Speed Week: RS6 vs. SLS Black
An RS6 vs. an SLS Black? Surely some mistake. In fact, they have more in common than you’d think...
Posted: 16 Aug 2013
But you know what? The SLS had to work hard every step of the journey to keep pace with the RS6. The Audi, twin-turbocharged and impossibly muscular, blitzes gaps in traffic and does so with minimal effort. In the SLS, you have to be more alert: you can't just slam on the pedal and spear the horizon - you need to think about gears and traction and camber and surface and driving the thing. It's immersive and demanding in a way that the RS6 just isn't. In the Audi, once you've mastered mirror, signal, manoeuvre, you don't need to know much more. The car takes care of everything, supporting you in a quattro cradle, distanced from the actual goings-on by layers of insulation and beefy servos.
Let's leave it at this. In the real world, both accumulate speed with near-equal alacrity, the Audi's torque surplus offsetting the Merc's power and weight advantages, its brotherly arm around your shoulders a genuine comfort on hairy passes that's entirely missing from the blood-and-thunder Mercedes. The Audi makes speed feel safe; the SLS relishes the danger. We saw 175mph in both. In the Audi, it was a nonchalant act, done while I was discussing picture requirements with photographer Dom Romney... in the SLS, I don't remember breathing.