Let's get the vital details out of the way: The new RS 4 gets Audi's faithful 4.2 litre V8 engine under the bonnet, delivering 331kW and 430Nm of torque.
The usual suspects lurk beneath the body, including Audi's quattro all-wheel-drive system, paired with the brand's seven-speed dual-clutch S tronic transmission.
While the penultimate model in the family - the S4 - claims a 0-100km/h time of 5.3 seconds, the RS 4 punches through to the ton in just 4.7 seconds. Top speed is electronically limited to 250km/h.
On the styling front, the new RS 4 brings a new look to the familiar RS fascia, swapping the massive intakes and stepped front-lip in favour of a more restrained design.
The large elliptical exhaust tips remain at the rear, but here also there is a more subtle take on the rear diffuser's design.
The usual all-black design is featured in the cabin, with carbon fibre highlights, a flat-bottomed tiller and body-hugging sports seats.
Watch for the latest RS car to make its official debut at next month's Geneva Motor Show.
Audi Australia has confirmed that the new RS 4 Avant will hit Australian showrooms in the first quarter of 2013. Details will be confirmed closer to launch, but expect its pricing to land between the $119,900 S4 and the $175,300 RS 5 Coupe.