Audi has just taken the wraps off the A5 Sportback, which is essentially an A5 Coupe with two extra doors and a hatchback, or an A4 Sedan with a hatch and A5 styling — it's all a matter of interpretation.
BMW has been busy of late coming up with new ways to mash up car genres, like the four-wheel drive that thinks it's a coupe and the tall hatchback that wants to be called a sedan. Thankfully, Audi's taken a whiff of this hatchback fever and come up with something a little more sensible.
Interestingly, when the Sportback goes on sale in Europe in September it will be cheaper than the A5 Coupe. Sounds like a good deal to us.
The A5 Sportback is almost as tall as the A4 sedan and about as long too, so it should offer similar rear accommodation, except for maybe headroom.
The interior seems to be a straight pinch from the other members of the A4 and A5 ranges. As such, top shelf materials should be a certainty and Audi's MMI interface will also be on offer.
In Europe, five engines will be offered. Two of which will be petrol — a 2.0-litre turbo (155kW) and a 3.2-litre V6 (195kW) — and the remainder diesels displacing either 2, 2.7 or 3 litres.
Audi claims A4 wagon equalling luggage space of 480 litres, although that probably says more about the A4 wagon than anything else.
With its on-sale date still a little while away, Audi's playfully teasing us with information about the Sportback, but we don't envision it featuring anything that is gee-whiz wonderful or cutting-edge that will cause its A4 and A5 cousins to shrink into a corner and turn a bright shade of burning red. Naturally, we'll update this photo gallery when more details present themselves.
Luxury car makers are once again discovering the beauty of hatchbacks, but are loathe to call them that because hatchback is such a proletarian term and more becoming of someone in a Yaris than an Audi. Hence the creative destruction of English via terms like "Sportback" and "progressive activity sedan".
The Sportback is like the A4 Sedan, but with sides that are noticeably curvier and more chiselled.
Walter de'Silva, currently chief designer in the VW Group, once said that the A5 Coupe was the most beautiful car he had ever designed. Given that his pen was also involved in creating the Alfa Romeo 156 we'd demur.
It's not only the Germans who are guilty of calling an apple an orange. Mazda did this in Japan many moons ago when it christened its 323 hatchback the Lantis Coupe. We know it's rakish and quite sexy — and, yes, a friend of