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2018 Audi S5 Cabriolet 3.0T Test Drive Review

Conducting vehicle reviews can be a pretty good gig, especially when one gets to slide behind the wheel of rides like this updated-for-2018 Audi S5 Cabriolet 3.0T. And while the high sticker price might come as a shock to some, I must say that the performance, luxury, technology and overall emotion that the car evokes warrants every single penny of it in a way that few other cars I’ve driven this year can match.

For the full 2018 Audi S5 Cabriolet 3.0T review, specs, pricing and data, read on…

2018 Audi S5 Cabriolet 3.0T Exterior:

There are so many things to consider when designing a well-proportioned cabriolet out of an already good-looking coupe. In theory, designers are chopping off one of the vehicle’s most prominent features, and then they’re tasked with the job of delivering a stylish, safe, open air driving experience that mimics the performance of the original. The good news is the 2018 S5 Cabriolet delivers on all fronts.

A large wide mouth grille, LED headlamps, and pronounced callouts in the front fascia give the S5 a menacing presence, especially when combined with a lower body line that runs into subtle wheel arches that cloak the 19-inch alloys. For 2018 the rear deck lid incorporates a small lip spoiler while a stainless trimmed rear diffusor houses a quad-tipped exhaust system. LED taillights and special S5 badging also grace the grille, trunk panel and opposing front fenders. The real triumph is that the S5 looks just as good with the top up as it does lowered.

2018 Audi S5 Cabriolet 3.0T Interior:

Carbon Atlas inlays, Magma Red leather seats with crosshatch stitching along with the flat bottom leather wrapped steering wheel with paddles are seen as soon as one slides into the cabin. Then there’s the Bang & Olufsen audio system, alcantara inserts, Audi navigation with MMI touch technology, plus a dash that converts into a virtual cockpit screen if need be. In all honesty, if this interior doesn’t make you feel special, then there is something wrong. Now, granted, no one ever said opulence comes cheap, but I felt like I received a salary bump every time I opened the door.

This is a cabin that makes you feel just as special sitting in a parking lot as it does at triple digits (which it does quite easily). For a cabriolet it is also surprisingly quiet, and, when combined with the power adjustable heated seats with built in massage functionality, long journeys become even more enjoyable as fatigue is kept to a minimum. Rear seating, however, is a bit on the cramped side for adults.

The S5 Cabriolet provides a top that can be opened at speeds of up to 31 mph and does so in a mere 18 seconds. Dropping the top is a one-touch affair and Audi has even integrated a nifty single button that lowers all the windows at once. Top down cruising was met with little buffeting and having a conversation at speed was a non-issue thanks to minimal wind noise.

2018 Audi S5 Cabriolet 3.0T Performance:

A twin-scroll 3.0L turbocharged 6-cyclinder produces 354 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque, which launches the S5 to 60-mph in just under 5-seconds and onto a limited top speed of 155-mph. These are decent numbers for a car that weighs in at 4,211-pounds. Power is transferred through an 8-speed automatic transmission with Tiptronic shifting through Audi’s all-wheel-drive quattro system. Peak torque comes on at just 1,370 rpm, so putting your foot down from a stop results in immediate acceleration. The engine is smooth and the transmission provides quick shifts along with a nice burble through the exhaust.

With an EPA fuel economy rating of 20-mpg city, 29-highway and 23-mpg in combined driving*, owners can expect a minimum range of over 300 miles from the 15.3-gallon fuel tank. Ride quality is compliant on both the highway and back roads as the S5 can be configured to suit the driver by utilizing any one of its four drive modes (Comfort, Normal, Dynamic and Individual). Emergency braking and handling maneuvers provide little in the way of drama and the S5 proved to be sure-footed during testing, thanks in part to the large six-piston front calipers that ride on 13.8-inch rotors.

2018 Audi S5 Cabriolet 3.0T Safety:
Equipped with the latest in safety technology, the 2018 Audi S5 Cabriolet 3.0T comes to us with such features as adaptive driver and front passenger dual-stage airbags, anti-lock brakes, electronic stability control, active rollover protection system and quattro all-wheel-drive. Additional safety features can be seen at AudiUSA.com.

2018 Audi S5 Cabriolet 3.0T Overall:

With a base price of $62,300.00 and an “as tested” price of $70,625.00**, the 2018 Audi S5 Cabriolet 3.0T Quattro Tiptronic makes for not only an outstanding open-air experience, but a wonderful daily driver as well. It’s beautifully crafted with a fair bit of aggression built in, and it lets you forget about your daily life while at the same time giving you the opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors. Drop by your local AutoNation-affiliated Audi dealer today to check one out!

*Fuel economy values (mpg) are EPA estimates. Actual mileage will vary and depends on several factors including driving habits and vehicle condition.

**Vehicle MSRP of $70,625.00 excludes taxes, title, transportation, options, and dealer fees.

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