Though not packing quite as much punch as the RS4 or R8, I doubt anyone who has the pleasure of taking a spin in the still powerful 2009 Audi S5 will have anything but nice things to say about it.
The S5 along with the A5 was introduced last year featuring the same, though marginally tamer, 4.2-liter V8 engine that is found in the RS4 and R8. It produces 354hp and 325lb-ft of torque instead of the 420 hp and 317 lb-ft found in its siblings. Detuned or not, the motor is good enough to still propel the S5 to 60 mph in under five seconds and to an electronically limited top speed of 155mph. Like all Audi “S” models, the S5 has sportier suspension, unique front and rear fascias, performance wheels and brakes, carbon fiber interior elements, and the choice of a six-speed manual or DSG gearbox. A wide 62.6-inch front track, the widest in the sport coupe segment, helps “provide direct feedback to your most aggressive steering demands,” Audi says. The main competition for the S5 is the BMW M3 and Mercedes Benz CLK coupes, though the S5 gains a slight edge with the availability of a manual transmission. Also unlike the other two, Audi’s coupe is offered exclusively with all-wheel drive, making it a capable all-year, all-weather vehicle. The Quattro system itself is also tuned to provide a more sporting driving experience thanks to its 40/60 front to rear bias.
As would be expected, inside Audi hasn’t skimped on the accoutrements including an optional Bang & Olufsen surround sound system with 14 speakers and 505 digitally amplified watts that is enhanced by microphone-based noise compensation that ensures optimum sound under varying road conditions and speeds. The other major options include a navigation system with coverage for all of North America, a 7-inch touchscreen display and six-disc CD changer, as well as a technology package comprised of a parking assistance system with rear view camera, adaptive headlights and a key-less entry and vehicle start system.
The S5 has a price tag that starts at $50,500 with a manual transmission and $51,800 for the automatic. Realistically, even if it is slightly less aggressive in comparison to its big brothers, it’s still better than 99% of the cars on the road.