As a symbolic reminder that spring is just around the corner Audi is reintroducing an open-air option to its comprehensively reworked A5 range this week. Bearing all the new, state-of-the-art design, engineering and technology hallmarks already associated with the elegant A5 Coupé and versatile Sportback, the all-new A5 Cabriolet has just become available to order priced from £35,235 OTR, meaning that there should be plenty of wind-in-hair opportunities remaining in 2017 for the first customers taking delivery in April.
At the same time, the S5 Cabriolet also joins the range with a new 3.0 V6 TFSI producing 354PS and 500Nm of torque from 1,370rpm. Priced at £51,835 OTR, its special status is subtly defined by customary S-specific body detailing and dynamic enhancements.
In keeping with tradition, a fabric hood that is fully automatic and acoustically optimised is fitted as standard. The four hood colours red, black, dark grey and brown are available to complement the exterior paint finishes, one of which – the crystal effect Tofana white – is reserved exclusively for the Cabriolet.
A new one-touch opening function makes operation much easier, as a flick of the switch is all it takes to open the soft top fully automatically in 15 seconds or close it in 18 seconds. Both can be done at speeds of up to 31mph. It is stowed in a fully automatic hood tray that moves down when opening the soft top and up again when the soft top is closed, thus providing the easiest possible access to the 380-litre total luggage capacity at all times. The rear seats have a 40/20/40 split and can be easily folded forward using levers in the luggage compartment.
A number of other highlights specific to the soft-top A5 variant are available, including a wind deflector and the option of a head-level heating system for front seat occupants, ensuring opportunities to lower the roof are fully exploited, even in the coldest of climes. Heated front seats are also fitted as standard across the board.
Working in harmony with the standard Audi smartphone interface, seat belt microphones are fitted to all Cabriolet models to amplify call quality with the roof down. Entry-level SE specification also gains Twin leather upholstery, Audi drive select, Audi parking system plus front and rear sensors, pre sense city and 17-inch alloy wheels sporting a fifteen-spoke design.
In addition to the above, Sport models also come equipped with MMI Navigation and a three-month trial of the Audi connect portfolio. Front Sport seats that are electrically adjustable also include four-way electric lumbar support. Rounding off the enhancements is an LED interior lighting package.
In top-flight S line guise, wheel size increases from 17 to 18 inches with a five-spoke Twin star design, and LED headlights with LED rear lights and dynamic rear indicators are complemented by a host of signature S line styling details. Inside, S line sport seats upholstered in leather/Alcantara with S embossing lend a suitably sporting air.
Lowered and stiffened Sport suspension is the automatic factory fit for S line versions, but Audi offers the option to deselect to a ‘comfort dynamic’ suspension set-up biased more heavily in favour of ride suppleness at no extra charge if preferred.
Alternatively, all models can be specified with adaptive comfort suspension with damping control. The electronically regulated system works in tandem with Audi drive select to provide a choice between a firmer setup or maximum ride comfort based on the driver’s preference.
Varied engine line-up
Two TFSI and TDI engines with differing outputs are offered for the Audi A5 Cabriolet. For those with a preference for petrol power two versions of the popular 2.0 TFSI are available. The first offers 190PS and is available in conjunction with front-wheel-drive and manual or S tronic transmission. The standard 62mph sprint time takes 7.9 seconds regardless of which transmission is fitted. Top speed is 147mph (148mph for manual models) and combined MPG peaks at 50.4 (manual: 47.9mpg). CO2 output is 127g/km for S tronic and 136g/km for manual models.
The second version offers 252PS and is paired with S tronic transmission and quattro drive exclusively. It enables the A5 Cabriolet to touch 62mph from rest in 6.3 seconds and to reach a 149mph top speed. In terms of efficiency, up to 44.8mpg combined is possible, with a CO2 output of 144g/km on 17-inch wheels.
In the TDI camp, a four-cylinder 2.0-litre with 190PS is the current lead-in unit, and is available with front-wheel drive or quattro drive, both combined with S tronic transmission. It is packed with clever technical solutions that facilitate low emissions of 118g/km and a high of 62.8mpg in the front-drive version and 60.1mpg and 122g/km in the quattro.
Above the 2.0 TDI is a 3.0-litre, 218PS V6 TDI mated exclusively to quattro drive and S tronic transmission. Weighing only around 190 kilograms, this advanced engine gives the A5 Cabriolet an impressive 0-62mph sprint time of 6.8 seconds, ahead of a 149mph top speed. It also enables it to return up to 57.6mpg combined, in conjunction with a low of 128g/km.
‘S’ is for spearhead
The Audi S5 Cabriolet moves into a whole new league with its newly developed 3.0 TFSI. From its 2,995 cc of displacement, the boosted six-cylinder engine produces 354PS of power – 21PS more than the engine in the previous model. Despite this, its combined fuel consumption is up to 36.2mpg, in line with 177g/km of CO2. The top model accelerates from 0 to 62mph in 5.1 seconds, and on up to an electronically governed top speed of 155mph. It features quattro permanent all-wheel drive and the eight-speed tiptronic transmission as standard.
Dynamic upgrades for the Audi S5 Cabriolet
19-inch wheels and S sport suspension are factory fitted, and for even greater composure suspension with damping control that is specifically tuned for the S model can be specified from the options list. This can also be supplemented by a sport differential capable of finely metering torque between the rear wheels to complement the quattro all-wheel drive and maximise cornering adjustability. The operating characteristics of both systems can be fine-tuned via the standard Audi drive select adaptive dynamics system.
Abundant support: the driver assistance systems
With up to 30 driver assistance systems, the new Audi A5 Cabriolet offers a broad range of support. An intelligent combination of different technologies enhances safety, comfort and efficiency. Meanwhile Audi is also taking the next step toward piloted driving.
Playing a central role here is the adaptive cruise control (ACC) Stop&Go system including traffic jam assist. It relieves drivers in slow-moving traffic up to speeds of 40mph by assuming the tasks of braking and accelerating the car, and it also temporarily takes charge of steering on better roads. The predictive efficiency assistant evaluates GPS information from the car’s immediate surroundings and helps to save fuel by giving specific driving advice – a unique feature in this segment.
Collision avoidance assist intervenes if the car needs to drive around an obstacle to avoid an accident. Based on data from the front camera, ACC and radar sensors, it computes a recommended driving line within a fraction of a second. The line-up is rounded out by other assistance systems such as turn assist, park assist, rear cross traffic assist, exit warning, camera-based recognition of traffic signs, Audi active lane assist and Audi side assist.
Other cornerstones of the Audi technology range are also available for the Audi A5 and S5 Cabriolet, from the virtual cockpit, head-up display and Audi Phone Box with wireless charging to the Bang & Olufsen 3D Sound System and Matrix LED headlights.