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Summer love

by Guilherme Marques [email protected]

The A5 Cabrio is a very tempting Audi and for an Algarve resident, that temptation can be more than you can take

The A5 range has just received a mild facelift in order to look a bit fresher, a bit more modern, a bit more second-decade-of-the-21st-century-Audi.

The result works really well, although it must be said there was nothing wrong with the A5 design to begin with – it being “the most beautiful car I have ever designed” in the words of Walter de Silva, the brilliant Italian designer that penned the Alfa Romeo 156, the Audi R8 and currently heads the whole Volkswagen Group design department.

The cabrio version is the best one. The A5 is a sporting car rather than a sports car, so the loss of the coupe’s rigid roof doesn’t necessarily make it worse to drive, as is many times the case – you trade driving dynamics for open air motoring.

Not here though. A5 buyers will not take their cars to a mountain pass or a track day – they will buy a TT or an R8 for that – so the A5 Cabrio makes a whole lot of sense.

Algarve Resident tested the logical best seller in Portugal, the 3.0 TDI Multitronic, in S-Line guise. In white, with a black leather interior, it looks so good it is hard not to agree with Walter de Silva. The profile is perfect, with a Ferrari-like wavy line that beautifully connects an aggressive front-end with a clean, no frills tail.

The overall proportions (always the most difficult thing to achieve) are spot on and a definitive testament to de Silva’s mastery.

The V6 3 litre engine produces 204 horse power and, although you can never forget it is a diesel power plant, the smoothness is fantastic, mainly due to the fantastic eight-speed Multitronic gear box, which swaps cogs in a blink of an eye.

The interior is typical Audi, i.e. ergonomically designed, comfortable, practical and with top-level materials.

Riding in the A5 Cabrio is more about relaxing than racing, and there are few convertibles that offer such a premium feel when the sun is flooding the cabin and the wind is in your hair.

The S-Line Pack brings a bit more sportiness, which can at times make the ride a little too stiff, but the wheels look great and the aluminium inserts in the inside add a touch of quality and class.

Audi has not succumbed to the rigid retractable roofs and we applaud that decision. A fabric roof has a classical beauty about it, enhances the overall shape of the car, makes it lighter and frees up more space in the boot for those things you just can’t leave home when going away for the weekend. It also works faultless, opening and closing in just 15 seconds and up to 40 km/h.

Once again – not a coincidence of course – here is another perfect car for the Algarve, for the obvious reasons.

Prices start at €61,814, but be careful on the options list or you can end up at our car’s impressive €76,565. Tempted? You won’t be disappointed…