The new, second-generation Audi RS5 Coupe is an interesting car. On one hand, it’s a brilliant performance car, thanks to its 450 hp 2.9 liter twin-turbocharged V6. That blown-six allows it to rocket from 0-60 mph in under four seconds. It’s also impressively capable when the road gets twisty. But on the other hand, it’s been criticized for being too soft and too luxurious, lacking the bite that the previous-generation car had. However, Manhart decided to do something about the latter point.
Meet the Audi RS500, the 500 hp Manhart-tuned Audi RS5.
One of the biggest reasons that the Audi RS5 is considered to be a bit too soft and unexciting is its exhaust note. It’s not that the twin-turbo V6 sounds bad it’s just that it pales in comparison to the thrilling, high-revving V8 of its predecessor. Manhart gives it a new exhaust system that certainly makes it sounds more exciting. While it isn’t the prettiest noise, being a bit tinny and hollow sounding, it’s much louder and more aggressive.
Most importantly, though, it sits on adjustable KW suspensions, which not only lowers the car but gives it a more aggressive demeanor. So it handles a bit sharper and it’s a bit tighter, which is a welcome change from the standard car’s soft, sort of GT-like character.
What’s nice is that Manhart didn’t focus too much on power or performance, as the RS5 already has a lot of both. So instead of bumping up power to a million, they only pushed it up to 500, up only 50 hp. Torque is also up to 516 lb-ft. So its 0-60 mph time probably comes down to around 3.5 seconds, which is faster but not the focal point of this build.
On the outside, the Manhard Audi RS500 gets a black and gold color scheme, with black paint and one gold stripe down the passenger side of the top of the car. It also gets 21″ custom black wheels. So it looks more menacing without being too dramatic.
We like the Audi RS5 but it does need some more flare, more excitement to be a proper Audi RS car. This Manhart RS500 seems like it could do the trick.