As you may have read in our review of the new A5 Sportback, it's quite a nice car to drive. But if you want a little more firepower, Audi has that covered with its more potent S5 model that packs in a 349bhp V6 motor.
Like the A5 Sportback, the S5 model too is striking from every angle with its low slung bodywork and purposeful design lines. Its coupe roofline and four-seater practicality add to its appeal. And I still find that crease on the shoulder line over the flared rear wheel arch very inspiring in my mirror. Except, this time I find that inspiration a little more purposeful as the car lets out a distant roar as the engine comes to life, a fairly toned down version of an irrevocable habit of Audi’s RS models.
The 3.0-litre twin scroll turbo V6 engine is very refined and quiet at low speeds. But to be honest, you don’t buy an S5 to drive slowly. Select Dynamic drive mode and the quad pipes open up to give you a distinct soundtrack that makes you want to just go on driving. There is a little lag at initial revs when you mash the throttle suddenly, but driving in a normal manner will make this virtually unnoticeable. As you go past 2,000 rpm the car begins to feel more responsive and the engine revs cleanly to its 6,500rpm redline. With 349bhp of peak power being made between 5,400 rpm and 6,400 rpm the S5 really does like to stretch its legs.
Although, even in Dynamic mode there is some delay in gearchanges from the 8-speed tiptronic autobox. Having said that, it’s nothing you can’t overcome by changing gears manually via the paddle shifters. And truth be told, when you really want to drive a car fast or enjoy driving a fast car, you have to change gears manually. Doing this in the S5 makes for a very rewarding experience with the exhaust popping and crackling every time you slow down or downshift, there is a very satisfying symphony going on.
Driveability is further enhanced by the massive 500Nm of torque being spread between 1,370 – 4,000 rpm, ensuring that the car stays on the power under normal driving conditions.
Like the A5, the S5 too has a very comfortable ride on our uneven highways. The car will hug corners with a little body roll at high speeds and ensure you have a pliant ride no matter what, even over potholes and ruts at speeds. The steering weighs up nicely as the speeds go up and has a nice direct feel to it but continues to be lacking on feedback. The S5 then like the A5 is a very usable and practical everyday car. And thanks to its V6 petrol, this feels like a proper enthusiast’s car.
Still can’t get over that shoulder line in the mirror though, I want that on my car!