This is Audi’s niche-busting answer to the BMW 5-series GT: the five-door, four-seat A5 Sportback. It is an attempt by Ingolstadt to appeal to those who want a coupe, saloon and estate all rolled into one, giving an element of each.
The range begins lower than the BMW and as such provides a thriftier entrance to this four/five-door coupe.
Audi has kept the same suspension settings as the A5 coupe, which is around 100kg lighter than the Sportback, so expect the same safe and predictable handling.
The Sportback does, however, gain its coupe cousin’s aluminium front wings, reducing the Audi’s trademark nose-heavy driving characteristics.
Audi’s Drive Select system is available in three different forms and allows the driver to alter the settings for gadgets such as the sports differential, adaptive dampers and dynamic steering. Audi will offer a manual gearbox only in the entry model from launch.
The 2.0 TFSI (178 and 208bhp) and 3.2-litre FSI petrol units, and 2.0-litre, 2.7-litre (187bhp) and 3.0-litre TDI (237bhp) diesels all get a seven-speed S tronic transmission. The 3.2-litre FSI petrol unit also gets an option of eight-speed Multitronic auto.
An S5 Sportback with a 329bhp 3.0-litre supercharged V6 is likely and Audi hasn’t ruled out an explosive V8 RS5 version, which could see a tie-in with Porsche like the 1990s RS2.