Audi’s RS 4 Avant Nogaro commemorates 20 years of RS (and you can’t have one)

Twenty years ago, Audi launched the RS 2 Avant wagon, the first in what is today a wide range of RS performance models designed to take on the best from BMW M and Mercedes-Benz AMG.

To commemorate the anniversary, Audi will produce a special edition of the RS 2 Avant’s spiritual successor: The Audi RS 4 Nogaro, which is set to debut at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show in March – and should do its ancestor proud.

Like the RS 2, the commemorative RS 4 will only be available in Nogaro Blue, a special color originally meant to reference Frank Biela’s two victories on the Nogaro circuit in the 1993 French Touring Car Championship.

While the two wagons may share the same paint color, a lot has changed over the past 20 years.

The RS 2 Avant had a 2.2-liter turbocharged five-cylinder engine, which produced 315 horsepower and 302 pound-feet of torque. Assembled at Porsche’s Rossle-Zau plant in Zuffenhausen, Germany, it could do 0 to 62 mph in 4.8 seconds, and had a top speed of 163 mph.

Today’s RS 4 Avant has a naturally-aspirated 4.2-liter V8, good for 459 hp and 317 lb-ft. It will do 0 to 60 mph in 4.7 seconds and reach a top speed of 174 mph.

Besides its historic blue paint, the RS 4 Nogaro gets gloss-black trim for the grille, window slots, and exhaust tips. There’s also matte-black trim on the roof rails.

The black-and-blue theme continues on the inside, with an interior decorated with black Valcona leather and blue Alcantara. Carbon inlays with a special blue thread finish off the upgrades.

Since the regular RS 4 Avant isn’t sold in the United States, the Nogaro won’t be either. That means it will probably become just as rare and desirable to U.S. enthusiasts as the original RS 2 Avant.

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