• Feb 17th 2010 at 7:24PM
  • 56
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We're going back and forth on this one. Do we file it under "We'll believe it when we see it" or "Pinch me I'm dreaming"? Either way, we get to sub-tag it, "Thank God for rich friends." That's right y'all, Audi is allowing Horchaus, the Canadian distributor MTM, to federalize some special four-ringers for American consumption. These are the real deal, hopped-up German Audis, straight from the tweaker factory.

As we're sure you all know, Audi keeps a whole bunch of extra spicy models back in Europe. Why? The excuses typically involve some song and dance about Americans not wanting high performance station wagons (as if), though in the case of the RS4 Avant (arguably the most desirable car we can't buy), the U.S. prohibition was because the rear-mounted battery didn't pass DOT certification...

So which cars can we now get via Horchaus? The RS4 Avant, RS4 Convertible, S3, the RS6 sedan and RS6 Avant, Q7 V12 TDI and TT RS. And there's something else to note: Since Euro-tuner MTM is involved in the equation, these cars can be pumped up a bit over stock. One example would be the twin-turbo V10 in the RS6 upped from a paltry 580 horsepower to a more appropriate 735 hp.

That said, Horchaus's pricing announcement is leading us back to the "We'll believe it when we see it" category. Using nothing but a straight Euros-to-dollars conversion rate, the RS6 would cost you about $150,000. However, Horchaus is saying it can be yours for just $107,600. Here's where it gets hinky. Supposedly Horchaus can sell you a R8 V10 5.2 FSI for $98,000, which is mucho less expensive than Audi USA sells them for (the last one we drove cost $172,250). We don't believe this last bit. Still, will us Americanos be able to get two of the hottest wagons in the world? Si senor, si.

UPDATE: After collaborating with a few colleagues who've spoken with people at both Audi Canada and Audi of America, along with Audi AG, we're a little unsure how a few of the vehicles listed could make it to the States and be legalized. The RS4 and S4 Avants shouldn't be a problem, as both have had their engines federalized and the S4 Avant has been crash-tested for the U.S. requirements. The RS6 Avant and its V10 engine have not, so importation of that beast is hardly cut and dry. We'll continue poking around and update this post as necessary.

[Source: IEDEI ]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      Can you say RS2?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Dear. God. Yes. I saw a black one in salzberg at new years, such an awesome awesome q sled.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Are these hopped up ones devoid of touchscreens and other unnecessaries? Please say yes!
      • 5 Years Ago
      The real problem is who's going to warranty these cars in North America? Not Audi, and no Audi dealer will touch one of these cars.
      I've got two V8 audis...and both of them are maintenance intensive relative to my BMW M3 or any Honda or Toyota my friends may own.
      Maybe not as bad as a Ferrari, but still bad enough.

      These Horchaus cars are just going to be a nightmare for their owners. Bring the cars over!
        • 5 Years Ago
        The RS6 is a true Wolf in sheeps clothing.... but Audi needs to adress a few items prior to the US release (I have had the pleasure to actually test drive a 2009 RS6 Sedan "thank you Walter"!). I would like to see them bring the car into the US in true RS fashion, increase horsepower (KW - current engine is seriously detuned from capability). Weight needs to be trimed, tweek the transmision - dif to increase the band width of power/ torque ratios...... This is an exceptional car, but for this type of money in the US market Audi will need to make sure they are years ahead of the competition. Similar to what Audi accomplished in early rally - and then 24 hr races ........ A (3rd generation?) RS6 Sedan will be offered to the US market 2012/ 2013 model years, I hope it's the true monster that Audi is aware they are capable of producing......... And Yes, I have left an "open deposit" with my Audi dealer for delivery of a 2012 RS6 vehicle.
        • 5 Years Ago

        The RS4 Avant is a wagon, with a big gaping opening between the location of the battery (trunk) and the interior. The theory implied by the DOT is that, in a collision, the battery (or it's contents) could fly into the passenger part of the cabin injuring passengers. This would not be an issue in your S5.

        But thank you for assuming.........
        • 5 Years Ago
        Really? The first and only place I've ever seen an Audi S3 in person was at the Audi dealer in Cary, North Carolina. Mind you, this was before the A3 was on the market here in the U.S.

        I was on their lot looking (ok, maybe drooling) at cars and saw a black S3 behind the building in the service area. The story I was told was that the guy who owned the car was in the U.S. Army and brought the car back to the States after being stationed in Germany. He had the car federalized and was driving it regularly. The car ended up at the dealer because he crested a hill so fast, the car went airborne and all four wheels broke after the car hit the ground. The car was towed to the dealer and they were waiting for parts to fix it.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I own an Audi S5, which incidentally has the battery in the trunk also so the DOT tidbit is definitely false for why we dont have the RS6 here in the states. Fact is, who is going to buy the car when Audi doesnt sell that many Lambo V10 S6s as it is... Bad business case for the U.S.

        Also, my Audi is a V8 and maintenance is non existent. I've taken the car to the dealer for the usual oil changes, but I've definitely enjoyed its trouble free ownership. Great car!
        • 5 Years Ago
        I'm glad this conversation is taking place - it was already starting in my head. I've come to the same conclusions, having a B8 (current-gen) A4 with...a battery in the rear. And yeah, I figured it was deemed OK since it was in the trunk. Here's the issue, though - each and every A4/A5 comes with folding rear seats...leaving "a big gaping opening between the location of the battery (trunk) and the interior."

        But hey, the DOT never commits errors in logic, right?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Cool! How exactly would service/maintenance and warranty (if any) work be handled?
        • 5 Years Ago
        You take it to your regular Audi dealership, just like normal.

        Except then, the mechanic says "I don't even know what this car is, or how you got it." And then they send you home.
      • 5 Years Ago
      OMFG. I'm SO going to order an RS4 Avant now, instead of a 2011 Mustang GT. I've been wanting the Avant from the day I drove an RS4 sedan. Mucho awesomeness! Now, how much???
        • 5 Years Ago
        Well, one thing is for sure, it will definitely cost a LOT more than the Mustang!! Try double... maybe even more. But hell if you can afford it, go for it... RS4 Avant is incredible.

        But then again, if you can afford it, why not buy the RS4 sedan, which is already easily available here???
        • 5 Years Ago
        more than 3 times that mustang GT you were considering.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Yes I know it would be much more. Shiet. Maybe I'll wait for someone to buy one and get it used. I was THIS close to picking up an MTM modified S4 Avant 6speed, but then it sold before I had a chance to contact the guy. Argh!!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Id love a 2.0TDi A5 Sportsback 6MT.

      its offers 2 things that are pretty much unattainable in the US, the Sportsback body, and the 2L TDi in an audi (besides the A3). sure, its not the fastest, but it sure is spacious, gets great mileage, and its anything like the a5, if should be a pretty fun drive as well. Save the serious sport for the serious sports car.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Hi, actually I don't get all the "spanish" part, I mean, I get the meaning but not the why...
      Anyways, I can tell you that in the USA the same car cost so much less than in Europe...
      The Audi R8 5.2L in the USA cost like 10k less than the basic 4.2L in Europe...
      • 5 Years Ago
      Hmm...a 420 hp r8 with a v8 or a 580 hp RS6 wagon with a v10...I'll take a sleeper so when I find an R8 to pull up next to I can smoke it!
        • 5 Years Ago
        Umm Are you stupid or something? R8 Weighs a fraction of what the RS6 Wagon does... there's this whole power to weight ratio thing...
        • 5 Years Ago
        last i checked, the r8 v8 was only a couple tenths quicker then the rs6, so when i theoretically pull up next to this r8, it likely wont think anything of some guy in a wagon, then realize i have more power, and yes much more weight, but i could at least shock him while carring a couple friends, maybe some boxes in the back, or some groceries (yes i know the r8 can carry some, even seen an r8 with golf clubs in the back).
      • 5 Years Ago
      One way flight to Canada then drive the RS6 back to the US... ROAD TRIP!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Wait...I have an S5. The battery is in the trunk? Holy crap. Good thing I found that out. I might poke my head around under the hood sometime and, not seeing a battery, assume that it's nuclear powered or something...(now where is that reactor)?
      • 5 Years Ago
      The US needs a whole lot less regulation.

      An RS4 is an A4 with a bunch of really good stuff. The A4 meets regs.

      Same for RS6, and others...

      The A5/S5 Sportback is another.

      It is not as if these are chinese knockoffs, that get 1 and a half stars on a crash test, like Brilliance.

      There should be a legal way to import and federalize cars on a case by case basis, if the cars meet regs in similar countries, such as European countries, and Japan, or if variants of the same car are already federalized.

      This bureaucratic bullcrap is getting pretty old, and petty.
        • 5 Years Ago

        The US is the one that needs less regulation, because the US is the country that is denied all these good cars.

        In europe, there is such a thing as grey importation, and individual type registration if the general model doesn't carry a type registration, and other exceptions to the main rules, to allow FLEXIBILITY.

        In the US, it is such a nightmare to try and use a car that was originally sold in another country, that it is extremely rare to even try it.

        And it is so expensive to federalize every little detail that cars like A5 Sportback, despite being 85% the same as every other A4 and A5, is not sold here, because it is too prohibitively expensive to federalize, compared to projected sales. WHY should it cost millions of dollars to re-federalize a car that is so closely related to cars that are already federalized?

        The US auto regs need to get seriously un-complicated, and more common sense, real fast, which should also become less expensive.

        It is kind of like corporate taxes. Corporations don't pay taxes, they expense taxes. Consumers pay corporate taxes, built into the price of products and services. We pay for high costs of bureaucratic game-playing in US Auto regulations, in the prices of the cars we buy.

        It is one of the reasons that the gap between the average automobile price has closed, compared to the average household income level... as most households go to two full time incomes to maintain the average, and cars get ever more expensive, consumer debt gets higher, and car financing gets longer, and long term costs for operating cars get higher. Yet real wages lag.
        • 5 Years Ago
        your bang on there BoxerFan.

        With it becoming a global Market its about time we started moving towards a set of global regulations. For the big players, like Ford, GM and VW this would save a huge amount of money. For the little players such as Lotus it would make some market viable that would otherwise be off limits. For us, we would have access to some great cars. And not just cars like this Audi, the RS Focus, the fast Seat's and Renault's, Honda's Type R's etc
        • 5 Years Ago
        It's a good ol' boys club and US consumer isn't welcome. Government knows better! Unions know better!

        Problem is GM, Ford and Chrysler are probably hating these two standards which are ROW vs US vs Canada. Because they have to make their products available worldwide, and since US car market is no longer than largest player in the world, it is becoming increasingly expensive for our domestics to compete worldwide due to stupid legislation that we have here in US 'n' A.
        • 5 Years Ago

        why is it the U.S. that needs "less regulation?" It's not like there's any real difference in the amount of regulation done by us and by EU; that they don't align perfectly is not evidence that the U.S. has "too much regulation." EU even has standards that we don't, e.g. pedestrian impact regs.
        • 5 Years Ago
        i think the US and EU already want to make common regulations for cars.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I'm not getting my hope's up.. just going to wait for a used MTM supercharger to pop up.. for the S4 avant. It just plan silly though, now we can't even get the V6 S4 avant...
        • 5 Years Ago
        or you could get a new PES supercharger that starts at $6500 for stage 1.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Battery in the hatchback? Not a problem, my Aurora has the battery under the back seat, it's already in the passenger compartment. And the seat bottom just lifts up with a cheap to appease the bean-counters strap, I can't imagine it staying in place during a crash.
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