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Audi A5 Sportback

The independent definitive Audi A5 Sportback video review
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    BRANDS HATCH? (some text hidden)

    By Jonathan Crouch

    Audi's second generation A5 Sportback may be hard to pigeonhole but it's a tempting proposition. Jonathan Crouch reports

    Ten Second Reviewword count: 62

    When it comes to prestigiously-badged compact executive German cars, traditional thinking suggests that estates are fine but five-door hatchbacks aren't. Audi however, hasn't made it to the top of the pile by traditional thinking and their second generation A5 Sportback continues to turn such thinking on its head, with coupe styling married to a couple of rear passenger doors and hatchback practicality.

    Backgroundword count: 146

    Back in 2010, the original version of Audi's A5 Sportback was the first hatchback in the compact executive segment, the area of the market dominated by models like Audi's A4, BMW's 3 Series and the Mercedes C-Class. Previously, we'd seen estates in this sector, but never a hatch. The A5 Sportback changed that - and was so successful that BMW was forced to copy its concept with subsequent 3 Series Gran Turismo and 4 Series Gran Coupe models. Audi though, reckons that the original is still the best and aims to underline that perspective with the second generation version we look at here. Like the MK2 model A5 Coupe which shares this car's underpinnings and engineware, this Sportback is sharper-looking, more efficient and lighter than its predecessor. It's also much better equipped and more technologically advanced. Time to check it out in a little more detail.

    Driving Experienceword count: 275

    This second generation A5 Sportback sits on an all-new platform with a wide track and a comparatively long wheelbase, all ingredients that should provide for composed, agile handling. There's a more sophisticated suspension set-up too, with a more sophisticated five-link system replacing the trapezoidal link rear suspension used previously. As you'd expect, there's an adaptive damping option you can control through the standard 'Audi drive select' vehicle dynamics system that all A5 Sportback models get. At its simplest, this set-up allows you to control all the usual things - throttle response, steering feel and, on S tronic auto models, gearshift timings too. You'll want to know about engines. Petrols first: there's an entry-level 150PS 1.4-litre TFSI unit in the base '35 TFSI' variant, then a couple of 2.0 TFSI petrol options, with a choice of either 190PS (in the '40 TFSI') or 245PS (in the '45 TFSI quattro'), the latter variant able to reach 62mph in just 6s. Most will want a diesel though. There's a base 150PS 2.0-litre unit in the '35 TDI'. And a 190PS version of that engine in the '40 TDI'. There's also a six cylinder 3.0 TDI variant offering 286PS and a mighty 620Nm of torque in the '50 TDI quattro' model, so it should feel genuinely quick. As should the S5 version, which gets a mild hybrid 347PS version of that 3.0 TDI. This develops 500Nm of torque and sprints to 62mph in just 4.9s on the way to an artificially governed top speed of 155mph. The top RS5 Sportback uses a 450PS 2.9-litre petrol V6. As usual, quattro 4WD is either optional or standard-fit on more powerful models.

    To see the full road test text contact us on 0330 0020 227

    Pictures (high res disabled)

    Statistics (subset of data only)

    Min

    Max

    0-60 mph (s):

    5.1

    9.5

    Combined mpg:

    35.8

    67.3

    Extra urban mpg:

    43.5

    76.3

    Height (mm):

    1382

    1391

    Length (mm):

    4712

    4718

    Max Speed (mph):

    127

    155

    ... and 6 other stats available

    Scoring (subset of scores)

    Category: Luxury Saloons and Estates

    Performance
    70%
    Handling
    60%
    Comfort
    80%
    Space
    80%
    Styling, Build, Value, Equipment, Depreciation, Handling, Insurance and Total scores are available with our full data feed.

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