When Audi launched the second-generation Audi A5/S5, it did so in front of a packed crowd at Audi’s headquarters in Ingolstadt. It was a massive spectacle, and deservedly so, because the second-gen A5/S5 is a big deal for Audi. Now, the four-ringed brand has just debuted the brand-new Audi A5/S5 Cabriolet, though it did so without a big party for it.
The lack of party doesn’t mean that the Audi A5/S5 Cabriolet isn’t a big deal, though. The A5 Cabrio was one of the most popular convertibles in its segment, so this new model should be even more so thanks to its new looks and new technology.
The new A5’s design language works better as a convertible than the previous A5’s. Firstly, the new Audi A5 is prettier than the first-gen, with sharper looks and more curves. Specifically, the new A5’s more graceful shoulder line that accentuates the rear wheel arches really works with the top-down look of the A5 Cabriolet. The rear window is also flatter and more in tune with the aggressive styling of the new A5.
Speaking of top-down, it’s now far easier than ever to drop the classic soft top. Just the quick pull of one switch will drop the top in 15 seconds or close it in 18 seconds. The top also has far better aeroacoustics, thanks to new acoustic insulation and better aerodynamics. So it’s far quieter in the cabin with the top up than before.
Aside from the power folding roof, the A5 Cabrio is essentially exactly the same as its Coupe sibling. However, there have been some structural bracing to increase some of the chassis rigidity lost without the fixed roof. With some additional structural bracing made of lightweight materials, the Audi A5/S5 Cabrio is the stiffest convertible in its class and among the lightest. It’s also 40 percent stiffer than the outgoing model, which tended to feel a bit wobbly over choppy pavement. Plus, the Cabrio only suffer an 88 lb weight penalty over the coupe variant.
In terms of powertrains and drivetrains, the Cabrio is unchanged from the coupe. So the Audi A5 Cabrio will pack the same 2.0 liter 252 hp turbocharged TFSI four-cylinder engine mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox. The Audi S5 Cabrio will pack a turbocharged 3.0 liter V6 engine, making 354 hp, and will be mated to an eight-speed ZF automatic. Front-wheel drive is standard the A5 Cabrio with Quattro all-wheel drive as an optional extra. However, Quattro is standard on the S5 Cabrio.
Thankfully, the interior hasn’t changed much at all, as it’s one of the best interiors in the business. The only real difference is the smaller trunk space with with roof folded down, but Audi’s worked hard to maximize space. The soft top compartment in the trunk automatically moves down when opening the soft top and up again when the top is closed, thus providing the largest possible luggage space at all times. Another addition to the interior is the as-stanadrd seatbelt microphones that allow the front passengers to control all of the natural-language voice controls or bluetooth calling with ease. The seatbelt microphones also allow for excellent voice recognition even with the top down.
The new, second-generation Audi A5/S5 is one of the best-looking and most exciting coupes on the market. Now, the Cabrio variants are some of the best looking and exciting convertibles in the segment. In either A5 or S5 trim, the Carbio looks great with both the top up or down. We’re really excited to get our hands on it to see how it handles and to get some top-down fun in one of Audi’s best cars.