With spring just around the corner Audi is debuting its much-anticipated A5 and S5 Cabriolets.
Both models will come as four-seaters with a fabric roof. Audi points out that the use of a fabric roof, as opposed to a hard-top, which has become much-more popular as of late, allows it to provide more cargo space. Even with the roof down, the trunk can still hold 11.3 cu.-ft. of stuff.
We’re sure the decision also had something to do with the fact that Audis are notoriously heavy, and making them even heavier wasn’t likely an option.
The soft-top can be opened in 15 seconds and closed in 17 seconds and can be operated at speeds up to 31 mph.
The official specs release so far are only for Europe, although much isn’t likely to change for North America. One area that is sure to be different, however, is in the number of engine choices. In Europe, an A5 Cabriolet will be available with five different engines, ranging in output from 180 to 265hp and will include two diesel powerplants. We can expect that in once the vehicles go on sale in the U.S., they will be offered in the 2.0TFSI and 3.2.
The 2.0 TFSI engine will make 211hp and 268 ft-lbs of torque and when offered in front wheel drive it will have either a multitronic or six-speed manual tranny. Quattro all-wheel drive models will come with a seven-speed dual-clutch S tronic transmission. The front-wheel drive model will be able to hit 62 mph in 7.5 seconds and achieve 34.6 mpg on average.
As for the 3.2-liter V6 engine, will will make 265hp and 243 ft-lbs of torque. With front wheel drive and an automatic transmission it will be able to hit 62 mph in 6.9 seconds and get an average fuel economy rating of 27 mpg (with quattro and the seven-speed DSG tranny).
As for the S5 Cabriolet it will make 333hp and 324 ft-lbs of torque thanks to Audi’s new supercharged 3.0-liter V6 engine. It will be available exclusively with quattro and a seven-speed DSG transmission and will hit 62 mph in just 5.6 seconds. Fuel-economy is rated at 24.5 mpg on average.
The A5 will come with 17-inch wheels as standard equipment and the S5 will feature 18s.
The A5 and S5 Cabriolets will be available with Audi’s Drive Select system, which allows the driver to choose between three different programs that control the throttle response, the steering sensitivity and the shift points (of the 7-speed transmission or multitronic six-speed auto). If the car is equipped with the MMI interface then driver’s can also create their own program for a customized driving experience.
Other driver selectable vehicle characteristics include the adaptive control shocks and the variable ratio steering.
Audi A5/S5 Cabriolets:
Complete specifications and details after the jump:
Audi A5 and S5 Cabriolet – the joy of open-top
Dynamic, confident and stunning – the new A5 Cabriolet from Audi is
emotionally evocative. The four-seater with the fabric top combines a
distinctly sporty character with the fascination of open-top driving, refined
comfort and a great everyday utility. Five efficient engines, an agile
suspension and a wide range of high-end options make the new Audi the most
attractive convertible in the mid-sized segment.
Delivery will begin in the second quarter of 2009. Prices start at 37,300 euros
for the entry-level 1.8 TFSI model with 118 kW (160 hp), which will follow
Crowning the new model series is the S5 Cabriolet. The letter “S”
traditionally stands for supreme sportiness – for dynamics, performance and
power, but also for amazing efficiency. Powering the S5 Cabriolet is a newly
developed, supercharged three-liter V6 that pumps out 245 kW (333 hp) for
Like all Audi convertibles, the open-top A5 also has a lightweight fabric top that
endows it with a silhouette of dynamic elegance. The fully automatic top opens in
just 15 seconds. Audi also offers an optional acoustic top with an intermediate
layer of insulating foam that reduces wind noise almost to the sedan level.
When opened, the Audi A5 Cabriolet top folds down so effectively that very little
trunk space is used up – leaving 320 liters (11.30 cubic ft) of unused storage
volume, clearly the best value in its field of competitors. The soft top
compartment lowers automatically when the top is opened. Equally useful is the
fold-down rear seat backrest and the large pass-through between the luggage
compartment and the interior, which increases the storage volume to a generous
750 liters (26.49 cubic ft).
Rounding out the comfortable character of the four-seater’s interior are automatic
seatbelt extenders for the front seats and the optionally available head-level
heating. A special coating on the optional leather seats reduces solar heating. The
A5 Cabriolet seats four comfortably. The refined ambience combines with perfect
ergonomics to convey an atmosphere of sporty elegance. Ultra-high-strength
steels and selective reinforcements of the body ensure high rigidity and crash
The A5 Cabriolet is being launched with three gasoline engines and two diesel
engines ranging between 132 kW (180 hp) and 195 kW (265 hp). All five power
plants are fueled via direct fuel injection; four of them use turbocharging.
Available powertrains include a six-speed manual, the continuously variable
multitronic and the new, lightning-fast seven-speed S tronic. In addition to front-
wheel drive, Audi also offers quattro permanent all-wheel drive for the higher-
power engines. The innovative sport differential, which variably distributes power
between the rear wheels, is optionally available for even greater dynamics and
Fascinating dynamics: Audi drive select
The perfect addition to this technology package is the Audi drive select vehicle
dynamics system, which enables the driver to chose among three different engine
maps controlling the characteristics of the fuel feed, the shifting points of the
seven-speed S tronic or the multitronic, and the boost provided by the servotronic
steering system. If the car is equipped with the MMI operating interface, a fourth,
freely programmable map is available. Additional technologies available include
adaptive control of the shock absorbers and variable-ratio dynamic steering.
The new Audi A5 Cabriolet features a rich array of equipment in addition to the
fully automatic top, including an automatic climate-control system and a CD
audio system. Highlights from the long list of options include the innovative
driver assist systems and the latest generation MMI operating interface, which
offers many attractive navigation and entertainment features.
As the dynamic top-of-the-line model of the new production series, the
S5 Cabriolet occupies a very special position. Its three-liter TFSI – a V6 with
mechanical supercharger – unfolds its 245 kW (333 hp) and 440 Nm (324.53 lb-ft)
of torque with impressive results: It responds tenaciously to the throttle and
delivers excellent driving performance. The quattro drivetrain, a sport suspension
with 18-inch wheels and a number of special equipment details underscore the
athletic character of the Audi S5 Cabriolet.
At a glance
Audi A5 and S5 Cabriolet
- Five engines between 132 kW (180 hp) and 195 kW (265) hp for the
A5 Cabriolet, 3.0 TFSI with 245 kW (333 hp) in the S5 Cabriolet
- All engines with direct fuel injection
- Turbocharging for the TDI and the four-cylinder gasoline engines
- 3.0 TFSI with supercharging
- Exemplary efficiency combined with superior performance
- Depending on the engine, manual, multitronic or seven-speed S tronic
- quattro all-wheel drive for the more powerful versions, with an optional
sport differential for the variable distribution of power to the rear wheels
- Lightweight suspension, balanced axle load distribution
- 17-inch aluminum wheels, large brakes
- Optional Audi drive select dynamic control system,
adaptive shock absorber control and dynamic steering available as options
- Lightweight fabric top with very good noise insulation
- Wind deflector standard, can be stored in the spare tire well in the trunk
- Automatic open/close drive standard, acoustic top optional
- Top can be opened/closed at up to 50 km/h (31.07 mph)
- Variable, self-retracting top compartment that lowers automatically
when the top is opened.
- Sporty, elegant design with harmonious lines
- Large luggage compartment even with the top open, large pass-through to the
- Wide range of convenience equipment, automatic seatbelt extenders standard
- Advanced assistant systems and features such as head-level heating optional
- Latest-generation MMI with innovative navigation and infotainment features
- Bang & Olufsen sound system
The joy of open-top driving
Audi A5 and S5 Cabriolet
The new A5 Cabriolet is a real Audi – and a particularly exciting one at that.
The four-seater with the elegant soft top combines its sporty character with
the joy of top-down driving, superior comfort and great everyday utility. Five
engines and a wide range of high-end options will be available at launch.
Prices start at 37,300 euros for the entry-level 1.8 TFSI model with 118 kW
(160 hp), which will follow somewhat later. The top-of-the-line model is the
S5 Cabriolet – its supercharged, three-liter V6 delivers 245 kW (333 hp) for
The exterior design
Open-top cars are bought with the heart – they are supposed to express the
personality of their drivers: their independence, their individuality, their joie de
vivre. Design is a particular important factor in this emotional decision, and Audi
underscores its leadership in this area once again with the A5 Cabriolet. It appeals
to young, highly educated customers with a good income and sporty lifestyle.
The A5 Cabriolet combines the brand’s progressive styling with the fascination of
an open-top car. Measuring 4.63 meters (15.19 ft) long and 1.85 meters (6.07 ft)
wide, but only 1.38 meters (4.53 ft) tall, the Audi four-seater wraps the sportiest
proportions in its class in classic elegance. The stretched hood, the long 2.75
meter (9.02 ft) wheelbase, the sharp lines and muscular sweep of the shoulder
contour draw a distinctive silhouette. The broad track of nearly 1.60 meters
(5.25 ft) front and rear, the large wheels, the distinctive front end, the expressive
tail and the sculptured, curving surfaces interact to create a harmonious whole.
The styling of the front end is dominated by the single-frame grille bordered by a
strip of anodized aluminum. The bars are painted Stone Gray; in the two top V6
models – the 3.2 FSI and the 3.0 TDI – these are painted a high-gloss black. Three
air intakes – the center one beneath the grille – emphasize the width of the front
The exquisite design of the headlights makes them look like technical works of
art. A plastic strut vapor-coated with chrome – the “wing” – separates the
individual lamp chambers. The high-efficiency daytime running lights of the
xenon plus headlights comprise a sickle-shaped strip of eight 1 Watt, high-
performance LEDs. Halogen fog lights are standard on all models, and Audi
offers adaptive light dynamic cornering lights as an option.
Lines, surfaces and contour edges – an athletic sculpture
Two lateral lines extending beyond the hood underscore the presence of the
single-frame grille. An aluminum molding lends high gloss to the windshield
frame, and LED blinkers are integrated into the new exterior mirrors. As with
every Audi, the flanks are marked by taut surfaces and two light-reflecting edges
– the dynamic line above the side sills and the tornado line below the window
shoulder. The broad, muscular arched shoulders, the pronounced wheel arches and
the large wheels – forged 17-inch wheels are standard – underscore the power of
the A5 Cabriolet.
Horizontal lines and a distinctly colored diffuser insert emphasize the wide, sporty
appearance of the tail end. The trunk bears an unobtrusive spoiler lip. LEDs in the
taillights creative a distinctive, ring-shaped light pattern. All models feature a dual
exhaust system, with the larger engine version having a tailpipe on the left and the
right. Even the TDI engines come with straight pipes – a subtle indication of zero
particulate emissions thanks to the standard diesel particulate filter (DPF).
The A5 Cabriolet is available in 15 colors: Aruba Blue, pearl effect, Brilliant Red,
Brilliant Black, Ice Silver, metallic, Garnet Red, pearl effect, Ibis White, Meteor
Gray, pearl effect, Quartz Gray, metallic, Phantom Black, pearl effect, Sahara
Silver, metallic, Sphere Blue, metallic and Deep Sea Blue, pearl effect. New
colors are Amethyst Grey, metallic, Aurum Beige, metallic and Teak Brown,
The outer skin of the top is available in a choice of four colors, Blue, Brown, Red
and Black, which form attractive combinations with the paint shades.
The convertible top
The fabric top with the large, flat glass rear window fits into the elegant design
profile of the Audi A5 Cabriolet perfectly and much more harmoniously than a
folding steel roof could. It is also much lighter, thus reducing total weight and
lowering the center of gravity. A metal top would have brought with it additional
disadvantages that Audi fundamentally rejects – wide, obvious body joints in the
roof and tail end area and reduced trunk space.
The soft top comprises three layers: top covering, cushioning pad and headliner.
In the optional acoustic top, which reduces wind noise almost to the level of a
sedan, this is replaced by a foam layer up to 15 mm (0.59 in) in thickness. The
acoustic top comes with an LED light for the rear seat – a feature usually found
only in the luxury convertible segment.
A high-pressure hydraulic pump and four operating cylinders that move the top
are actuated when a pushbutton on the center console or on the optional advanced
key is depressed. It takes 15 seconds to open the top, 17 seconds to close it. Both
actions can also be performed while driving at speeds of up to 50 km/h
(31.07 mph) – a major convenience in city traffic or on country roads.
Large trunk: 320 liters (11.30 cubic ft) with the top open
When opened, the top is retracted under a fixed cover, where it is folded down
into an extremely compact, trifold configuration. Its storage compartment, which
is made of a robust textile mat and adorned with aluminum trim, takes up just a
few centimeters of height and only 60 liters (2.12 cubic ft) of the 380 liters
(13.42 cubic ft) of luggage space. The remaining 320 liters (11.30 cubic ft) with
the top open are by far best in class. Rivals equipped with a folding steel roof
offer at least 100 liters (3.53 cubic ft) less.
A number of clever solutions bring even more convenience to the Audi
A5 Cabriolet. The driver does not have to do anything before opening the top –
the top compartment lowers itself automatically into the trunk. If there isn’t
enough room, a sensor annunciates an alarm and the top does not open. A master
switch with one-touch function also makes it very easy to actuate the four power
The 50:50 split folding rear seat backrests can be easily unlocked by actuating two
levers in the trunk. Pretensioned with springs, they drop automatically onto the
seat cushions. The standard pass-through is 70 centimeters (27.56 in) wide and 30
centimeters (11.81 in) high. The loading space behind the front seatbacks is thus
1.76 meters (5.77ft) long, providing a total storage volume of 750 liters
(26.49 cubic ft). A ski bag is optional; a 12-volt plug in the trunk comes standard.
The rear trunk lid with the electric lock reveals an opening large enough to stow
two golf bags. The low loading lip also makes loading and unloading easier. The
standard wind deflector, which is stretched over the rear seats, can be stored in the
spare-wheel well when not in use, provided that the optional compact temporary
spare wheel is not on board.
Like every Audi, the A5 Cabriolet has an extremely rigid body. This is the prime
reason for its precise, sporty handling, superior ride comfort and high crash safety.
Hardly any oscillations or vibrations can be felt in an open A5, not even at the
steering wheel or on the seats – the “comfort points.”
Several innovative technologies are used in the construction of the body-in-white.
A prime example are the ultra-high-strength steels, which Audi largely fabricates
in-house using hot forming. Combining low weight with extremely high tensile
strength, they are used in the side sills, the longitudinal members, the center
tunnel, the B-pillars and the front cross members.
A whole array of additional reinforcement parts compensates for the absence of a
solid roof. In the front section, diagonal struts run from the side sills to the
auxiliary frame for the suspension mounts. In the rear section, similar components
are integrated beneath the floor of the trunk. The side sills have particularly thick
walls. The hydroformed tubes that reinforce the A-pillars from the inside are
particularly high-strength and capable of bearing extremely high loads.
Another important component is a solid aluminum frame with integrated roll-over
protection located between the cabin and the trunk. When a rollover threatens,
electric actuators release aluminum braces pretensioned with powerful springs,
which shoot up fast as lightning behind the rear headrests and lock into place, thus
expanding the passenger survival space.
Seat-mounted head and thorax side airbags with a volume of 18 liters
(0.64 cubic ft) each provide protection in the event of a side impact; full-size
airbags protect the driver and front-seat passenger in the event of a frontal
collision. Because the control unit knows the seating position, it can adaptively
trigger the belts and airbags to provide the best possible protection for passengers
large and small in all types of collisions. In a rear-end collision, the integral head
restraint system averts the danger of whiplash injuries.
The front fenders of the Audi A5 Cabriolet are made of lightweight aluminum to
reduce weight and optimize the axle load distribution. Sophisticated details such
as a fully-enclosed underbody improve the airflow and thus the acoustics and also
fuel efficiency. With the top closed, the four-seater has a drag coefficient of 0.31
and a frontal surface area of 2.17 m2 (23.36 sq ft).
With its long wheelbase of 2.75 meters (9.02 ft), the A5 Cabriolet offers a roomy
interior; the open four-seater has plenty of room for longer trips. That’s also true
for the sportily sculpted rear seats, which can be optionally supplied with a center
console with a beverage holder with two cup holders and roller cover, including a
storage compartment beneath the front passenger seat.
The front seats are sportily low and sculpted for perfect ergonomics, offering
perfect control and support. Electric seatbelt extenders provide assistance with
fastening the belts. Integrated into the B-pillars, they move forward automatically
when the ignition is activated. The seatbelt extender returns to its ready position
once the tab engages in the buckle.
Audi offers a broad range of optional seats for special requirements – sport seats
with extendable thigh rests and electric lumbar support, all-electric adjustment
and heating, including heating for the back seats as a separate option. In the high-
end climate-controlled comfort seats, small fans and an automatic auxiliary heater
ensure luxurious comfort.
Another luxury feature integrated into the climate-controlled comfort seats is the
new neck-level heating. A three-level adjustable fan blows warm air through ducts
on the topside of the seatback to warm the back of the head and the neck. The
neck-level heating, which is also available for sport seats, prolongs the open-air
Another special feature is the optional leather upholstery: a special coating
inhibits solar heating while the A5 Cabriolet is parked in the sun with the top
down. This heat-up resistance function reflects the warming infrared radiation and
thus lowers the surface temperature by up to 20 degrees Celsius (68 degrees
Audi offers a choice of several seat coverings for the entire range of seats, from
the standard Arcade fabric to a combination of leather and Alcantara to a
particularly soft version of Fine Nappa leather. Seven colors are available: black,
lunar silver, pale gray, luxor beige, cardamom beige, cinnamon and red. Inlays
come standard in Micrometallic platinum; aluminum, burl walnut, ash and laurel
are available as options. The headliner is available in three colors: black, star
silver and linen beige.
Flowing elegance – the interior design
Elegance in flowing lines, perfect ergonomics, high-grade materials and
uncompromising craftsmanship characterize the interior. Like in every Audi, the
interior is a treat for the senses – for the ears, nose, fingertips and of course the
eyes. The teardrop-shaped surrounds of the instruments have already become
modern classics. The central, high-mounted onboard monitor is standard
equipment. The sculpted cockpit is oriented toward the driver. Flowing lines link
it to the center tunnel and the door linings.
If the customer has ordered either one of the two navigation systems, it comes
with the sophisticated MMI operating system. With its intuitive, easy-to-
understand menu system, the large buttons and the central control knob on the
middle tunnel, it is the best solution on the market.
Audi has also consistently used innovative technologies for the engines. All five
gasoline and diesel engines initially available for the A5 Cabriolet use common
rail direct injection. They are impressive evidence that efficiency and dynamics
are complementary and interdependent. Audi has demonstrated the potency of this
philosophy in motor sports for a number of years now. At the Le Mans 24 Hours,
the toughest test of them all, Audi R8 and R10 TDI race cars have claimed eight
overall victories in the past nine years.
The most powerful gasoline engine in the Audi A5 Cabriolet is the 3.2 FSI.
Installed in the head is the innovative Audi valvelift system (AVS) – a technology
that varies the lift of the intake valves in two stages as a function of load and
engine speed. The AVS improves the gas exchange and adjusts the volume of
intake air over a wide range. The throttle can also remain wide open even at part
load, reducing throttle losses. Torque and power increase, which permits a
somewhat longer gearing; fuel consumption is improved by up to ten percent.
Displacing 3,197 cc, the V6 delivers 195 kW (265 hp) and 330 Nm (243.4 lb-ft) at
between 3,000 and 5,000 rpm. With front-wheel drive and multitronic, it
accelerates the A5 Cabriolet to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 6.9 seconds on the way
to a top speed of 246 km/h (152.86 mph). Its fuel consumption averages just 8.6
liters per 100 km (27.35 US mpg). quattro all-wheel drive combined with the new
seven-speed S tronic is available as an option.
The 2.0 TFSI displacing 1,984 cc is also a high-tech engine. The four-cylinder
combines FSI direct fuel injection with turbocharging and crowns this
combination with the Audi valvelift system. Here AVS manages the variable
opening of the exhaust valves, reducing flushing losses in the combustion
chamber and ensuring an optimal flow of exhaust gas to the turbocharger. The
effects are the same as in the V6 – increased performance and lower consumption.
Another key feature of the four-cylinder are the two balance shafts, which are a
major factor for its smoothness.
Two versions of the 2.0 TFSI are available. In the entry-level version, which
comes with front-wheel drive and multitronic, the turbocharged four-cylinder unit
delivers 132 kW (180 hp) and 320 Nm (236.02 lb-ft), with the powerful torque
available between 1,500 and 3,900 rpm. This version completes the standard
sprint in 8.9 seconds and has a top speed of 219 km/h (136.08 mph). Average fuel
efficiency is an excellent 7.4 l/100 km (31.79 US mpg).
The more powerful version of the 2.0 TFSI delivers an impressive 155 kW
(211 hp) and 350 Nm (258.15 lb-ft) over an even broader range between 1,500
and 4,200 rpm. It is available with three powertrain versions: with quattro all-
wheel drive combined with the seven-speed, dual-clutch S tronic transmission,
and with front-wheel drive and either a multitronic or a six-speed manual
transmission. In the latter version, the A5 Cabriolet achieves performance that just
a few years ago would have been worthy of a six-cylinder version: It sprints to
100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 7.5 seconds and has a top speed of 241 km/h
(149.75 mph), making its average fuel consumption of just 6.8 l/100 km
(34.59 US mpg) all the more astonishing.
TDI from Audi – the world’s most successful efficiency technology
The TDI engines, which offer a unique combination of power and fuel economy,
have been the world’s leading efficiency technologies since their debut in 1989.
The two V6 diesels in the A5 Cabriolet also set the standards in their class. With
their composed character, massive torque and consistent running smoothness, they
represent a modern, smart type of sportiness.
The two four-valve engines, part of the modern family of V-engines from Audi,
feature lightweight, yet high-strength crank cases. A number of sophisticated
measures significantly reduce internal friction. Fast and accurate down to the
smallest injection volumes, the piezo injectors in the common rail injection
systems ensure a “soft” combustion process that benefits not only the engine
acoustics but also the raw emissions. Thanks to sophisticated exhaust gas
recirculation, both V6 TDI engines satisfy the limits of the Euro 5 standard.
Displacing 2,967 cc, the three-liter engine generates 176 kW (240 hp) and applies
500 Nm (368.78 lb-ft) of torque to the crankshaft. The sprint from zero to
100 km/h (62.14 mph) takes 6.4 seconds. Top speed is 247 km/h (153.48 mph).
This top-of-the-line diesel, which powers all four wheels via the seven-speed
S tronic transmission, consumes only 6.8 liters/100 km (34.59 US mpg).
The second TDI in the program is even thriftier: The 2.7-liter unit with 140 kW
(190 hp) and 400 Nm (295.02 lb-ft) between 1,400 and 3,250 rpm boasts an
average fuel consumption of only 6.2 liters/100 km (37.94 US mpg). The smaller
of the two diesels, which displaces 2,698 cc, is paired with front-wheel drive and
a manual transmission. The key data: 0 – 100 km/h (62.14 mph) and a top speed
of 230 km/h (142.92 mph).
The entry-level diesel engine is the 125 kW (170 hp) 2.0 TDI. Its average fuel
consumption is a mere 5.6 liters/100 km (42 US mpg) (preliminary figure). The
four-cylinder unit displacing 1,968 cc combines driving enjoyment and refinement
with high efficiency.
Dual cam shafts actuate 16 valves in the cylinder head. The common rail injectors
are managed by the most advanced controllers on the market. Modern piezo
injectors with eight-hole nozzles are also used in the 2.0 TDI. The fine modulation
of up to five injections per cycle significantly reduces noise. The single-piston
high-pressure pump develops a system pressure of 1,800 bar.
The fan belt drive was also acoustically redesigned; the shroud now includes more
noise-damping structures. Two balance shafts reduce the vibrations generated in
the crankshaft drive.
The four-cylinder includes a number of special features for improved
performance. The turbocharger uses adjustable vanes for rapid generation of
torque, and a pulsation damper reduces its vibrations. Electric motors control the
position of the swirlers in the intake tube to adapt the inflow of air to the
prevailing load and speed.
The optimized air management and modified piston geometry result in a high
maximum engine speed of 5,000 rpm and improved thermodynamics in the
combustion chambers. The two-liter TDI can be operated with an exhaust gas
recirculation rate of up to 60 percent, resulting in cooler and leaner combustion
and lower nitrogen oxide levels in the raw emissions. The EGR (exhaust gas
recirculation) unit provides high cooling performance.
The refined 2.0 TDI generates 125 kW (170 hp) and delivers 350 Nm
(258.15 lb-ft) of torque to the crankshaft between 1,750 and 2,500 rpm. That
suffices to launch the Audi A5 Cabriolet to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 9.3 seconds
and to a top speed of 222 km/h (137.94 mph).
Efficiency in stop-and-go traffic: the new start-stop system
Sporty power and high fuel efficiency are not contradictory at Audi – quite the
contrary: The one necessitates the other. The brand with the four rings has also
used its new technologies from its modular efficiency system in the A5 Cabriolet.
Cars equipped with the six-speed manual transmission in combination with either
of the two 2.0 TFSI engines or the 2.0 TDI engine come with a new solution as
standard equipment: a highly efficient start-stop system.
When the A5 Cabriolet comes to a stop at a traffic light or an intersection, the
shift lever is in neutral and the driver’s foot has been taken off the clutch, the
system’s control unit shuts down the engine. A message to this effect is displayed
in the display of the central instrument cluster. On a hill or a downgrade, the brake
system maintains the brake pressure automatically unless the slope is greater than
The engine restarts as soon as the driver pushes the clutch to the floor. A
particularly powerful starter developed by Audi completes this process in roughly
two-tenths of a second; faster, quieter and more comfortably than the competition.
The crankshaft only has to turn at most one quarter of a turn before the first
ignition occurs. While the driver puts the vehicle in gear, the engine speeds up;
when the driver releases the clutch, it has reached idle speed.
Audi combines its start-stop system with particularly powerful batteries that
continue to function even at very low outdoor temperatures. Only during the
initial warmup period of the engine is the battery not yet active so that the engine
oil and interior can be brought to temperature more quickly. The driver can
deactivate the start-stop system at any time with the push of a button.
The start-stop system reduces consumption by roughly 0.2 liters/100 km, which
corresponds to approximately five grams of CO2/km (8.05 g/mile).
Assistant for efficient driving: the new driver information system
The new start-stop system comes standard with another new technology from the
modular efficiency system – the driver information system with efficiency
program. It presents all of the data relevant to fuel efficiency on the central
display. One of its primary functions is the newly designed gearshift indicator. It
uses different sizes and colors to prominently indicate when it makes sense to
The new efficiency program continuously analyzes the flows of energy within the
car and shows detailed information about the effect on consumption of larger
electrical consumers such as the air conditioner or rear window defroster, which
can be as high as one liter per 100 kilometers. The system gives the driver
practical tips, if necessary, such as to close the windows while the air conditioner
is on. The current and average consumption are displayed at the push of a button,
showing their interdependence at a glance.
The new driver information system with efficiency program brings the
intelligence behind the modular efficiency system from Audi to life. It is a
solution that is fun for the driver and also serves as a reminder of the driver’s
responsibility: Approximately 30 percent of a car’s fuel consumption is a function
of driving style.
Energy recovery: the recuperation system
Like many Audi production models, the A5 Cabriolet is equipped with a
recuperation system that utilizes kinetic energy during deceleration. The alternator
increases its secondary voltage during the coasting and braking phases. It is then
able to convert the kinetic energy into electrical energy that is stored in the
battery. When the convertible accelerates again, the battery feeds the energy back
in, thus reducing the load on the alternator.
Audi equips the A5 Cabriolet with three different drivetrains. The 2.0 TFSI with
155 kW (211 hp) and the 2.7 TDI come standard with a six-speed manual
transmission featuring short throws for precise gear changes. Internal friction is
minimal. The two two-liter engines and the 3.2 FSI can be equipped with the
multitronic continuously variable automatic transmission. It combines smooth
operation, high efficiency and fuel-saving gear ratios. When speed is of the
essence, multitronic offers a sport mode and a manual mode with eight simulated
Audi offers the seven-speed S tronic as an option for the stronger of the two
2.0 TFSI engines and the 3.2 FSI. It is standard with the 3.0 TDI. Like a
mechanical gearbox, the S tronic uses pairs of gear wheels to create seven gear
The innovative, high-tech dual-clutch transmission changes gears in only a few
hundredths of a second and so serenely that the driver barely notices. Its high
efficiency and long ratio in seventh gear have a positive effect on consumption.
Drivers can set the seven-speed S tronic to change gears automatically or they can
decide for themselves when to shift gears, including by using shift paddles on the
The new seven-speed S tronic is made up of two separate transmissions and
integrates two multidisk clutches that control the various gears. The clutch located
on the outside directs the torque via a solid shaft to the gear wheels for the odd-
numbered gears 1, 3, 5 and 7.
A hollow shaft rotates around the solid shaft. It is connected to the clutch inside
the clutch assembly and controls the gear wheels for the even-numbered gears 2, 4
and 6, as well as reverse.
Both transmission structures are continuously active, but only one is connected to
the engine at any one time. For example, when the driver accelerates in third gear,
the fourth gear is already engaged in the second transmission structure. The
change of gear occurs by changing the clutches. The mechatronic module, a
compact unit comprising controllers and hydraulic actuators, controls all shift and
clutch operations with extraordinary exactness, even when carrying out precise
The power flows from the output shaft to the center differential of the quattro
permanent all-wheel drive, which distributes it in two directions. Normally 60
percent flows to the rear differential and 40 percent to the front differential. When
a wheel begins to slip, the mechanical center differential instantly and
automatically transfers most of the power to the axle with the better traction. Up
to 85 percent can be sent to the rear or a maximum of 65 percent to the front. The
seven-speed S tronic and quattro all-wheel drive come standard on the top diesel
model and are available as options for the two most powerful gasoline models.
Innovation from Audi: quattro with sport differential
The new sport differential on the rear axle provides even greater dynamism. The
latest Audi powertrain innovation takes driving enjoyment to a whole new level in
the A5 Cabriolet with quattro all-wheel drive thanks to the continuously variable
distribution of power between the rear wheels.
With quattro with sport differential, the open-top four-seater remains completely
neutral in all types of corner as if it were on rails. When steering into or
accelerating in a corner, the majority of the torque is sent to the outside rear
wheel, which literally pushes the car into the curve. The system thus anticipates
and prevents any tendency toward oversteer or understeer, ensuring an even more
dynamic driving experience.
Thanks to its extremely short reaction time – less than 100 milliseconds – the
sport differential takes effect even more rapidly than the ESP stabilization system.
It is just as effective while coasting as it is under load.
quattro with sport differential is a new type of rear-axle differential. A
superposition gear was added to both the left and right sides of the classic
differential; it rotates ten percent faster than the wheel’s drive shaft. Each stage
comprises two sun gears and a ring gear offset from one another. This results in a
large tooth overlap for high loadability with a minimal number of components.
A multi-plate clutch provides the connection between the drive shaft and the
faster-turning superposition gear. It is activated by an electrohydraulic actuator
and runs in an oil bath. When the clutch is closed, the higher speed of the
superposition gear is applied to the drive wheel. This generates additional torque
at the outside driven wheel and torque at the opposite wheel is reduced via the
differential. In this way nearly all of the torque can be directed to one wheel. The
maximum different in torque between the wheels is 1,800 Nm (1,327.61 lb-ft).
The secret to the effectiveness and fast reaction speed of the sport differential lies
in its management software – developed in-house by Audi. The controller
continuously and quickly recalculates the ideal distribution of torques for each
driving system as a function of the steering angle, yaw angle, lateral acceleration,
speed and other information.
The functions of the sport differential can also be adapted to the individual
requirements of the driver. The “comfort” mode is aimed primarily at safety and
stability, and load changes are optimally damped. “Auto” mode is programmed
for an even balance of all functions. The “dynamic” mode emphasizes all agility
functions. It is here that the improved dynamics due to the sport differential are
most noticeable. Load change behavior in this mode is both agile and controllable.
The Audi A5 Cabriolet leads its class in all relevant sporty criteria – steering
response, stability and agility – yet it provides a very smooth ride The reason for
these strengths is the exemplary body stiffness and the cleanly balanced
distribution of axle loads. The front axle is located far forward in the front section
– a condition made possible by an unusual solution: The differential is mounted in
front of the clutch or torque converter.
The suspension design is also technologically advanced. The front wheels are
mounted on a five-link axle that can respond separately to the longitudinal and
lateral forces acting upon it. Bearings are stiff in the lateral direction for sporty
precision and soft and supple in the longitudinal direction. All major components
of the front and rear suspensions are made of aluminum, which reduces the
The auxiliary frame for the front axle and the engine is rigidly bolted to the front
section of the car. The high rigidity facilitates the spontaneous generation of
steering force. The steering box, mounted low and far forward, transmits the
steering commands directly to the wheels.
The hydraulic rack-and-pinion steering with its 16:1 ratio is sporty and direct,
providing a precise and finely differentiated connection with the road. A regulated
vane-type pump also provides just the right amount of hydraulic energy for the
respective operating point. The speed-dependent servotronic is standard with the
V6 engines and the 211 hp 2.0 TFSI.
Compact and capable: the rear axle
The rear-wheel suspension of the Audi A5 Cabriolet is a self-tracking trapezoidal
link suspension and is identical in the front-wheel drive and quattro versions. It is
also mounted onto an auxiliary frame and is very compact for added space in the
trunk. The springs and shock absorbers – the latter with small supplemental
springs – are mounted separately on the wheel carriers, a solution that enabled the
developers to combine high ride comfort with sporty precision.
Audi also delivers the A5 Cabriolet with a sport suspension. Two variants are
available – a somewhat tauter configuration and an S line sport suspension that
lowers the body by 10 millimeters.
The Audi A5 Cabriolet rides on 7.5 J x 17 forged alloy wheels sporting a classic
six-arm design. The tires – including the winter tires – are in a sporty 225/50
format. Individualists can choose from three additional 17-inch wheels, two
18-inch wheels and one 8.5 J x 19 wheel. quattro GmbH also supplies additional
18-inch, 19-inch and even 20-inch wheels, the latter shod with 265/30 wide tires.
Behind the large wheels of the A5 Cabriolet are large brakes that can be very
precisely metered. Both 2.0 TFSI models have 314 millimeter (12.36 in) disks up
front and 300 millimeter (11.81 in) disks at the rear. The ventilated front disks are
designed for maximum heat dissipation: The two halves of the disk are connected
by hundreds of small metal cubes, between which a high volume of cooling air
can flow in a very short period of time.
The V6 versions of the new Audi A5 Cabriolet are equipped with brakes featuring
320 millimeter (12.60 in) disks. A composite construction was chosen for the
calipers: nodular cast iron is used in areas requiring high strength. The piston
housing of aluminum dissipates the heat very well. The lightweight brake calipers
are extremely stiff; the aluminum disks and cover plates are also unusually light.
Even more driving enjoyment: Audi drive select
One high-end technology that helps the A5 Cabriolet outpace its competitors is
the Audi drive select driving dynamics system. It provides the driver with access
to all of the technical components relevant to driving dynamics via buttons on the
center console, and enables the driver to switch between three modes – comfort,
auto and dynamic – to vary their function. If the MMI navigation plus operating
system is present, a fourth mode in which the driver can compose his or her own
custom settings from a large number of parameters is also available.
Audi drive select influences the engine’s throttle response characteristic, the shift
points of the seven-speed S tronic and multitronic transmissions as well as the
boost of the servotronic steering. Because of the modular system layout, the
customer can order one or more of three additional technologies: the sport
differential, adaptive shock absorber control or dynamic steering.
A fast controller plays the lead role in electronic shock absorber control. It
continuously analyzes the signals received from 14 sensors and calculates the
optimal damping per wheel in extremely short intervals (1,000 times per second).
The CDC (continuous damping control) shock absorbers include
electromagnetically actuated valves. They control the flow of hydraulic fluid
between the inner and the outer tubes. A large cross-section provides a soft
damping characteristic, and a small cross-section provides a hard damping
The dynamic steering is another high-end technology from Audi – its
superposition gear modifies the steering ratio as a function of driving speed. It is
integrated into the steering column and combined with an electric motor. As a
harmonic drive it is compact and light. It operates without any play and is
therefore extremely precise, with low friction. It can transmit very high torques
and operates at a high level of efficiency.
Audi dynamic steering can vary its steering ratio by nearly 100 percent in
response to both the vehicle speed and the Audi drive select mode in use. The
transitions are continuous and undetectable. The system is very direct when
parking, and boost is also very high. At moderate highway speeds, the system
becomes less direct and provides less power assist. At top speeds, an indirect
steering ratio and low level of power assist facilitate steady tracking.
The dynamic steering system cooperates closely with ESP in the vehicle dynamics
and safety areas. It relieves the burden on the electronic stabilization program for
the simple reason that a steering correction can be performed faster than the time
needed by the brake system to build up pressure at the individual wheels. It thus
eliminates many braking operations and the driving becomes faster and more
Dynamic steering counteracts both oversteer as a result of load changes and
understeer. It also provides valuable assistance when braking on surfaces with
various coefficients of friction.
The Audi A5 comes with an impressive array of standard equipment. This
includes a fully automatic convertible top, a wind deflector, 17-inch alloy wheels,
individually folding rear seatbacks with a large pass-through, an automatic
climate control system and the chorus audio system with CD player. Automatic
seatbelt extenders, an electromechanical parking brake and – starting with 140 kW
(190 hp) models and above – xenon plus headlights including daytime running
light strip and LED rear lamps are also standard.
Attractive options bring premium-class luxury to the open-top four-seater. The
adaptive light option combines xenon plus headlights with dynamic cornering
lights; the high-beam assistant changes automatically between low beam and high
beam. The advanced key provides keyless entry, pushbutton starting and opening
and closing the top remotely. The Audi hold assist adds numerous functions to the
electromechanical parking brake.
The automatic climate control system regulates the temperature separately in three
zones in the vehicle; the acoustic top further reduces wind noise; and the climate-
controlled comfort seat in combination with neck-level heating creates a perfectly
tempered environment. The optional LED lighting for the vanity mirrors is an
unusual touch. When it comes to the chassis, the program is complemented by the
Audi drive select system, quattro with sport differential and two conventional
Innovative driver aids make driving in the A5 Cabriolet even more relaxed,
composed and safe. These include the adaptive cruise control with the Audi
braking guard functions, Audi side assist and Audi lane assist. They keep the
open-top four-seater a safe distance from the vehicle to the front and help the
driver to change lanes or to stay in lane. The Audi parking system advanced with
acoustic and optical parking aids uses a rearview camera to display the area
behind the vehicle on the Audi MMI monitor.
For sports fans: the S line package
Audi has put together two S line packages for customers with particularly
dynamic tastes. The S line sport package plus combines the taut setup and lowered
body with 18-inch wheels. Fine details abound in the interior – sport seats covered
in cloth and leather, a special leather sport steering wheel, a leather shift lever
knob, inlays in brushed aluminum and color-coordinated floor mats. S line logos
are found on the fenders, the steering wheel, the seats and the door sill trims. The
exterior colors Misano Red, pearl effect and Monza Silver, metallic are offered
exclusively for the S line sport package plus.
Audi also offers as an alternative or as a supplement the S line exterior package,
which imparts the body with a particularly dynamic look. Independent bumpers
and distinctive features on the side air intakes, on the diffuser and on the tailpipes
are the primary elements. Side sill trims painted in the body color and S line
badges on the door sill trims and the front fenders round out the program.
Audi also offers an attractive range of multimedia components. The concert radio
with CD has a memory card reader for MP3 and WMA music files and an AUX-
in port for connecting an MP3 player. A 6.5-inch color monitor and eight speakers
round out the package. The symphony radio adds a six-disk CD changer.
The next-generation MMI navigation and MMI navigation plus infotainment
systems offer even more capabilities. The former includes a color display, a
memory card reader and a six-speaker sound system. It can be expanded to
include a digital radio receiver, a CD changer, a high-performance Bluetooth cell
phone interface and an interface for full iPod integration.
Deluxe multimedia: MMI navigation plus
The top-of-the-line MMI navigation plus has exclusive technologies on board.
The seven-inch, high-resolution color monitor shows the navigation maps as
either conventional 2D graphics or in 3D. Map data are stored on a 40 GB hard
drive. Places of interest and city models are shown in 3D for better orientation.
Music files and the user’s contacts are also stored on the hard drive. The radio
module features a dual tuner, and there is a player for audio and video DVDs that
can be controlled easily via a special joystick function for the MMI control unit.
Optional features enable the MMI navigation plus system to be expanded into a
high-end media center. Audi offers solutions such as an analog/digital TV tuner
and a luxury sound system from Bang & Olufsen that treats passengers to hi-fi
The Audi S5 Cabriolet
The top-of-the-line model of the new Cabriolet production series from Audi is the
S5 Cabriolet. The letter “S” stands for Sport – for dynamics, performance and
power, but also for amazing efficiency.
The Audi S5 Cabriolet’s engine is a newly developed, supercharged, three-liter
V6. A supercharger in the space between the two banks of cylinders pressurizes
the direct-injection 3.0 TFSI to up to 0.8 bar. Two downstream intercoolers
reduce the temperature of the compressed intake air. Power peaks at 245 kW
(333 hp); torque between 2,900 and 5,300 rpm remains constant at a generous
440 Nm (324.53 lb-ft).
The six-cylinder unit, which displaces 2,995 cc, exemplifies the Audi philosophy
of intelligent efficiency – boost replaces displacement. The powerful thrust, the
spontaneous response that is the result of short fuel paths and the aggressive
engine sound make for a fascinating driving experience.
The open-top four-seater sprints from zero to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 5.6
seconds and accelerates up to a governed top speed of 250 km/h (155.34 mph).
Yet at 9.6 liters per 100 km (24.5 US mpg), it is amazingly fuel-efficient.
Out-and-out dynamism: drivetrain and suspension
The Audi S5 Cabriolet comes standard with servotronic, seven-speed S tronic and
quattro drive. The sport differential is optional. The 18-inch cast aluminum
wheels are shod with 245/40 tires. The black brake calipers are emblazoned with
S5 emblems. It goes without saying that the S version also has a specially sports-
tuned suspension. The acoustic top is also standard equipment.
A number of design features contribute to the distinctively sporty styling,
including modifications at the lower front and back panels, at the front spoiler and
the diffuser, at the single-frame grille, at the air intakes, at the sill trims and at the
The exterior mirrors are mounted in shimmering aluminum-look housings. The
Sprint Blue, pearl effect paint finish is exclusive to the S5 Cabriolet and
emphasizes its athletic character.
Inside, electrically adjustable sport seats covered in Alcantara and leather and
brushed aluminum inlays underscore the high-quality, dynamic style of the high-
end model. The scales of the instruments are a subtle gray; the pointers are
illuminated white. The color driver information system is standard. Aluminum-
look shift paddles and a center armrest round out the program of distinctive
features. S5 logos adorn the door sill trims, the key, the leather multifunction sport
steering wheel and the instruments.
Extra-firm S sport seats covered in Silk Nappa or the climate-controlled comfort
seats are available as options from Audi. The seat coverings are available in black,
brown and three two-color combinations.
The headliner is available in star silver and black. Inlays are available in carbon,
fine grain birch wood and stainless steel mesh. The latter comprises countless
steel fibers and feels slightly rough – an unusual haptic experience.
Audi Cabriolets in the mid-sized segment since 1991
The new A5 Cabriolet is the latest chapter in a long history of success written
over the last 18 years by the brand with the four rings. The first open-top Audi of
the modern automotive era appeared in 1991 and was based on the Audi coupe.
The four-seater had a wheelbase of 2.56 meters (8.4 ft), was 4.37 meters (14.34 ft)
long and offered 230 liters (8.12 cubic ft) of trunk space. The smooth lines and the
softtop, which even then resided in its own compartment behind the rear seats,
imparted the vehicle with an understated, classic yet modern appearance and
defined a style that remains current today.
From 1993, optional front seats with integrated seatbelts and rollover protection
provided greater safety in the event of a crash. A wind deflector and an
electrohydraulic drive that opened the top in 30 seconds were first offered in
1993. A hardtop followed in 1997.
The Cabriolet debuted with a five-cylinder engine producing 98 kW (133 hp).
Early 1993 saw the introduction of an entry-level gasoline engine displacing two
liters and producing 85 kW (115 hp) and two newly developed V6 units – a 2.6
liter with 110 kW (150 hp) and a 2.8 liter with 128 kW (174 hp). In spring 1997, a
1.8 liter four-cylinder unit with 92 kW (125 hp) assumed the role of the new
entry-level engine. All power plants transferred their power to the front tires via a
five-speed manual transmission. Four-speed automatics were available for the
more powerful engines.
In September 1995, the 1.9 TDI with 66 kW (90 hp) made its debut in the
Cabriolet. This diesel engine marked another pioneering move by Audi in the
premium segment. The 202 Nm (148.99 lb-ft) of torque at 1,900 rpm allowed for
relaxed cruising with minimal fuel consumption. In 1997, Audi gave the Cabriolet
some minor cosmetic updates. Production ended three years later.
2002: The Audi A4 Cabriolet
In early 2002, the brand launched the second edition of the open four-seater,
which this time was built by Karmann from the very beginning. In the second
generation, now called the Audi A4 Cabriolet, the wheelbase grew to 2.65 meters
(8.69 ft) and length increased to 4.57 meters (14.99 ft), which meant significant
gains in interior space. The trunk held 315 liters (11.12 cubic ft), and the drag
coefficient was an impressive 0.30.
Like its predecessor, the quiet, harmonious silhouette featured an optical highlight
– an aluminum frame around the windshield. Special reinforcements like the
double rear wall, which harbored two roll-over bars, endowed the body with high
rigidity. The three-ply softtop with the glass rear window was once again
electrohydraulically powered, and a two-zone, automatic climate control system
was included as standard equipment.
The front suspension was a four-link construction. In the rear was self-tracking
trapezoidal link suspension. Most axle components were made of aluminum. Four
large disk brakes, ventilated up front, provided the stopping power. The ESP
stability program was included standard for active safety. Its 16-inch alloy wheels
gave the Cabriolet a safe and nimble ride.
Audi initially offered new V6 gasoline engines with five-valve cylinder heads.
The 2.4 liter produced 125 kW (170 hp), and the larger displacement, sonorous
three-liter 162 kW (220 hp). In fall 2002, the 2.5 liter diesel with 120 kW (163 hp)
debuted as the world’s first V6 TDI in a convertible. The equally powerful, 1.8 T
four-cylinder turbo rounded out the portfolio late in the year. Joining the standard
five-speed manual transmission as an option was the new multitronic – the
world’s first continuously variable transmission in an open-top car.
The 1.8 T and 3.0 versions were available with quattro all-wheel drive beginning
In late 2003, Audi introduced the S4 Cabriolet as a highlight at the top of the
model line. The 4.2 liter V8 with five valves per cylinder produced 253 kW
(344 hp) and launched the open-top four-seater to 100 km/h (62.14 mph) in 5.9
seconds on its way to a top speed of 250 km/h (155.34 mph).
A six-speed tiptronic was offered as an alternative to a six-speed manual.
Rounding out the program was a new entry-level model with a two-liter four-
cylinder producing 96 kW (130 hp).
2005: Next generation with large single-frame grille
The model series was discontinued in fall 2005. The successor model bore the
large single-frame grille. Audi completely reshuffled the diesel lineup, which has
since comprised the 2.0 TDI with 103 kW (140 hp) and the 3.0 TDI with 171 kW
(233 hp). The 2.7 TDI with 132 kW (180 hp) followed shortly thereafter. The
gasoline engines saw the 1.8 liter four-cylinder joined by two new direct injection
engines – the 2.0 TFSI with 147 kW (200 hp) and the 3.2 FSI, which delivered
188 kW (255 hp).
Two top-of-the-line models rounded out the range. The open-top S4 kept the
motor of its predecessor. It was joined in fall 2006 by the RS 4 Cabriolet,
developed and manufactured by quattro GmbH. Its newly developed FSI V8, also
a 4.2 liter engine, was designed for high revs and put out 309 kW (420 hp). With
front-wheel drive and quattro all-wheel drive, with five and six-speed
transmissions, with the continuously variable multitronic and comfortable
tiptronic, Audi offered a broad range of drivetrain options for the A4 Cabriolet.