The if-it-ain’t-broke approach to fixing things apparently translates well into German because you have to squint your eyes to see how Audi has altered the A5 with this new-for-2018 redesign. Wheelbase and overall length are a touch longer, while height is the same and width is down by a mere 0.3 inch. The grille, headlamps, and taillamps all have broader proportions, and those zeppelin-like creases in the hood are apparently how Audi’s metal benders earn their pay.
The clamshell hood is a lovely touch, and we’re also fond of the subtle upward and outward sweep of the rear fender creases. If your lifestyle hungers for low-key elegance, this A5 delivers.
This 2018 edition has Quattro all-wheel drive, a huge sunroof, three-zone automatic climate control, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity as standard equipment. Interestingly, Audi charges the same $43,775 base price for both manual and automatic versions. Our two-pedal test car was a Premium Plus model, which is a $3000 step up from the base Prestige (adding heated 10-way adjustable front seats, LED headlights, heated exterior mirrors, satellite radio, audio-visual parking aids, and other equipment). It was outfitted with a $2600 navigation package (which includes Audi’s Virtual Cockpit electronic instrument cluster), a $1250 S line Sport package (front sport seats with four-way lumbar adjustments, sport suspension, and a few décor items), a $950 Bang & Olufsen audio system, an $800 19-inch wheel and low-profile summer-tire package, and Florett Silver Metallic paint costing an extra $575. The full $52,950 tab is less than you’d spend for a Ford Mustang Shelby GT350.
For the 2018 model year, the Audi A5 receives a reimagined interior filled with sophistication, fine craftsmanship, and cutting-edge technology.
Occupants of the Atlas Beige cabin area will find themselves surrounded by a variety of premium materials, starting with high gloss dark brown walnut wood inlays on the signature wraparound dash and center console. Leather seating surfaces, black cloth headliner, and brushed aluminum also add to both the visual and tactile experience.
Our test model was upgraded with the optional Prestige Package, which replaces the standard instrument cluster with an Audi virtual cockpit, a vibrant and fully-digital 12.3-inch information cluster that can be customized to deliver a multitude of vehicle, entertainment, and navigation data. The virtual cockpit can also be set to full-screen mode to display additional information or a larger version of the navigation map.
At the center of the dash sits an 8.3-inch MMI center screen, an integral part of Audi’s MMI Touch system, which is available in the A5 for the first time. Using the scroll wheel, touch pad, and buttons located just ahead of the gear selector, you can access all of the vehicle’s entertainment and technology features, like Bluetooth smartphone integration, satellite radio, GPS navigation, connected apps, and more.
Drawing on classic design elements, the all-new 2018 A5 coupe now features a wider appearance and lower stance to really emphasize its performance-focused draw.
Audi’s signature Singleframe grille is widened and flattened, while the hood finds itself with angular lines that sweep back from the front fascia. The A5’s sharp character line starts at the pronounced front wheel arches and follows the dramatic flow of the side sills and roof to end in a molded rear deck lid.
18-inch 10-spoke-dynamic design wheels with all-season tires come as standard equipment, complementing the Glacier White Metallic paint of our test model.
The available Prestige Package adds full LED headlights as well as heated and power-folding exterior mirrors, pairing nicely with the standard LED daytime running lights and LED taillights with dynamic turn signals.
Additional exterior highlights include fog lights, chrome accents in the light housings and rear bumper, and dual exhaust tips.
This second-generation A5 is undoubtedly elegant, dynamic, and athletic — a combination that is sure to continue the model’s popularity.