Audi RS 5 Coupe 2.9 TFSI qu Tiptronic (331 kW) Review

27 Sep 2018

we cannot deny that the car’s handling is genuinely confidence-boosting.

The all-new RS5 Coupe loses its beefy naturally-breathing 4.2 litre V8 and now “makes do” with a smaller 2.9 litre twin-turbocharged V6. The old engine delivered a delicious deep rumble we loved, which the new V6 lacks in. But where it makes up for it is in its delivery of performance.

The new engine’s twin turbocharges are nestled between the “vee” of the engine for improved efficiency. The 90 degree V6 is derived from the 3.0 unit which powers their S4 and S5 cars, but features some changes like a shortened valve lift to accommodate the high pressure that the turbochargers shove into its cylinders, and a larger crank main bearing to handle the additional power demands. In all, the new V6 weighs 31 kilos less than the previous engine.

While the V6 delivers the same 450ps as its predecessor, its 600Nm of torque is a massive bump-up of 170Nm over the old V8. And since the engine is force-fed, the RS 5 delivers this massive 600Nm from an earlier 1,900rpm, and keeps it at peak till 5,000rpm. Acceleration is very smooth with the drive transferred to all four wheels, through an 8-speed Tiptronic transmission. In default, the system delivers a slightly rear-biased drive at a 40:60 front-rear ratio; and is able to transfer up to 85% of the drive to the front wheels when grip and weight transference situations requires the system to do so.

The RS 5 delivers a stomach churning century sprint timing of 3.9 seconds, quicker than the 4.2 seconds done by its predecessor; and in contrast, the McLaren 570 S, with all of its carbon fibre and +2 cylinders does this in 3.2 seconds.

I tried to draw Sentosa... but failed miserably...

And while Audi’s milder performance “fiver”, the S5 does benefit from adaptive damping control (CDC), the RS 5 is intended for the purist, without all this glorious suspension trickery; therefore ride quality is a little harsher. But with its wider track, the RS 5 takes to corners just so confidently, and steering feel is surgically accurate.

Ease down on the throttle, and you will realise that the RS 5’s Tiptronic 8-speeder will want to kick a gear or two down very readily, almost like the car has eyes on you, trying to anticipate that jab of your right foot. Braking power is very good, though after some aggressive test driving, we did manage to smoke them a little.

As with Audi’s range of RS cars, the RS 5 is also equipped with one internally split oval exhaust finisher on each side. And while this looks all aggro, that wonderful snarling you get within the cabin comes across as rather muted, unlike the RS 6 with that lovely throaty V8 engine, delivering some wonderful mouth-watering aural stimulation…

But as a daily driver, we do feel that the RS 5 comes across as a little too harsh in its ride, and seemingly a tad too clinical in how it sounds. But that aside, we cannot deny that the car’s handling is genuinely confidence-boosting.

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Engine Capacity 2899cc Turbocharged
Engine Type V 6
Bore x Stroke (84.5 x 86)mm
Power 450bhp @ 5700rpm
Torque 600Nm @ 1900rpm
Power to Weight 271.9 bhp per ton


Acceleration 3.9s (0-100 km/h)
Top Speed 250 km/h

Misc Technical Data

Transmission 8 -speed Auto Tiptronic
Drive Type F4
Steering Electric


Body Type Coupe
(L x W x H)
(4723 x 1861 x 1360) mm
Wheelbase 2766 mm
Kerb Weight 1655 kg
Boot Capacity 465 L
Fuel Tank Capacity 58 L


Brakes (Front) Ventilated Discs
Brakes (Rear) Ventilated Discs