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FIRE-UP THE QUATTRO (some text hidden)
By Jonathan Crouch
Audi's RS 5 performance coupe targets BMW M4 and Mercedes-AMG C63 buyers. Jonathan Crouch checks out the latest version.
Ten Second Reviewword count: 87
With a 450PS 2.9 TFSI V6 biturbo engine under the bonnet, Audi's RS 5 has plenty of firepower, plus quattro 4WD to give it an advantage over similarly quick BMW M4 and Mercedes-AMG C63 rivals. The original version of this model didn't quite create the impact Ingolstadt was hoping for, hence the need for this sleeker, lighter, more agile second generation model. As before, the spec looks impressive, including an RS sport exhaust system and a sport differential. It all adds up to a fearsome performance car.
Backgroundword count: 148
The German brand's RS models are highly specialised versions of its mainstream production cars, this RS 5 based on the second generation A5 coupe and drawing on a heritage that goes all the way back to the original Audi Quattro coupe of thirty five years ago. Early RS efforts from the mid-Nineties onwards were big on grip and power but short on feel and fun factor. But Ingolstadt kept trying, finally nailing it in 2006 with an R8 supercar you could reasonably buy over a Ferrari and an RS 4 super-saloon that could take on and beat a BMW M3. That RS 4 model's 4.4-litre V8 engine was also used in the original version of this car, the RS 5 coupe, launched in 2010 and then improved in 2012. Now, we've got a second generation RS 5 with a far more credible 2.9-litre biturbo engine beneath the bonnet.
Driving Experienceword count: 205
Packing a mighty punch, this RS 5's 2.9 TFSI biturbo engine produces 450PS and delivers 600Nm of torque, with a charismatic soundtrack and pulling power that's available across a wide band from 1,900 to 5,000rpm. The 0 to 62mph sprint takes 3.9 seconds and with the optional dynamic package fitted, the car can reach a top speed of 174mph. Two turbochargers are positioned centrally between the cylinder banks of the 2.9 TFSI unit. The ingested air flows to the respective turbocharger and into the combustion chambers through a dual-branch system for spontaneous response. As you'd expect, the car features the latest, more driver-orientated version of Audi's quattro 4WD system. An updated five-link construction is used on the front axle. At the rear, a five-link suspension replaces the trapezoidal-link suspension used on the previous model, benefiting the deft driving characteristics and agility. It also improves comfort significantly. With the standard RS sport suspension, this MK2 model RS 5 Coupe sits much lower than the previous model. Audi Sport options include stiffer RS sport suspension with Dynamic Ride Control (DRC), ceramic brakes and dynamic steering with RS-specific tuning. Drivers can make their personal driving experience more individual, dynamic or comfortable using the standard Audi drive select system.
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