GM's Legal Staff. Editor-in-Chief's Note: An apology is due to the dedicated men and women who work in the GM Legal Staff. It's not their fault that they've been saddled with that Unctuous Prick of a boss - Michael Millikin - and they shouldn't be lumped in with him just because they happen to be working there. So the implication that they should all be removed is grossly unfair. I know GM Legal is rife with real live car enthusiasts and that distinction should be made in the midst of this swirling maelstrom of shit that surrounds the fact that Millikin still has his job. - PMD
Editor-in-Chief's's Note: Our (very brief) "Quick Take" has us in a 2014 Audi RS 7 quattro Tiptronic this week. It would be easy to say that this Audi Hot Rod is spectacular, because, well, it is. Not a half-mile down the road in this genuine supercar and it's hard not to be amazed, because it is simply a magnificent machine. Bristling with all of the usual Audi attention to detail and executional goodness, the RS 7 combines that with a bad-ass attitude that can be dialed-up in instantaneous fashion with your right foot, yet this machine will trundle along acting like a typical performance-oriented luxury car and do so quite nicely, with a relatively compliant ride that's totally unexpected, it's that good. But who's kidding whom? You buy this machine because you're into serious performance, and the RS 7 delivers that with fantastic bursts of acceleration, razor-crisp steering, supremely confident brakes and a level of cat-quick agility that belies its 4,500 lb. curb weight. Whereas last week's Audi S8 felt a little sluggish around town at a similar weight, the RS 7 felt easily 1,000 lbs. lighter. Yes, the 21" wheels would be like playing Russian Roulete around here due to the horrendously damaged roads we have to deal with everyday, but with the RS 7 you start to think it may be worth it to have to replace a rim or two over the duration of ownership, the driving experience is so enthralling. I would be hard-pressed to choose the Porsche Panamera Turbo (the RS 7's logical competitor on paper) over this machine, because the Porsche doesn't look nearly as nice and it costs a good $30,000 more than the RS 7 comparably equipped. I would say that it's no contest, in fact. If you're looking for a serious high-performance machine that has a modicum of roominess and usability, the Audi RS 7 is the most seductive combination of high-performance, luxury and everyday versatility that money can buy. - PMD
2014 Audi RS 7 quattro Tiptronic: $117,885 ($104,900 Base Price; Suzuka Gray Metallic, $500; Black Interior; 4.0-liter TFSI V8 with 560HP and 516 lbs-ft of torque; quattro all-wheel drive system with sports rear differential; Eight-speed Tiptronic transmission; 9" x 20" 7-Twin-spoke RS-design wheels with 275/35 summer performance tires; Electronic Stability Control with sport mode; Anti-lock brakes with ventilated disc brakes front and rear; Electromechanical vehicle speed-sensitive power steering; Power glass sunroof; Power tailgate; Full LED headlights (DRLs, low/high beams, turn signals); Auto dimming and power-folding heated exterior mirrors; Twelve-way power adjustable front sport seats with heating and driver memory; Four-zone automatic climate control; Audi advanced key (keyless entry and ignition); Audi MMI navigation plus with MMI touch; Bose Surround Sound System; Audi connect with six-month subscription; SIRIUS Satellite radio with three-month complimentary subscription; Audi music interface with iPod cable; Power adjustable tilting & telescoping steering column; 3-spoke, sport perforated leather-wrapped multifunction steering wheel with contrast stitching and shift paddles with RS 7 emblem; RS-specific shift knob and interior door handles; RS-specific Carbon fiber inlays, Optional layered Aluminum/Black wood decorative inlays; Black-faced instrument gauges with white scales and red needles; Aluminum pedals and footrest; Garage door opener (Homelink); Preparation for mobile phone (Bluetooth); Audi parking system plus with rearview camera; RS 7 Dynamic Package, $5,500; Driver Assistance Package - Audi active lane assist, Audi pre sense plus, Audi adaptive cruise control with stop and go, Audi active lane assist, Corner view camera - $2,800; 21" 5-spoke Blade-design wheels with gloss black finish and summer performance tires, $1,000; Matte Aluminum Optic Package - Lower air intakes in matte alu-optic, "quattro" script in lower front grille, Diffuser trim in alu-optic - $950; Power soft-closing doors, $500; Cold Weather Package - heated steering wheel & rear seats, supercedes RS 7 wheel and shift knob - $500; Media cable package, $295; Audi first aid kit, $45; Front filler panel, included; Destination charge, $895)
Adherence to Brand Image: The Audi RS 7 is everything Audi represents to a growing legion of enthusiasts. It looks beautiful, it's wonderfully turned-out, and it's ultra-quick. This RS 7 represents Audi hitting on all cylinders, even more so than with its vaunted mid-engined R8 sports car. If there is anything approaching the reality of an everyday supercar, the Audi RS 7 nails it. Adherence to Brand Image? Dead. Solid. Perfect.