Evolution and revolution - the new Audi A5
Revealed at a special event in Germany at Audi's headquarters, the new A5 coupé offers much sharper exterior looks than its predecessor but it's on the inside that's truly cutting-edge.
Although the press were surprised by Audi's decision to unveil such an important model so early -- the Paris motor show isn't until September -- the fact that the new car is a gentle visual evolution of the old A5 and one that takes cues from the new Audi A4, albeit with two rather than four doors and a more sharply tapering rear, comes as little shock at all.
The decision to buy an A5 -- a decision thus far made by over 300,000 people -- is one made with the heart, so Audi is rightfully cautious to keep the original car's proportions and visual appeal. The front grille is larger, flatter, and more dominant, and the headlights more aggressive. But the sweeping curves that run from nose to tail still take the same path.
The new model’s lines are in keeping with its predecessor’s.
Audi says that this line tightening has cut the car's drag coefficient and that the taught appearance also hides the fact that the new car's wheelbase is longer -- good news for rear-seat passengers.
However, under the skin, things are revolutionary. The A5 is 60kg lighter and therefore more efficient than its predecessor and when combined with a completely new chassis set-up, the result is comfort when traveling with a full load and fun in the corners when driving for the sake of driving.
The cabin offers the right visual balance of luxury, sport and cutting-edge tech. It can be specified with the all-digital virtual cockpit where gauges are ditched in favor of display panels and, this being an Audi, a host of active safety and active driver aids are available.
The cabin can be specified with Audi’s cutting edge virtual cockpit system.
They include a predictive efficiency assistant to help eke out fuel, an active lane keeping system, adaptive cruise control with traffic jam assist, plus sensors and systems for monitoring exits, assisting with parking, recognizing road signs, and taking evasive action in the event of a potential collision.
As for drivetrains, the A5 comes with front or Quattro all-wheel drive, a six-speed manual or seven-speed paddle-shift box and a choice of gasoline and diesel engines offering up between 187bhp and 282bhp.
But for those that want something racier, the S5 Coupé boasts a 350bhp 3-liter, twin-turbo V6, can hit 100km/h in 4.7 seconds and on to an electronically limited 250km/h.