The new Audi A5’s exterior shape is evolutionary, but there are improvements aplenty in the way the car drives. The body is actually new, even if it doesn’t really look like it: There’s a new front end with a wider grille, the xenon headlights are mounted higher and the sides are smoothed out some — less creasy. An Audi slappy in my neighborhood said the new car looks “fatter.” I disagree. It’s good looking. So there ya go.
It’s still a fine coupe to drive — in fact, more so. The driving improvements include the steering, which feels more direct than before and now has decent weight at all but the slowest speeds. The adjustable suspension’s comfort and dynamic modes do what their names suggest, but now it feels like there is more difference between the two. I preferred comfort. I found dynamic good at first but then a little too rough as time went on. It got a little tiresome.
To me the engine is the biggest improvement. Horsepower is increased only marginally and I thought off-the-line acceleration felt about the same. It’s the mid and higher ranges where I found it much more delightful — it felt quite a bit quicker from 70 mph and up. That equals more fun. The thing was just a hoot on the freeway.
The smoothness and fluidity remain, so overall I would say subtle improvements are the name of the game here.
–Wes Raynal, editor