Seven-and-a-half thousand years ago, bronze was big news. This new alloy became the hardest metal in widespread use, replacing stone as the must-have material for more durable tools and, of course, weapons. Happily, bronze served a creative purpose too, with the ancient Greeks and Chinese being quick to use it to create works of art. I can imagine Audi’s new RS 4 Avant Bronze Edition being installed in a beautifully lit gallery. It is indeed an objet d’automotive art of the finest order, and at the pinnacle of the recently updated high-performance Avant range – above the RS 4 Avant, RS 4 Avant Carbon Black and RS 4 Avant Vorsprung. Just 25 RS 4 Avant Bronze Edition models will be sold in the UK.
At first glance, you can tell this is a very special car, thanks to its stealth-like Vesuvius grey paint, exquisite black detailing and stunning 20-inch bronze milled wheels. Like a beguiling statue or an iconic painting, it offers something new and different to appreciate every time you study it afresh. The numerous captivating details include the high-gloss black finish for the single-frame grille and front air-intake surrounds, complemented by a matt carbon lip spoiler. Black roof rails and window surrounds marry with matt carbon mirror housings to add to the car’s brooding presence, as does a matt carbon diffuser with a high-gloss black insert at the rear.
Inside, bronze contrasting stitching adorns the black Fine Nappa leather Super Sports seats, while additional Fine Nappa leather elements are found on the sides of the centre console and the armrests. Underlying the RS 4 Avant Bronze Edition’s track-bred Audi Sport pedigree, carbon detailing is carried through from the exterior into the matt carbon twill inlays. There’s a substantial equipment upgrade, too, thanks in part to the Comfort and Sound Pack, which is fitted as standard. This provides features such as Audi’s Advanced Key system, enabling the keyholder to open each door without the need to have the key in their hand.
The electric-powered tailgate can be opened simply by touching a foot on a sensor mounted in the rear bumper’s underside, while a 360-degree camera provides a bird’s-eye view from inside the cabin. Extended LED interior lighting, configurable via the MMI system, bathes the cabin in a variety of hues to suit your mood, and a Bang & Olufsen 755-watt, 19-speaker audio system provides superb sound quality. Finally, there’s that mesmerising-sounding twin-turbo V6 TFSI engine nestling under the bonnet. Channelling 450PS and 600Nm through a fast-changing eight-speed tiptronic transmission to an optimum-grip, all-wheel-drive quattro system, it can blast the elite Avant to 62mph in a mere 4.1 seconds, transforming into a modern Bronze Age track-day weapon any time you venture onto a racing circuit.