Audi A5 Cabriolet
Aggregated reviews, user reviews, videos, photos and stats
- Looks great with the roof down
- ...and just as good with it up
- Smart interior
- Rear head-room is tight
- Coupe is better to drive
- It's expensive
Thankfully, the Audi isn’t just a pretty face, as many critics seem to be impressed with the car’s refinement, its ease of use and the well-rounded engines on offer. However, the svelte styling does conceal a few rough edges here and there.
As you’d expect from an Audi, especially one that can be seen by all once the roof is removed, the interior is amongst one of the best in its class – all the materials are of high quality, and everything feels like it’ll last long after it reaches the end of the car’s working life.
There controls are also mostly easy to use, though some buttons are a bit fiddly. Space inside for passengers is fairly good for a car of this type, as there’s good headroom all-round (some testers even thought it was better than the hardtop’s!) and, as long as the people up front aren’t too tall, adults can fit in the back. The boot is also surprisingly big for a convertible, with 320 litres available with the roof down, and 380 when it’s up.
It’s worth pointing out that the optional wind deflector makes the rear seats redundant when the roof is stowed away, so you can only have one companion if you want turbulence free motoring!
The A5 Cabriolet is, at heart, a machine to cruise in, so it’s no real surprise that it excels under more relaxed driving conditions – over most surfaces, the ride is quite composed, and the fabric roof does a very good job at insulating out intrusive noises, especially if you opt for the ‘Acoustic Hood’.
However, it’s by no means the most engaging car in its class to drive – the A5 Cabrio does handle fairly well, but this isn’t a car you’d want to wring out down a B-road or on a track day (not that most buyers would take one there…).
A few critics also thought the ride was a bit jittery on rougher surfaces, especially when riding on the stiffer ‘S-Line’ setup, and there’s a wee bit of body flex and scuttle shake to be found.
Bar the 4.2 V8 that you’ll find in the hardtop S5 and RS5 models, the Cabrio shares all of the engines it has with the car’s tiptop cousins, which means there’s bound to be one that’ll cater for your needs. There’s a whole range of petrols and diesels to choose from, ranging from a tiny little 1.8 turbo right up to the range topping V6 and S5 models.
There isn’t really a bad engine in the range, as they’re all smooth and refined and have enough poke to shift the car’s sheer mass, are mostly affordable to run and work well with the different gearboxes on offer. However, most critics reckon that, if outright speed isn’t a primary concern, the 2.0 TDI diesel is the best all-rounder in the range, as it suits the car’s more relaxed qualities yet is quite frugal on the combined cycle.
Value for money
Compared with some of its main rivals, the Audi A5 Cabriolet is competitively priced, and you could argue that the appeal of its badge and design may be enough to justify buying the car. Standard equipment is also fairly good across the range – for instance, all cars come with stop/start, climate control and an auto-opening boot – and residual values are expected to be strong.
However, you will have to fork out a fair bit of cash in order to get the more ‘prestigious’ models in the range and, as with most Audis, the vast array of options and extra equipment on offer means you can raise the lofty prices even further if you’re not too careful!
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Most of the reviews we have of the A5 Cabriolet are of the pre-facelift models – the entire range was given a refresh earlier this year. However, we still reckon that the reviews are still relevant, as most of the changes were just cosmetic, and there were only a few alterations to the engines and chassis setups.
Though they were satisfied with all the different transmissions on offer, most critics reckon that, if you’re able to, it’s best to specify the seven-speed S-Tronic gearbox option. Though a pricey option on some models, it’s a unit that shifts cogs smoothly, and complements the car’s cruising qualities.
Overall, the Audi A5 Cabriolet is a decent car that does an exceptional job at being a relaxed open-top cruiser. Most of the time, it’s a desirable, comfortable and refined cruiser that also handles and goes fairly well, and shouldn’t cost the Earth to run if you opt for diesel power.
It’s by no means the best big drop-top on the market, and the car’s dynamic qualities most likely won’t appeal to people who would prefer a sharper and more engaging drive. That said, there is plenty of appeal in the Audi’s laid-back approach to things, and the A5 Cabriolet is certainly worth considering if you’re in the market for such a car.
- Price range:
- £31,965 - £68,985
- 26 - 60
- Date released:
- Replacement due:
- Not for at least a couple of years
- Model history:
- In September 2011 the facelifted A5 Cabriolet went on sale. We’ve written a quick article on what’s new for the A5 Cabriolet facelift.
- Engine to go for:
- The 2.0 TDI and potent S5 are rated highly
- Engine to avoid:
- Unlike the A5 Coupe, the 3.0 TDI isn't as highly praised - mainly due to its cost
- Engine naming:
- TDI engines are diesels, FSI and TFSI engines are petrols
|3.0 TDI Quattro||4||6.5|
Audi A5 Cabriolet User Reviews
Had car from new and generally very pleased with it. For a cabriolet it is surprisingly practical. The rear seats are not just for show, two adults can sit comfortably in them and although if you’re 6ft plus you wouldn’t want to be in the back for a long journey, it’s roomier than most rivals. Boot space is also pretty decent though needs careful packing if you want the top down. The interior finish and driving position are good ( some reviews mention offset pedals which personally I find gives me more leg room than previous cars and I like) and visibility is superb since there are no B pillars to obstruct your view. Even rear visibility is good. The roof mechanism is a joy to behold and since it is both very rapid and can be retracted and put up whilst moving at speeds up to 28mph, also very practical- it does ding in a bit into the rear compartment as it folds so warn rear passengers. I have the SE which does not come with the acoustic hood as standard (which seems rather odd- surely should be standard on all, not some models) but despite being slightly concerned by this I would have to say that cabin noise is minimal. Fuel economy on the 2l TDI is fantastic - not quite as good as the mythical figures quoted, but still pretty impressive. The car is certainly an absolute stunner, roof up or down and if you don’t want any attention it is probably a tad too ostentatious for you!
The only gripe I would have is that the steering feels rather remote and not very responsive. There is also some slightly queasy-making flex/roll in the body after overtaking at speed which scared the bejesus out of me at first but which I am now used to. Despite its very sporty looks this is more a cruiser/posing car than a performance car.
In all other respects though, it is an absolute delight to own and run and I have had zero problems in the three years since I bought it
- By Jon Wray, who owns this car
iMotorTV test the A5 Convertible in Monaco. Useful review if you're thinking of buying one.
Promotional video showing exterior shots of the A5 Cab.
Video review of the S5 Cabriolet. Autotuningnews give their opinion on what it's like to drive, the roof mechanism and the interior.
Great video that explains the different trim levels available on the A5 Cabriolet.
Official launch video for the A5 Cabriolet.