Road Test: Audi A5 Cabriolet
A familiar concept with some new tricks up its sleeve, says Alex Grant.
SECTOR Convertible PRICE £31,535-£42,220 FUEL 44.8-62.8mpg CO2 118-144g/km
The Cabriolet is the lowest-volume version of the three-variant A5 line-up, but with around one in six of the old car’s 800,000 global customers opting for the drop top, it’s an important component and one with plenty of user-chooser appeal.
Audi has offered similar products since the late Eighties, and the hallmarks haven’t changed much; clean and ageless design, four seats, and a platform and engines shared with the A4 or its predecessor, the 80. As the new A4 is a far better driver’s car than the old one, that’s good news.
Those improvements suit the A5 perfectly. It offers a more positive drive when life when there’s an opportunity to take the long route home, but it’s just as well suited to comfortable business miles, its acoustic roof drowning out an impressive amount of wind noise at high speed. This can open and close at up to 31mph, and roof-up boot capacity is the same as in the Coupe.
Trim levels are shared with the A4 – SE, Sport and S line – though A5 sales are weighted towards the top end of the range. All include leather upholstery, front and rear parking sensors and Android and Apple smartphone connectivity, though the entirely necessary wind deflector is a £300 option. As on the A4, the S line’s sports suspension can be downgraded at no cost.
Engine options are slimmed down, comprising 188bhp 2.0-litre and 215bhp 3.0-litre TDIs, and 2.0-litre petrols
at 188bhp or 249bhp. Quattro is standard on all except the 188bhp units, and all except the entry-level petrol include an automatic transmission. Audi’s 2.0-litre TDI is plenty quiet enough for roof-down driving, though long-distance drivers may find the tiny 40-litre fuel tank a bind. Thankfully, the 54-litre tank is a no-cost option, and worthwhile on an otherwise well-rounded cruiser.