Audi’s RS6 Avant will get an electrified powertrain when it arrives in showrooms

Audi’s next-generation RS6 Avant has been spotted testing for the first time. Although the black A6 Avant mule in these photos looks little different to the standard A6 Avant, it has all the tell-tale signs of an RS model thanks to its flared wheelarches, massive wheels and tyres, and oval exhaust outlets.

Likely to share its drivetrains with the upcoming Audi RS7, the new RS6 will likely push the fast wagon into new territory by offering an electrified variant, in addition to the standard petrol-only RS6. As a result, we’re expecting the new RS6 to be packing a twin-turbocharged 4-litre V8 engine with around 447kW in standard trim, with the electrified e-tron version likely reaching near-522kW.

> Click here for our look at the upcoming Audi RS7

As confirmed to evo by Audi’s head of design Marc Leicht, the next generation of Audi’s flagship RS models will borrow technology developed by Porsche for the Panamera Turbo S E-hybrid. This should give the new RS6 Avant a distinct edge against rivals like the Mercedes-AMG E63 S Estate.

Along with new drivetrains, the RS6 will pick up Audi’s typically understated, but purposeful design language, dominated by those flared wheelarches. The model spotted doesn’t yet reveal any details of this, though, instead running standard A6 bodywork with stuck-on overfenders, much like those seen on previously spotted RS7 prototype mules.

Otherwise the RS6 Avant will do what it does best, in offering a sophisticated, well built and spacious cabin, with all the latest in-car tech and safety equipment introduced on the standard A6, only with a fire-breathing atom bomb of an engine underneath.

With Audi’s A6 Avant still to reach showrooms, never mind the middle-ground S6, we won’t expect to see the new RS6 until next year. But if you’re the sort of person who gets excited about the ultimate fast estate, it’ll be one to wait for.