Lighter and leaner performance models are always good recipes for an improved driving experience

In a day and age where “special edition” models can mean just about anything under the sun, Audi has found a nifty trick to kill two birds with one stone by offering special edition models for the Audi RS4 Avant and the Audi RS5 Coupe. Officially, both models are have been designated as Carbon Editions, a nod to the smattering of carbon bits they received that help make them lighter and a bit more fun to drive on the open road.

The lightweight blueprint is a tried-and-tested one, and many automakers have taken that approach to squeeze out every ounce of improved performance they can out of their cars without having to pump more power out of the engines. Audi’s approach with the RS4 and RS5 Carbon Editions is similar by the sheer number of carbon fiber reinforced polymer add-ons both models received. The goal of replacing the standard parts with CFRP counterparts is to make both cars lighter, which is exactly what Audi accomplished. The RS4, for example, is now 80 kilos (176 pounds) lighter than its standard counterpart whereas the RS5 slashes 60 kilos (132 pounds) from its original weight. Does the weight loss spell massive improvements in performance? Not quite. But don’t think that these are “standard” RS4s and RS5s either. If anything, these two new special editions should be lighter on their feet, and we know what that equates to in the end.

Continue after the jump to read more about the Audi RS4 Avant and RS5 Coupe Carbon Editions.

What makes the Audi RS4 and RS5 Carbon Editions special?

2018 Audi RS4 And RS5 Carbon Editions High Resolution Exterior
- image 734768

It’s not a sexy billing when you describe a special edition’s calling card as “lighter than the original.” There’s just nothing fancy about it. There’s no new aesthetic look, and certainly no extra horsepower to tout. But, not everything about cars is defined by looks and power, and that’s where the Audi RS4 and RS5 Carbon Editions come into the picture.

Both received a menu of carbon-fiber-reinforced polymer details

Both models still look largely like their standard counterparts. But they also received a menu of carbon-fiber-reinforced polymer details. Both models, for example, share new front spoilers, sill extensions, diffuser inserts, and door mirror casings. The two special edition models also benefit from receiving matte aluminum finishes for their respective radiator grilles. Each one also gets a privacy glass, window surrounds, and RS Matrix LED headlamps. Being the coupe of the two, the RS5 Carbon Edition also gets an exposed roof and a rear spoiler. The two special edition models also get the exclusive treat of having a set of one-piece milled 20-inch alloy wheels. This wheel set is not only new and exclusive to the Carbon Edition models, but they also provide weight savings of up to 8 kilos (18 pounds) compared to the standard wheels.

2018 Audi RS4 And RS5 Carbon Editions High Resolution Exterior
- image 734771
2018 Audi RS4 And RS5 Carbon Editions High Resolution Exterior
- image 734772

Move inside both special edition models, and similar upgrades are also in the offing. From interior inlays featuring the same CFRP material to fine Nappa leather sports seats in black with contrast red stitching, the RS4 and RS5 Carbon Editions have both been dressed up to legitimately look the part of special edition models.

It must be expected though that neither the RS4 nor the RS5 feature any power and performance enhancements

It must be expected though that neither the RS4 nor the RS5 feature any power and performance enhancements. Both the models are still powered by the same 2.9-liter twin-turbocharged V-6 engine that pumps out 444 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque. Identical output aside, the RS4 is capable of sprinting from 0 to 62 mph in 4.1 seconds while the RS5 is 0.2 seconds quicker at 3.9 ticks. Top speed also remains at 155 mph for both models, though if customers avail of the option, Audi can lift the limiter up to unleash a 174-mph top speed for both models.

2018 Audi RS4 And RS5 Carbon Editions High Resolution Drivetrain
- image 734773

The two Carbon Edition models are available in the UK, each with a price that’s understandably higher than their standard counterparts. The RS4 Avant Carbon Edition, for example, costs £71,625, or about $95,700 based on current exchange rates. That price point is higher by £10,000 ($13,360) over the standard RS4 Avant. Likewise, the RS5 Coupe Carbon Edition will sell for £75,400, or just over $100,000. Do the math, and that’s a premium of around £12,500 ($16,700) over the regular RS5 Coupe.

It’s unclear how many RS4 Avant and RS Coupe Carbon Editions Audi plans to sell, though we can at least be certain that none of them will find their way into the US market. That could still change depending on where the wind is blowing in Ingolstadt, but if history is an indication of the company’s allocation of these models, don’t expect any good news in that regard.

References

Audi RS4 Avant

2018 Audi RS4 Avant High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
- image 730957

Read our full review on the 2018 Audi RS4 Avant.

Audi RS5 Coupe

2018 Audi RS5 High Resolution Exterior
- image 708379

Read our full review on the Audi RS5 Coupe.

Audi Looks To Our Autonomous EV Future With Aicon Concept
- image 730650

Read more Audi news.

What do you think?
Show Comments
Car Finder: