April 2017: The first happy owners are driving away from their nearest Swansway Audi showroom in the latest model of the Audi S5 Cabriolet. And, guess what? We even had a few sunny days, with the first butterflies and bumblebees of the year hovering around. Perfect weather for that other tell-tale sign of summer: the elegant S5 Cabriolet being driven with its top down.
The Cabriolet is the third and final piece in the jigsaw of the Audi S5 range, following the Coupé and Sportback models onto the available list. But the drop-top is distinguished from its brethren by being the first model to sit on Audi’s latest MLB Evo platform. This means that, while the new S5 Cabriolet is longer and wider than the model it’s replaced, it’s also 40kg lighter than the more mainstream A5 Cabriolet.
Sleek Looks, Improved Safety
The main changes to the long-standing favourite are summed up by reviews website Topspeed.com as “a sleek interior packed with gadgets, a more powerful turbo six-cylinder, an updated rear suspension, and new systems for safety and convenience.”
The dual-clutch, eight-speed automatic gearbox is reckoned to be a real gem by the reviewers at Auto Express, who say that the 500Nm of torque on offer are easily accessed as the box clicks up through the ratios.
But they also point to one of the S5 Cabriolet’s real strong points: “With the roof down, your ears get full access to that tuneful V6 while the exhaust pops and bangs on the overrun. It adds a little bit of drama that was previously in short supply,” they say.
However, they also note that the suspension has been softened to help compensate for the stiffer body structure that’s needed to cope with the changes made by chopping off the car’s roof.
Power comes from a three-litre engine, putting out 349bhp with the help of a turbo. However, because there’s some compromise to the car’s aerodynamics over the hard-topped S5, it’s four-tenths of a second slower in the sprint from 0 to 62mph (100kph) but still capable of a hardly shoddy 5.1 seconds.
Usefully, the folding fabric roof can be operated with one flick of a switch while the motor is travelling at speeds of up to 31mph. It folds quickly and smoothly, opening in as little as 15 seconds, and closing again in 18 seconds. Around the rest of the cabin, the look remains smart, and the Auto Express team praised the build quality as first-class.
Unlike many other convertibles, there’s enough space to seat four adults in comfort, making it a relaxing place to just sit and soak up the admiring looks of other drivers sheltering under their tin roofs.
Official fuel consumption figures go up to 36.2mpg. While you can order an S5 Cabriolet in SE, Sport or S line specification, with a 190PS two-litre petrol engine and manual or S tronic gearbox, and 252PS two-litre or 354PS V6 engines. Both of these have the legendary quattro four-wheel drive system. There are also two two-litre turbo diesel engines, producing 190PS and 218PS, the lower-powered of which can be had in two or four-wheel drive.
Of these options, the Auto Express team favoured the more powerful diesel engine, saying that its flexibility, thanks to the superior torque, was the best fit for a car which would be most at home cruising at motorway speeds.
Four Fab Hood Colours
The S5 Cabriolet’s fabric hood is available in four colours – red, black, dark grey and brown – to complement the exterior paint finishes, one of which, the crystal-effect Tofana white, is only available on the Cabriolet.
Other standard specifications on the S5 Cabriolet include heated front seats, Audi smartphone interface, pre-sense city, seatbelt microphones, Audi parking system plus, matrix LED lights, Audi Virtual Cockpit, MMI Navigation Plus with MMI Touch, Bang & Olufsen sound system and head-up display with Audi Phone Box optionally available.
Its Pre-Sense City function operates at speeds of up to 52mph, scanning the road ahead for other vehicles and pedestrians. It sends a series of escalating warnings to the driver which, if ignored, can be followed by an automatic full brake application.
Other driver help and economy systems include adaptive cruise control with stop&go, and electronic systems to help avoid collisions and prevent the car from drifting from its lane.
The new Audi S5 Cabriolet also comes with heated front sports seats which are adjustable four ways to achieve the ideal back support, while a handy feature for you if you need to stay in touch while on the go (and with the hood down) is the seat belt-mounted microphones which will let you make and receive phone calls hands-free.
Finally, all models can be specified with adaptive comfort suspension with damping control. The electronically regulated system works in tandem with Audi drive select to provide a choice between a firmer setup or maximum ride comfort based on the driver’s preference.
Come and visit your nearest Swansway Audi dealership today to take a closer look at the new Audi S5 Cabriolet. Find us in Blackburn, Carlisle, Crewe, Preston, Stafford and Stoke where you can talk to any of our friendly team who’ll be happy to arrange a test drive.