Audi A5 Cabriolet Review
The Audi A5 Cabriolet is a stylish convertible with a focus on comfort and interior quality
Strengths & weaknesses
The Audi A5 Cabriolet is a four-seater convertible that’s based on the A5 Coupe and A5 Sportback models, which are the fixed-roof two- and five-door versions of the A5 respectively. There are also high-performance S5 and RS5 models as part of the range, which offer extra power and speed, although they’re less common in Cabriolet form and the RS5 isn’t even available as a drop-top.
The A5 Cabriolet range isn’t as wide as the A5 Coupe and Sportback models, as - for example - the 2.0-litre TDI Ultra diesel model isn’t available in the UK. That’s understandable, as those who want a convertible are less likely to want an economy-focused model. The Cabriolet is the worst of the range on the motorway, after all - while it’s not unpleasantly loud, it’s not as quiet as its fixed-roof siblings.
Yet the A5 Cabriolet is still one of the most comfortable and quiet soft-top cars you can get. It has a superb, high-quality interior and is easy to drive, and as there are four seats, it’s reasonably practical for a car like this - though the rear seats are tight.
Rivals for the A5 Cabriolet include the BMW 4 Series Convertible and the Mercedes C-Class Cabriolet. These models, just like the A5, both use soft-top roofs, although the pre-2021 4 Series had a folding metal roof. Generally, we prefer the soft-top models because the metal roof adds a lot of weight and complexity.
In early 2020 there were some small changes to the range including a subtle new look for the car and new trim levels. The changes weren’t huge so don’t be too concerned about choosing one of the newer models.
Should I get an Audi A5 Cabriolet?
✔ Excellent interior and lots of equipment
✔ Punchy and efficient engines
✔ More practical than many convertibles
✘ Can be expensive to buy new
✘ Not very sporty to drive
✘ Rear seats are a little cramped
The Audi A5 Cabriolet is a convertible car that will appeal to those who love driving with the roof down but aren’t fussed about sporty driving. It’s more focused on comfort and being easy to drive than being a sports car, and the fact that there are two rear seats means that there’s a bit more practicality there as well.
It has a high-quality interior with comfortable seats and lots of technology, plus the engine range is well-suited to the car because the engines lean more toward efficiency than performance. If you are considering the A5 Cabriolet because you want a fun-to-drive sports car though, it’s not an ideal choice, but it’s still decent enough to drive.
- Models explained
- Trim levels
- Best A5 Cabriolet for...
- Boot space
- Should I buy used?
Audi A5 Cabriolet
The Audi A5 Cabriolet is a four-seat convertible with a canvas folding roof. It’s part of the A5 range, so most aspects are very similar to the A5 Coupe including the interior, engines and equipment.
Not all of the engines from the rest of the A5 range are available, but there’s still a good amount of choice. You can pick a 2.0-litre petrol in varying power outputs, plus a 2.0-litre diesel option and, in older models, there was also a six-cylinder diesel engine offering greater power and refinement than the smaller diesel units.
The older models (pre-2020) were available in SE trim, but the updated range starts at Sport and goes up through S line and Edition 1 and ends at Vorsprung. Entry-level models are pretty well equipped but the Sport model is probably the best value for money, as it gets LED headlights and digital dials with sat-nav among other desirable bits of kit.
Other Audi A5 models (reviewed separately)
There are a number of other models in the A5 range but we’ve reviewed them separately, so you can find more about each one by clicking the links below.
The A5 Coupe is the fixed-roof model with two doors, and has similar practicality to the Cabriolet, albeit with a more usable boot. Then there’s the A5 Sportback, which has more space inside, a useful hatchback boot opening and two extra passenger doors.
The S5 is a faster, more powerful version that’s available in Coupe, Sportback and Cabriolet body styles, while the RS5 is an even more tuned-up version with the most performance - though it’s not available as a Cabriolet.
- AUDI A5 COUPE BUYERS' GUIDE
- AUDI A5 SPORTBACK BUYERS' GUIDE
- AUDI S5 BUYERS' GUIDE
- AUDI RS5 BUYERS' GUIDE
|SE is the lowest trim level but it’s still well-equipped. It comes with 17-inch alloy wheels, xenon headlights, climate control and a seven-inch media system, which is controlled using a dial on the centre console and is easy to use and looks modern.
|From £21,589: If you choose a post-2020 update car, Sport is the entry-level model. It comes with 18-inch alloy wheels, LED lights and Virtual Cockpit - Audi’s name for its digital dials. This trim is probably the best value for money overall.
|From £12,600: S line trim is a sporty version that adds different suspension to make the car handle a bit better around corners, at the expense of a bit of comfort. It has a sportier look too, with different alloy wheels and bumpers that look sharper.
|Limited stock: Edition 1 looks even sportier thanks to its black exterior trim and huge 20-inch alloy wheels. The add-ons here are mostly cosmetic, so it’s not really worth the extra cash over the S line models.
|Limited stock: The Vorsprung model is the top-of-the-range trim level and comes with 20-inch alloys, extra driver assistance technology and an upgraded sound system. It’s fully-loaded but quite expensive.
The Audi A5 Cabriolet range uses exclusively 2.0-litre four-cylinder engines from 2020-on, and while there was a 3.0-litre six-cylinder diesel available previously, it’s probably not the ideal choice for this model. Newer cars use a slightly cryptic naming convention based on the power of the engine, so let’s clear that up before we pick the best engine.
The entry-level car is the 35 TFSI, which is a 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol with 150hp. Then there’s the 40 TFSI, which has 204hp, and the 45 TFSI, with 265hp. All of these engines are closely related, they’re just tuned up to achieve the higher power outputs. Two- and four-wheel-drive is available in the A5 but all models are automatic-only.
There’s only one diesel in the current range, which is the 40 TDI - a 2.0-litre motor with 204hp. It’s punchy and will be the most economical choice. The older 'V6' diesel model is smoother, but not as efficient.
We like the 40 TFSI version, as it offers the best mix of performance and economy. It works well for general use - the diesels are more efficient but aren’t as good for shorter trips and are a bit noisier, which makes a big difference in an open-top car.
Think about which model works best for you in the A5 range before choosing the Cabriolet. You might love the looks and the idea of a roof-down drive, but if you have kids then the cramped rear seats will be a pain - the Sportback model is much better for practicality. Here, we’ve picked out the best choices in each of our normal categories, but just be aware that the A5 Cabriolet isn’t really a good option for families.
The engine you choose makes quite a difference as well - the diesel version works well for those doing lots of long trips, but the Cabriolet model isn’t as suited to that type of driving even though it’s relatively quiet on the motorway.
|Audi A5 Cabriolet 40 TFSI Sport: The 2.0-litre engine in this model offers the best balance of performance, price and fuel economy, while the Sport trim level has all the kit you need and is the most affordable in the current range.
|Audi A5 Cabriolet 35 TFSI Sport: The A5 Cabriolet isn’t a very good family car, but the 35 TFSI is more than good enough for local trips and the Sport trim level is the most comfortable of the bunch.
|Audi A5 Cabriolet 45 TFSI S line: The 45 TFSI model is the most powerful model in the range (aside from the S5 high-performance version), with 265hp. The S line trim level is also equipped with stiffer suspension, so this model handles more sharply than others as well.
|Audi A5 Cabriolet 40 TDI Vorsprung: This is the most expensive trim level with the least suitable engine for top-down driving, the 2.0-litre diesel. It’s economical, but if you want fuel economy and low costs then a convertible car is rarely a sensible buy.
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The Audi A5 Cabriolet is a rival for the BMW 4 Series Convertible and the Mercedes C-Class Cabriolet. These models all have an equivalent Coupe model as well, and the newest of the bunch is the 4 Series - a newer model with a soft-top roof (as opposed to the metal roof of the previous model) arrived in 2021.
The 4 Series Convertible is considered to be a sportier option and the C-Class Cabriolet is seen as the more comfortable alternative, but the three rivals are so closely matched that the real decision is which one you like the look of the most. They all feature high-quality interiors and plenty of tech, plus a comfortable driving experience.
A left-field option that you might also want to consider is the Range Rover Evoque Convertible, which is an odd SUV-convertible that offers comfort and the drop-top roof, but it misses out on the sporty styling of the other models mentioned.
Audi A5 Cabriolet dimensions
You can read more about the Audi A5 Cabriolet’s dimensions on our dedicated page linked to below, but rounded-up it’s 4.7m long, 1.8m wide and 1.4m tall. With the door mirrors out, it’s over two metres wide - but that’s not unusual for this type of car.
For example, the BMW 4 Series Convertible is just under 2.1m wide with the mirrors out, plus it’s the same height and is 4.8m long. This, the C-Class Cabriolet and the A5 Cabriolet are all quite large despite not having much room for passengers in the back - the rear seats are pretty tight and aren’t comfortable for most adults.
The Audi A5 Cabriolet has a 370-litre boot with the roof up, but this will drop by around 60 litres when you have the roof down because the folding mechanism takes up space in the load area. It’s a decent boot for a convertible car, though, and makes it much more practical than many sports cars with folding roofs.
The latest 4 Series Convertible has a bit more space, though, at 385 litres - though the previous metal-roofed version had the same 370-litre boot as the A5 does, yet this dropped to just 220 litres when the bulky roof was folded away.
|Roof up 370 litres
|Roof down 310 litres
The Audi A5 Cabriolet uses the same engines and other parts as the other cars in the A5 range, so reliability should be nearly identical. Parts availability should be good for these commonly-used engines, too. The fabric roof is likely to be more reliable than the metal roof in the older 4 Series Convertible model.
The Driver Power customer satisfaction survey can tell us a bit about the reliability of car brands, but Audi usually fares poorly. For example, in 2021 it came in 23rd place out of 29 manufacturers. BMW and Mercedes also finished poorly, though, with upmarket brands like these often failing to meet the high expectations of owners.
Audi’s factory warranty is pretty typical as new car warranties go, at three years and with a mileage limit of 60,000 in the third year (with the first two having no mileage cap). This means you’ll have to go for a newer model if you want to buy a used A5 Cabriolet with manufacturer warranty left on it.
You can buy an extended warranty from Audi with new cars, though. There’s a package with four-year cover for up to 75,000 miles and five-year cover for up to 90,000 miles. These might be worth a look if you're purchasing a brand new car, as they add some peace of mind for a fairly reasonable price.
AVERAGE REPAIR COST PAID BY WARRANTYWISE: £643
If you are looking for a drop-top sports car with four seats, the Audi A5 Cabriolet might not be the best choice. That’s because it’s not a whole lot of fun to drive and the engine range is more focused on everyday usability rather than performance. The S5 version could be worth a look if that’s the case, though.
Where the A5 Cabriolet makes sense is for those looking for a convertible car to enjoy relaxed trips with a bit more practicality than most drop-tops can offer. The rear seats aren’t big enough to use often, but they’re fine for occasional use and it’s the same story with the boot. The A5 is comfortable, easy to drive and has a high-quality interior with lots of kit, so it’s good for driving every day.
The petrol versions make the most sense in the Audi A5 Cabriolet range. The best option for value for money is the 40 TFSI in Sport trim, which has the equipment you need at the most affordable price and a punchy and quiet engine.
The 35 TFSI is also good value if you don’t mind sacrificing a bit of performance. It has 150hp, so there’s still enough power for most, but it’s cheaper and should deliver decent fuel economy.
The 45 TFSI model in S line trim, meanwhile, is the best option if you want a sportier driving experience, although the A5 Cabriolet isn’t the most enjoyable car to drive overall. This model is fast and handles well enough, though.
*Representative PCP finance - 2018 Ford Fiesta 1.0 ST-Line Hatchback:
|PCP representative example
|APR rates available
|Cash price £12,000
|Value of loan
|Fixed monthly payment £218.12
|Annual mileage of 8,000pa
|Total cost of credit £2,755.55
|Term 48 months
|Optional final payment £4,285.79
|Loan value £12,000
|Total amount payable £14,755.55
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The Audi A5 Coupe is stylish and desirable - but neither the most high-tech or exciting car
The Audi A5 is a stylish coupe that offers plenty of comfort and a high-quality feel throughout, with a broad choice of engines