Review

Audi A5 Sportback hatchback

£26,780 - £43,940

The Audi A5 Sportback is a practical and stylish executive car that's also the most user-friendly model in the A5 range. It joins the A5 coupe and A5 cabriolet editions, but adds the flexible appeal of four doors and a spacious boot, which is accessed through a large hatchback that's easy to load items through.

Audi claims the A5 Sportback has no direct rivals in the executive class, but both the BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe and the Mercedes C-Class coupe provide healthy competition. Plus, while there's much to recommend about the A5 – not least its beautiful design and roomy interior – you might not like the firm ride (especially in models fitted with larger alloy wheels and S line suspension) and the Sportback is not the most fun version of the car to drive.

The A5 Sportback comes in five main specifications – entry-level, then mid-range SE and SE Technik, higher-spec S line and top-of-the-range Black Edition Plus. Buyers looking for an extremely quick version of the Sportback are catered for by the standalone S5 model.

As with the two-door A5 coupe, there's a wide range of diesel and petrol engines on offer, while most models are available with Audi's quattro four-wheel drive system. The Audi A5 has sat at the top of the executive coupe tree for a long time, but it's beginning to show its age. It's not as good to drive as the BMW 4 Series Gran Coupe, nor as smart inside, plus it's arguably not as stylish, either.

If you’ve decided the Audi A5 Sportback is the car for you, then we’d recommend the 175bhp 2.0-litre diesel model in SE trim. In this form, the A5 Sportback packs plenty of punch, is still very economical and has almost all the equipment you could want – without it costing a fortune to buy.