Driven by style
The new A5 range once again delivers the perfect blend of poise and performance.
Coupe, Sportback or Cabriolet – the choice is yours, but each one delivers an engaging drive and superb luxury with that famous A5 styling.
17 August, 2020
A car with the right proportions and balance that had onlookers nodding in admiration from the word go
Get into a discussion about the aesthetic merits or shortfalls of various different models and things can get very heated very quickly. Some people become extremely attached to specific models for a variety of reasons other than said vehicle’s actual design, and telling them their favourite is ugly is going to cause problems.
Then there are cars that are universally acknowledged as being ‘good lookers’ by the vast majority, and that has been the case with the Audi A5 since it first appeared on the world stage back in 2007.
A perfect example of ‘less is more’, the Audi A5 Coupé was a simple study in elegance. A car with the right proportions and balance that had onlookers nodding in admiration from the word go. Even its designer, Walter de Silva, an acknowledged master automotive designer, was more than a little pleased with the fruits of his labor, and his list of outstanding success stories was the sort of thing young designers can only dream of.
Maintaining the extraordinary design integrity well into the second generation A5 models was not only a major design task, but essential to a model that has become a design icon. And that is exactly what the new wave of Audi designers have achieved with all three of the new Audi A5 models – Coupé, Sportback and Cabriolet. Just as important though is matching ride, performance and finish with the car’s arresting styling, but that too has been well and truly taken care of in the current generation.
That essential A5 design element is obvious through the three model range despite the significant differences in each car’s character. Sure the front Singleframe has become much lower and flatter and the Matrix LED headlights with dynamic indicators and strongly contoured bonnet give the front end a more purposeful look, but the balance and proportions remain.
All three variants also wear the Audi S line exterior package as standard and ride on 19-inch alloy rims which further accentuate that athletic feel.
Importantly, that athletic feel is backed up by two 2.0-litre power plants which both feature 12V mild-hybrid technology (MHEV) that contributes to the efficiency.
Kicking off with the 40 TFSI which is available across all three variants, it produces 140kW and 320Nm of torque and uses a seven-speed S tronic and with power going to the road through the front wheels.
On test, it was the 45 TFSI powerplant that we put through its paces, its 183kW of power and 370Nm of torque, seven-speed S tronic and quattro all-wheel drive with ultra proving the perfect power plant and driveline to compliment the A5 in all three guises.
Of course the combination perfumes slightly differently depending on the body type, with the standing 100km/h run taking just 5.8 seconds in the A5 Coupé 45 TFSI quattro S line ($79,900*), while the A5 Sportback 45 TFSI quattro S line with its added size takes a fraction more at six seconds on the dot. Slip behind the wheel of the A5 Cabriolet 45 TFSI quattro S line ($93,400*) and the additional reinforcement required when producing a soft-top adds another 0.3 of a second, not that you’d know when you push the loud pedal into the firewall.
Of course it’s a matter of personal taste, but there really is no truer expression of raw motoring than with the top down and the A5 Cabriolet is the perfect platform from which to experience the great outdoors. There’s nothing raw about the A5 Cabriolet, which is as refined as you’ll find, the top folding neatly away in 15 seconds while you’re still driving at speeds of up to 50km/h, absolutely transforming the car from coupe to pure convertible without any fuss.
Of course it’s a matter of personal taste, but there really is no truer expression of raw motoring than with the top down
Inside the stunning cabin you’re ensconced in the sort of luxury interior that Audi is famous for, complete in this case, with neck-level heating should the outside temperatures be challenging
Inside the stunning cabin you’re ensconced in the sort of luxury interior that Audi is famous for, complete in this case, with neck-level heating should the outside temperatures be challenging. Wind deflectors provide added shielding from a stiff breeze, particularly at speed, but for the most part, the design of the cockpit is such that you are in the elements but not at the mercy of them.
Touches like the strategically positioned mikes mean that even with the hood down you can use the hands free for your phone without shouting, though why you’d want to spoil time behind the wheel of the A5 Cabriolet chatting on the phone is beyond me.
The A5 Cabriolet is an elegant tourer that is perfectly happy cruising the boulevards with the top down, but really comes into its own out in the country, where it’s just you, the car and the open road. With the 45 TFSI and quattro it deals with anything thrown at it and the Audi Drive select allows you to tailor ride to suit the conditions. Whether you want to just kick back and cruise or really push on and explore the limits of the car, the A5 Cabriolet provides plenty of feedback and urge from the 45 TFSI to really immerse yourself in the deriving experience.
Should the weather turn nasty or you feel too many prying eyes on you, then that insulated soft-top slips back into position at the touch of a button (again at up to 50km/h) and you are neatly shut away in what effectively becomes the A5 Coupé.
Of course not everyone is sold on the idea open-top motoring in the first place, but with the choice of Coupé or Sportback available in either specification, that same engaging drive is available with fixed roof or five-door configuration. And regardless of the variant, that aesthetic and sense of style remains, as does the A5’s place as one of those cars that just nails it in the looks department.
To learn more about the Audi A5 model range, visit audi.com.au
(*Manufacturer List Pricing [MLP] – excludes dealer delivery and government statutory charges)
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