Audi upgrades the RS 5

Audi upgrades the RS 5

Audi has given the 450hp RS 5 coupe and Sportback models a subtle set of upgrades just in time for Christmas.

Basically, this is the same round of enhancements that we've already seen in the A4 and in the standard A5 and A5 Sportback. So, on the outside, the main 'Singleframe' radiator grille is flatter and wider, giving the front end a cleaner look that copies the styling of the RS 6 and RS 7. There are 'implied' (which we think is a nice word for 'fake') air intakes above the grille that are supposed to remind us of the 1984 Audi Sport Quattro rally car.

The wheelarches are now 40mm wider than those of the standard model, while the new (optional) Matrix LED headlights get dark-finished bezels. Meanwhile the side sills and rear diffuser have been redesigned, and you can have gloss black, matt aluminum or carbon styling packages to further enhance their looks. Even the Audi four-rings logo and the RS badge can be finished in menacing black if you like. You can also choose from two new paint options - Turbo Blue and Tango.

On the inside, you get RS sports seats in leather and Alcantara as standard, with Nappa leather as an option, plus you can have RS red or grey highlghts throughout the cabin if you like. The most obvious change to the interior is that the RS 5 now gets the big 10.1-inch MMI infotainment touchscreen, which here includes a specific RS monitor that provides the driver with information on the engine temperature, longitudinal and lateral acceleration, the quattro sport differential, the tyre pressure and the tyre temperature.

In front of the driver is an updated Virtual Cockpit digital instrument panel, which also gets some RS-specific displays, and gearshift lights if you're using the eight-speed Tiptronic gearbox in manual mode. There's an optional head-up display too.

Engine power and torque - 450hp and 600Nm - are unchanged, but the RS 5 is now a little lighter, thanks to a carbon-fibre roof panel that saves four kilos from the mass of the vehicle. Performance remains brutal - 0-100km/h in 3.9 seconds and a top speed (if you tick the right options box) of 280km/h.

The suspension can be optionally upgraded to RS Sport Suspension Plus spec, which comes with dynamic anti-roll and three-stage adjustable dampers. There's also the new RS button inside the cabin (actually, it's on the steering wheel) that allows you to switch easily between maximum attack and maximum relax modes.

Standard wheels are 19-inch items, with 20-inch rims available as an option, and you can have carbon-ceramic brakes too.

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