VIDEO: Audi RS e-tron GT vs Tesla Model S

Audi e-tron GT vs. Tesla Model S

carwow pits Audi RS e-tron GT vs Tesla Model S in a 571-mile race from Inverness, Scotland to London, England!

Tesla changed the world with the Model S, proving that electric vehicles could be stylish, luxurious, incredibly fast, and travel long distances. When it arrived, it stood alone and conquered the emerging luxury EV market. But here we are in 2021 with OEMs on every continent chasing Tesla for customers and an all-electric future. Enter the Audi RS e-tron GT, which was co-developed with the Porsche Taycon and is set to debut later this summer here in the US.

In a recent video posted by carwow on YouTube, host Mat Watson sets the stage for the ultimate battle of electric luxury sedans: Audi RS e-tron GT vs Tesla Model S in a 571-mile race from Inverness, Scotland to London, England.

On the surface, the Tesla boasts faster 0-to-60mph times as well as a 390-mile range. But the Audi, with only a 238-mile range, charges faster. Who? Will? Win?

Watch the video to find out, of course. What I will say, though, is that I think this test highlights the subjective nature of buying any new car, EV or not. Spec sheets aren’t the end-all-be-all. Personal issues like style, comfort, features, and daily ergonomics often prevail. Especially at this price range.

What do you think? What would you buy? What’s most important for you in considering a luxury EV?

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Loving Tribute Tells the Whole Truth About the Audi R8 V10

Audi R8 V10

There’s one big problem with the Audi R8 — but it has nothing to do with the V10 or the styling…

The writing has been on the wall for the Audi R8 V10 since long before Ingolstadt announced the end of internal combustion development back in March. There’s just no place for this Four Ring rocket in the new world, and while it’ll be on the books until 2023, the today’s version is the last version. But with 15 years of development under its belt, you can’t say it didn’t have a good run. It’s a sparking example of an everyday supercar, and one of the machines that invented the concept. As YouTuber Joe Achilles points out this new clip, however, it does have one pretty big flaw.

That flaw, of course, has nothing to due with the ferocious 562-horsepower V10 which sits behind the cockpit, or the styling, which has aged like a bottle of Pappy Van Winkle’s. Hell, even though it’s not longer on the order books, this machine was once available with a gated six-speed manual — the supercar equivalent of a mic drop. So from the greasy bits to the sheet metal, there’s little fault to be found. The only real problem with the R8, in his opinion, is that its athleticism makes driving it on public roads as frustrating as trying to eat phở while white water rafting.

Now, as someone fortunate enough to have driven Audi’s supercar on a few occasions, I whole-heartedly agree, as using even a small portion of this beast’s potential if you’re not on a closed course is asking for trouble. So Achilles fixes this “problem” by taking this R8 to England’s legendary Silverstone Circuit, where he can flex it’s muscles to the full extent of his abilities — and we get to hear the 5.2-liter ten-pot sing at the top of its register.

Make sure to crank up the sound here when Achilles hits the track, because while the performance of future supercars with undoubtable eclipse the capabilities of the R8, the time when new hardware won’t scream like this isn’t all that far away. Sure, sound designers will ensure they have character, but it won’t be the same. Someday, audiences will watch period movies, and be amazed at just how loud the vehicles of our era were — just like how we’re amazed that people used to smoke in hospitals.

Overall, this clip is mighty good fun, even if there’s not a lot — meaning like, nothing — dedicated gearheads don’t already know. Enjoy!

Photos: YouTube

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Audi RS6 Avant With Capristo Exhaust: Hot or Not?

Audi RS6 Avant

The custom exhaust of this wicked Audi RS6 Avant takes the snap, crackle, and pop all the way to 11!

While it’s a wagon, or an estate if you want to be all European and fancy, the Audi RS6 Avant is anything but a sleeper. Even in factory form, this baby looks more aggressive than a grocery getter has any right to be, and you’d have to be illiterate in all things automotive not to suspect something powerful lurks under the hood. Straight from the factory however, it doesn’t sound terribly beastly, especially in the old country, where the engine is muffled by a mandatory OPF exhaust particulate filter.

Of course, the aftermarket has plenty of solutions to wake up Ingolstadt’s potent twin-turbo 4.0-liter, and this system from Capristo Exhaust sounds positively brutal — even if it might not be everyone’s cup of tea. It ditches the OPF filter, and apparently, and semblance of baffling to produce a noise that’s positively demonic, as you’ll discover as soon as you hit play. According to Automotive Mike, this machine is producing a whopping 830 horsepower, so it’s not a case of bark being worse than its bite, either.

The 239 horsepower increase isn’t the most I’ve seen on a new RS6, but it’s close, and along with the Stage 2 tune and Milltek Downpipes, this baby is rocking a trick set of bronze Ferrada wheels. While I’m generally not a fan of aftermarket wheels, I think these look spectacular, and absolutely love how the blue-painted brake calipers look behind them. While it’s hard to go wrong with red ones, this subtle difference in color choice really makes them pop. It probably doesn’t hurt that this lovely shade of blue is one of my all-time favorite colors.

Now, I’m of two minds on this exhaust. On the one hand, it’s way, way, too loud for me. Maybe if I lived in the middle of nowhere, I’d be comfortable with it, but driving this in a city like Seattle is going to be pretty obnoxious. And it would make your neighbors totally hate you. But I happen to love the complete riot of snaps, crackles, and pops that accompany the overrun here. Even if I know that it’s all electronic trickery and completely unnecessary, it still makes me giggle like a four-year old. That said, watch the video and let me know what you think. Is this the kind of treatment you’d consider for your ride? Why or why not?

Photos: YouTube

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Rocket Through the Trees: Onboard an Audi quattro S1

Audi quattro S1

Strap in and watch this Audi quattro S1 rip through a special stage of the FIA European Historic Rally Championship.

Since this is a site dedicated to everything Four Rings related, I’m always stoked to learn about the latest and greatest kit that the wizards of Ingolstadt are bringing to market. But while the emerging tech like e-tron GT and hot rod wagons like the MTM Avant are all well and good, there’s a special place in my heart for the ferocious rally cars that Audi built its reputation on — like the incredible quattro S1. Seriously, I wish I was cool enough to drive a killer replica, like this amazing tribute.

But while we Audi fans might talk about how just how dominating the S1 was in the World Rally Championship all the time, it’s tough for mere mortals to conceive of just how incredibly fast this machine was in that rough and tumble world. Fortunately, videos like this clip from the FIA European Historic Rally Championship exists, and while it’s not exactly like riding shotgun on stage, if it doesn’t get your blood moving, you should probably see a doctor.

This was shot on Special Stage 11 of the historic Vltava Rallye, and features Italians “Zippo” and Denis Piceno ripping down some scary-tight roads at speeds which will make your toes curl. Thanks to the pair’s teamwork, they would go on to win the stage overall, snatching victory from driver Karl Wagner’s Porsche 911 SC. But even if they hadn’t managed to claim victory, this footage would still be killer to watch. Race tracks are one thing, but can you imagine going past homes and barns at this pace?

This is exactly the kind of video which makes me want to book a class with Dirtfish, the rally school in my neck of the woods. While I’ve never been over to their facility, a brief introduction to high-performance techniques at Team O’Neil Rally School a few years back gave me a taste of what to expect, so I know it would be an absolute blast. Check out the video below, and let me know if you stumble across any awesome POV rally videos — I love these things!

Photos: YouTube

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Watch the 1000-HP Audi RS6 MTM Avant Climb the Alps

Audi RS6 Avant

After the tuning wizards at MTM get done with it, the Audi RS6 Avant is packing 1,001 horsepower and 958 lb-ft of torque.

Right out of the box, the Audi RS6 Avant is a beast of a machine, and we’re lucky to have it on our shores. Its twin-turbo 4.0-liter V8 pumps out a whopping 591 horsepower and 590 lb-ft of twist, which gets routed to all four corners thanks to Ingolstadt’s famous quattro system. All that poke means it’ll make the sprint from zero to 60 mph in a blistering 3.1 seconds, which is brutally quick, and faster than many purpose-built sports cars.

For some people, brutally quick just isn’t enough however, and for those folks there’s the Audi RS6 MTM Avant. After the wizards at the tuning company get done with it, the already-potent mill is stoked to produce a staggering 1,001 horsepower and 958 lb-ft of torque. As you’d expect, the performance numbers are even more mind-blowing after the treatment. According to MTM, the luxury longroof will now hit 60 in just 2.6 seconds, and if you keep your foot buried, it’ll hit 217 mph.

The massive increase in poke is thanks to a re-worked turbo system, which utilizes larger intake collectors, MTM-fortified snails with larger turbine shafts and a  larger compressor wheel, upgraded boost pressure sensors, and a retuned ECU which removes the factory top-speed governor. From the description on YouTube, it doesn’t even sound like they’ve had to do anything to the internals of the motor, which speaks volumes about how stout the greasy bits are from the factory.

That said, there’s no mention of what — if anything — been done to the transmission, so I’m curious about just how long the stock system will hold up against the almost-50% increase in output. But given the high cost of entry for the car and not-inconsequential funds required for the tuning job, I’m going to assume that they folks who can spring for this level of car aren’t terribly concerned with longevity. Heck, if I had that kind of scratch, I wouldn’t either.

Watch the video below to watch this weapons-grade Audi RS6 Avant go climbing in the Alps, and make sure to turn up your headphones, as this baby sounds like a properly glorious beast when given the beans!

Photos: YouTube

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