The new Audi A5 Cabriolet - is set to make its UK debut next spring, and will be closely followed by a new S5 Cabriolet flagship. Priced from just under £30,000, and available to order from February 2009, the striking four-seat Audi A5 soft-top range capitalizes on the space maximizing extended wheelbase length and state-of-the art engines, transmissions and chassis configuration that have secured success for the Audi A5 Coupe.
Chosen in preference to heavy and complex folding metal roof systems, the lightweight soft-top in the new A5 Cabriolet features a heated glass rear window, and in just 15 seconds retracts into a compartment within the boot that automatically lowers to accommodate it. Equally importantly under UK skies, it also raises again in only 17 seconds, and can complete both operations at speeds of up to 31mph. When in place the three-layer roof very effectively insulates occupants from external noise, and for optimum refinement an optional acoustic hood is also available to reduce sound intrusion to virtually the same level as the Audi A5 Coupe.
Roof up or down, the Audi A5 Cabriolet makes light work of transporting up to four adults in comfort thanks to its extended wheelbase, which helps to maximize cabin space. When the soft top is in place, a best-in-class luggage capacity of 380 litres also enables easy accommodation of luggage for four, and in topless mode the roof stowage compartment only marginally reduces this impressive total to 320 litres. Thanks to the standard split/folding rear seat back a maximum capacity of 750 litres can be accessed if required.
With the roof stowed and the standard wind deflector in place, front seat occupants make impressively buffet-free progress, and for the last word in topless refinement can be cosseted by new options such as a neck-level heating system built into the tops of the seat backs for cooler days and solar heat-reflecting leather upholstery that keeps seat surfaces cooler in direct sunlight.Published 3 December 2008