• Mar 2, 2010
2011 Audi RS5 - Click above for high-res image gallery

The one thing on our minds as Audi unveiled the RS5 here in Geneva is whether or not the car will come to the United States. We can't get a definitive answer from the German automaker, and although we're guessing the chances are fairly slim, we were told not to completely rule it out. Audi has listed the base price of the car only in Euros (77,000), but we'll hold on to hope until Audi officially states the car won't be sold across the pond.

Why do we want the RS5 in the U.S. so bad? For starters, it's got a 450 horsepower version of Audi's tried and true 4.2-liter V8 paired to the legendary Quattro AWD. Combine that with perhaps the best looking coupe designs on the market today and you've got one heck of an appealing sports car. Hit the jump for the newly released press release or check out our live photos in the high-res gallery below.



Photos by Drew Phillips / Copyright ©2010 Weblogs, Inc.
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INGOLSTADT, Germany, Mar 2, 2010 - Unbridled power lurking in a classically elegant coupé: the Audi RS 5 will debut at the Geneva Auto Show. The high-revving 4.2-liter V8 with its 331 kW (450 hp) unleashes powerful performance while achieving remarkable fuel economy. The seven-speed S tronic and an innovative center differential in the quattro drivetrain transmit power to all four wheels.

Developed by quattro GmbH, the RS models comprise the dynamic spearhead of Audi's model range. The RS 5 is the latest torchbearer in a tradition dating back over 15 years to the RS 2 Avant: superior handling in the mid-size class.

A close relative of the V10 which powers the high-performance R8 sports car, the high-revving V8 engine delivers its output from a displacement of 4,163 cm3. Like nearly every Audi gasoline engine, this one also operates via direct fuel injection known by the abbreviation FSI. This same technology has propelled the Audi R8 racing car to four triumphs at the classic endurance race in Le Mans. The common-rail system generates up to 120 bars of pressure.

Intensive fine-tuning of the dual-branch intake and exhaust system allows the undersquare engine to breathe freely; four adjustable camshafts and tumble flaps in the intake manifold facilitate mixture formation. The 4.2 FSI provides imposing torque and is right at home even at high revs almost like a race engine. The engine delivers 331 kW (450 hp) at 8,250 rpm and between 4,000 and 6,000 rpm - transmits a maximum of 430 Nm (317.15 lb-ft) of torque.

The vigorous strength, the spontaneous responsiveness, the joyful high-revving, and the throaty, sonorous music: this V8 produced by hand at Audi stunningly combines the essence of power and emotion. The 4.2 FSI propels the coupé's 1,725 kilograms (3,802.97 pounds) in 4.6 seconds from 0 to 100 km/h (0 to 62.14 mph) to an electronically governed top speed of 250 km/h (155.34 mph). Audi can increase that to 280 km/h (173.98 mph) upon request.

Impressive efficiency: just 10.8 liters of fuel per 100 km

Efficiency is standard in every Audi; the RS 5 is no exception. The ultra-powerful eight-cylinder engine averages 10.8 liters of fuel per 100 kilometers (21.78 miles US mpg) - far less than its main competitors. This impressive figure is due in part to the technologies from the Audi modular efficiency platform. The engine and the entire drivetrain have been optimized to minimize friction, the oil pump operates on demand, and an energy-recovery system conserves energy during coasting and braking.

The standard seven-speed S tronic in the RS 5 with its high efficiency ratio and its high-geared top speed also enhances efficiency. It consists of two clutches and two subsidiary transmissions. Both subsidiary transmissions are continuously active, but only one is powered at any given time by the engine. Gears are alternately shifted by the two clutches at lightning speed, smoothly, and almost imperceptibly.

The seven-speed S tronic, which was specially reinforced to accommodate the high-revving V8, can operate in fully automatic mode or the driver can shift via the innovative selector lever or shift paddles on the steering wheel. By means of the standard Audi drive select, the driver can switch in automatic mode among three different options: auto, comfort, and dynamic. In the launch control program, the seven-speed S tronic ensures flawless acceleration from a standstill – at full power and with minimal tire slip.

New quattro technology: the crown-gear differential

Like all RS models, the RS 5 also applies its power to the road with quattro permanent all-wheel drive. As for the center differential, which regulates power distribution between the front and rear axles, Audi – the leading all-wheel-drive brand – unveils the next generation: a crown-gear differential.

The self-locking crown-gear center differential is compact and lightweight – and attains a high efficiency ratio.

Thanks to its package of plates, the differential can widely vary the distribution of torque between the front and rear axles. If necessary, up to 70 percent can flow to the front or as much as 85 percent toward the tail end. The 40:60 ratio of the standard rear-biased configuration ensures sporty handling.

This new differential operates in conjunction with electronic torque vectoring, which affects all four wheels. If one of the inside wheels becomes imbalanced while the vehicle is at its operational limits, then the system slightly decelerates the wheel to obviate wheel spin. This results in terrific traction on the one hand while generating a yaw moment which aids cornering.

As a perfect complement to the new quattro drivetrain, Audi can optionally position the sport differential at the rear axle. It actively distributes torque between the rear wheels in order to further boost stability and grip at the vehicle's limits of handling. The electronic management of the RS 5 sport differential was designed to be uncompromisingly dynamic.

With regard to the springs, shock absorbers, elastokinematics, and the anti-roll bars, the RS 5 chassis exhibits a sporty configuration and renders the body 20 millimeters (0.79 inches) lower than that of the Audi A5. The 19-inch alloy wheels fitted with 265/35 tires are standard. They are executed in an exclusive 5-arm structure design. The RS 5 optionally comes with 20-inch wheels and 275/30 tires. Winter wheels featuring the same dimensions are available; the 19-inch wheel is suitable for snow chains.

The brake system employs powerful and internally ventilated discs, which measure 365 millimeters (14.37 inches) in diameter at the front axle. In order to maximize the dissipation of heat, the steel friction rings are perforated and connected by pins to the aluminum brake discs. The high-gloss black brake calipers bearing RS logos are likewise made of aluminum; the front calipers are fitted with eight pistons each. Audi can optionally fit the front axle with ceramic carbon-fiber brake discs measuring 380 millimeters (14.96 inches) in diameter. They are extremely lightweight, strong, and durable. The electronic stabilization program (ESP) integrates a sport mode and can be switched off entirely.

Even more dynamics: Audi drive select

The speed-dependent servotronic steering in the RS 5 is especially taut. The standard Audi drive select (a vehicle-dynamics control system) allows the driver to switch among three modes of operation – comfort, auto, and dynamic – to adjust steering, the seven-speed S tronic, the sport differential, the engine, and the exhaust system. And if the car is equipped with the MMI navigation system, a fourth mode allows the driver to customize their own profile.

As regards the engine, Audi drive select controls the exhaust system's two throttle valves and the sound flaps; when they open, the rich sound becomes even more resonant. Along with the sport differential, dynamic steering is another optional component of Audi drive select. Dynamic steering adjusts the steering ratio to a vehicle's speed – directly for maneuvering at low speeds and indirectly for traveling at highway speeds. At the vehicle's cornering limits, it automatically ensures smooth handling via minor corrective actions.

The RS 5 exudes an athletic and powerful identity; its classically beautiful coupé styling dazzles with new and clear-cut accents. Its single-frame grille bears a shiny charcoal-gray rhombus-pattern grid. Xenon plus headlights boasting a sweeping strip of LED daytime running lights are standard. The oversized air inlets for the engine, front brakes, and the radiators are bordered by striking contours. The newly designed bumper tapers downward into a splitter.

The flared fenders with the crisp horizontal upper edges are reminiscent of a classic Audi: namely, the all-wheel-drive pioneer Audi quattro, which itself debuted at the Geneva Auto Show 30 years ago. The side sills bear angular caps; the trim strips on the single-frame grille and near the side windows as well as the outside mirrors' covers feature a matt aluminum look. Eight different paint finishes are available.

The tail end is dominated by two oval exhaust pipes integrated within the bumper. A large diffuser protrudes prominently upward. The spoiler in the tailgate automatically extends at a speed of 120 km/h (74.56 mph) and retracts at
80 km/h (49.71 mph).

The extensively clad underbody of the RS 5 integrates air vents for the seven-speed S tronic and the front brakes. At highway speeds, the aerodynamic characteristics of the RS 5 generate downforce to further enhance stability.

Dynamic elegance: the interior

The vehicle's dynamically elegant styling extends to the interior. Sports seats with pronounced side sections and integrated head restraints are standard. They are electrically adjustable and feature a leather/Alcantara combination. Alternatives include bucket seats with more prominent contours and folding backrests or ventilated and luxuriously upholstered climate-controlled comfort seats.

The steering wheel has a substantial rim and is covered with perforated leather. The instruments have black gauges and white lettering with distinctive scaling. When the ignition is switched on, the red needles briefly rise high and then drop back down. The driver information system integrates a lap timer for recording circuit times and an oil-temperature gauge. Just like the optional MMI navigation systems' monitor, it displays an RS greeting upon ignition.

The interior is black and the decorative inlays are made of carbon fiber. A fascia in the instrument panel features a piano finish. The pedals, the footrests, and the optional MMI navigation systems' control buttons gleam thanks to their aluminum look. Moreover, the door handles consist of two slim strips – typical of Audi RS models. Aluminum inserts adorn the door sill trims and RS 5 logos lend dynamic highlights to the interior.

Upon request, truly exclusive features such as decorative inlays with a dark, stainless-steel mesh look, a black piano finish or brushed aluminum are available. Or seat upholstery featuring special leathers and colors as well as silver headlining. In addition, the Audi exclusive RS program offers options such as suede-covered controls and floor mats bearing RS 5 logos.

A Carbon design package is available for the engine compartment and, for the vehicle body, there are styling packages in black or matt aluminum look. And the acoustically bold Sport exhaust system – also with a sound flap – has black tailpipe trims.

Sales of the Audi RS 5 will begin in the spring. Its basic price will be approximately 77,700 euros.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 54 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      This does look fantastic, but I just can't get excited about this car, it's the same way with the M6, something about the coupes just doesn't do it for me. I would sooner go for a 911 or a saloon (M3, C63 AMG, etc.)
        • 4 Years Ago
        I think it is the pedestrian crash regs...

        These front-engined coupes... the hood edge on the front is pretty much as tall as the back of the hood, at the windshield cowl.

        It harms the wedge look, and the sleekness of the car. Most front engined cars are starting to look much more rectangular and blunt again.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Wonder how long it'll be till we see a twin turbo kit for this car
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'm sorry but the standard A5 sport package is beautiful enough.

      I would purchase this car for style not performance.

      If you want performance go with the M3
        • 4 Years Ago
        So you're going to buy a car that's faster than the m3 for style and are encouraging people who want performance to go with the m3? It sounds like you're getting both with the RS5 so I'm guessing both camps will buy it. It's actually kinda heartwarming to see audi produce such a beautiful coupe, a tad quicker than the m3, yet very distinctively audi. Anyone with M3 money to spend now has another option that’s equally as appealing but not a copy, pretty awesome.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Tried and flawed V8 is more like it.

      I'm a huge Audi fan but Audi has a problem with power robbing carbon build-up on their FSI engines (which is virtually all of them). Some owners of the RS4 (me included) are attempting to get Audi to address the issue. But in the meantime, I'm going to have to assume that the same problem plaguing RS4s and other FSI Audis will plague the RS5.

      Besides potentially malfunctioning, the 450hp will likely fall down to around 400hp after a few thousand miles. Those interested in learning more about this issue are welcomed to read up here: http://www.audizine.com/forum/showthread.php?336352-Audi-FSI-Engine-Carbon-Build-up-Megathread
        • 4 Years Ago
        Looks like PCV residue combined with EGR gasses collecting on "dry" intake valves. With direct injection, no gasoline to act as a solvent and constantly wash the backsides of the valves. Are other manufacturers having this same DI problem?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Wow, Just wow such an awesome car. The A5/S5/RS5 Coupe line is probably the best looking out there.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I love the subtlety of the flared quarter panels. It's one of those touches that will go completely unnoticed by the uninitiated, but speaks volumes to those who know what "RS" means in Audi parlance.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Wow, I am in love. Aud knocked this one out of the park and the ball is still going! This is a car a guy like me could own and be happy with for many years to come. Look out BMW and it might be time to drive mine in to get a better look at this beauty.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I wish the front was a bit sharper, maybe a bit more angular. Then again, that's an issue I have with most of Audi nowadays.
      • 4 Years Ago
      With Audi's record of non-importation... frankly I doubt this will see our shores.

      But what I do hope... re-fresh of Audi R8 4.2

      450hp upgrade to the V8 engine.
      Dual-clutch gearbox option, with torque vectoring AWD and rear diff.
      S-line trim package that upgrades the 4.2 to look like the 5.2
      Some nicely simple wheels. (5.2's wheels are horrible... RS5's are pretty nice)
      Some subtly widened fenders, and black full-mesh grille (like RS5, but black, instead of silver).
      Transparent roof panel, like the V12TDI concept.

      That would be about all it needs.
        • 4 Years Ago
        And R8 needs those red valve covers. A little color in the engine bay, under the glass. :D
      • 4 Years Ago
      The car looks perfect, I want it I want it.
      • 4 Years Ago
      God this car is orgasmic to look at! but for nearly $104,000 i dont think many people would want to buy one when they can drop an extra 10 grand for a base Audi R8... but i have to say i think that the RS5 pulls of the huge oval exhaust pipes better than the R8
        • 4 Years Ago
        mnmlist, and another interior comment, Ugh.

        Reveal yourself mnmlist, who do you work for? BMW, MCB? He really loves the interiors he just can't admit it here. Must be a college kid working at an internship for BMW trying to post negative things about Audis throughout the interwebs. You have been discovered, quick change your username.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @invisiblepigeon:

        Thats just it. Its a "standard sports/luxury car interior".
        • 4 Years Ago
        You can't just convert euro's to dollars...the pricing structure does not work that way. Should be around $70K, this has been discussed in length on here. just fyi
        • 4 Years Ago
        @mnmlst

        "The money was definitely spent on the exterior and not the interior"

        What? Audi has some of the best interiors in the business (if not the best). Love it or hate it, they didn't scrimp on the interior.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @fahnlanders i know i know i know im sorry im sorry and i would hope that it would be $70,000... it would be much more worth it if it was... and im pretty sure i saw the number $104,000 in another autoblog post but that muct have been another direct conversion

        @mnmlist the interior is classic audi... whats not to love, sure its a little dark but imagine putting in the red alacantra seats with the carbon fiber trim... that would be awesomee
        invisiblepigeon3
        • 4 Years Ago
        Ok I have to ask. What's your problem with the interior? It looks pretty standard sports/luxury car interior to me.
        • 4 Years Ago
        The money was definitely spent on the exterior and not the interior. Ugh.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Haven't you people learned that you don't just convert the euro MSRP to get the US MSRP?!

      This will likely start at around $70k...not $104k!

      jeebus..

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