All-Electric Audi RS4 Reportedly Planned Along With RS4 Plug-In Hybrid

Audi has already begun creating all-electric performance cars with the RS e-tron GT. Tony Stark's car showed surprising performance when put up against the Porsche Taycan, its sister car. And for a repeat act, we could have an all-electric RS4.
All-Electric Audi RS4 Reportedly Planned Along With RS4 Plug-In Hybrid 5 photos
Photo: Audi
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The Ingolstadt automaker has already announced that nearly all its cars will soon have all-electric versions. That was made clear with the surprising reveal of the A6 e-tron prototype in China recently. But an RS4 e-tron still comes as a shock.

Like Mercedes is doing with the C63's replacement, we expected the next-gen RS4 to be a plug-in hybrid. Two years ago, Audi Sport managing director Oliver Hoffmann told Autocar that such a car would arrive early this decade.

But we haven't seen the all-new A4 yet, the base model sedan/wagon. Usually, it takes at least three years between the moment a normal Audi model begins road testing and the launch of its RS derivative. It used to be even worse in the past, with the first RS3 arriving right at the end of the A3's life cycle.

The RS4 plug-in isn't dead; it's still supposed to get an electric motor mated to a V6. But now, Autocar claims an RS4 e-tron is also planned. According to the UK publication, this zero-emissions model would be based on the PPE platform, the same as the A6 e-tron, Q6 e-tron, and Porsche Macan EV.

So what does this mean for Audi RS4 fans? Well, it could reset expectations in the segment. Neither BMW nor Mercedes-AMG have an all-electric rival planned, though you could argue that the i4 counts since the electric 4 Series derivative makes way more than 500 hp.

It's too early for technical details, but we want to draw a very interesting parallel with Porsche. You see, the Audi RS4 and RS5 currently use the same 2.9-liter twin-turbo V6 that's in the Panamera 4S. Meanwhile, the $105,000 Taycan 4S makes 522 hp from its dual electric motors, and we bet the new Audis will do the same. Naturally, the EV will have heavy batteries, but a sub-4s sprint time to 62 mph (100 km/h) is possible.

The news implies there will be an all-electric A4 and S4 as well. Right now, the RS4 is purely a wagon, which means it's off-limits for America. But the RS4 e-tron technology should make its way either to some kind of four-door, either a pure sedan or the RS5 Sportback.
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About the author: Mihnea Radu
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Mihnea's favorite cars have already been built, the so-called modern classics from the '80s and '90s. He also loves local car culture from all over the world, so don't be surprised to see him getting excited about weird Japanese imports, low-rider VWs out of Germany, replicas from Russia or LS swaps down in Florida.
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