2021 Audi S5 Sportback – A Powerful, Safe, Luxurious Sports Sedan

Slotted between the A5 Sportback and RS5 Sportback, the 2021 Audi S5 Sportback comes with secure handling, a robust six-cylinder engine, and a comfortable cabin. This uniquely styled, high-performance Sportback’s biggest merits include a 349-horsepower 3.0-liter turbocharged V6 with standard Quattro all-wheel-drive offering quick acceleration and nimble handling. The only drawbacks some reviewers quoted are its lower driving engagement than its German rivals and average storage space for small items. Let’s go deep and discuss every aspect of this sporty sedan.

Our 2021 Audi S5 Sportback Review

audi s5 sportback



What’s New For the 2021 Audi S5 Sportback?

Audi didn’t want to meddle with the S5’s winning formula, so they decided to carry over the powerplant. However, they did update the Audi S5 Sportback specs. Each trim level has something new in terms of facilities. For instance, Audi’s smartphone interface with wireless Apple CarPlay and an integrated toll-road payment transmission system, are standard across the range, and so is the lane departure warning.

The optional Convenience Package adds some nifty features such as front/rear parking sensors and a heated steering wheel. The mid-level Premium Plus variant is now more attractive than ever, thanks to the addition of a top-view camera system, adaptive cruise control, a hands-on detection steering wheel, and lane-keeping assist. Furthermore, the range-topping Prestige has everything you get in the mid-level model plus standard backseat heating.

Audi S5 Trim Levels

The new Audi S5 Sportback comes in three variants: the entry-level Premium, mid-level Premium Plus, and top-level Prestige. All the models feature Audi’s 3.0-liter twin-scroll turbocharged TFSI V6 engine, 8-speed automatic transmission, and Quattro all-wheel drive. Other facilities differ for each model, and we will discuss them in detail later on.

Audi S5 Sportback Performance

audi s5 sportback performance

Engine and Transmission

Audi decided to carry over the 3.0-liter twin-scroll turbocharged TFSI V6 engine for the 2021 model year, and rightly so. It delivers ample power to satisfy your adrenaline rush. The new sports sedan cranks out 349 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque.

The power goes to all the wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission. The powertrain enables the 2021 Audi S5 Sportback to complete a 0-60 mph run in only 4.5 seconds on its way to an electronically limited top speed of 155 mph. Wrap this performance sports sedan in all-season tires, and the top-speed reduces to 130 mph, still capable of offering plenty of thrusts.

However, you might feel it playing unresponsively in Comfort mode. For high-speed cruises, you may want to shift to Dynamic mode.

  • Handling and Driving Dynamics

The 2021 Audi S5 Sportback boasts an advanced powertrain and excellently built chassis to deliver comfortable rides. The electromechanical steering might not be as responsive as you would want it, but you cannot blame the car for just this. The standard Quattro all-wheel drive is as smooth as you would expect. Indeed, the new S5 isn’t as exciting as the RWD BMW M340i, but it is the Audi S in question, not an RS. We believe the Sportback does exactly what it is built for i.e., performing its daily commutes under the legal speed limit while giving you a sense of security and calmness like a true cruiser. On upper-trims, you can opt for adaptive damping suspension and dynamic steering to minimize steering and improve the handling.

S5 Sportback Gas Mileage

Remarkably, the 2021 Audi S5 Sportback delivers better fuel economy (1 mpg higher) than the previous model. The EPA-estimated figures stand at 20/28/23 mpg city/highway/combined. By topping up the tank with 15.3 gallons, you can expect the S5 to cover approximately 352 miles.

Audi S5 Sportback Exterior

audi s5 sportback exterior

On the front, it sports Audi’s single-frame grille, bordered by Matrix-design LED headlights (laser lights are standard on the top-tier trim). At the rear, we can see LED taillights, dynamic indicators, a crafty rear trunk lip spoiler, and S-model quad exhaust outlets. All variants come standard with a panoramic sunroof, a power tailgate, and 18-inch alloy wheels.

Audi S5 Sportback interior

audi s5 sportback interior

The S5 Sportback’s interior highlights top-class materials, excellent finishing, and an ergonomically responsive design. Regardless of its low roofline, it can accommodate three passengers in the back. If you feel you are better off with a roomier cabin, you might prefer the Audi S4 sedan. It offers around 0.5-inch extra legroom for the rear occupants. The standard facilities encompass front seats with heating and massage functions, three-zone climate control, a sunroof, and passive entry with a push-button start.

What makes it more practical is its spacious boot, which is the best in its segment. You can add
six suitcases with the rear seats intact and a massive 16 with them folded. However, you will not find many storage slots inside the cabin.

Audi S5 Sportback Safety

Unfortunately, the NHTSA did not test the 2021 Audi S5 Sportback yet for crashworthiness. But we can tell you that the 2019 S5 received the maximum stars for safety. It got a four-star for frontal crash and five stars for the side and rollover checks. Additionally, the 2020 S5 Sportback obtained five stars for the rollover assessment.

We also do not have the IIHS test results yet. However, the closely linked 2020 A5 Sportback received Good ratings for all crashworthiness trials and Superior rankings for crash avoidance and mitigation.

Audi ensures the safety of occupants through six airbags (rear side airbags are an optional extra), electronic stability control, and ABS/EBD braking. Moreover, the tire pressure monitoring, Audi pre sense basic, Audi pre sense city, rain-sensing windshield wipers, and high-beam assist.

The base Premium gets a rearview camera; however, the mid-level Premium Plus receives a top-view camera system. Moreover, the Premium trim comes with a lane departure warning while the Premium Plus also features adaptive cruise control, lane-keeping assist, rear cross-traffic alert, vehicle exit warning, and front/rear parking sensors. The flagship Prestige model also receives traffic sign recognition, a head-up display, park steering assist, and active lane assist.

Audi S5 Sportback Price

Audi has increased the base price for all the models. The 2021 Audi S5 Sportback starts at $53,545 – a $600 bump over the last year’s Premium. The Premium Plus costs $57,145 – an increase of $1,700, and for the Prestige, you have to dole out $61,945 – $600 rise over the previous model. These prices include taxes, licensing, registration, and a destination fee. Tick all the boxes, and the 2021 Audi S5 Sportback will set you back over $70K.

What 2021 Audi S5 Sportback Model Should I Buy?

If you read other S5 Sportback reviews on the internet, you will find journalists have picked the mid-range Premium Plus from the three available trim levels. The reason for this is evident; it offers you more bang for your bucks. Yes, it suffers the biggest price hike in the lineup, yet it comes with extra facilities that you will not find in the base model. We are talking about Audi virtual cockpit, adaptive cruise control with active lane assist, a top-view camera system, and a steering wheel with hands-on detection.

Do not forget, you can always opt for the optional packages, but those come at a price. Nonetheless, we suggest you select the Black Optic package (black exterior trim, 20-inch wheels, performance summer tires) for updated styling and the S Sport package (red brake calipers, adaptive dampers, and a torque-vectoring rear differential) for improved handling.

Final Words

The 2021 Audi S5 Sportback is a complete package; it is more attention-grabbing than an S4, powerful, offers secure handling, and has an immaculate interior. It is certainly an excellent alternative to the A5. The Audi S5 Sportback horsepower figure of 349 ponies is healthy, delivering a refined driving experience.

It is not only quick on its toes it is also fairly useful thanks to its smartly incorporated hatchback. If more power matters to you, perhaps the new BMW M340i would interest you most. This BMW sedan is more engaging and faster than the S5 while costing the same.

Audi didn’t recall the 2020 and 2021 models for any safety concerns, so it is a flawlessly built car. With Audi’s strong build quality and tidy interior, selling the 2021 S5 Sportback isn’t complicated for Ingolstadt automaker.

Pros                                                                            Cons

Powerful Turbo V6                                                     Light on driver engagement

Excellent cornering grip                                             Very few storage spaces for small items

Spick and span cabin                                                  Rear seats aren’t comfortable for tall people

More standard tech this year

Jasper has been an enthusiast of the automotive and IT industries since the age of 16. He independently writes on the auto industry's recent happenings.