Audi RS 5

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If it were possible to sum up the Audi RS 5 coupe or convertible in five words, they’d have to be “more of a good thing.” That’s because this ultra-high-performance variant of the German automaker’s appealing A5 (and its sportier S5 sibling) takes everything that’s good about those’

Audi adds more aggressive styling and significant hardware upgrades to make the RS 5 the best of the bunch. It takes everything that’s good about A5 and its sportier S5 sibling and incorporates them to provide a ultra-high performance variant.

One cannot argue that the RS 5 deserves and earns a place by virtue of its 336 kilowatt powerful V8 engine alone. The Audi is capable on the handling front as well, thanks to its strengthened suspension, re-calibrated steering gear and its AWD (all-wheel-drive system) which works together to make winding roads as an enjoyable experience

Under the bonnet, the Audi RS 5 provides a 4.2-litre V8 engine that develops class-leading 336 Kw power. With a seven-speed automated manual gearbox that can be run in fully automatic mode or manually shifted via steering-wheel-mounted paddles.

Audi’s finely-calibrated “Quattro All-Wheel-Drive System” provides incredible stability with the coupe sprinting  from zero to 100 kmh in 4.3 seconds- amazingly fast with fuel consumption at 15.7 litres/100 kms.

Standard features include:

  • 19-inch alloy wheels,
  • adaptive xenon headlights,
  • a speed-activated pop-up rear spoiler,
  • a panoramic sunroof,
  • keyless ignition and entry,
  • tri-zone automatic climate control,
  • leather upholstery,
  • heated eight-way power sport seats,
  • Bluetooth and a premium sound system with a CD player,
  • Satellite radio and iPod integration.
  • Option highlights include 20-inch alloy wheels, carbon-ceramic front disc brakes, a sport exhaust system, leather/faux suede upholstery, a navigation system and a Bang & Olufsen sound system with HD radio. A Driver Assist package includes adaptive cruise control, adaptive steering and blind spot monitoring.

The Audi RS 5 includes an interior that’s luxurious. As with many of its competitors, the biggest negative is a backseat that’s a tight fit for 2 adults.

On the road, that potent power-systems works in together with the ‘All-Wheel-Drive System’ its recalibrated suspension and fantastic steering systems providing a performance that should satisfy most fast-driving enthusiasts.

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AUDI A4

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The Audi A4 has been so good for so long that it’s easy to take this entry-level luxury sedan’s excellence for granted.

Its styling is familiar but still attractive, while its cabin is what you can expect from Audi in terms of stylish design and quality.

The features are extremely generous, while certain competitors are more impressive to drive, the A4 still finds a nice middle ground between the sport and comfort.

The 2014 Audi A4 is even better. Firstly, the 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine has increased to HP to 220. A luxury car with only 4 cylinders is routine now as the fuel economy benefits of a four-cylinder generally outweigh this stigma.

The A4 cannot be labelled as being slow, but if you want a performance model the superb 2014 Audi S4 is available and at a heftier car payment.

While the 2014 A4’s performance has improved, the high-quality interior is still the car’s main draw. While perhaps not as visually interesting as some of its competitors, the A4’s typically German cabin nevertheless has a rich tone with a decent-sized backseat and boot with the cabin interior suitably practical as well.

It does compete against some impressive small luxury sedans- the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class to name a few that offer similar refinement and driving experiences.

The Lexus IS and Volvo S60 are also good alternatives, but the new Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class could be a more trendy and cost-effective alternative. Many of these competing models may be better-looking and offering more value for money, with only the BMW being a well-rounded alternative.

 

The 2014 Audi A4’s turbo-charged four-cylinder may not be the most thrilling or pleasing engine in the world, but don’t be surprised at its ability to rivet you to your seat when accelerating at speed.  The A4 has more than enough torque for quick spurts of acceleration when required whether around town or over-taking when required. If you require the ‘more sport aspect’ the sport-focused S4 will more than suffice.

The A4 provides a balanced and secure feeling when cornering and puts it on equal footing with the BMW 3 Series sedan.

It also retains a high level of comfort (the Quattro all-wheel drive further enhances its capabilities and driver confidence).

More performance-minded drivers may find the optional Sport package to their liking, though be prepared for a slightly harsher ride quality.

 

 

A3 Audi

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The Audi A3 hatchback is one of the smarter looking medium family hatchbacks and it attracts well-heeled buyers or company car drivers that don’t want to draw too much attention to themselves.

Most people will buy an A3 based mainly on the badge and, as a medium hatchback with excellent engines and sensible running costs (thanks to its strong residual values), it certainly ticks plenty of boxes.

This latest model is not only larger than the previous version (12mm wider and the wheelbase is up 23mm), but it also weighs 80kg less. Boot space has grown from 350 to 365 litres. The A3 design is understated, but it’s in line with newer models like the Audi A6 and Audi A4.

Wide Range of Economical Engines

The A3 hatchback is offered with four petrol engines and two diesels. Petrol units range from 1.2 to 1.8 litres, with the latter coming with the option of Quattro four-wheel drive.

A recent addition to the range is a 1.4 TSI unit with Cylinder on Demand technology. This system ( this raises the price) automatically shuts down two of the four cylinders when coasting or on light throttle inputs – the result is diesel-like fuel economy of 60.1mpg and CO2 emissions of 109g/km.

Diesel engine options, popular among company car drivers, are 1.6 and 2.0 TDI units offering 103bhp and 148bhp respectively. CO2 emissions are from 99g/km.

Equipment Levels

Entry-level models are badged SE and come with air conditioning, DAB radio with the Audi Music Interface, voice control and 16-inch alloy wheels. Sport models bring 17-inch alloys, aluminium interior trim, the Audi Drive Select system which alters the ride characteristics, and a sports chassis lowered by 15mm. Top spec S line models gain 18-inch wheels, part-leather interior and xenon headlights with LED running lights.

IN SUMMARY

The Audi A3 is a desirable, premium-badged alternative to the VW Golf

From its gorgeous interior to its sporty drive, the A3 has a character all of its own.

There’s plenty of space in the front of the A3, and headroom is good throughout. However, six-footers will wish the three-door version of the car had a bit more rear knee room.

This is exactly what you get with the Sportback model, along with two extra doors, so it’s a far more practical choice.

Whichever version of the A3 you choose, the boot is big enough to take a fold-up baby buggy or the weekly food shop. Plus there’s a false boot floor that lets you divide the space in two and raise the load level so that you’re less likely to strain your back when lifting in heavy items.

THE AUDI A1

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The Audi A1 is a supermini with the interior quality and technology of a luxury sedan.

The Audi A1 is a stylish and trendy entry into the growing niche of upmarket super-minis, a segment that was invented by the MINI Hatch and joined by the Citroen DS3.

These cars are the perfect fit for high flyers who live in the city, or simply don’t want a big car, yet still crave luxury and the latest technology.

There’s a choice of a three-door model or five-door version called the Audi A1 Sportback, a more practical choice should you have children.

If you need to get from A to B economically, or like a car which can accelerate from 0-1100 kmh in just 5.8 seconds, the A1 could be the choice for you. The petrol engine range features 1.2- and 1.4-litre litre engines, while those seeking lower running costs can choose from 1.4– or 2.0-litre diesels.

The quickest version is the Audi S1 Quattro, which pulls off the impressive feat of fitting four-wheel drive and a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine under its diminutive frame. There’s a number of different trims to choose from and a wide range of options to customise your A1.

The Audi A1 triumphs as a small car which feels big from inside, and makes an excellent cruiser.

It is said that it is impressively cheap to run.

The A1’s small size and Audi’s efficient engines lend themselves to providing great economy and the 1.6-litre TDI is best of the bunch, recording 74.3mpg and CO2 emissions of 99g/km, of CO2 emissions, making it free to tax. It’s not a class-leading performance though, being beaten by both the DS3 and all-new MINI Hatch, which can manage 78.5 and 83.1mpg respectively.

Despite its extra size, the 2.0-litre diesel doesn’t disgrace itself: it’s capable of 68.9mpg and 108g/km of CO2.

Petrol engines are well-suited to the A1, improving refinement compared with the slightly noisy diesels. The 85bhp 1.2-litre TFSI engine manages 55.4mpg, which is a respectable figure, but can’t match the 61.4mpg of the 102bhp MINI One.

Three version of the 1.4-litre engine are available. The entry-level version with 121bhp is fractionally more expensive to run than the 1.2 with 53.3mpg and emissions of 126g/km. The same engine fitted with technology that turns off half of the engine when it’s not needed to save fuel sees power and running costs improved. Here the car returns 60.1mpg and has CO2 emissions of 109g/km for a Impressively, even the powerful 182bhp 1.4-litre TFSI S line returns 47.9mpg and 139g/km of CO2, which is not bad for a 141mph hatchback.

The A1’s interior is only rivalled by the latest MINI for quality in the ‘super-mini’ class. The steering wheel adjusts for reach and rake and the driver’s seat for height, so it’s easy to get comfortable.

You can customise almost every aspect of the interior, choosing the seats, steering wheel, upholstery and colours you desire to achieve the sporty or luxurious A1 of your dreams.

Forward and rear visibility is good, but you’ll need to beware the over-the-shoulder blind spot caused by the thick door pillar just behind your head.

Bigger boot than the MINI, and Sportback has two more doors

With three doors getting in and out of the back seats is awkward, but the two rear seats have more space than the MINI, with better legroom, while headroom is restricted by the curvy roof. The boot measures 270-litres, which is usefully bigger than the MINI’s 211-litre boot, and just behind the DS3’s 285 litres.

The rear seats can split, but don’t fold completely flat, increasing possible luggage space to 920 litres.

The boot hatch opens to give reasonably wide access, however the large rear bumper makes the loading lip fairly high to lift items over.

Audi RS 4

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The Audi RS 4 have squeezed their V8 motor into this compact luxury sedan. The Audi RS boasts a 313 Kw V8 attached to a fine-tuned version of the Quattro all-wheel-drive system that twists power to the rear wheels.

The RS 4 differs from the rather tame S4 via a sporting chassis, larger brakes and 19-inch wheels. These features creates a superb car in all the areas: incredible acceleration, effective braking and a superb ride and amazing cornering ability.

The Audi RS 4 sedan is also available in a Cabriolet version and like the S4, the convertible version has less-padded sport seats and a slightly different interior design.

As Stuttgart and Munich prepare for increasing ‘kilowatt battle’ with their respective new M3 and C63 AMG, Audi has a breath-taking weapon ready for battle.

Standard features include 19-inch wheels with 255/35 high-performance tires, Dynamic Ride Control suspension, xenon headlights, Recaro sport seats with power adjustment (the Cabriolet has less aggressive, non-Recaro seats) and front seat heaters. Napa leather upholstery, carbon-fibre cabin trim, dual-zone automatic climate control, a 10-speaker audio system with six-disc CD changer, a sunroof (sedan) and rear park assist are all standard.

A six-speed manual gearbox (the only transmission offered) sends the power to all four wheels through their ‘Quattro All-Wheel-Drive System’ which has a 40/60 front-to-rear power split in this application.

The RS 4 does 100 kmh in 4.5 seconds good enough to take-on both the new BMW M3 and Mercedes-Benz’s C63 AMG.

Safety features include stability control, anti-locking brakes, front-seat side airbags and full-length head curtain airbags are all standard.

Audi consistently produces some of the finest interiors with both models featuring outstanding materials and efficient controls.

As a serious performance car, the sedan as standard Recaro front seats.

Although the rear seat is fine for small children, adults back-seaters are likely complain about a shortage of leg-room.

Apart from the amazing acceleration, the RS 4 makes a strong showing in the braking and handling departments. Confidence and grip from the front tires are superb, balance is good and steering at speed is the best on all Audi’s.

Audi S5 Coupe

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The Audi S5 Cabriolet provides the best of both worlds – elegance and style as a day-to-day commuter and a car that is equally at home on the race-track- it provides 333-horsepower, good looks, and Audi’s sure-footed “Quattro all-wheel-drive”.

The S5 cabriolet is essentially an open-top version of the S5 Coupe- sharing the coupe’s hardtop’s styling and engine. A mid-cycle update included sleeker headlights, a “single-frame” grille and a more aggressive front fascia.

Equipped with a super-charged 3.0-litre V6 motor that produces 333 horsepower and 325 lb-ft, the Cabriolet comes exclusively with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic that sends power to all four wheels via Audi’s Quattro all-wheel-drive system.

It can do 0-100 kmh in 5.3 seconds, and fuel economy is rated at 13.06/8.4 litres/100 kms city/highway driving.

Main Features

  • Suspension and styling modifications and more sporting look and feel.
  • Larger brakes and a tightened and lowered suspension help the Z-rated tires deliver the uprated power to the street.
  • The coddling interior features carbon fiber trim, special seats and a unique steering wheel.

Available Tech Equipment

  • Audi’ MMI infotainment interface and
  • Audi Connect, which brings in-car internet connectivity and
  • Industry-first Google Earth integration – complete with panoramic views and high-resolution 3D satellite and aerial imagery.

The S5 Cabriolet top is a lightweight, insulated cloth folding top rather than a heavier, but more coupe-like, folding metal hardtop. The top can be raised or lowered at speeds of up to 50 kmh, and a head-level heating system enables passengers to drive with the top down in less-than-ideal weather.

Standard and Optional Features

The S5 Cabriolet can be had in two trim levels – Premium and Premium Plus.

The Premium models comes standard with Nappa leather upholstery, heated front seats, a 10-speaker AM/FM/CD/SiriusXM stereo system with iPod integration, Bluetooth connectivity, tri-zone automatic climate control, 18-inch alloy wheels, fog lamps, xenon headlights and LED taillights.

The Premium Plus trim adds a navigation system with Audi Connect, a 12-speaker, 505-watt Bang & Olufsen sound system with HD ratio technology, Audi side assist and a rear parking Camera.

Notable options include ventilated seats, adaptive cruise control and a performance-oriented Sport Differential package with torque vectoring. Also available is Audi Drive Select, which offers a variety of different suspension, steering, transmission and engine calibrations.

The Black Optic package adds black exterior elements and 20-inch alloy wheels.

Occupant Safety

All S5 Cabriolet models come standard with dual front, front side and front-knee airbags in addition to traction and stability control systems. Also included is a pop-up roll-bar system that provides extra protection in roll

Audi SQ5

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The 2014 Audi SQ5 tips scale to be considered top of the luxury compact crossover segment: a luxury compact crossover that oozes performance: and the most fun

If you enjoy sports car performance as well as having an ideal SUV/Crossover, you cannot go wrong with this fabulous car.

In true definition, the Audi SQ5 is a performance-inspired luxury crossover most likely to be watched by BMW (its primary competitor) in their attempt to emulate Audi’s success.

The compact crossover market is booming in South Africa, the U.S. and China luxury crossovers offer a competitive choice.

The Audi SQ5 builds upon the Audi Q5, with the SQ5 adding more refinement features and levels of performance not seen in the Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class, or BMW X3 family range.

The range-topping Mercedes GLK350 is powered by a 3.5-litre V-6, and 302 hp; the BMW xDrive35i similarly gets 300 hp from its 3.0-litre V-6. Audi SQ5 cranks up power to 354 hp, and taking just 5.1 seconds to do the 0-100 kmh.

The SQ5 is equipped with a supercharged 3.0-litre V-6 motor and its only engine option. Fitted with an eight-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters sending power to all four wheels using Audi’s ‘quattro all-wheel drive system’

The SQ5 offers a generous array of standard equipment.

The 2014 Audi SQ5 is an increasingly popular luxury compact crossover that currently has no equal.

Volkswagen Group’s other brand, the Porsche Macan crossover, recently launched could be a serious contender in the sales department.

If you’re looking for compact crossover utility, but still long for the performance aspects of your sports car, the Audi SQ5 is an obvious choice.