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Audi showrooms across the Middle East are taking receipt of the updated A5 model series, in the form of Sportback, Coupe and Cabriolet models – all promising impressive leaps forward in terms of engines, chassis and on board infotainment. We took a full options Sportback model, 2.0L TFSI Quattro for a test drive, to see if Audi has come good on its assurances that the A5 range is sportier, more powerful and more efficient than its predecessor lineup.
Power is the watchword of the Sportback, delivering as it does impressive torque, even in the entry-level engine – which provides 350 Nm of the stuff. With all this power, it’s surprising to discover that the CO2 emissions of the new A5 range have been cut by up to 18 per cent.
Acceleration is smooth, and the handling ensures you feel in complete control, no matter how hard you push. Fundamental to this excellent ride comfort is the improved chassis, which has had its shock absorbers re-tuned. This signature Audi feel of comfort and power is to be experienced in almost every aspect of the Sportback’s design.
Much like the preceding A4, the navigation and audio controls are truly world class and will take even the biggest technophobe just minutes to get used to.
Overall, the interior design has received a substantial makeover, with a bigger emphasis on elegance. A new steering wheel, updated inlays and upholstery all conspire to create a fresh feel inside. Other additions include a new automatic selector lever, tasteful chrome braces and a redesigned instrument cluster. All of which makes it feel like a very different car from its predecessor – and all the more exciting for it.
Outside, too, you can sense that Audi’s design team have been busy. The revitalized exterior is very easy on the eye, with a new high-gloss, single frame grille and bumper, elegant fog lights and powerful Xenon Plus headlights. LED daytime front and rear lights complete the impression that this car is several paces ahead of many of its rivals in terms of design. Crisper lines emphasize notions of speed and power, whilst the overall structure and safety technology ensures that this model maintains Audi’s reputation as a world leader in crash safety.
As sporty as the Sportback is, it is nevertheless a family-friendly vehicle. Seating, however, is limited to four adults. The seats themselves are sporty and comfortable, and are ideal for longer journeys, but leg room is rather limited.
For those seeking a car that makes a powerful statement without veering too far away from the sporty market segment, the A5 is likely to be an enticing model. As well as young executives, however, it is also a great option for small families – yet one that offers plenty of scope for guilty pleasures after the kids have been dropped off at school.
Overall, the Bavarian marque does not disappoint with the latest incarnation of the A5, which delivers all the masterful handling and unashamed power that you would expect from an Audi.
Facts and Figures:
Check out 2013 Audi A5 Sportback technical specifications and prices