The 2021 Audi RS5 Sportback has 444 horsepower, 442 pound-feet of torque and can hit 60 mph in lower than four seconds. It has Quattro all-wheel drive with a torque-vectoring rear differential, ceramic entrance brakes, adaptive dampers and a sport exhaust. Throw in a ton of tech, cozy lodging and a liftback form that is each modern and practical, and the RS5 positions itself as one hell of a go-fast all-rounder. So why do not I would like one?
- Appears to be like nice
- Comfortable cabin
- Purposeful cargo maintain
- High-notch tech
Do not Like
- Numb steering
- Lacks emotion
- Ascari Version is tremendous costly
This automobile’s largest downside is that it desperately lacks drama. It isn’t sufficient for the RS5 Sportback to simply be fast, quick or agile. It must be visceral. It must be thrilling. It must make you giggle. You need to wish to drive it more durable and more durable, time and again. Audi completely nails this unquantifiable feeling with vehicles just like the, and even the electrical . The RS5, by comparability, is form of sterile.
The two.9-liter twin-turbo V6 has loads of shove, however it’s too quiet — ditto the RS Sport Exhaust. The eight-speed automated transmission shifts rapidly and seamlessly, however the small, steering wheel-mounted paddles provide no experiential draw. A minimum of the RS5 is extra fuel-efficient than different sporty compact luxurious vehicles, returning 18 mpg metropolis, 25 mpg freeway and 21 mpg mixed. Usually I might say good luck hitting these numbers given the RS5’s efficiency stats, however since this automobile actually would not eke you into driving it arduous, these EPA numbers are fairly spot-on.
2021 Audi RS5 Sportback dons new Ascari Launch Version duds
See all photographs
To its credit score, the RS5’s adaptive dampers make it actually comfy to drive round city, and it will gobble up a whole lot of miles on the freeway. However while you name up Dynamic mode and level the RS5 up a mountain highway, it is such as you’re forcing it to do one thing it is not up for. There’s pronounced physique roll in quick corners and audible protesting from the 275/30R20 Pirelli P Zero tires. You’d suppose Audi’s sport steering choice would assist liven issues up, however it’s too gentle and too numb, no matter drive mode. The ceramic brakes are loads highly effective, however the inconsistent pedal really feel hampers confidence. Actually, the RS5 is happiest while you’re rocking a reasonable tempo, which kind of defeats the aim. The BMW M3 andwon’t be as well-rounded, however holy smokes are they extra entertaining. And is not that what made you wish to purchase certainly one of these within the first place?
All of the aforementioned efficiency package might be fitted to any RS5, however it comes normal with my check automobile’s limited-run Ascari Launch Version pack. Solely 100 RS5 Sportbacks and 25 RS5 Coupes will probably be optioned like this, painted within the appropriately named Ascari blue, which is a hue so beautiful it virtually makes up for a few of this automobile’s shortcomings. Paired with matte aluminum trim, this RS5 seems to be sizzling as heck, and people 20-inch wheels actually fill out the wheel arches for an excellent stance. The special-edition trimline additionally comes with a 360-degree digicam system, head-up show, adaptive cruise management, lane-keeping help, navigation and a bunch of different goodies. Then once more, contemplating the Ascari Launch Version is a $20,500 choice, it had freaking higher be totally loaded.
The RS5 will get the identical updates as Audi’s different 2021 A5/S5 fashions. You will discover the redesigned headlights, wider grille and bigger exhaust pipes, and inside, Audi’s up to date MIB three infotainment interface is displayed on a 10.1-inch touchscreen. This tech is nice — colourful, responsive and straightforward to work via, with Google Earth map imagery and a typical Wi-Fi connection. You should usewirelessly or hook up with a USB cable. Mixed with Audi’s always-awesome Digital Cockpit digital gauge cluster, the RS5’s tech recreation cannot be beat.
One other massive win, the RS5’s Sportback form provides a heap of performance. The entire rear hatch opens to disclose 21.eight cubic ft of cargo house behind the rear seats, which is greater than double what you get in an RS5 Coupe. You possibly can fold the again bench down to hold longer gadgets, too, making this one of the crucial practical automobiles round that does not get slapped with an SUV or crossover designation.
All issues thought-about, the RS5 Sportback would make an excellent day by day driver. However $76,445 (together with $1,045 for vacation spot) is an entire lot of cash, and if I am shelling out for an RS-badged Audi, I would like it to make me really feel all the emotions. Oh, and this Ascari Launch Version rings up at $96,945, which might usually make some modicum of sense given its limited-run standing, however not when the RS5 is so inherently meh.
In addition to, if it is quiet competence you are after, why not simply get an? It is each bit as luxurious and practical, and you may get a generously geared up one for round $65Ok. The RS5 may need an additional 95 hp, however it simply is not definitely worth the added price. Keep in mind, specs do not at all times inform the entire story.