Enjoying an RS5 on home turf
Words and Photos Ezekiel Wheeler
Fall is a time where most of the country begins to put their performance cars away for the winter. In California we are privileged with great weather year round, but as Californians we think cold weather is anything around 50 degrees. But we couldn't resist when the local chapter of the Audi Club invited us out for a day of canyon carving.
Partnering with Audi NA we were able to procure a Daytona Grey RS5 for the weekend gathering. We also featured one in our EC 2/13 issue. It was now up to me to navigate the car through the tricky canyons on Mulholland Drive that weekend.
Arriving at Supercar Sunday in Woodland Hills, CA, the RS5 was getting the adoration it deserved. The DTM inspired front bumper made everybody stop for a closer look. Of course the rumbling 450hp 4.2L V8 cruise by also warranted further investigation.
Once parked we sought the comfort of a morning coffee. We would need it, as nearly everybody that walked by the car had a question for us about it. Once the lot began to fill, attention quickly turned to a Lamborghini Miura strolling in along with a Countach, an Arial Atom, and a Caterham Super7. It was proving to be a great day in the canyons!
We spoke with some of the Audi Club members to see what their impressions of the performance coupe were. Scottie from the Audi Club told us, "the car is simply gorgeous, lets hope they supercharge it or add some turbos to create a RS5 GT version." Marcel, the organizer of the event shared, "The RS5 has a menacing presence on the road and we are happy to see Audi taking the fight to BMW and Mercedes. It should prove to be a great car to enjoy on California's technical canyon roads."
I couldn't agree more with them. Yes the power packed into the RS5 is a wake up call from the S5's 333hp Supercharged V6. The thrilling quattro drivetrain makes you feel nearly invincible when carving into various canyon hairpins. Keep in mind I said nearly, 450hp under the hood does make the RS5 bite from time to time so I had to keep my wits about me.
Since we were still familiarizing ourselves with the car we opted for the "spirited-tour" group rather than the "fun-runners". The seven-speed twin-clutch auto gearbox provides plenty of rev-matching exhaust grunts but seems to have a slight delay when you ring it out, which caused a dramatic dip during peak acceleration. A quick readjustment and we decided the car was best left in mid range of the gearbox to enjoy the tight canyon roads and still come home in one piece.
As we pulled into the Johnny Rockets in Agora Hills, CA the group decided to take a moment and debrief their session. Today seemed oddly congested so sadly I wasn't able to fully let the RS5 loose. I did manage to exercise the brakes and corner acceleration for the entire 2-hour trip. Johnny Law every dozen miles made things difficult as well.
The RS5 captivated everybody with its impressive exhaust note, acceleration capabilities and agility while navigating narrow roads. Like Disneyland's Autotopia attraction, the Audi was fixed permanently to the road.
For even more on what the RS5 is capable of be sure to pick up a copy of our EC 2/13 issue on stands now. Greg and Alex take an Audi RS5 and pit it up against its natural enemy, the E92 M3 in the Sequoia National Forest.