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2019 Audi A5 Review

The 2019 Audi A5 ranks near the top of the competitive luxury small car class. It boasts a fantastic combination of engaging performance, interior opulence, and easy-to-use features.

Pros & Cons

  • Potent engine lineup
  • Dynamic handling and comfortable ride
  • High-class cabin
  • User-friendly features
  • Undersized rear seat and trunk
  • High base price for the class

8.8

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 9.5
Performance: 8.7
Interior: 8.7
Safety: 9.3
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

Is the Audi A5 a Good Car?

The 2019 Audi A5 is an excellent car. Performance-wise, it boasts a peppy base engine, a refined transmission, engaging handling and a comfortable ride. Audi's commitment to interior elegance and modern, intuitive technology also shines through in the A5. The cabin is a comfortable and relaxing place to be. The A5’s somewhat cramped back seat is one of its few downsides.

Should I Buy the Audi A5?

Though it has a high price tag, the 2019 A5 is one of the best buys among luxury small cars. Offering various powertrains, trim levels, and body styles, it's easy to find an A5 that suits your needs. Still, there are some intriguing alternatives that are worth consideration, such as the BMW 4 Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class, and the attractively priced Kia Stinger.

Compare the A5, 4 Series, and C-Class »

Should I Buy a New or Used Audi A5?

After a full redesign for the 2018 model year, the Audi A5 carries over for 2019 mostly unchanged. One notable update is the introduction of the high-performance RS 5 Sportback model. The RS 5 was previously only available as a coupe for 2018. Some features and packages were shuffled around for 2019. Audi also axed a no-cost manual transmission option in the 2019 A5, so a used A5 is your only option if you prefer to row your own gears. If none of these changes matter that much, consider shopping for a very similar 2018 Audi A5. It will likely save you lots of money over a new 2019 model.

You can also probably save thousands more by shopping for a model from the previous generation. However, these models look different, and they also have weaker engines and fewer standard features.

If you're considering an older model, be sure to read our 2017 A5 and 2018 A5 reviews to help make your decision. Also, check out our Used Car Deals page to learn about savings and discounts you can find on used cars.

Compare the 2017, 2018, and 2019 A5 »

We Did the Research for You: 26 Reviews Analyzed

We analyzed 26 Audi A5 reviews – along with performance specs, fuel economy estimates, and more – to help you decide if the 2019 A5 is the right new car for you. This 2019 Audi A5 review incorporates applicable research for all model years in this generation, which spans the 2018 through 2019 model years.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News & World Report has been ranking cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007, and our team has more than 75 years of combined automotive industry experience. To remain objective, we don't accept expensive gifts or trips from car companies, and an outside team manages the advertising on our site.

How Much Does the Audi A5 Cost?

The 2019 Audi A5 has a base price of $44,200. That’s higher than the starting price of most other vehicles in the luxury small car class. The sporty S5 variant raises the price to $52,400, while the high-performance RS 5 model retails for $74,200. For more details on trim levels and pricing, see our Which Audi A5 Model Is Right for Me? section below.

Overall, the A5’s price point falls in the middle of the Audi car lineup. The Audi A3 and Audi A4 sedans are the least expensive models at $33,300 and $39,200, respectively. The Audi A6 sedan is priced at $54,100. The pricier Audi A7 hatchback and Audi A8 sedan start at $68,000 and $83,800.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great deals at your local Audi dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Audi deals page.

Audi A5 Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Audi A5 or BMW 4 Series?

The BMW 4 Series and Audi A5 have a lot in common: Both are available in coupe, convertible, and hatchback body styles, and both cars have similar starting prices. Both also reward drivers with refined handling, punchy engine options, and user-friendly infotainment features. You can’t really go wrong with either model, so choosing between these two may come down to personal preference. That being said, the A5 is a better value in many respects. It comes standard with all-wheel drive plus a wider array of active safety features. These are optional with the BMW.

Which Is Better: Audi A5 or Mercedes-Benz C-Class?

The Mercedes-Benz C-Class is another popular pick in the luxury small car class. Like the A5, the C-Class is available in a range of body styles and can be had with muscular engine options. Both models also have exceptionally well-trimmed interiors. The A5 earns a bit more praise, thanks to its easier-to-use infotainment system and zestier handling. Still, both are fine choices.

Compare the A5, 4 Series, and C-Class »

A5 Interior

How Many People Does the A5 Seat?

The Audi A5 Sportback model holds five people, while the coupe and convertible models seat four. Up front, the seats are comfortable for long highway trips, and there’s plenty of side support and bolstering for twisty maneuvers. It's easy to find a relaxing driving position thanks to ample power adjustments, and the A5 gives the driver a good view of the road ahead.

Back-seat accommodations vary based on body style. The Sportback has ample legroom for adults, but its coupe-like sloping roofline limits headroom. There’s even less space in coupe and cabriolet models. Entering and exiting the back seat can be difficult, and the whole second row feels cramped.

A5 and Child Car Seats

Both the Audi A5 coupe and A5 Sportback have two complete sets of rear LATCH child-seat connections. The Sportback has an additional tether anchor for its middle seat. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gives both LATCH systems the highest score of Good for ease of use. All the anchors are easy to locate and use, and they’re clearly labeled.

A5 Interior Quality

Like most vehicles in the Audi lineup, the A5 has a sleek and modern design that's luxurious without being overly flashy. High-end materials are everywhere you look, and the whole cabin flows together nicely. Leather seats are standard, and you can opt for upgraded Milano or Nappa leather, Alcantara seat inserts, and metal or wood interior trim pieces.

A5 Cargo Space

The five-door Audi A5 Sportback has one of the largest cargo holds in the luxury small car class, at 21.8 cubic feet. Folding the back seat down gives you a total of 35 cubic feet. The Sportback's hatch opening is large and wide, making it easy to load in bulky cargo.

The A5 coupe has 11.6 cubic feet of trunk space, a below-average amount for this class. At just 9.3 cubic feet, the A5 cabriolet has one of the smallest trunks in the segment. Regardless of model, a power trunk (or liftgate) is standard.

A5 Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

The 2019 A5 comes standard with an MMI infotainment system, which features a 7-inch display. Instead of a touch screen, you use a rotary controller on the A5’s center console to navigate through menus and select functions. It's pretty straightforward to use, even when driving. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone integration are also standard.

An upgraded infotainment system with an 8.3-inch screen is optional. It also comes with satellite radio, wireless device charging, navigation, and a touch pad on the center console. This touchpad uses handwriting recognition, allowing you to enter phone numbers or addresses by drawing on the pad with your finger.

You can upgrade from the standard 7-inch digital driver information display, to a 12.3-inch Virtual Cockpit screen. It has digital gauges and works in tandem some infotainment features with other vital information about the car and operation.

Read more about interior »

A5 Performance

A5 Engine: Not a Bad One in the Bunch

The 2019 Audi A5 comes standard with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine and a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. Rated at 248 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque, this turbo-four engine has no trouble getting you moving and up to high speeds. The transmission rattles off smooth, precise shifts as well.

Under the hood of the Audi S5 is a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine that puts out 349 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque. An eight-speed automatic transmission rounds out this powertrain.

The high-performance Audi RS 5 comes with a twin-turbocharged 2.9-liter V6 engine good for 444 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque. It's one of the quickest sedans you can currently buy, with a 0-60 time of 3.7 seconds. A package of performance options also raises the car's limited top speed to 174 miles per hour.

A5 Gas Mileage: Pretty Efficient

The standard 2019 Audi A5 has great fuel economy for a luxury small car. It gets an EPA-estimated 23 mpg in the city and 34 mpg on the highway. The 2019 S5 earns an estimated 21/30 mpg city/highway. The RS 5 comes in at 18/27 mpg.

A5 Ride and Handling: Among the Best

The A5 handles curves with enthusiasm, exhibiting controlled body motions around turns. Steering is sharp and direct, and road grip is excellent thanks to standard all-wheel drive. You can enhance the S5's performance chops with upgrades like an adaptive sport suspension, an upgraded rear differential, and dynamic steering. The RS 5 comes with a uniquely tuned RS adaptive suspension.

When you want to take it a little easier, you'll appreciate the A5's forgiving ride quality over rough roads. The suspension soaks up bumps and potholes, and most road and wind noise is isolated from the cabin.

Read more about performance »

A5 Reliability

Is the Audi A5 Reliable?

The 2019 Audi A5 has an above-average predicted reliability rating of 3.5 out of five from J.D. Power.

Audi A5 Warranty

Audi covers the A5 with a four-year/50,000-mile warranty.

Read more about reliability »

A5 Safety

A5 Crash Test Results

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 2019 A5 Sportback an overall safety rating of five out of five stars. The car received five stars in the side crash and rollover tests, and four stars in the frontal crash test. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave the A5 coupe and Sportback the highest score of Good in five individual crash tests. The Sportback also earned a score of Good in the passenger-side small overlap front test, which the coupe didn’t undergo. Both models received a score of Superior for front crash prevention technologies, and a rating of Marginal for how well the headlights illuminate the road ahead.

A5 Safety Features

The Audi A5 comes standard with a rearview camera and Audi Pre Sense Basic, which prepares the car and occupants for a collision by closing the roof and windows, tightening seatbelts, and activating the hazard lights. Standard Audi Pre Sense City includes forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, and automatic emergency braking.

The A5 is available with a long list of other optional advanced safety technologies. These include blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, front and rear parking sensors, a head-up display, adaptive cruise control, stop-and-go traffic jam assist, automatic parking assist, a surround-view parking camera, automatic high beams, traffic sign recognition, lane departure warning, and lane keep assist. Optional Audi Pre Sense Rear can detect an impending rear-end collision and prepare the car and occupants for impact. You can also upgrade the A5 to alert you when vehicles or cyclists are approaching on your side as you prepare to exit the car. Turn assist can help mitigate collisions when making a left turn across oncoming traffic, and collision avoidance assist automatically steers the car around an obstacle on the road ahead.

Read more about safety »

Which Audi A5 Model Is Right for Me?

The 2019 Audi A5 lineup features almost 20 different configurations. There are three body styles: coupe, convertible, and the five-door Sportback. There are three models - A5, S5, and the high-performance RS 5, and each has a unique engine. Trim levels include Premium, Premium Plus, and Prestige. One of the few things these models have in common is standard Quattro all-wheel drive. Feature availability may vary depending on body style, but we've covered some of the more popular configurations below.

Choosing a body style and powertrain will come down to personal preference. No matter which body style and model you choose, we recommend the midrange Premium Plus trim. This offers a good blend of features and value, building on an already long list of standard amenities like leather and heated seats, a sunroof, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, Android Auto, and Apple CarPlay. The Premium Plus comes with a price increase of about $4,400 compared to the base model, but it adds proximity keyless entry, a hands-free trunk, a 12.3-inch Virtual Cockpit display, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and an upgraded infotainment system with an 8.3-inch display screen, satellite radio, wireless device charging, navigation, and handwriting recognition.

Audi A5 Premium

The 2019 Audi A5 coupe and Sportback Premium start at $44,200. The base Audi A5 cabriolet Premium retails for $51,200. The A5 features a 248-horsepower, turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine; a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission; and all-wheel drive.

Standard features include leather upholstery, power-adjustable front seats, a leather-wrapped shift knob, three-zone automatic climate control, a panoramic sunroof, a power trunk, push-button start, LED headlights and taillights, rain-sensing windshield wipers, heated and power-adjustable outside mirrors, a 7-inch digital driver information display, a rearview camera, Audi Pre Sense Basic, forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, and automatic emergency braking.

The standard MMI infotainment system features a 7-inch display screen, two USB ports, Bluetooth, a 10-speaker stereo, HD Radio, voice command activation, Android Auto, and Apple CarPlay.

For $1,500, the Convenience package includes proximity keyless entry, hands-free trunk access, satellite radio, driver's seat and outside-mirror memory function, blind spot monitoring, and Audi Pre Sense Rear. The Sportback model offers the $1,000 S Line Sport package (standard in the A5 Coupe), which includes front sport seats and upgraded exterior styling.

Audi A5 Premium Plus

Prices for the A5 coupe and Sportback Premium Plus trim start at $48,600, with the cabriolet retailing for $55,600. Added features include proximity keyless entry, a hands-free trunk, a 12.3-inch Virtual Cockpit display, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, vehicle exit warning, Audi Pre Sense Rear, and front and rear parking sensors. An upgraded infotainment system has an 8.3-inch display screen, satellite radio, wireless device charging, navigation, and MMI Touch handwriting recognition.

Some options include $800 ventilated front seats and a $950 19-speaker Bang & Olufsen sound system. The optional Cold Weather package for the Sportback model costs $750 and includes a heated steering wheel and heated rear seats. The Luxury Package for the cabriolet costs $2,100 and adds ventilated front sport seats, a heated steering wheel, and a neck air-vent system.

Audi A5 Prestige

The 2019 Audi A5 Prestige starts at $52,300 for coupe or Sportback models, and at $59,300 for the cabriolet. The Prestige trim comes with a Bang & Olufsen stereo, a head-up display, adaptive cruise control, stop-and-go traffic jam assist, automatic parking assist, a surround-view parking camera, automatic high beams, traffic sign recognition, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, turn assist, collision avoidance assist. Features like the Cold Weather package and ventilated front seats are also optional in the Prestige trim.

Audi S5

The 2019 Audi S5 starts at $52,400 for the Sportback and coupe Premium trim, and $65,100 for the cabriolet Premium Plus. The S5 models has a 349-horsepower, turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine; an eight-speed automatic transmission; and all-wheel drive. It shares most of the same features throughout the trim lineup as the standard A5, but it adds front sport seats with leather and Alcantara upholstery, along with sportier styling.

In the S5 Premium Plus ($56,800), you can opt for Milano leather or Nappa leather seats. For $2,500, the S Sport package includes an adaptive sport suspension, an upgraded rear differential, and red brake calipers. Dynamic steering is optional for $1,150.

Audi RS 5

Starting at $74,200, the 2019 Audi RS 5 is only available in coupe and Sportback styles, and there is only one trim level. The RS 5 has a 444-horsepower, twin-turbocharged 2.9-liter V6 engine; an eight-speed automatic transmission; and all-wheel drive.

The RS 5 offers a $3,700 Driver Assistance package, with adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, a head-up display, automatic high beams, a surround-view parking camera, and traffic sign recognition. The Dynamic package costs $3,350 and includes red brake calipers, an RS suspension with dynamic ride control, and a sport exhaust. The $5,800 Dynamic Plus package adds a 174-mph speed limiter, a carbon fiber engine cover, ceramic front brakes, and steel rear brakes.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Audi dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Audi deals page.

See 2019 Audi A5 specs and trims »

The Final Call

The 2019 Audi A5 melds sporty performance with interior luxury and high-tech features, making it one of the most well-rounded luxury small cars. It may have a high price tag, but it's well worth it.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • "The A5 Sportback combines the features of several Audis: the sweeping lines of the A5 coupe, the four-door layout and cargo space of the A4 sedan, and the convenience of the Q5 SUV's rear liftgate. Despite this formula, the A5 Sportback doesn't look or feel cobbled together—just the opposite. It's rewarding to drive, with nimble sports-sedan handling and a spirited turbo four-cylinder. Its sheetmetal is Euro chic, and inside, its high-quality materials and minimalist design look great—although the interior gives up some rear-seat spaciousness to its sedan sibling. But because of its playfulness and practicality, we're happy to forgive the A5 Sportback its few small flaws." -- Car and Driver
  • "Performance, practicality, and a pretty face come with a price, but for those shopping the luxury vehicle aisle who aren't interested in the latest crossover, the … A5 and S5 Sportback are sedan-not-sedan models worth a look." -- New York Daily News (2018)
  • "Audi's latest offering may be something of a segment-splitter, but it does a fine job incorporating the best attributes of all of them. There are few more satisfying all-around sports-luxury contenders on the market." -- CNET (2018)

Buying

Expert Advice

Last Updated: December 5, 2019

Strong, but Cooling Sales: A redesign for the 2018 model year, along with the introduction of the four-door Sportback model, led to a healthy increase in demand for the A5 last year. Now in 2019, the A5 is selling in the top quarter of the luxury small car segment, behind popular competitors like the Mercedes-Benz C-Class and BMW 3 Series. However, demand has cooled as dealerships have moved 14 percent fewer A5 models so far this year compared to the same span in 2018.

Research more buying advice »
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