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By Jonathan Crouch
If you fancy a version of the second generation Audi A5 coupe with vibrant performance but need to keep costs in check, the 40 TFSI 190PS petrol model could be the one to choose. Jonathan Crouch checks out the improved version.
Ten Second Reviewword count: 101
If you accept that the main purpose of Audi's A5 coupe is to provide a welcome alternative to coupe versions of BMW's 4 Series and Mercedes' C-Class, then the importance of the affordable 190PS 40 TFSI variant we're looking at here can hardly be stressed highly enough. Once upon a time, to get 150mph performance from an A5, you had to stretch to one of the pricey 'S5' variants. Here, around £35,000 gets you behind the wheel of a surprisingly quick version of this car. This revised model features a smarter look, an updated cabin and some efficient mild hybrid tech.
Backgroundword count: 102
Audi's A5 Coupe has been a strong seller or the Ingolstadt brand for some time now but often the entry-level petrol versions tended to be the ones that buyers tried to avoid. With this revised model, the baseline green pump variant could actually be the one to go for, thanks to the introduction of the brand's MHEV mild hybrid technology in the 190PS 2.0 TFSI engine used in the 40 TFSI variant we're looking at here, which also offers quite a turn of speed. It's just one of the changes made to this much improved second generation model. Let's check it out.
Driving Experienceword count: 239
Essentially, what the engineers have done with this 40 TFSI model's 2.0-litre TFSI powerplant is to maximise compression efficiency, add in a bit of power and via the non-negotiable S tronic auto transmission - take full advantage of the low first gear ratio that the installation of this 7-speed DSG 'box allowed them to fit. The result is sparkling performance. An A5 Coupe 40 TFSI is capable of 62mph in just 7.3s, en route to 149mph. This engine now features 12-volt MHEV technology, consisting of a belt alternator starter connected to the crankshaft. The system recuperates energy and stores this in a small lithium-ion battery, enabling the start-stop system to operate in a larger window and reducing the amount of effort required by the engine while moving at speed, reducing CO2 and improving fuel economy. As for driving dynamics, well you'd think in this regard that this A5 Coupe would be starting out with a disadvantage over 4 Series Coupe rival. Its front-driven layout will, after all, never reward an enthusiast in quite the same way as a rear-driven BMW. But in originally developing this car, Audi was convinced that it could be made to feel almost as good. To prove the point, three different suspension systems are being offered this time round, two of them passive and one featuring adaptive damping. Whatever your choice, you'll find the set-up firmer than it would be in an equivalent A4 saloon.
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