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One For The Road: A high-performance car on an unlimited budget


Thomas Peters needs to replace his VW V6 4-motion estate, which is no longer made. He needs a high-performance, ultra-reliable, four-wheel-drive car and money is no object.

A Car for the Head

No budget? In that case the Ferrari FF at a starting price of £227,077 would be perfect. Surely the ultimate grand tourer? However, the maintenance cost is equally stratospheric and the service intervals relatively short and it's not exactly an estate. So in that case my initial thoughts would be a Subaru Legacy Outback 2.5.

Subaru is a marque that constantly does well in reliability ratings even if fixing it is quite expensive when it does break down. While it is quite dull to look at, that shouldn't matter when it is such a spacious and practical estate. The 2.5-litre engine is quite flexible and sounds great but may not be the high-performance model Thomas craves. I believe, though, that it is the best compromise. The SE model with Linetronic gearbox costs £29,075.

A Car for the Heart

If the Subaru is the safe choice, then the completely bonkers one would be the Audi RS 6 Avant which fits Thomas's high-performance requirements, as it goes from 0 to 62mph in just 3.9 seconds. It's a brand-new model, which will be available in the next few months with a downsized twin–turbo 4.0-litre V8 TFSI engine that generates a mighty 560bhp.

This is the first RS model to feature adaptive air suspension, which lowers the body and reacts to road conditions, and driving style. It's hard to miss with matte aluminum body trim on the radiator grille, bumpers and large roof spoiler. At the rear of the new RS 6 are the diffuser and two large exhaust tailpipes, which is all many road users would see. It's not cheap, mind: prices will start at £77,000.

Looking to buy?

Email James Ruppert at onefortheroad@independent.co.uk, giving your age, address and phone number, details of the type of vehicle in which you are interested, and your budget.