Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Audi Pleasure Is All Upfront

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Audi Pleasure Is All Upfront

Article excerpt

Byline: By Peter Keenan

DRIVING the Audi A5 is a scintillating experience - attempting to sit in the back is not. Up front, everything is in place to make the A5 a dynamic drive.

The 3.0-litre diesel engine makes Audi's coupe lightning quick out of the blocks.

I had endless fun impressing my nine-year-old son with the rocket-like acceleration qualities of the V6 oil burner.

It powers the car from 0-62mph in a shade under six seconds helped by a close ratio sixspeed manual gearbox fitted as standard. The 238bhp monster is second only to the mighty Q7 V12 TDI in Audi's diesel performance hierarc hy.

Overtaking is a must, and the A5 is adept at putting boy racers revving up at the traffic lights in their place. But it still manages to achieve an average fuel consumption figure of up to 39.2mpg.

Not that it looks like a souped-up dragster. Indeed the styling of the exterior is quite understated for a coupe offering this level of performance.

It's not that the A5 looks dull, just quietly confident. Audi ensures the car is equipped with all the bits necessary to control this power so you don't end up wrestling with a tree.

There's more grip than a drowning man on a lifebuoy thanks to the quattro permanent four-wheel drive system. The sports suspension makes the ride firm but without ever threatening to shake loose any fillings. The power-assisted steering provides a good feel for what is happening on the road, while the handling is precise and balanced. However, Audi makes a point of saying that the A5 has four-seat practicality, so in fairness that claim has also to be tested.

Well, there are indeed four seats, but no one over the age of 10 will be able to sit for any length of time in the rear two. Coupled with this is the reality that getting in and out - even for the kids - is to elegance what Gordon Brown is to witty one-liners. …

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