The Audi A5 is a snazzy car that can carry lots of stuff.
German automakers have a penchant for slicing and dicing their vehicles, creating a myriad of slightly different versions from a single model. In this case, Audi’s A5 is an A4 in fancy dress. Instead of the A4’s conventional, boxy sedan styling, the A5 wears sleeker, sportier garb. With a lower roofline, it gains in sex appeal but loses in rear-seat headroom.
The A5 is further sliced and diced into three versions: a convertible, a coupe, and a hatchback. Unless wind-in-the-hair motoring is a must, the hatchback is the one to get. Called the Sportback, it has four doors, a roomier backseat than the coupe, and nearly three—yes, three—times the cargo-carrying capacity.
Although Audi offers S editions with powerful V6 engines, all base A5s have a turbo 4-cylinder and a dual-clutch automatic that deliver plenty of punch with little drama. In fact, more drama would be nice: The drivetrain is so smooth and quiet that a raucous exhaust note would enhance the A5’s sporty character.
The Sportback’s handling is hard to fault, and the cabin is beautifully executed with top-notch materials. The leather-clad front seats on all A5s wrap the torso. Controls are mostly easy to master. Other standard equipment includes Quattro AWD as well as forward automatic emergency braking and Apple CarPlay/Android Auto.