Audi’s second generation A5 and S5 Cabriolet have arrived Down Under, trim, taut and terrific

The cabriolet’s stylish new body is acclaimed stiffest in its class, yet overall weight has been reduced by as much as 25kg in the A5 and 40kg in the S5.

By Barry Green

The cabriolet’s stylish new body is acclaimed stiffest in its class, yet overall weight has been reduced by as much as 25kg in the A5 and 40kg in the S5. Conversely, torsional stiffness has been increased by a good 40 percent.

Lower interior noise levels have been achieved through the combination of the standard acoustic convertible soft top, acoustic windshield, innovative sealing around the doors and thicker glass in the side windows, Audi says.

The top opens in 15 seconds and closes in 18 seconds – fully automatically, at the push of a button – up to a speed of 50km/h. With the top up, the boot offers a capacity of 380 litres and, top down, a best-in-segment 320 litres.

There’s more leg room in the rear, thanks to the body being nearly 50mm longer, while the rear seat has a 50/50 split and can be easily folded forward to make more space using levers in the boot.

In the A5, there’s a choice of 2.0 TFSI engines with 140 kW/320Nm or 185kW/370Nm mated to a new seven-speed S tronic dual-clutch transmission, which replaces the continuously variable multitronic.

0-100km/h for the former is rated at 7.9 seconds with a figure of 5.9 litres of fuel per 100km on the ADR combined cycle. The latter, driving through Audi’s quattro all-wheel-drive system, is good for 6.3 seconds and 6.7 litres.

With up to 30 driver assistance systems – way too many to list and explain here – the new Audi A5 Cabriolet is acclaimed best-in-class. Some of the solutions are standard features, while the options are grouped together in an assistance package.

Prices start at $83,400 for the A5 Cabriolet 2.0 TFSI S tronic sport and $95,000 for the 2.0 TFSI quattro S tronic sport. (Prices not inclusive of on-road costs and government statutory charges). Driver assistance packages range from $2470 to $7400.