Audi A5 Cabriolet convertible (2009-2017) - Engines, drive & performance

The Audi A5 Cabriolet is easy to drive, but not as much fun as a BMW 4 Series

Carbuyer Rating

3.3 out of 5

Engines, drive & performance Rating

3.5 out of 5

The Audi A5 Cabriolet is very easy to drive, with positive, responsive controls that make most trips very straightforward. The steering is light and Audi offers its Drive Select system as an option, which allows you to alter the steering and comfort settings to your preference.

However, as good as this idea is, none of the modes offered – including a new efficiency setting –offers quite the right balance between the weight of the controls and ride comfort, which is in many ways is more frustrating than not having it at all.

A lot of people will find the ride uncomfortably firm on the top-spec S line model, especially if the car comes with larger alloy wheels.

The A5 does have a reassuring amount of grip when cornering, particularly if you choose quattro four-wheel drive, but the light steering is also slightly vague and it's hard to get a feel for what the front wheels are doing. This lack of sharpness means it’s best to think of the A5 as a comfortable cruiser rather than an out-and-out sports car.

Audi A5 Cabriolet diesel engines

Only the 148bhp version of the 2.0-litre diesel could be called sluggish, as it’s the only model in the A5 Cabriolet line-up that posts a 0-62mph time of more than 10 seconds. The 187bhp 2.0-litre diesel feels much punchier and can do 0-62mph in 8.2 seconds (or 7.3 with an automatic gearbox). The powerful 3.0-litre TDI is the quickest in the range, doing the same sprint in 6.3 seconds.

Petrol engines

Both petrol engines are punchy performers, with the 175bhp 1.8-litre petrol model capable of 0-62mph in 8.7 seconds. The quickest version of the 227bhp 2.0-litre petrol model can get to 62mph from a standstill in 7.4 seconds.

The range of engines available in the A5 means straight-line speed is good in virtually every model, but when you pay a lot of money for a premium car, you’re entitled to expect high standards across the board. As a result, it’s particularly disappointing to find that the Audi A5 Cabriolet suffers from excessive vibration that you really feel through the seats and steering wheel when driving on poorly surfaced roads.

The phenomenon is especially noticeable when you compare the A5 to the BMW 4 Series convertible. Sadly, we’re not just talking about the usual minor juddering that you naturally get on bumpy roads, either – the A5 can be uncomfortable on all but the smoothest roads.

Recommended

Top 10 best convertibles 2022
2021 MINI Convertible driving with roof down
Best cars
8 Sep 2021

Top 10 best convertibles 2022

Most Popular

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2022
Toyota Prius front 3/4 cornering
Best cars
17 Jan 2022

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2022

UK road tax 2022: VED tax rates and bands explained
2021 Road Tax explained
Car tax
20 Jan 2022

UK road tax 2022: VED tax rates and bands explained

Top 10 best economical 4x4s, SUVs and crossovers 2022
Peugeot 3008 SUV front cornering
Best cars
6 Jan 2022

Top 10 best economical 4x4s, SUVs and crossovers 2022

Tips & advice

View All
Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide
Car dashboard symbols and meanings
Tips and advice
10 Aug 2021

Car dashboard warning lights: the complete guide

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide
Electric car charging station
Tips and advice
5 Nov 2021

Electric car charging stations: a complete guide

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?
PCP vs HP
Car buying
21 Jan 2022

PCP vs HP – which type of car finance is right for you?

Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Average speed cameras: how do they work?
Tips and advice
23 Jul 2021

Average speed cameras: how do they work?

Best cars

View All
Top 10 best car interiors 2022
Peugeot 208 hatchback
Best cars
25 Jun 2021

Top 10 best car interiors 2022

Top 10 best electric cars 2022
Ioniq 5
Best cars
19 Jan 2022

Top 10 best electric cars 2022

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2022
Toyota Prius front 3/4 cornering
Best cars
17 Jan 2022

Top 10 best cheap-to-run cars 2022

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2022
Audi RS 3 driving - front view
Hot hatches
21 Jan 2022

The UK's top 10 fastest hot hatchbacks 2022