Motoring and Property Editor
6:15 PM 13th October 2020
Audi’s S5 Coupe Gets A Makeover
All photos by Will Lamour. Instagram @route65_photography
The original Audi S5 used to come with a powerful V8 engine as standard. My neighbour had one for many years and it was a delight to hear the warble from the engine as he headed for home. Performance was brisk, fuel economy poor.
A V6 petrol motor was next to grace the S5’s engine compartment, until now. As part of an extensive midlife update, Audi has now chosen to power its svelte coupe with a V6 diesel engine. It is a powerful unit (347PS) and boasts an astonishing 700Nm of torque.
In order to rid the car of any turbo lag, the engine is equipped with an electric compressor which can send pressurised air into the cylinders at low revs, prior to the exhaust gas driven turbocharger coming on song. It seems to work well.
Performance is rapid to say the least, the benchmark sprint to 62mph taking 4.9 seconds according to the spec sheet. And with Audi’s familiar quattro all-wheel drive system, it would seem easy to replicate this in the real world, regardless of the weather (I had no stopwatch).
The eight-speed automatic gearbox shifts quickly and smoothly, especially in ‘sport’ mode.
Audi quotes 40.9mpg for the combined cycle and although much of my time behind the wheel was spent on the motorway, my experience would back their claims. The 58-litre fuel tank should ensure a range of around 500 miles or so. CO2 emissions are 182g/km which may not make your accountant smile.
In a further quest for economy, the S5 now boasts a mild hybrid system. It harvests energy into a small 0.5kWh battery under deceleration. It also has the ability to coast for short periods of time at speeds between 34 and 99mph. It is a little unnerving and there are occasions when you can catch the system off-guard and experience a little hesitation. What price economy?
As a motorway cruiser, the S5 excels. The car is quiet and refined, the ride complaint and the performance plentiful. Several four-hour spells behind the wheel at a time were a pleasure. Once free of the straight-line cruise, there is fun to had on the back roads. Traction is excellent, body roll almost non-existent and the accurate steering allows the car to be precisely placed on the road.
I would point out that my test car boasted ‘Dynamic Power Steering’ (£1,025) and sports suspension with damping control (£1,000).
The ride may be a tad firm for some, but as a keen driver I was quite happy with the balance. If ride comfort is paramount, perhaps delete the trick suspension.
Audi interiors continue to impress and the S5 does not disappoint. Materials are the highest quality, the seats firm but comfortable and there are all the latest technological advances to ensure excellent connectivity, safety and convenience. Highlights include the 12.3-inch Virtual Cockpit and a 10-inch infotainment screen.
There is plenty of scope to create your dream specification, ably demonstrated by my Tango Red test car which had some £20,000 worth of added extras. I would probably choose them all – panoramic glass roof (£1,400), Bang & Olufsen 3D sound system (£850), red brake calipers (£350), you get the idea…
The back seats will accommodate two adults in comfort, though getting into them is a little challenging. A Sportback version with five doors is available which trades a little style for practicality. The choice is yours. Boot space is adequate, though a full complement of luggage for four might be a tight squeeze.
There is much to commend the latest S5. It is still as fast as ever, yet now boasts economy to suit the higher mileage driver. It even sounds good too, for a diesel.
Coupe good looks and top-notch build quality complete the package.
Audi S5 Coupe TDi
347PS V6 diesel engine
0-62mph in 4.8 seconds
Top speed 155mph
Combined economy 40.9mpg
Emissions 182g/km CO2
Price £50,930 (£69,310 as tested)
Photographs by Will Lamour. Instagram @route65_photography