words: Bill, photos: Denis Podmarkov for Imola Media, Anthony Garbis
This year’s LA Auto Show (and the run-up to) was a busy one for Audi: the reveals of the e-tron Sportback, RS 6 Avant, RS 7 Sportback, S8, and the RS Q8. We did however notice that Audi sneaked in one: the RS 5 Panther edition in Audi exclusive Panther Black paint.
A total of 100 RS 5 Panther editions (75 Sportback, 25 Coupé) will be offered and are set to show up at dealers in December. Anthony Garbis, Audi Product Manager and friend of the Club, loves to come up with special editions…he’s the genius behind the Audi A4 Ultra sport (the last manual transmission Audi) and others. The RS 5 Panther edition includes 20in RS 4 Avant wheels, Alu-Optic, Audi exclusive Panther Black (which looks black but turns a deep purple the closer you get to it), and Alcantara interior with red stitching.
Also curious was the presence of the Q5 TFSI e quattro or hybrid model. There was no messaging that it would be at the Audi stand but we were glad to see it there. The Q5 PHEV (as it was labeled on the stand) is the first of the new plug-in models and is powered by a combined 367hp combustion engine and an electric motor with intelligent controller, enabling it to cover most everyday driving distances electrically. All-electric range is 26 miles with speeds up to 84mph.
Aside from that, enjoy the gallery of photos shot by our LA man on the ground, Denis Podmarkov.