 4 Cabriolet delivered to the U.S. before calling Canada home, blacker than the blackest black, times infinity.

The B7 Audi A4 had two notable things going for it. One: it was the only generation of the A4 to include a cabriolet in the lineup. Two: it witnessed the return of the RS 4, which had disappeared after the first-gen A4 gave way to the second. And while the first RS 4 was only available in Avant form, the second could be had as a droptop, a handful of which were sold in the U.S. between 2006 and 2008.

Like this one. One of the last RS 4 Cabriolets to arrive in the U.S., it now appears on Bring a Trailer from Canada ready for a new home.

2008 Audi RS 4 Cabriolet

This black-on-black 2008 RS 4 Cabriolet first landed in a Pennsylvania dealership before its current owner brought it to Canada in December 2009. And it is black than the blackest black, times infinity. From the soft top to the wheels, this RS 4 haunts the open road in total darkness.

2008 Audi RS 4 Cabriolet

Under the hood, though, is a much more colorful story. Like all RS 4s of the time, the RS 4 Cabriolet leaves it all on the highway with a 4.2-liter V8. Back in the day, it made 420 horses and 317 lb-ft of torque, all of which hit the corners of the quattro system via a six-speed manual. It might be packing more punch these days, though, as the only mods to the big V8 include a REVO tuning chip and Milltek exhaust.

2008 Audi RS 4 Cabriolet

Under the soft top (or sun, depending), the black leather seating is accented by black carbon fiber and matte silver trim. The instrument cluster includes a 200-mph speedometer, which says quite a lot about what to expect from this RS 4 Cabriolet. The OEM satnav still looks as good now as it did in 2008.

2008 Audi RS 4 Cabriolet

The RS 4 is already a beast on the road. The fact that, at one time, it could be had as a soft top blows away the mind (not to mention everyone’s hairstyles). The closest anyone can get to the RS 4 Cabriolet these days is the R8 Spyder. What a time the turn of the millennium was.

Photos: Bring a Trailer

Click HERE to join the AudiWorld forums!

Cameron Aubernon’s path to automotive journalism began in the early New ’10s. Back then, a friend of hers thought she was an independent fashion blogger.

Aubernon wasn’t, so she became one, covering fashion in her own way for the next few years.

From there, she’s written for: Louisville.com/Louisville Magazine, Insider Louisville, The Voice-Tribune/The Voice, TOPS Louisville, Jeffersontown Magazine, Dispatches Europe, The Truth About Cars, Automotive News, Yahoo Autos, RideApart, Hagerty, and Street Trucks.

Aubernon also served as the editor-in-chief of a short-lived online society publication in Louisville, Kentucky, interned at the city’s NPR affiliate, WFPL-FM, and was the de facto publicist-in-residence for a communal art space near the University of Louisville.

Aubernon is a member of the International Motor Press Association, and the Washington Automotive Press Association.

RS4 Avant Clone is The Closest You Can Get in the US

B7 Audi RS4 Avant Wagon Clone For Sale

Inside and out, this B7 Avant is a full-fledge RS4 clone. This Cars and Bids auction is the closest you’ll get to a B7 RS4 for a decade!

The B7 Audi RS4 Avant is an iconic staple of the fearsome four rings’ timeline. What’s not to love? A six-speed manual transmission and a 4.2-liter V8 that makes 420 horsepower and 317 pound-feet of torque.  Couple that with the practicalities of a wagon and Audi’s legendary Quattro all-wheel-drive system, and you’ve got yourself a winner. Come to think of it, though; there is one thing we don’t love about it. See, Audi never sold the B7 RS4 in the US. We’re sure you’re aware, and we promise this article’s point is not simply to add salt to that open wound. Instead, we have great news. Right now, there’s a chance for US Audi enthusiasts to get an authentic taste of the B7 RS4 lifestyle. Furthermore, this car is 100% US legal and ready to rock.

This 2008 Audi S4 Avant is currently listed on Cars and Bids. However, this particular wagon is a whole lot more than an S4. This car is a meticulous recreation of an RS4. It has a full drivetrain swap, meaning instead of the standard affair S4 V8 engine with 340 horsepower, it has an authentic RS4 engine making the full-fledged 420 horsepower. It doesn’t stop at just the drivetrain, either. This thing has hours and hours of love and care put into it. As such, though, it’s not going to come cheap. At the time of writing, this auction has five days remaining and already carries a bid of over $50,000.

Interior B7 RS4 swapped S4 Leather bucket seats

The RS4 Conversion Doesn’t Stop at the engine

While the drivetrain swap in itself is impressive, it’s far from telling the whole story of this conversion. If you open the doors, you’ll find that this car also has a full-blown RS4 interior swap. Of course, this includes the gorgeous and sporty Euro-spec leather bucket seats. Heated, of course. Additionally, it has Euro-spec RS4 door cards, a TTRS flat-bottom steering wheel, SRP pedals, and a weighted shift knob.

Other upgrades include an RS4 steering rack, KW V3 coilovers, Brembo GT front rotors, EBC brake pads, and 034Motorsports adjustable control arms, both upper and lower.

Audi RS4 RSFaux S4 B7 Avant Cars and Bids Auction

Widebody to Complete the Look

Perhaps the most selling part of this conversion is the widebody conversion. If we hadn’t been told it wasn’t a legitimate RS4 (and we didn’t read the fantastic “RSFAUX” license plates), we would be at a loss for how this car is in the US. It really is that convincing.

Tying together the whole look is a full-color change to Cambridge Green Pearl, Euro-spec head and taillights, a German-spec Avant rear bumper, and a shining set of gold Work Emotion wheels.

The only slight hang-ups some potential buyers may have are that the Carfax report shows a minor-damage front-end collision in 2014 and the fact that the RS4 cluster swap puts the actual mileage of this vehicle up in the air.

B7 Audi RS4 Clone Six Speed Manual 420 Horsepower

Ultimately, this is a rare opportunity to own a car in the US that meets the specs of one of the many cool cars we never got in our market. Though we finally get a taste of the RS Avant life thanks to the RS6, we are still missing out on plenty of awesome RS Avant cars that are not yet legal. Now, you’ve got a chance o experience it. Unfortunately, though, it’s likely not going to come cheap.

We’ll certainly be watching this auction to see the final hammer price!

Photos: Cars and Bids