Road Test: 2013 Audi A5 3.0 TDI Clean Diesel Quattro

Its been nearly four years since we last drove the Audi A5. Time to revisit Audi’s A5 line with the 3.0 TDI Clean Diesel Quattro Coupe and see what has changed!

Not too long ago Audi refreshed the entire A5 line-up, including the Coupe, Convertible and Sportback. The facelift included updated front and rear lights, as well as a new front bumper design. The new front end includes pronounced air inlets, revamped grilles and flat fog lights.


The particular A5 we drove comes with the 3.0 TDI Clean Diesel Quattro, a variant of the 3.0 TDI that produces 245hp. This low-emissions clean diesel model made the A5 the first coupe on the market to meet the Euro 6 diesel standard. The diesel engine is paired with the 7-speed S tronic transmission and as other members of the A5 family equipped with quattro permanent all-wheel drive and the S tronic transmission also features the self-locking center differential with torque vectoring.

During normal driving, the mechanical component sends the engine’s power primarily to the rear wheels. If necessary, it redistributes the power smoothly to the front. Up to 70 percent can flow to the front axle, 85 percent to the rear axle. Torque vectoring uses targeted, minor braking interventions to make the handling even more precise.

The interior has received some minor modifications but is still very similar to the A5 we drove four years ago. In general the ergonomics, seats and controls of the navigation system, radio and other features is fine. The navigation screen could be a little bigger for our taste. The Audi A5 comes with 2 rear seats but the leg and headroom is fairly limited and a BMW 3-series coupe seems to offer more space. In the luggage compartment you find where the reduced interior space has gone, it is very deep and you can easily fit enough luggage for four people for a weekend away.

New on the Audi A5 is lane assist and an update version of adaptive cruise control and a collision prevention system. These systems make long journeys all that more comfortable. We put them to the test on a long stretch of autobahn and it adapts nicely to the speed of the car in front, only keep your eyes out for traffic cutting across from other lanes because the Audi system, as do many other adaptive cruise control systems, might recognize, or chose to act, in those cases fairly late (sometimes too late).


Lane assists helps you stay in your lane, get too close to the white line on either side and it will gently steer you back to the center. In slight bends on the highway it might even steer for you completely. The system has two settings for when to react, either early or late. It is also a good system for people who don’t tend to indicate much, cross the white line without indicating and you will have to apply extra force on the wheel to cross.

Besides these systems that make the journey safer, the A5 also packs a few systems to make it more comfortable and fun. Think about bluetooth phone connectivity that allows to setup a WIFI network and fetch real time traffic info. And Digital Radio with Bang & Olufsen sound system that offers a significant upgrade over analogue radio. Sadly DAB as its called is not available in every country yet and has no reception in most tunnels.

So far the A5 3.0 TDI Clean Diesel Quattro sounds pretty good, but what if you like to have a little fun? The 3.0 TDI Clean Diesel Quattro engine provides plenty of torque with 560Nm but sadly it feels like its mostly pretty far away. Emphasis is placed on the fuel economy and low emissions, for acceleration and power you are better of with the more powerful, but more expensive petrol powered S5 or RS5.

The Audi A5 3.0 TDI Clean Diesel Quattro is the perfect car for people who are in the market for an autobahn cruiser or an Audi A4 but prefer the Coupe looks. The interior has the luxury appeal you expect from Audi, the fuel economy is impressive but if its sportiness and driving fun you are after we would opt for an Audi S5 instead!

Published: July 16, 2013 3:24 pm

Published by | Photography by Philipp Rupprecht

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