Performance car of the year 2022 Super Saloon Shootout: RS6, M5 & E 63 S

Getting down to the business end of Performance car of the year, no matter what wins this overall competition, most everyone will find this little shootout just as important. And hoo boy, is this an interesting one!


Truth be told, the pride of all of Germany rests on this super saloon test result. And it’s the only real direct comparison of any of our three final trios. So, let’s not waste any more time. Alphabetically, the Audi RS6 Avant, BMW M5 Competition and Mercedes-AMG E 63 S together represent the absolute epitome of tin-top motoring. There’s nothing new here, either. These three have been at it since ultra-saloons were a thing – the M5’s ancestors won three Pcotys, RS6 one.

The RS6 Avant even pretends to hug the planet with its mild hybrid 441 kW 800 Nm 4-litre TFSI biturbo V8 turning all four wheels via a shift-optimised eight-speed auto. There’s nothing new under the BMW’s bonnet. Just the good old 460 kW 750Nm 4.4-litre M Power V8. And the Merc’s handmade AMG V8 makes a tad less power at 450 kW, but twists out the best torque of this lot at 850 Nm.

There’s not much to choose in transmission, drive and their chassis. Bar perhaps that the Audi lacks the other two’s ability to expunge their all-wheel systems’ front drive to allow you to play the hoon. There really is nothing in their respective performance either. You can pretty much toss a blanket over them down the drag strip. There’s two tenths between the three to 100 km/h, where the Merc is quicker.


The M5 strikes back at the top end of the performance envelope and the Audi is right there all the way. It’s similar in overtaking. The Merc and the Beemer may as well be twins there. And the Audi really is right on it too. And all three will give any Porsche, Ferrari or Lambo more than enough to worry about.

These super saloons thrust you back in their seats, shove your brain back into the cranium and your eyes aft in their sockets. Thanks to nuclear levels of power and incredible all-wheel drive traction. They all ride splendidly, handle brilliantly, turn in precisely and follow through beautifully. And each has the presence of greatness.

For the most of it, there’s also so little to choose between what all three do between their A and D pillars. Splendid cabins, with the very best in space age tech to cosset and spoil you. Just in three individual takes of the same thing. But there are two areas where there are differences.


Firstly, the Audi brings a most exciting wagon twist to the party. Did we mention it has a towing capacity better than most bakkies? And space for the dobermenn, the crates – no make that barrels of Weiss beer. Or all the stuff you need to pack in to take to the racetrack; horse paddock, riviera or whatever. To service what’s in, or on your trailer.

And then we get to price. You’ll save two hundred grand on the Audi over the BMW. An extra hundred versus the Merc. For a more practical, perhaps sexier and more exciting car. Now in our minds, that saving and extra practicality over a saloon not worth a tenth or two in vital performance statistics. And for that reason, we give this one to the Audi.

Surprised? Yeah. So are we!

              Audi        BMW           Mercedes-AMG
              RS6 Avant  M5 Competition E 63 S 4Matic+
Output:       410kW 800Nm 460 kW 750 Nm 450 kW 850 Nm
Engine:       4-litre bt  4.4-litre bt  4-litre bt
petrol        V8 petrol   V8 petrol     V8 petrol
Drive:        8-speed     8-speed       9-speed
              auto AWD    auto AWD      auto AWD 
0-100 km/h:   3.37 sec    3.24 sec      3.18 sec
0-160 km/h:   7.69 sec    6.77 sec      7.12 sec
400m time:    11.4 sec    10.9 sec      11.1 sec
400m speed:   195 km/h    205 km/h      202 km/h
80-120 km/h:  2.24 sec:   1.97 sec      1.98 sec
120-160 km/h: 3.09 sec    2.78 sec      2.87 sec
VMax:         280 km/h    305 km/h      300 km/h
Fuel l/100km: 12.2        10.8          11.6
CO2:          285 g/km    243 g/km      265 g/km
Warranty      1y Unl.     2y unl.       2y unl.
Service:      5y 100K km  5y 100K km    5y 100K km
LIST PRICE:   R2.11M      R2.32M        R2.43M
RATED:        10          9             9
Performance car of the year 2022 Program
Pcoty ‘22 Introduction
Audi RS 6 Avant
BMW M5 Competition
Ford Ranger Raptor SE
Jaguar I-Pace
Mercedes-AMG A45 S
Mercedes-AMG E 63 S
Mini Cooper SE
Toyota GR Yaris
Volkswagen Golf 8 GTI      
Pcoty ‘22 Electric Shootout
Pcoty ‘22 Super Hatch Shootout
Pcoty ‘22 Super Saloon Shootout
Pcoty '22 Top Three
Pcoty ‘22 Winner
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