2014 Audi RS 7 at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show

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  • Competes with: 2014 BMW M6 Gran Coupe, 2014 Mercedes-Benz CLS63 AMG, 2014 Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG
  • Looks like: Four-door coupes with 550-plus horsepower are all the rage for 2014
  • Drivetrain: 560-hp, twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V-8 with eight-speed automatic transmission and all-wheel drive
  • Hits dealerships: Fall

Four-door coupes like the Audi A7, Mercedes-Benz CLS and BMW Gran Coupe offer elegant, sleek styling a step above traditional sedans. Audi’s RS 7 is a beefed-up version of the A7/S7 with an additional 140 horsepower over the S7. With the RS 7, there’s now a trio of super-sedan coupes — Mercedes CLS63 AMG and BMW M6 Gran Coupe — with more than 550 horsepower. Audi’s reign as the all-wheel-drive leader could also be challenged in the super-sedan segment by the all-new Mercedes-Benz CLS 63AMG with standard all-wheel drive to combat wheel spin. Let the games begin.

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With 560-hp, Audi says the RS 7 accelerates from zero to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds. The standard Quattro all-wheel drive splits power 60% to the rear wheels and 40% to the front. Continue past 60 mph and you’ll find the RS 7’s electronically limited top speed of 155 mph — only on some models, however. A Dynamic Package raises the top speed to 174 mph and a Dynamic Package Plus bumps it to 190 mph. Stopping the RS7 are 15.4-inch brakes up front with six-piston calipers; higher-performance carbon fiber ceramic brakes are available and bump rotor size up to 16.5 inches.

When it’s time to turn corners, the RS 7 has two suspension choices. The standard air suspension lowers ride height by 20 millimeters and features adaptive dampening to adjust the suspension’s response to the road. As an alternative, a Sports Suspension Plus Package uses steel springs in place of the air suspension and three-stage adjustable dampeners. 

The RS 7 balances performance and fuel economy with a cylinder deactivation system that shuts down four of the RS 7’s eight cylinders during medium-to-light load conditions to save fuel. When all eight cylinders are firing during acceleration, the RS 7’s exhaust features switchable flaps in the exhaust for a fuller sound, Audi says. An optional sports exhaust system is also offered. 

Other options include a Carbon Styling Package with a more boldly shaped front splitter and diffuser, side mirrors with exposed carbon housings, all-LED headlights, a head-up display and Comfort Package. Standard equipment includes RS sport seats with pronounced side bolsters covered in Alcantara simulated suede and leather (all leather is optional), xenon headlights, 20-inch wheels and navigation.

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Managing Editor Joe Bruzek’s 22 years of automotive experience doesn’t count the lifelong obsession that started as a kid admiring his dad’s 1964 Chevrolet Corvette — and continues to this day. Joe’s been an automotive journalist with for 16 years, writing shopper-focused car reviews, news and research content. As Managing Editor, one of his favorite areas of focus is helping shoppers understand electric cars and how to determine whether going electric is right for them. In his free time, Joe maintains a love-hate relationship with his 1998 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am that he wishes would fix itself. LinkedIn: Email Joe Bruzek

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