‘Game over’ is not an expression generally used in the automotive realm. And though we’re hesitant to use it in this case, we feel justified when referring to the likes of the new 2012 Audi A7. We’ve driven everything from electric roadsters to $100,000+ sports cars (which oddly enough sometimes fit both categories), but Audi’s new five-door hatchback sedan coupe has emerged as an uncontested winner without ever really playing the game. And it’s done so by operating in a little bit of an automotive gray area.
The 2012 Audi A7 is a fascinating amalgamation of 2 distinctly different styles. The first is a nod to the 2004 Mercedes CLS, a four door fastback saloon style “coupe” with its sweeping roofline tracking all the way to the rear of the car. Though these cars initially sold like hotcakes (and raised quite a few eyebrows) the auto manufacturers that tried to follow suit were less successful and the segment eventually cooled off. The second style harkens back to the upscale hatchback which really hasn’t seen any successful action since the days of the Sterling 827 and Rover SD1. So it’s interesting that Audi chose to create a car that mixes in strong elements from both classes, but with its own skillfully interpreted design esthetic and brand language.
The hot hatch tuning battle is really starting to heat up. With the recent release of the Audi RS3 and the BMW 1 Series M, the Ford Focus RS may be a little outclassed. MR Car Design is looking to level the playing field with their new tuning program for the Blue Oval’s Rallye Sport competitor.
Back in good ol’ Erftstadt, German, MR Car Design works their magic to boost the stock 305hp up to 360 hp. This comes by way of an in-house exhaust upgrade with downpipe, 200-cell catalytic converter, ECU reflash and sport air filter from K&N. A Variant 1 KW coilover suspension keeps the Focus RS going in the right direction.