Home / Social media / Cars / Which all-wheel drive Audi RS is better in the snow? EV or ICE?


When it comes to drag races, a huge part is traction off the line. If you have a slippery start even a 500 kW car can be embarrassed by a 50 kW car that has good traction. Having the engine’s power spread to all four wheels does make this easier, which is why all the best rally cars have an all-wheel drive setup. But what about all-wheel drive street cars trying to out-accelerate each other on a slippery surface, like when the ground is covered in slushy snow? These are the questions we ask ourselves after a good blazing session, and luckily for us Mat Watson and the Carwow crew often have the same thoughts we do, except instead of wondering about the outcome, they actually test it so that automotive stoners the world over can have answers. In this drag race that was recently setup, the contenders all come from Audi and are found under the RS banner. The choice of cars expands on the question, because in the lineup we have a fully-electric model and so we can also find out if an EV will do better or worse than one of the OG combustion engine setups.

In this lineup we see the coolest RS trio in the form of the all-electric RS e-tron GT, the sizeable RS6 and the hottest of hatches, the RS 3. Now all of these cars are the best in their respective segments and as such they have brilliant ECUs that have a variety of drive modes that optimise launches and traction. Before watching the video we had our money on the e-tron because having an electronic setup we figured that it would be able to better regulate the power to eliminate as much wheel spin as physics allow. The mechanical versions do rely on the ECU, but for a proper pull-off they need launch control and that sees the power to the wheels being rather aggressive and so that simply cannot work properly on snow, even with a winter drive mode activated. So are you rooting for the 475 Kw RS e-tron GT, the 300 kW RS 3 or the 411 kW (or 463 kW in Performance Pack guise)? No matter the outcome, we’d still bite someone in the face to have an RS 3 parked in our driveway.

Take a look at the YouTube video from a very cold-looking venue that's got way too much snow for this heat-loving Saffer to try and comprehend. Our fav Mat Watson pits a couple of all-wheel drive Audi RS models against each other to see which handles the icy conditions better in drag race - all-electric or old school ICE: Quattro 4WD v EV 4WD: SNOW DRAG RACE | Carwow

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