The man responsible for the exterior design of the new Audi RS6 Avant has dubbed the 441 kW super-wagon the “autobahn killer”.

Speaking to Autocar after the reveal of the fourth-generation RS6, exterior designer Francesco D’Amore said the outgoing version of the super-estate was “a hero for us”.

“We had to think about how to top it. It’s changed a lot from the standard A6. This is Darth Vader. It’s the autobahn killer,” he told the publication.

D’Amore added that some of the styling inspiration had come from motorsport.

“We looked at the old RS cars and wanted to go in a clear, clean direction. Audi cars are always simple and super-precise. The motorsport guys always say ‘we reduce, we don’t add’, so we just applied that here. From some angles, it looks like a DTM touring car.”

The designer also revealed the RS6’s special bonnet was a “big investment”.

“The bonnet makes it stand out, because the A6 doesn’t have the powerdome. The bespoke bonnet was a big investment, but we managed to convince everybody, and it was worth it,” he said.

Ingolstadt's super-wagon employs a twin-turbo 4,0-litre V8 petrol engine churning out a whopping 441 kW and 800 N.m. That’s enough for a sprint from standstill to 100 km/h in a claimed 3,6 seconds, with the speedometer reading 200 km/h in a claimed 12 seconds. Top speed, meanwhile, is electronically limited to 250 km/h.