Audi RS5 returns with Audi Sport Edition Coupe and Sportback

Sportback finally debuts on UK shores, but only 250 each of Coupe and Sportback will be available in 2019

Audi’s RS5 is available for the first time in the UK in Sportback guise, with dealers now taking orders for both the five-door car and the returning RS5 Coupe before deliveries begin later this month. You’ll have to be quick though, as just 250 examples of each will find their way into the country this year, and in special Audi Sport Edition form alone.

Mechanically it’s business as usual for the RS5, even if there’s a new wrapper available. Peak power of 444bhp comes from a 2.9-litre twin-turbocharged V6, with 443lb ft of torque on tap from 1900rpm.

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Power is sent to all four wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission. The centre diff sends 60 per cent of the engine’s torque to the rear wheels, where it’s split according to the whims of Audi’s sport differential for optimum traction. From a standing start the RS5 will pass 62mph in 3.9sec regardless of body style, while top speed is limited to 155mph.

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The Sportback has taken a little while to reach UK shores, but Audi should have little trouble selling all 250 examples of the model. Styling bridges the gap between RS5 Coupe and the RS4 Avant, and practicality is closer to the latter, with five seats, 480 litres of luggage space, and split-folding seats to expand that to 1300 litres.

Audi Sport Edition trim comes with its own features too, from 20-inch, anthracite-finish alloy wheels, to darkened glass, gloss black exterior trim (in place of the usual RS silver), and the standard fitment of a rowdier Audi Sport exhaust.

Also standard as part of Audi Sport Edition trim is a pair of RS super sports seats trimmed in diamond-stitched Nappa leather and Alcantara, along with a panoramic glass sunroof and piano black trim elements. Other features remain as per past RS5s: Virtual Cockpit, navigation, in-car internet, smartphone connectivity and a suite of safety features.

Adaptive dampers are standard too, with driving modes adjustable through Comfort, Auto, Dynamic and the configurable Individual mode. Experience with our long-term RS5 suggests Audi has judged these modes fairly well, giving GT-style legs in Comfort and a suitably taut feel in Dynamic – and the RS5’s cross-country pace should be undiminished.

The high level of specification means the new RS5s are far from cheap, though there’s no penalty in picking Coupe over Sportback or vice-versa, since each is priced at £68,985 before options. For reference, that’s in the region of £4k more than a BMW M4 Competition Package and just shy of a Mercedes-AMG C63 coupe.

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