By Salaphezulu Masindane and Khulekani Dumisa
Very often the family people are overlooked when it comes to performance cars as most performance cars have power but lack the space to cope with the practicalities of everyday living. Some have the space but deliver a rather harsh driving experience for ferrying families around every day. We think Audi has the solution to all these issues with the spectacular RS5 Sportback. The M3 and C63s fighting Audi has the space and comfort to contend daily realities of family life whilst offering exhilarating performance.
The RS5 is looker like most RS models that we have become accustomed to. Before we get to the looks, the practicality of the Audi RS5 Sportback is something to marvel at. If you are family buyer, the first thing that wins you over is the boot space that stands at a claimed 480 litres and extends to 1300 litres with the back seats folded down. The seats also fold 40:20:40 for ease of access to the load area.
Hop inside the car, you are met with a roomy interior. Unfortunately, only two adults can be seated comfortably at back due to the sloping nature of the roofline. Anyways, if you are family buyer, your three teenage kids will be okay back there. The legroom and shoulder room is also in abundance upfront. You are also treated to RS sports seats finished in nappa leather. Our test unit came with beige leather seats and we would pass those over for black ones to limit visits to the car wash for leather treatment. Rounding up the practicality discussion is the large panoramic roof which makes the interior feel even roomier. We enjoyed having it and cannot imagine the RS5 without it.
Other than being practical, the interior is well built and stylish true to Audi form. Driver conveniences include 3-zone the climate control, Audi phone box for wireless charging for your smartphone, Audi Virtual Cockpit (digital instrument cluster) with navigation and a crisp Bang & Olsen audio system. A cherry on top for the beautiful interior is a flat-bottomed RS multifunctional steering wheel that is complemented by stainless-steel pedals.
Back to the exterior styling, Audi has done justice to this performance car without overdoing things. RS5 and quattro badging located in a number of places on the body of the car to remind you about the credentials of this beast from Audi. RS double exhaust, the Audi Matrix LED headlights and tail lights and 20-inch forged allow wheels all combine to give the RS5 Sportback a sporty look.
The engine and drive
The RS5 Sportback is powered by a twin-turbocharged 2.9-litre V6 engine with 331 kW of power and 600 Nm of torque which is paired with an 8-speed automatic transmission. The combination of this and Audi’s Quattro all-wheel drive ensure that the car can sprint from zero to 100 km/h in just 3.9 seconds. Top speed is limited to 250 km/h.
The RS5 Sportback excels in everyday driving. The interior is comfortable and quite. The powerful car is also surprisingly fuel efficient. We averaged just below 10,l/100km and on occasion got as low as 9,5l/100km without breaking a sweat. This was refreshing considering that there was some spirited driving. Perhaps this is where the vehicle may not appeal to some though. Not the fuel efficiency but how Audi manages to tame it so much so that you forget that you are in a machine that can go toe-to-toe with the likes of C63s. The RS5 also lacks a launch control button and that may prove near fatal a world that is obsessed with 0-100 km/h records.
Well, on our test, we were not about breaking those records as the RS5 reputation is proven beyond doubt. If driving on Normal mode is not for you (i.e. the car seems too docile for you), reach over to the Drive Select and opt for the Dynamic drive mode. The car changes instantly. The suspension firms up and the sound coming from the exhausts reminds you that you are behind an RS model. True to character of the car, the exhaust note is not as intense as the AMG competitor but will fit the profile of a buyer who wants to blend into the crowd now and again. The car’s acceleration is superb with the torque and Quattro all-wheel system aggressively propelling the car ahead. The car also stays planted and grips on the road quite impressively. You are able to point the car almost everywhere you want it with instant feedback thanks to the precise steering wheel. Not only does the car inspire confidence on straight lines, it also remains confident in corners. This is notwithstanding the size of its body which you may fear will affect the car’s behaviour in those situation. Overall the car entertains when required to and also manages to seamlessly deliver super everyday drive quality that will have all your family members looking forward to a comfortable drive to their next destination.
Price Audi RS 5 Sportback is priced from R1,312,000. The price includes Audi’s a 5-year/100,000 km Freeway Plan.
Leave a comment