Audi A5 Cabriolet 2016

Four-seat convertible with an attractive interior

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wowscore
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  • Desirable looks
  • Space for four
  • High-quality interior
  • Space is tight with the roof up
  • Expensive
  • Basic diesel sounds gruff
 

£31,500 - £42,253 Price range

 

4 Seats

 

45 - 70 MPG

Review

The original Audi A5 Cabriolet was one of the most desirable four-seat convertibles on the market so it’s no surprise that Audi hasn’t changed much for this second-generation car. Although it may look just like the outgoing model it’s actually a bit larger, sleeker, roomier and better equipped than before – improvements that help it rival the Mercedes C-Class Cabriolet, BMW 4 Series Convertible and Ford Mustang Convertible.

The new A5 Cabriolet’s interior really moves the game on over the old car’s dated insides. The new cabin isn’t anything radical but instead follows the same minimalistic design philosophy that makes the A4’s interior such a great place to spend time. Perceived quality is reinforced by really tactile materials such as unpolished wood and cold metal, plus build quality that embarrasses some bank vaults.

The new A5 Cabriolet is lighter and more aerodynamic than its predecessor. That said, the driving experienced hasn’t changed much – it still grips well and can be driven quickly around corners but without putting a grin on your face in the way a BMW 4 Series convertible can. It does handle bumps in the road far better than the old model did, making it a relaxing motorway cruiser – you can even spec large 19-inch alloy wheels without needing a chiropractor to fix your back after a trip to the shops.

The A5 Cabriolet is quick and efficient too – especially when equipped with the 188hp 2.0-litre diesel. Just don’t expect a great sound when you give it the beans with the roof down. There’s also a larger 3.0-litre V6 diesel, which sounds better, is smoother and, in the real world, is nearly as fast as the range-topping S5 Cabriolet that comes with a petrol V6 making 349hp.

Aside from the S5 Cabriolet there’s one more petrol which is a 2.0-litre engine with 187hp that prioritises refinement and fuel efficiency over performance. A six-speed manual is standard in the lower end of the range – or you can pay £1,600 to upgrade to Audi’s S-Tronic dual-clutch automatic gearbox, while the big diesels get traditional eight-speed automatic gearboxes. All engines can be mated to Audi’s quattro all-wheel drive system.

The model range starts with the SE version, which gets Audi’s MMI infotainment system complete with sat-nav and a seven-inch screen plus cruise and climate control – things that were optional on the previous A5 Cabriolet. Mid-range Sport models will come fitted with larger 17-inch alloys and front sports seats with more side bolstering among other less significant upgrades. Top-spec S-line models get really close to the muscular look of the S5 by adding a lowered sport suspension, a subtle bodykit and leather upholstery.

Those fairly good equipment levels don’t mean that there isn’t an overly long and sometimes optimistically priced options list that includes technology such as Audi’s £250 virtual cockpit, £1,250 adaptive cruise control and a £450 rear-view camera.