The A5 is already one of the oldest models in Audi’s line-up, having been introduced as long ago as 2007. The new model will feature an extended wheelbase, adding extra cabin space in a class where a little more practicality can go a long way.
The move to the A4’s five-link suspension set-up and a weight saving of about 100kg should give the A5 a little more agility, too, although the car will still be pitched as more of a style-focused model than BMW’s handling-orientated 4 Series.
The A5 will get the latest A4’s range of turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engines, as well as 1.6 and 2.0-litre diesel options.
Petrol and diesel V6s will be fitted to the cars at the top of the conventional A5 range, although a plug-in petrol-electric hybrid, using the same 1.4 TFSI engine and electric motor set-up as the A3 Sportback e-tron, is also considered likely.
Spy shots have shown that the A5 coupé will retain its subtle side-on profile but adopt the crisp, slim headlights and tail-lights of the latest A4. Its cabin will also be based heavily on that of the saloon, including the option of Audi’s well-received Virtual Cockpit instrument panel.
Audi will prepare a new RS5 to give it a rival for the Mercedes-AMG C63 Coupé and BMW M4. As with the next generation of RS4, it will switch from a normally aspirated V8 with 444bhp to a twin-turbocharged V6 producing around 500bhp. The performance model should arrive soon after the regular editions; Audi is said to have been focusing on delivering its RS versions earlier in the product cycle, due to customer demand.
The A5 coupé is being lined up for an introduction in the first six months of next year. That could mean a public debut at one of the American motor shows during the preceding winter, either Los Angeles this November or Detroit in January next year.
Farther down the line, Audi will launch successors to the A5 Cabriolet and A5 Sportback. The drop-top is considered key for the US market, while the five-door is needed in order to offer an alternative to BMW’s 4 Series Gran Coupé.