2012 Audi A5 Review
The 2012 Audi A5 impresses test drivers with sharp styling, good fuel economy and an attractive interior, but it’s not the most performance-oriented upscale midsize car.
Test drivers say that there’s plenty that the 2012 Audi A5 does right. While A5 Coupes and convertibles frequently earn praise for their sexy exterior designs and upscale, well-crafted interiors, they also get good fuel economy.
All A5’s are powered by a turbocharged four-cylinder engine which makes slightly less power than the BMW 328i. The A5 also weighs more. Despite its lower power-to-weight ratio, test drivers say that there’s still some fun to be had if you’re looking for a sleek, comfortable coupe with grand touring style. Automobile Magazine says, “Get it with the 2.0T, the six-speed, and Quattro, and you've got not only the least expensive, most economical combo, but also one that's pretty sweet to drive.”
If you decide that the A5 convertible is right for you, Audi offers a slightly different formula in the same attractive package. The A5 Cabriolet comes standard with front-wheel drive and a continuously variable transmission. However, if you’re seeking the stability of Audi’s quattro all-wheel drive, you can add it to the A5 Cabriolet, along with an eight-speed automatic transmission.
While the A5 Cabriolet is a soft-top convertible in an ever-growing world of retractable hardtops, there is one key benefit to Audi’s ragtop design: cargo capacity. The A5 Cabriolet offers significantly more space than competitors like the Infiniti G37 convertible when the top is folded down.
Other Cars to Consider
Upscale midsize coupes and convertibles usually favor performance. While the A5 keeps some sporting intentions, it’s also more comfortable and practical than many of its rivals.
If you like the A5 Cabriolet and you prioritize luxury rather than performance, the Lexus IS convertible is a worthy adversary. The IS convertible comes with your choice of two engines, and although its slightly less expensive, it also features a folding, metal hardtop rather than the A5’s soft-top.
However, if you’re looking for stronger performance, the BMW 3-Series coupe offers similar levels of refinement with more power and agility. The BMW 328i coupe is more powerful, and it’s also available as a convertible or with all-wheel drive. However, an all-wheel drive 3-Series will cost you a bit more than the A5 Coupe. While the 3-Series is known for its razor-sharp handling and sporty suspension, its ride isn’t as comfort-tuned for daily driving.
Audi A5: The Details
The 2012 Audi A5 is available as a Coupe or Cabriolet and comes in three trim levels: Premium, Premium Plus and Prestige.
- "The A5 and S5 may get noticed for their crisp lines, but they also offer a lot of refinement and sporting gusto." -- Car and Driver
- "Not only is the A5 capable of turning heads, it's also able to set your mind at ease. It provides a comfortable ride, a high-class interior, confident handling and admirable fuel economy." -- Edmunds
- "Not only does Audi's recipe constitute a viable option to the 3 Series, in an era of diminishing resources it could constitute a viable alternative to Bentley's Continental GT. And while we're not sure how that would work in or around Windsor Castle, we know it would play (and play...) on California's 101." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "Given the influx of power-folding hardtops in the U.S. market, Audi seems poised to separate itself from the herd. The new A5 and S5 Cabriolets offer handsome styling, whether the top's up or down, impressive cargo capacity, and formidable street cred." -- Motor Trend