The performance figures for the new Audi RS 5 speak for themselves. Nor does closer examination cast a scrap of doubt: The latest Audi Sport model is driven by sportiness down to the finest detail. Join the League of Performance!

Peter Sommer (copy) & Robert Grischek (photo)

Just say the word and the Audi RS 5 can be decked out with a carbon roof featuring a visible fiber structure. But the front and rear spoi­lers, lateral inserts in the side sills, solid rear diffuser and diffuser insert can also be optionally ordered in this high-tech material. That goes for the door mirror housings and the side door trim, too.

Breathtaking. There’s no better way to sum up what the new Audi RS 5 is all about. Just look at the bare facts: 331 kilowatts of power and 600 newton-meters maximum torque generated by a newly developed 2.9-liter V6 biturbo engine. The eight-speed tiptronic orchestrates the power, which the quattro permanent all-wheel drive converts straight into forward thrust. The result? The Audi RS 5 sprints from 0 to 100 kilometers per hour in 3.9 seconds while mastering the complete repertoire of sporty driving styles. Audi drive select lets the driver tailor numerous standard components and various optional systems to suit. Take, for instance, the optional RS sport suspension plus with Dynamic Ride Control (DRC). Configured specifically for the new Audi RS 5, it reduces pitching and rolling motions for enhanced road holding. It also features three-stage adjustable dampers ranging from balanced and smooth to sporty and tight. The right setup, whatever the road surface. The RS brake assembly fitted with large discs and six-piston fixed calipers delivers powerful deceleration. To cope with even higher loads, 19-inch ceramic brakes are optionally available for the front axle. Highly resistant to wear, they have a long service life and are not sensitive to high thermal loads.

The Audi RS 5 comes ready for the road fitted with 19-inch forged aluminum wheels as standard, while 20-inch wheels are optionally available. Striking flared wheel arches—the “quattro blisters”—are a signature RS design element that reveals the close links to legendary Audi Sport cars.

Yet the looks of the new Audi RS 5 are enough to take your breath away before it even moves a muscle. It’s all down to the hallmark RS contours inspired by the legendary Audi 90 quattro IMSA GTO touring car. Flared wheel arches on the widened body coupled with the distinctive side sill attachments, RS bumpers with large air intakes and sculpted diffuser insert, plus the unobtrusive rear spoiler, make for an exterior styling that’s as elegant as it’s athletic. Compared with that of the Audi A5, the Singleframe grille is both broader and flatter. Add to the equation the dark-tinted headlights typical of the new design idiom at Audi Sport, and the car takes on an unmistakable look and feel. Headlights and rear lights come with LED technology as standard, but owners have the option of selecting Audi Matrix LED headlights. Available on request, exclusive styling packages in matte aluminum, glossy black or carbon enhance the car’s individual character. An optional carbon roof that not only adds to the aesthetic appeal but also reduces the weight by three kilograms is now available for the first time. Overall, the new Audi RS 5 is up to 60 kilograms lighter than its predecessor.

The huge air intakes in the front section, the wide, flat Singleframe grille and the rear diffuser between two oval tailpipes are distinctive features of the new Audi RS 5. Optional Audi Matrix LED headlights with dark-tinted surrounds emphasize the dynamic design idiom used for the head-on view.

The eight-speed tiptronic shifts gear purely electrically, “by wire.” The red contrast stitching is a characteristic feature of the optional RS design package.

The interior is similarly designed to emphasize the car’s sporty genes. The optional Audi virtual cockpit presents the driver with performance data via high-resolution RS-specific displays such as a G-meter and shift light, at the same time supplying information on tire pressure and temperature on request. It’s all so neatly laid out and can be configured to suit every driver’s personal preferences. RS sports seats, optionally available in fine Nappa leather with honeycomb quilting in a contrasting color, provide the creature comforts to go with secure support. And the vehicle interface is rounded out with the RS sports contour leather steering wheel featuring multifunction plus and large shift paddles. Add a couple of sporty touches? Black Alcantara leather and red contrast stitching on the steering wheel, selector lever knob and center console come in the shape of the RS design package, available on request.

Breathtaking. Yes, that pretty much sums it up. Even so, nothing compares to taking the car out for a spin yourself. Join the League of Performance.

Audi RS 5 Coupé fuel consumption urban/extra-urban/combined (in l/100 km): 11.5/7.1/8.7. CO2 emissions combined (in g/km): 197. Where stated in ranges, fuel consumption, CO2 emissions and efficiency classes depend on tires/wheels used.