2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet
The gifts just keep coming from Audi’s quattro performance tuning division: stunning first official images of the brand-new 2014 RS5 Cabriolet, which will be coming to American Audi dealers later this fall.
Joining the R8 and the new RS7, the RS5 Cabriolet brings enough horsepower and visual aggression to break glass with just one stare. Yes, the Audi’s LEDs are not exactly the friendly smile worn by many cars in traffic. The metallic honeycomb grille is gigantic and looks capable of ingesting a whole family of birds at its 174 mph top speed.
The atmospheric V-8 produces 450 horsepower, with an optional sports exhaust and Black Optics package hiding the twin coffee-can oval exhaust outlets under the diffuser panel. These cans are so large that they define the lower rear graphic of the RS5, and look really incredible with the sharp bumper corners up top. Dark wheels bring standard steel discs with an interesting fluted edge design, but carbon ceramic brakes are available for ultimate autobahn stopping power.
Any tradeoff versus the RS5 coupe yet? Wind in your hair, Audi’s classic aluminum brightwork on the windshield surround, and a flat soft-top all seem better than the coupe. Seating for four is also possible in the RS5 Cab, which loses only 2 cubic-feet of luggage room with the top down.
A $10,000 premium sees RS5 Cab base prices at $78,000, but the optional comfort seats with heat and ventilation look ideal for this beach bruiser, so budget about $85,000 in total for the Black Optics upgrades as well.
Click past the jump for the full review of the 2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet, the hottest four-seat Audi drop-top ever made.
2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet
Transmission:7-Speed S-tronic DSG
Horsepower @ RPM:450
Torque @ RPM:317
0-60 time:4.9 sec. (Est.)
Top Speed:174 mph
With three shades of red available, along with a host of normal colors of course, the official images of the 2014 RS5 Cabriolet are outstanding. It looks hot, dramatic, fast and expensive.
The red shade is more Ferrari California than the darker lipstick hue from the RS5’s press shots, and the difference really helps the Cab look sharp.
The Black Optics package changes the color of the grille and brings dark wheels and exhaust tips, but still keeps some brightwork for the windshield header - long an Audi glam stamp since Princess Diana bought an Audi Cabriolet in 1992. The Black Optics package also brings the sports exhaust, which is well worthwhile to hear this engine sing.
The steel brakes are more interesting because of that special humped edge design, which is said to dissipate heat into calipers more effectively.
Lastly, the RS5 Cab keeps the hard-top’s power rear spoiler, which is a real treat to see and operate for added racing credibility. Automatically deployed at high speeds, it can also be raised via a cabin button for maximum Ocean Drive posing.
2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet - Exterior Dimensions:
|Front Track Width (in.)||62.3|
|Rear Track Width (in.)||62|
|Curb Weight (Pounds)||4050, est|
|Drag Coefficient||0.32, est|
2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet - Exterior Features:
- RS5-exclusive honeycomb grille insert
- RS5-exclusive speed-deployed electric rear spoiler, with manual override (deploys at 75 mph, retracts at 50 mph) 2.5 mph
- Redesigned LED taillights
- RS5-exclusive oval exhaust tips
- RS5-exclusive rear-diffuser
- RS5-exclusive lower air inlet without fog lights
- RS5-exclusive wide-body design
- Adaptive Audi xenon plus headlights with self-leveling, LED daytime running lights and static cornering lights Automatic self-leveling for xenon plus headlights
- Three blink touch-to-pass lane change feature in turn signal
- Automatic light switch controlled by light sensor, coming home/leaving home function
2014 Audi RS5 Exterior Options:
- Metallic/pearl/crystal effect paint (varies: $475 up to $1,075)
- Sport exhaust with retuned acoustics and black oval finishers ($1,000)
- Comfort Seats
- Titanium package with body-color door mirrors, gloss black grille and matte black window surround ($2,500)
- Ceramic front brakes ($6,000)
- Matte finish aluminum trim ($750)
- New-for-2014 Black optics pack (RS5 Cabriolet only)
The soft top is quite plush when up, with integrated headlining and no sharp points near your head, which is nice. It is also able to hush the cabin to near-coupe levels, while also lined with fleece to keep the car insulated for hot and cold weather. Power operated, of course.
The drop in headroom is on par with the coupe in its ’sunshade’ setting, and the back seat leg and shoulder room tallies are each down slightly. This is a real four-seat coupe, unlike the Aston Martin DB9 or Jaguar XK, whose 2+2 layout sees the front seatback hit the rear cushions.
In the trunk, also almost no compromise for the convertible layout. The full 12.2 cubic-feet is available with the top up, and 10 cubic-feet with it down. These are both exceptional scores, especially versus the top-down total of the BMW 3 Series Cabriolet.
2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet - Interior Dimensions:
|Seating Capacity - Front||2|
|Seating Capacity - Rear||2|
|Headroom (In.) - Front||37.9, est|
|Headroom (In.) - Rear||36, est|
|Legroom (In.) - Front||41.3|
|Legroom (In.) - Rear||31.0, est|
|Shoulder room (In.) - Front||54.3|
|Shoulder room (In.) - Rear||50, est|
|Hip room (In.) - Front||NA|
|Hip room (In.) - Rear||NA|
|Trunk capacity (cubic-feet) - Top Down||10|
|Trunk capacity (cubic-feet) - Top Up||12.2|
2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet - Interior Features:
- RS-design Carbon Fiber inlays on door panel interior beltline and center console with piano black console and instrument panel surround
- Full Fine Nappa leather interior and armrests
- Twelve-way power front RS5 ‘S sport-contoured seats’ including four-way power lumbar adjustment, thigh support and RS5 embossing
- Fully automatic tri zone climate control with separate air distribution controls for driver and front passenger, combined pollutant and pollen filter, automatic recirculated-air functions; air quality, humidity and sun angle sensors
- Rear seat HVAC vents in rear of front center console and under each front seat and temperature variation dial Electric rear window defogger with automatic timed shut off feature
- Three-spoke multifunction flat-bottom steering wheel
- Shift paddles, in alu-optic
- Dynamic steering (Audi drive select)
- Audi advanced keyless start, stop and entry
- Homelink with three programmable buttons
- Audi MMI Radio plus system for controlling Infotainment / Climate / Car Setup (with 6.5” color screen)
- Audi music interface with iPod integration includes one cable for iPod connection
- Audi six-channel DSP extended sound system with ten speakers including subwoofer, 180W sound system
2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet - Interior Options:
- Driver Assistance pack: Adaptive cruise control, Blind Spot assist and Audi dynamic steering ($3,250)
- Audi Connect with six-month trial subscription
- MMI Nav ($3,550) includes Bang & Olufsen 505-watt audio
- Bluetooth audio streaming (available with MMI Nav only)
- Comfort seats with heating and ventilation
Drivetrain, Suspension and Brakes
Adding about 100 pounds for the RS5 Cab, this is still one of the most intoxicating and addictive power units available. Totally different in character from the turbo V-8’s from BMW and Mercedes, this is from the older school of high-revving racing powerplants. In fact, this engine shares more of its philosophy with the old BMW M5’s V-10.
This means less initial shove than the RS7 and S8, but far better harmonics as the engine starts to scream. Throttle response is also more pure than a turbo engine, but in-gear performance can feel lazy if in manual transmission mode, thanks to the obedient S-tronic box that will hold gears almost indefinitely.
In automatic mode, this S-tronic twin-clutch box is all business, with multiple settings to tame down the ferocious gear change violence with launch control engaged. Like the Nissan GT-R, the transition from first gear to the pre-loaded second clutch, and second gear, is marked by a moment of carnage. Like slamming a door or dropping a textbook, the shift is complete in a blink and racing back toward the redline and horizon.
Purity of down changes allows engine braking for corners, which is a fun way to drive the RS5 Cab on twisty roads. With any revs on the dial near mid-corner, flooring the throttle creates an explosive rush to that gear’s red line. 60 mph sprint is set at 4.9 seconds, down 0.4 seconds versus the RS5 coupe.
2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet - Performance Details:
|Engine||4.2-liter 32-valve V-8 with TFSI Direct Injection and Chain-driven DOHC|
|Transmission||7-Speed S-tronic DSG Automatic With Paddle Shift|
|Top Speed||174 mph|
|EPA Fuel Economy (City/Highway/Combined)||16/22/18|
The RS5 Cab brings all the latest additions to the car’s active safety, including an optional Driver Assistance Pack for adaptive cruise and a rollover protection system that automatically deploys in the event of a crash.
2014 Audi RS5 Cabriolet - Safety Features:
- Driver and front passenger dual-stage airbags, thorax side airbags, knee airbags, and Sideguard head curtain airbags
- Front passenger occupant detection—for airbags
- Power central locking system with safety unlock feature if airbags deploy
- Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) with Electronic Brake-pressure Distribution (EBD) and brake assist
- Electronic Stability Control (ESC) with traction control (ASR)
- Anti-theft alarm system with panic function
- Tire-pressure monitoring system
- Safety belt reminder for driver and front passenger
- Electromechanical parking brake
- Tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS)
Pricing and Availability
The RS5 Cab is priced $8,300 above its coupe sibling, for a total of $77,900 before options like the vented seats and Black Optics sports exhaust.
While just a two-seater, there is no other drop-top hotter than the F-type V-8 right now. The RS5’s pricing is about identical to the top 2014 F-type, the V-8 model. The rear-drive Jag is much more of a handful when driving at max attack, and it is also slightly slower to 60 mph versus the all-wheel-drive Audi. The jag also has a tiny trunk, but has friendlier-looking LEDs as its nighttime signature.
More RS Audi models is always a good thing, and the RS5 is set to be one of 2014’s hottest cars at any price. With styling that looks even better than the coupe, minimal trunk and performance deficits - the RS5 Cab is everything the coupe is and so much more.
A much broader set of shoppers would love this as their dream car, versus the coupe’s more limited appeal in its focused battle with the BMW M4.
Available for orders now, the first models arrive at Audi dealers nationwide in September. Get that deposit in soon to rock Audi’s hottest RS convertible on American streets this fall!