2023 Audi S5 Sportback

Compare insurance prices:
Save an average of $440
Free Quote

2023 Audi S5 Sportback Review: Style With Substance

Take an Audi S4, wrap it up as an alluring fastback, and add a dash of unexpected practicality courtesy of a hatch at the rear, and you get the S5 Sportback. Mercedes-Benz doesn't make anything similar, so the coupe-styled BMW M440i is its only natural rival. Despite naysayers trying to invalidate a four-door coupe design, the S5 Sportback makes a strong case for the niche - it offers rapid performance and everyday refinement, striking an admirable balance. The 349-horsepower V6, smooth eight-speed automatic, and quattro all-wheel drive ensure strong acceleration and unerring grip, whatever the weather; the driving experience is refined, save for a bit of tire noise on the highway. The trade-off of the sleek design is a cramped rear seat, and the boxy standard S4 offers more commodious accommodations. Yet there's something about the Sportback version that is inexplicably appealing.

Read in this review:

  • Exterior Design 9 /10
  • Performance 8 /10
  • Fuel Economy 8 /10
  • Interior & Cargo 9 /10
  • Infotainment & Features 9 /10
  • Reliability 8 /10
  • Safety 9 /10
  • Value For Money 8 /10
What is BuzzScore?

2023 Audi S5 Sportback Changes: What’s The Difference vs The 2022 S5 Sportback?

The standard features of the 2023 S5 Sportback are mostly the same as last year, except that Audi USA is including the Bang & Olufsen audio system with 3D sound as a standard fitment on the Premium Plus trim this year; it used to be standard on the flagship Prestige only. The optional packages see various changes. Adaptive cruise control is now added to the Premium's optional Convenience package. Last year's Black Optic Package is replaced with a Black Optic Plus Package that adds more items, notably black treatment for the rear lip spoiler, the Audi badges, and the exhaust tips; this package is only available on the Premium Plus and Prestige trims.

The top two trims also get access to a new Audi Sport interior package that decks out the interior in black with red stitching and RS Carbon trim inlays. There is one new paint color - Chronos Grey - that replaces last year's Quantum Grey.

Pros and Cons

  • Strong performance
  • Spacious trunk and liftgate practicality
  • Stylish design
  • Luxurious, well-built cabin
  • Excellent handling and road holding
  • Not as exciting as rivals
  • Somewhat intrusive tire noise
  • Lack of interior storage spaces
  • Cramped rear seat

What's the Price of the 2023 Audi S5 Sportback?

The 2023 Audi S5 Sportback's price is right on par with that of its BMW M440i rival. The base S5 Sportback Premium's MSRP is $55,800 without any extras fitted, with the Premium Plus starting at $59,800. At the top of the lineup sits the Prestige at $64,200. These prices don't include Audi's $1,095 destination fee.

Best Deals on 2023 Audi S5 Sportback

2023 Audi S5 Sportback Trims

See trim levels and configurations:

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
3.0T Premium quattro
3.0L Turbo V6 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
3.0T Prestige quattro
3.0L Turbo V6 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
3.0T Premium Plus quattro
3.0L Turbo V6 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
All-Wheel Drive
See All 2023 Audi S5 Sportback Trims and Specs

2023 Audi S5 Sportback Handling and Driving Impressions

Audi's S cars aren't as hardcore as the RS models and have a different, distinctive personality; the Audi S5 Sportback is neither as exciting nor as fast as competitors like the Mercedes-AMG C43 or the BMW M440i xDrive. However, should we be complaining about the turbocharged V6's 349 horsepower and 369 lb-ft, or the 4.5-second 0-60 sprint? That's plenty fast enough for most enthusiasts. The fact that it comes in a very refined package with good ride quality just makes the S5 so much easier to live with day to day, and shows that you don't have to compromise to be sporty. As it is, there is just enough compliance, grip, and composure to have fun with, and it does a convincing impression of a luxury cruiser. There isn't a ton of steering feedback, but it goes where it's pointed and exhibits high grip levels. It's a bit of a shame, then, that it can feel a bit lazy off the line before it gets going in the default Comfort mode. For extra spice, you can opt for the S Sport package's adaptive sport suspension and sport rear differential. It adds that layer of excitement and handling sophistication for drivers longing for a little more. Dynamic steering that varies its ratio for sharper responses is also available on the top two trims.

Verdict: Is The 2023 Audi S5 Sportback A Good car?

The new 2023 Audi S5 Sportback continues where last year's model left off and provides a sporty and refined driving experience with excellent performance and quattro traction, albeit without the thrill the RS 5 provides for a substantial $20k-plus premium. With the S Sport Package added, we feel the S5 Sportback has the zest and handling finesse to offer a really compelling alternative in this class. The M440i xDrive is a mite faster, costs virtually the same, and offers a top-drawer driving experience, but it has that grille, which might be a deal-breaker for some. If you feel it lacks a bit of excitement, the S Sport package should redress the balance, making the 2023 S5 Sportback a top pick in a small niche. In terms of practicality, a review of the Audi S5 Sportback's cargo space reveals that the M440i is less spacious. The BMW's worse practicality and polarizing appearance will put it behind the Audi in many people's books.

What 2023 Audi S5 Sportback Model Should I Buy?

The Premium Plus is the best value of all the Audi S5 Sportback models because it includes several desirable features the Premium lacks, such as wireless charging, parking sensors, adaptive cruise control with traffic-jam assist, SiriusXM, a 360-degree camera system, and important driver assists. This year, the 19-speaker B&O audio system is thrown in as standard too. All of this for a base price of $59,800 represents good value - the $4,400 jump to the Prestige trim isn't worth it. We can live without the Prestige's extra features; for example, its navigation isn't much of a selling point, with smartphone mirroring on all trims enabling you to use your phone for that purpose. We would forego the cosmetic interior and exterior packages, but if you are an enthusiastic driver, the S Sport package with the Sport diff and adaptive damping elevates the S5 to that final level of sporting sophistication the standard car lacks. Kitted out like this, and with the splendid District Green metallic paint and the destination fee included, the total comes to $63,990, which is still less than the base price of the Prestige. How much you pay for an S5 is dependent on the boxes you tick and can get close to $80,000 if you don't practice restraint - that's more than an RS5!

To Top