Sitting above all regular trims in the new, second-generation A5 Coupe’s line-up is the S5. Like the previous S5, it is focused a lot more on performance but there is quite a lot different comparatively.
One of the biggest changes is the engine, a tasty 3.0-litre V6 TFSI petrol unit combined with an eight-speed Tiptronic automatic gearbox and Audi’s Quattro all-wheel drive powertrain. The S5 has used a 3.0-litre V6 before, but almost all of its components have been changed and it’s now more menacing. The latest S5 Coupe also rides 23mm lower compared to A5 models.
With rivals including the likes of the BMW 4 Series 435i and the Mercedes C43 AMG, the S5 faces stiff competition but it’s lighter, sleeker and more potent build gives it a real chance to shine.
The turbocharged 3.0-litre V6 unit in the latest S5 Coupe produces 349bhp and 500Nm of torque, leading to a 0-62mph sprint time of just 4.7 seconds. That closely matches the likes of the Mercedes C43 4MATIC.
The S5’s performance benefits not just from a more powerful V6 but also a lighter construction. The Coupe is now around 60kg lighter than before, and the redesigned engine and new body components have a lot to do with that weight saving.
So, there’s unquestionably plenty of power then, and the Tiptronic gearbox helps to make this a smooth and fun V6. When you’re initially setting off from a standstill, there’s a neat gurgle from the engine to remind you what it’s capable of if you dare press the gas pedal hard.
When you build up speed though, or if you just drive in a more conservative manner, the S5 Coupe is generally a very quiet and civilised motor.
Ride and Handling
There is a lot to like about the S5’s drive and while the ride is unsurprisingly firmer than less performance-focused coupes, it does stay well composed even when there are many bumps on the road.
As we mentioned before, the S5 has a lower ride height than other specifications in the A5 Coupe range, thanks to its tuned, sportier suspension set-up. The steering is fairly light and very sharp and responsive, giving drivers confidence to take corners with enthusiasm. Even more enthusiasm may have existed though if there was more weight to the steering. The S5 Coupe undoubtedly handles well but some performance coupe buyers may find the steering too artificial for their liking, or would rather opt for a rear-wheel drive alternative. Still, there is a lot to like about the S5’s drive and while the ride is unsurprisingly firmer than less performance-focused coupes, it does stay well composed even when there are many bumps on the road.
Interior and Equipment
The S in Audi’s performance models like the S5 stands for ‘Sport’ while Audi’s RS badge stands for ‘RennSport’ which translates to “Racing Sport”.
The interior of the S5 Coupe is not radically different to A5 specifications, but that’s no issue as the seats are very comfortable and you’re surrounded by lots of soft-touch materials and flashy buttons which ooze quality. Rear seating is somewhat cramped but anyone planning on driving with rear passengers frequently will probably be more interested in the S5 Sportback anyway. The boot is very handy, offering 465 litres of capacity as standard, a little more than the 4 Series coupe and a lot more than C-Class coupes. Standard kit for the Audi S5 Coupe is plentiful, with the list including 19-inch alloys, Audi’s Virtual Cockpit, heated leather sports seats and a sat-nav and media device with an 8.3-inch high-resolution screen and a touch control panel with handwriting recognition.
Thanks to its lighter build, the new S5’s fuel economy and CO2 output is not too shabby for a performance coupe.
The latest Audi S5 Coupe is priced from £47,000, which is a little more than the C43 AMG Coupe from Mercedes. Thanks to its lighter build though, the new S5’s fuel economy and CO2 output is not too shabby for a performance coupe. It officially records 38.2mpg combined and emits 170g/km. There aren’t a huge number of options to choose for the latest S5 but pick several and the price of the car will skyrocket, so carefully consider if any are essential.
The Audi S5 is better than ever before and makes a strong case for those after a coupe which can deliver both classy, luxury transport and more aggressive, sporty driving. Some driving purists may find other performance coupes with heavier steering and rear-wheel drive more compelling, but those just looking for something that's fast yet not especially firm will find a lot to like here. The powertrain is a delight, the cabin is very luxurious and the car has no trouble acting in a civilised manner when the situation suits.