Audi serves up double delight

PUBLISHED : Friday, 11 June, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 11 June, 2010, 12:00am

So which do you choose? The Audi A5 Sportback 2.0 TFSI Quattro S tronic, or the A5 Sportback 1.8 TFSI multitronic? Should you cough up HK$484,000 - or save something for a rainy day and just part with HK$375,300?

These are tough questions to answer as the Audi 2.0 and 1.8' are two different models but have a great deal in common, not least in the realms of power and performance.

They could be viewed as one and, from whichever angle you look at them, it has to be acknowledged they are designed with more than a touch of beauty. Putting aside the rather vulgar question of cash, whether you plump for the 2.0 or the 1.8, it must eventually boil down to what makes you feel most comfortable.

On a personal note, a seat that goes not just backwards and forwards, but up and down is a real boon.

In the manner of a pre-boxing match weigh-in, it's worth briefly sizing up these two Audis. Both sport an in-line, four-cylinder petrol engine with direct fuel injection, though the 1.8 displaces 1,798cc as opposed to the 2.0's 1,984cc. The transmission is not so much worth a close look as an extensive feel, though it's so smooth in both cases that you need to concentrate your nerve endings. The 1.8 features an eight-speed multitronic continuously variable automatic transmission. Set that against the 2.0's seven-speed S tronic dual-clutch system. All in all, there is much to absorb and entertain.

There's lots to admire on board, but the power-glass sunroof, standard in both models, is a joy to open on days when the sun beams on Hong Kong.

Shortly after passing the Kwun Tong bypass, a vehicle ahead flung up something sized between a pebble and a stone. It arced its way towards the windscreen almost in slow motion, thwacked and bounced off, leaving nary a scratch, with the Sportback sailing along the highway, serene and unbowed. It was a momentary fright and a good example of just how robust this particular line of vehicle is.

On a final note, there are some great optional extras. Both models offer Xenon-plus headlights (HK$20,000), while the 2.0 will also take 18-inch alloy wheels and 245/40 R18 tyres (HK$10,000).