New Car Review

2016 Audi RS 7: New Car Review

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ADDITIONAL MODEL INFORMATION

author photo by Autotrader April 2016

The 2016 Audi RS 7 is the most powerful RS model available in the United States. It comes with 560 horsepower, which really is a huge amount of muscle. It builds on the S7, a high-performance machine based on the already-excellent A7. The result is a car with contemporary 4-door coupe styling, exemplary build and ergonomics, and power levels that might be called brutal if the delivery wasn't quite so refined.

What's New for 2016?

Exterior styling changes to the nose and tail bring a revised grille and lights, while the interior sees a slightly tweaked instrument cluster. The Multi Media Interface (MMI) infotainment system receives a faster processor, 4G LTE capability and two USB ports. And the previously optional variable-ratio steering system is now on the list of standard equipment.

What We Like

Supercar acceleration; sublime handling; exquisite interior; show-stopping style; top-notch tech

What We Don't

Rear headroom not great for tall passengers; limited versatility from the hatchback trunk

How Much?

$107,425

Fuel Economy

The RS 7 is propelled by a twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8 developing 560 hp and 516 lb-ft of torque. The transmission is an 8-speed automatic, and all-wheel drive is standard.

Fuel economy is quite impressive in light of the car's talent for acceleration. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates it at 15 miles per gallon in the city, 25 mpg on the highway and 18 mpg combined.

Standard Features & Options

The 2016 Audi RS 7 ($107,425) comes in one well-appointed trim level.

Standard equipment includes 20-inch alloy wheels, dual oval exhaust tips, full LED headlights and taillights, a power rear spoiler, an adaptive sport-tuned air suspension, variable-ratio steering, a sport rear differential, a power lift gate, a sunroof, a blind spot monitoring system, collision mitigation, power-folding exterior mirrors, keyless entry/starting, Audi's drive select system (featuring electronic adjustments for steering, throttle and transmission), an MMI infotainment system with a 7-in display and a console-mounted control knob, a rearview camera, front and rear parking sensors, a head-up display, quad-zone climate control, carbon-fiber inlays, aluminum pedals, RS-specific gauges and door handles, a sport steering wheel with shift paddles and contrast stitching, leather upholstery, 8-way heated power sport seats with honeycomb quilting and driver memory functions, Google-Earth-based navigation, 4G LTE/Wi-Fi hot spot capability, two USB ports, Bluetooth and a 14-speaker Bose audio system.

Options include three different 21-in alloy wheel designs, carbon-fiber trim, a Dynamic package (anti-roll adaptive suspension, red brake calipers and a sport exhaust), a Driver Assistance Plus package (adaptive cruise control, collision mitigation with automatic braking, lane-departure prevention and a corner-view camera system), a Cold Weather package (a heated steering wheel and heated rear seats) and a Comfort Seating package (multicontour front sport seats with ventilation and massage functions, along with driver and passenger memory), plus rear-side airbags, Alcantara (faux suede) headliner and a 15-speaker/1,300-watt Bang & Olufsen audio system.

The RS 7 is officially a 4-seater, with no tiny middle seat in the back. Trunk space behind the rear seats is 24.5 cu ft. Those seats split and fold down for a little extra versatility.

Safety

The RS 7 comes with standard stability control and 4-wheel anti-lock ventilated disc brakes. Eight airbags are standard (front, front-side, front-knee and full-length side-curtain), with rear-side airbags available as an option. A blind spot monitoring system, lane-departure prevention, a more-advanced collision-mitigation system with automatic braking and a corner-view camera setup are also offered.

Behind the Wheel

Design and quality are at stratospherically high levels. That's normal for high-end Audis, but the RS 7 goes further with its honeycomb seat inserts, carbon-fiber inlays and RS gauges. Standard technology features are first-rate, including the ever-improving MMI system (now with handwriting recognition) and rolling Wi-Fi capability.

If we could change anything about the cabin, we'd give it a little more rear headroom and cargo space. However, the car's profile looks so good that these drawbacks seem like reasonable trade-offs.

According to the spec sheet, the RS 7 weighs a considerable 4,497 pounds, but it's a dynamo on the road, leaping forward at the slightest throttle squeeze and slicing through corners like a car half its heft. The engine is civilized and quiet in normal driving conditions but can transform into something far more active with just a prod of the accelerator pedal. That's also when the 8-speed automatic is quick to kick down.

Other Cars to Consider

2016 BMW M6 Gran Coupe -- The 4-door M6 stacks up well against the RS 7 in terms of power and equipment, but it's not as lithe and lively on winding roads.

2016 Porsche Panamera Turbo -- The Turbo is way more expensive, but it has the athleticism of a sports car and the comfort of an executive sedan.

2016 Mercedes AMG CLS63 -- The AMG-tuned CLS has fierce acceleration and a more bearable back seat. But like the M6 Gran Coupe, it's less precise than the Audi.

Used Aston Martin Rapide -- For a sleek sport sedan with as much exclusivity as performance, a low-mileage Rapide is certainly worth a look.

Autotrader's Advice

We only have one emphatic response if you ask us whether you should consider the 2016 RS 7: Yes, yes, yes!

Find an Audi RS7 for sale

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Used 2016 Audi RS 7 Prestige
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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
2016 Audi RS 7: New Car Review - Autotrader