2018 Audi A5

Change Year or Vehicle
$42,600–$49,600 MSRP range
SAVE
Key Specs
Our Take
Road Test
Photos
Reviews
Safety & Recalls
Warranty & CPO
Compare
Back to top

Key Specs

of the 2018 Audi A5. Base trim shown.

  • Body Type:
  • Combined MPG:
    27 Combined MPG
  • Engine:
    252-hp, 2.0-liter I-4 (premium)
  • Drivetrain:
    All-wheel Drive
  • Transmission:
    7-speed auto-shift manual w/OD and auto-manual
  • View more specs

Our Take

From the Cars.com Vehicle Test Team

The Good

  • Engine responsiveness at all speeds
  • 40/20/40-split backseat's cargo flexibility
  • Virtual Cockpit enhances instrument panel
  • Customizable drive mode
  • Brake pedal feel
  • Adaptive suspension

The Bad

  • Steering feedback is muted
  • Short door opening requires ducking to enter
  • Predictive Control abruptness
  • Rotary dial controls Android Auto/Apple CarPlay
  • Uncomfortable sport seats on S Line models
  • No USB ports for backseat passengers

Notable Features of the 2018 Audi A5

  • Redesigned for 2018
  • Turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine
  • Standard all-wheel drive
  • Seating for four
  • Three trim levels
  • New exterior styling

2018 Audi A5 Road Test

Brian Wong
The Verdict:

The A5 successfully combines the key ingredients of a luxury sports coupe: style and performance.

Versus The Competition:

The A5 really needed this redesign, and its improvements in performance, technology and luxury put it among the class leaders.

Redesigned for 2018, the Audi A5 coupe looks similar to the previous generation, but don't let that fool you — the A5 is improved in many facets and better than ever before.

The two-door Audi A5 shares a lot of mechanical similarities with the four-door A4 sedan, which was redesigned in 2017 and recently took home the crown in our Luxury Sports Sedan Challenge. This was a big leap for the A4, which placed fifth out of six contestants in the previous Challenge in 2013. The A5 had to wait an extra year to get its redesign, but the changes mimic what was done to the A4, and that's an excellent place to start. Compare the 2018 A5 with last year's model here.

The A5 Coupe competes with other compact luxury coupes, like the BMW 4 Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class coupe and Infiniti Q60, and the A5 Sportback. Compare the A5 with those cars here.

Performance

The Audi A5 comes equipped with a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that's a mainstay of the Audi lineup. It makes 252 horsepower and 273 lb-ft of torque, and it comes tied to a six-speed manual or seven-speed automatic transmission. My test vehicle came with the automatic transmission and all-wheel drive, which is standard on all A5s.

I'm a big fan of this engine, which punches above its weight on the spec sheet and is very responsive. I even liked it in the large Q7 three-row SUV, so in this application it more than does the trick. The coupe is very responsive to accelerator inputs...

Redesigned for 2018, the Audi A5 coupe looks similar to the previous generation, but don't let that fool you — the A5 is improved in many facets and better than ever before.

The two-door Audi A5 shares a lot of mechanical similarities with the four-door A4 sedan, which was redesigned in 2017 and recently took home the crown in our Luxury Sports Sedan Challenge. This was a big leap for the A4, which placed fifth out of six contestants in the previous Challenge in 2013. The A5 had to wait an extra year to get its redesign, but the changes mimic what was done to the A4, and that's an excellent place to start. Compare the 2018 A5 with last year's model here.

The A5 Coupe competes with other compact luxury coupes, like the BMW 4 Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class coupe and Infiniti Q60, and the A5 Sportback. Compare the A5 with those cars here.

Performance

The Audi A5 comes equipped with a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that's a mainstay of the Audi lineup. It makes 252 horsepower and 273 lb-ft of torque, and it comes tied to a six-speed manual or seven-speed automatic transmission. My test vehicle came with the automatic transmission and all-wheel drive, which is standard on all A5s.

I'm a big fan of this engine, which punches above its weight on the spec sheet and is very responsive. I even liked it in the large Q7 three-row SUV, so in this application it more than does the trick. The coupe is very responsive to accelerator inputs, especially in Dynamic mode, and it accelerates quickly at all speeds.

My test vehicle also came equipped with an adaptive suspension, which is a $1,000 stand-alone option. Adaptive suspensions are among the components I wish were more widespread, especially in cars with a performance focus. An adaptive suspension allows a car to have a dual nature: comfortable when desired and firmer for sportier moments. The A5 isn't an out-and-out performance machine like the S5, so offering it with a setting that allows for better cruising makes a lot of sense. Our Chicago-based editors warned that they drove an A5 with the optional sport suspension, which isn't adaptive, and it was too firm for their embattled roads.

If the A5 Coupe falls short in one area, it's steering feel. Even moving the A5 into Dynamic mode — which also increases throttle sensitivity and tightens up the suspension — doesn't cure this. It does add more weight to the steering, which is nice when traveling straight, as it helps keep the car going straight with less effort, but there's still some disconnect between the driver and the wheels.

Fuel-economy figures for the new Audi A5 are an EPA-estimated 24/34/27 mpg city/highway/combined for the hardtop coupe. The manual loses 1 mpg on the highway. Premium gasoline is required.

Does It Come With Instructions?

The new Audi A5's interior also apes the best parts of the A4: high-quality materials, excellent fit and finish, and a big emphasis on technology. The rather comprehensive Prestige Package ($7,600) adds heated front leather seats, LED headlights, an upgraded sound system, a head-up display, 360-degree cameras, navigation and Audi Virtual Cockpit, a large color screen that serves as your instrument panel (separate from the display mid-dash).

There's a lot of technology in the Audi A5 (especially with the Prestige Package), but using it can be cumbersome in some cases. For example, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay come standard, which is good. But the A5's screen (as is true in many Audi models) is mounted high up on the dash and out of reach, and it isn't even a touchscreen. So to use those systems, which have clearly been designed for touchscreens, you have to resort to the multifunction rotary dial controller. As with many of the A5's technology features, the functionality is there, but getting to it can be a chore.

Virtual Cockpit replaces the instrument panel with a 12.3-inch display that's highly customizable: The tachometer and speedometer can be shrunk to open a larger display area showing things like vehicle status or your choice of map or Google Earth views. Interestingly, though, if Android Auto is activated, the Google Earth view and navigation map views are disabled and you'll see only a large, comparatively useless compass in the virtual cockpit.

Ultimately, none of these quirks were deal-breakers for me; the system is fast and responsive to inputs, minimizing the nuisance of having multilayered menus. The other technology additions are welcomed additions and the inclusion of a 360-degree camera system (even on a smaller car like this) is always welcome.

How's the Space?

If there's a weakness to the Audi A5 interior, it's backseat room. The car's low-slung proportions make it a tight squeeze back there, and while there's enough space to navigate the legroom issues if both passengers collaborate, the larger issue is headroom. The roof fed into the rear window right where my head sat (I'm 5-foot-11), impeding headroom. I had to slouch a bit to feel comfortable and not worry about the top of my head bonking the glass if we hit an unexpected bump.

Trunk volume is 11.6 cubic feet, slightly below the A4 sedan's 13.0 cubic feet. While the cargo area isn't very tall, it is deep, so it swallows up luggage nicely. Dropping two segments of the 40/20/40-split rear-seat also allowed me to fit three golf bags in back, which nicely matched the number of occupants who could still fit inside.

Safety and Driver Aids

My test vehicle came equipped with a Driver Assistance Package ($1,800) that added adaptive cruise control (which operates to a stop), lane keep assist, high beam assist, blind spot detection and traffic sign recognition. Audi's systems work as advertised. The lane keep assist operates subtly under most circumstances, keeping the car centered in its lane, not merely correcting after it strays.

There was one feature, however, that I was not ready for: The adaptive cruise control works with traffic sign recognition to power a feature Audi calls Predictive Control. When activated, the system changes the speed of the adaptive cruise control when it detects a change in the speed limit. So if you're cruising along at 65 mph and pass a sign dropping the speed limit to 45 mph, the system adjusts accordingly. There are ups and downs to this system, which I detail here, but I'd leave it turned off the vast majority of the time; managing speed is something I still like to do myself at this point.

Value

The 2018 Audi A5 starts at $43,775 including destination, but my test vehicle gleefully tacked on options to bump the as-tested price to $55,300. Additions included the two big option packages mentioned (Prestige Package and Driver Assistance Package), as well as Glacier White Metallic paint ($575), an adaptive suspension ($1,000), Dark Brown walnut wood interior accents ($350) and a heated steering wheel ($200).

There are many times when these heavily optioned luxury vehicles don't feel as though they match up to their lofty price tags, but the Audi A5 was the opposite for me. Interior materials are up to snuff, performance is impressive and technology is plentiful. My only hang-up would be a preference for the added utility of an Audi A4: greater passenger and cargo room, with analogous performance. Either way, though, you'll end up with a winner.


Latest 2018 A5 Stories

Consumer Reviews

Exterior Styling
(5.0)
Performance
(4.8)
Interior Design
(4.6)
Comfort
(4.9)
Reliability
(5.0)
Value For The Money
(4.6)

What Drivers Are Saying

(5.0)

Best car I ever had.

by DrRon from Delray Beach, FL on July 17, 2018

The 2018 Audi A5 Cabrio Premium Plus is the best can I have ever owned to date. And I have been an Audi owner for a number of years. The navigation system is accurate and easy to use. The blind spot ... Read full review

(5.0)

Comfortable and better fit me

by Nkwan from Carlisle, MA on July 10, 2018

Best car for young professionals and road trip. Good for family uses, I will highlly recommend it others friends. ECO friendly and save money for gasline. Read full review

Safety & Recalls

Recalls

The 2018 Audi A5 currently has 2 recalls

IIHS Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

Based on 2018 Audi A5 2.0T Premium

IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal, or poor.

Child Seat Anchors (Latch)

Ease of Use
good

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
good
Overall Rear
good
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry
good

Headlights

Overall Rating
marginal

Moderate overlap front

Chest
good
Head/Neck
good
Left Leg/Foot
good
Overall Front
good
Restraints
good
Right Leg/Foot
good
Structure/safety cage
good

Other

Roof Strength
good

Side

Driver Head Protection
good
Driver Head and Neck
good
Driver Pelvis/Leg
good
Driver Torso
good
Overall Side
good
Rear Passenger Head Protection
good
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
good
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
good
Rear Passenger Torso
good
Structure/safety cage
good

Small Overlap Front - Driver Side

Chest
good
Head/Neck
good
Hip/Thigh
good
Lower Leg/Foot
marginal
Overall Evaluation
good
Restraints and Dummy Kinematics
good
Structure and Safety Cage
good
marginal
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a nonprofit research and communications organization funded by auto insurers.

Manufacturer Warranty

  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    48 months / 50,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    48 months / 50,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    48 months / unlimited distance

CPO Program & Warranty

Certified Pre-Owned by Audi

Program Benefits

Comprehensive 300+ point dealer inspection, 24/7 roadside assistance including towing and trip interruption reimbursement, 1 Year/Unlimited Miles Audi Certified pre-owned Limited Warranty coverage, transferability of the Audi Certified pre-owned Limited Warranty to a subsequent private owner, and CARFAX® Vehicle History Report.

  • Limited Warranty

    1 Year / Unlimited Miles

    1 Year/ Unlimited Miles Audi Certified pre-owned Limited Warranty features 1 Year / Unlimited Miles of warranty coverage after the expiration of the new vehicle limited warranty or from the date of sale if the new vehicle limited warranty has expired and coverage honored at over 300 Audi dealerships service centers throughout the U.S., total confidence is yours as you take the road less traveled.
  • Eligibility

    Under 5 years / 60,000 miles

    Vehicles receive a 300+ point inspection.

    See inspection details.

Change Year or Vehicle

0 / 0 0 Photos
0 / 0

Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The A5 received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker