Price (as tested) 💲: $100,565
Powertrain ⚙️: Twin-turbocharged 2.9-liter V6
Output 💪: 444 hp/443 lb-ft of torque
Transmission 🕹: 8-speed automatic
0-60 MPH 🚦: 3.6 seconds
Top Speed 💥: 180 mph
MPG (as tested) ⛽️: 18 city/26 hwy/21 combined
Curb weight ⚖️: 3,737 lbs


We all want the best, we just can’t all afford it.

To soothe our unfulfilled desires, we upgrade on a budgeted scale. Joe might snag the best basketball shoes; Sally might acquire the finest handbag; Danny might pull the trigger on the ultimate Audi…RS5.

It’s a niche play indeed, but Audi is banking on enough buyers to warrant the development of this slightly lighter (by 35 pounds), slightly quicker to 60 (by 0.1 seconds), and slightly lower (by 0.4 inches) RS5 “Competition”.

For all these minor tweaks, Audi is asking a major premium: $14,600. Price padding converts this RS5 from the least expensive offering in its segment to the most.

It’s tempting to judge the RS5 Competition and its altered elements individually, but a fairer assessment looks at how they work in concert to breathe life into a somewhat sterile performance car.

The standard RS5 permits only murmurs of feedback through its variable ratio steering rack, but the RS5 Competition’s fixed ratio dials up the discourse between car and driver.

You’ll beg the base RS5 to throttle oversteer even slightly, but only the Competition’s modified rear differential will overdrive the outside tire to balance the nose-heavy design.

Competence and composure characterize the normal RS5’s handling, yet the Competition provides eagerness of turn-in (owed to less unsprung mass) and adjustability (with manual calibrations to the coil overs for rebound and compression).

Even the presentation improves: lowered ride height, stylish 20-inch wheels, and additional carbon fiber bits push the RS5 Comp well above competitor curb appeal.

This is far and away the ultimate RS5, yet even those who can afford the best may still choose a better breed of driver’s car.