Audi A5 coupe (2007-2016)
“It’s a handsome, well-built coupe, but the Audi A5 is beginning to feel its age.”
- Stylish exterior
- Efficient engines
- Exceptional interior quality
- Some rivals are better to drive
- Gets hit hard by depreciation
- Tight for space in the back
It’s been around for a while now, but the Audi A5 Coupe still looks sleek and sporty enough to take on its nemeses, in the shape of the BMW 4 Series coupe and Mercedes C-Class Coupe. A new version is on its way to go into battle with the soon-to-be-refreshed BMW and the almost brand-new Mercedes.
Unusually for an Audi – especially one of these proportions – the A5 doesn’t actually fair that well on the used market, meaning you’re likely to lose more of your initial outlay when the time comes to sell or trade in. The fact that a brand spanking new version is on the way doesn’t help matters, but it does mean that you should be able to get a bit of money off if you buy one now.
There are only two trim levels available – S line and Black Edition – which means standard equipment is pretty good. All models get alloy wheels, DAB radio, sat nav, Bluetooth connectivity, a 10-speaker sound system, Napa leather upholstery and heated front seats. You also get three-zone climate control, as well as cruise control.
Under the bonnet, there’s a choice of two petrols and two diesels. Both the petrols are turbocharged four-cylinder engines: a 175bhp 1.8-litre and a 227bhp 2.0-litre. These don’t sell as well as the diesels due to their higher running costs, with CO2 emissions of 134 and 157g/km for annual road-tax bills of £130 and £185 respectively. The less powerful model is front-wheel-drive only, while the more powerful one is only available with Audi’s quattro four-wheel-drive system.
Not surprisingly, the diesels are much more popular, with two versions of the same 187bhp 2.0-litre (one with four-wheel drive, one without) and the range-topping 241bhp 3.0-litre which is only available with four-wheel drive. The cleanest and cheapest-to-run of these – the 2.0-litre diesel without quattro – is also our favourite in the range. Emitting just 124g/km of CO2 means you’re only liable for a £110 tax bill with this model, while average fuel consumption is rated at over 60mpg – not bad for a slinky coupe.
Standing a little apart from these more mainstream models is the high-performance S5 Coupe, which uses a 328bhp turbocharged 3.0-litre petrol V6. Only available with the quattro four-wheel-drive system and a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox, this is enough to propel the S5 from 0-62mph in just 4.9 seconds and on to an electronically limited 155mph top speed.
Unsurprisingly, running costs for these models are a little higher than the standard version, with an annual tax bill of £230 due to 184g/km CO2 emissions. It’ll only return an average of around 35mpg (if you’re lucky) too.
Naturally, thanks to the S5’s slinky styling, room in the back is a little tighter than the A4 saloon on which it’s based and some may find the standard suspension a little too firm (and without much dynamic payoff in the way the car drives). Thankfully, while the first of these issues can’t be solved, the second can. Audi will fit a softer suspension setup for you free of charge if you want – and we recommend you do this.
Euro NCAP hasn’t tested the A5 specifically, but it has tested the last-generation version of the Audi A4 saloon on which it’s based, awarding it the full five stars. There’s plenty of safety equipment as standard, too, including a vast array of airbags, ISOFIX child car seat mounting points in the front and rear, stability control, anti-lock brakes and traction control.