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      05-31-2012, 06:45 AM   #1
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Audi RS5, would you consider it?

I am planning on ordering an M3 coupe with pick-up at BMW's Performance Center next spring. However the now available (to the US market) Audi RS5 is a compelling alternative. Potential drawbacks, aside from brand preference, would be DSG (i.e. DCT) only and AWD. Otherwise both use a N.A. engine developing similar power. Assuming equal equipment both are priced the same.

The RS5 has been available overseas for a few years. Perhaps some forum members have been able to drive this car and can comment the pros and cons vs. the M3.

I have owned several BMW's with my last one being a 335i vert. The M3 is on my short list of vehicles to own but it doesn't hurt me to consider other vehicles before committing $70k or so dollars on a purchase.
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      05-31-2012, 06:56 AM   #2
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Apparently it's a great car like all RS's but its still lost to the m3 in comparisons. Price point is speculated to be higher than the m3 as well
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      05-31-2012, 07:16 AM   #3
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Fantastically built cars, something them is a bit more business like than the m3 imho though! Certainly worth considering saying that!!
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      05-31-2012, 07:28 AM   #4
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I don't feel like Audi has the lust factor that the M brand carries. There are a lot of people that will look at the M3, M5 and say god damn I want that car! I just don't feel like you get that with an Audi.
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      05-31-2012, 08:02 AM   #5
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check this out: http://www.quattroworld.com/audi-new...-for-2013-rs5/
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      05-31-2012, 09:26 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SehrSchnell View Post
Great looking car, great exhaust note, one of the best interiors in the business, but mediocre performance for the price. Would make a fantastic daily driver, but will be a lackluster on the track.
Not sure what you meant by "mediocre" and "lackluster", but if you meant these terms to mean not very quick, there are two extended videos in these very pages showing the RS5 to be a bit quicker than the M3 on track, by virtue of superior traction coming out of turns, and slightly better low to mid range torque.

These were tests by magazine types (as opposed to pros), meaning they're better than most of us on track, but far from Godlike.

The cars were closer than half past six in both tests by the way, but the Audi was just that little bit quicker, and consistently so.

Acceleration? Again, very, very close.

In short, pick 'em. They're both winners - unless the RS5 is U.S - priced more against an M5 than an M3. History suggests that won't be the case, but you never know.

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      05-31-2012, 11:08 AM   #7
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In-terms of performance, reading various comparisons from publications such as CAR, MT, etc the test data seems to be about even. I'm sure there is some variance depending on how each car is running and possibly the driver.

The M3 can be configured with limited options. Thus keeping the purchase price low. I can see this appealing to dedicated track users. However I suspect (and I don't have actual data to back my statement) is that most owners order their cars with most of the options. Therefore the MSRP would range from $72 - $75k USD. This is were the RS5 would be priced except for adding the ceramic front brakes at $6k.

The M3 being more pure could also be more rewarding to the driver especially for track day events. Where the RS5 with AWD and torque-vectoring would help the novice or casual driver. For some potential owners not having a MT would immediately exclude this type of car (as with a C63). Tough part is the lack of availability of any demo models. If one was to order an RS5 it would need to be on faith. I have test driven an M3 several times and know this is a good vehicle for me.

To an earlier statement about status of the M3 vs. RS5. I agree that in the US the M series has more of an appeal and following. Aside from the R8, Audi hasn't imported any of the upper line models. The last one was the RS4 and recently with the TTRS. It's more of question of which one would better fit the lifestyle and preference.

I am more aligned with BMW vs. Audi but I do respect what Audi has done over the last few years. They have some good products. Most likely I will stay with the M3 and submit my order in December but I have several months to research and decide. My post was just to solicit feedback from others who have looked at the RS5 or have owned one (overseas).
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      05-31-2012, 12:34 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NHman View Post
In-terms of performance, reading various comparisons from publications such as CAR, MT, etc the test data seems to be about even. I'm sure there is some variance depending on how each car is running and possibly the driver.

The M3 can be configured with limited options. Thus keeping the purchase price low. I can see this appealing to dedicated track users. However I suspect (and I don't have actual data to back my statement) is that most owners order their cars with most of the options. Therefore the MSRP would range from $72 - $75k USD. This is were the RS5 would be priced except for adding the ceramic front brakes at $6k.

The M3 being more pure could also be more rewarding to the driver especially for track day events. Where the RS5 with AWD and torque-vectoring would help the novice or casual driver. For some potential owners not having a MT would immediately exclude this type of car (as with a C63). Tough part is the lack of availability of any demo models. If one was to order an RS5 it would need to be on faith. I have test driven an M3 several times and know this is a good vehicle for me.

To an earlier statement about status of the M3 vs. RS5. I agree that in the US the M series has more of an appeal and following. Aside from the R8, Audi hasn't imported any of the upper line models. The last one was the RS4 and recently with the TTRS. It's more of question of which one would better fit the lifestyle and preference.

I am more aligned with BMW vs. Audi but I do respect what Audi has done over the last few years. They have some good products. Most likely I will stay with the M3 and submit my order in December but I have several months to research and decide. My post was just to solicit feedback from others who have looked at the RS5 or have owned one (overseas).
Audi has actually imported quite a few - RS4, RS6, R8, R8 GT, TT-RS, etc. Not to mention that the "original" B5 S4 had quite a following. Enthusiasts respect RS cars here (those who aren't brand whores). They may have their inherent handling handicap (quattro and required engine placement, weight) but I have found them to be very impressive cars across the board.

My biggest beef for the RS5 (and the M3 for that matter) is weight. Quite frankly neither is a great track car, you just can't say that for a car weighing well over two tons. The M3's capabilities are very impressive given its weight, but to say that it is a great track car and the RS5 will not be? Don't agree at all. Lack of a manual (and need for 4 doors) will keep me out of the RS5.

Attaching the order guide I got from a local dealer. Base price is $68.9k plus $895 destination. A lot more competitive that I would have expected.
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File Type: pdf rs5 order guide and pricing.pdf (787.5 KB, 264 views)
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      05-31-2012, 01:10 PM   #9
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an M3 has a presence, an RS5 is just like an A5 until its 10 feet away. i don't like to way audis feel, loose steering wheel, doesn't hug corners, its like steering a fast car. an M3 is drives like it owns the road.

however i've wanted an M3 since i was 11yrs old...
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      05-31-2012, 02:04 PM   #10
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I'm in Europe right now and have seen two RS5's so far, they're beautiful and I'm sure are great performers. I wouldn't take one over the M3 though.
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      05-31-2012, 03:21 PM   #11
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I can't seem to find the original, but hope this helps


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2CQQ7yf7N5Y&feature=youtube_gdata_player
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      05-31-2012, 04:52 PM   #12
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More expensive and an engine in front of the front axle aren't strong selling points to me.
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      05-31-2012, 05:03 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MattE92 View Post
an M3 has a presence, an RS5 is just like an A5 until its 10 feet away. i don't like to way audis feel, loose steering wheel, doesn't hug corners, its like steering a fast car. an M3 is drives like it owns the road.

however i've wanted an M3 since i was 11yrs old...
Seriously? An e9x M3 looks mostly like another one of the zillion 3 series out there, but have you seen an A5 in a grouping of cars, or even more so an RS5 in person? The latter has those splitter/brake scoops, the honking grill and the mostly unique coupe stance, that demands 'presence'.

We know the RS5 will be burdened by the AWD system, but as most said, the everyday comfort and build quality is undeniable - along with the elegant, understated (less so lately) designs.
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      05-31-2012, 05:41 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SehrSchnell
Great looking car, great exhaust note, one of the best interiors in the business, but mediocre performance for the price. Would make a fantastic daily driver, but will be a lackluster on the track.
Just because it lost out to the M3 it doesn't mean it would be bad at the track.

I brought my STOCK S4 to the track once and had no problem passing all the E90 M3's on the track that day.

Im sure the RS5 can outdo the S4 which is quite a capable car on the track as is.

In my view if you live in an area with snow during the winters and want a car that has AWD but is also a great car to bring to the track on weekends then you can't go wrong. An AWD is not as fun as a powerful RWD though so you might get bored when you get better.
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      05-31-2012, 07:33 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NHman View Post
I am planning on ordering an M3 coupe with pick-up at BMW's Performance Center next spring. However the now available (to the US market) Audi RS5 is a compelling alternative. Potential drawbacks, aside from brand preference, would be DSG (i.e. DCT) only and AWD. Otherwise both use a N.A. engine developing similar power. Assuming equal equipment both are priced the same.

The RS5 has been available overseas for a few years. Perhaps some forum members have been able to drive this car and can comment the pros and cons vs. the M3.

I have owned several BMW's with my last one being a 335i vert. The M3 is on my short list of vehicles to own but it doesn't hurt me to consider other vehicles before committing $70k or so dollars on a purchase.
Well, I am a former RS4 owner, so I think I am in a pretty good position to answer this. Basically these cars are really equal on the overall balance sheet. The M3 will have some advantages, the RS5 others.

There is no question that AWD will allow you to just hammer the car with much less chance of losing control. I have to be more careful driving the M3 than I did the RS4, especially with the stability programs off, which is what you need to do to fully enjoy either car. Advantage RS5.

Looks are purely subjective, but I honestly think the old RS5 (pre-facelift) looked better than the new one. Audi is known for their interiors, but the grade of interior materials Audi is currently using is a step down from what it used to be. The M3 with extended leather really looks upscale IMO. Advantage M3, if optioned correctly.

Exhaust....RS5, hands down. Not even close. This is simply one of the nicest sounding stock exhausts. Period.

Engines are similar. Audi has a bit more mid range punch, the M3 screams more up top. Toss-up.

Where the M3 totally dominates, however, is the feel of the chassis, and steering responsiveness. By comparison, the Audi feels heavy, sluggish, with a less precise feel to the steering. This will always be the case when the front wheels are also driven.

In the end, if I lived where there was snow, and I had to have one car, I would get the RS5. If snow isn't a concern, or you have another winter vehicle, the M3 just has a more dynamic feel.

However.....and you need to be really honest with yourself here....if you are a less skilled driver, it will be easier to extract maximum performance out of the RS5 due to its AWD.
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Last edited by LarThaL; 05-31-2012 at 07:58 PM.
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      05-31-2012, 07:54 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LarThaL View Post
Well, I am a former RS4 owner, so I think I ma in a pretty good position to answer this. Basically these cars are really equal on the overall balance sheet. The M3 will have some advantages, the RS5 others.

There is no question that AWD will allow you to just hammer the car with much less chance of losing control. I have to be more careful driving the M3 than I did the RS4, especially with the stability programs off, which is what you need to do to fully enjoy either car. Advantage RS5.

Looks are purely subjective, but I honestly think the old RS5 (pre-facelift) looked better than the new one. Audi is known for their interiors, but the grade of interior materials Audi is currently using is a step down from what it used to be. The M3 with extended leather really looks upscale IMO. Advantage M3, if optioned correctly.

Exhaust....RS5, hands down. Not even close. This is simply one of the nicest sounding stock exhausts. Period.

Engines are similar. Audi has a bit more mid range punch, the M3 screams more up top. Toss-up.

Where the M3 totally dominates, however, is the feel of the chassis, and steering responsiveness. By comparison, the Audi feels heavy, sluggish, with a less precise feel to the steering.

In the end, if I lived where there was snow, and I had to have one car, I would get the RS5. If snow isn't a concern, or you have another winter vehicle, the M3 just has a more dynamic feel.

However.....and you need to be really honest with yourself here....if you are a less skilled driver, it will be easier to extract maximum performance out of the RS5 due to its AWD.
Good write up. It is still hard to believe that it has taken this long for Audi to respond to BMW's M3 which came out in fall 2007.
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      05-31-2012, 08:22 PM   #17
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I cant find the UK Top Gear M3 comp Ed Vs RS5 thats not in Italian or indeed home video'd by a moron..........so this (as its a stablemate RS4) will have to do!!

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      05-31-2012, 08:24 PM   #18
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It would seem to be a question of 'Understeer from the far to the front Audi Vs slight oversteer from perfectly controllable weight distribution & a decent diff'

But dont get me wrong I love the RS5 too........true story!!
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      05-31-2012, 09:05 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LarThaL View Post
Well, I am a former RS4 owner, so I think I am in a pretty good position to answer this. Basically these cars are really equal on the overall balance sheet. The M3 will have some advantages, the RS5 others.

There is no question that AWD will allow you to just hammer the car with much less chance of losing control. I have to be more careful driving the M3 than I did the RS4, especially with the stability programs off, which is what you need to do to fully enjoy either car. Advantage RS5.

Looks are purely subjective, but I honestly think the old RS5 (pre-facelift) looked better than the new one. Audi is known for their interiors, but the grade of interior materials Audi is currently using is a step down from what it used to be. The M3 with extended leather really looks upscale IMO. Advantage M3, if optioned correctly.

Exhaust....RS5, hands down. Not even close. This is simply one of the nicest sounding stock exhausts. Period.

Engines are similar. Audi has a bit more mid range punch, the M3 screams more up top. Toss-up.

Where the M3 totally dominates, however, is the feel of the chassis, and steering responsiveness. By comparison, the Audi feels heavy, sluggish, with a less precise feel to the steering. This will always be the case when the front wheels are also driven.

In the end, if I lived where there was snow, and I had to have one car, I would get the RS5. If snow isn't a concern, or you have another winter vehicle, the M3 just has a more dynamic feel.

However.....and you need to be really honest with yourself here....if you are a less skilled driver, it will be easier to extract maximum performance out of the RS5 due to its AWD.
This is a very good write up. I am a former RS4 owner as well.

The Audi is very easy to drive. It makes the even the most talentless driver look like the Stig. It can be driven hard in almost any weather condition. It does suffer from understeer but the car needs to be pushed hard to really feel it.

The exhaust note was a deep guttural growl and one of the things I miss most about the car.

The one thing I haven't seen mentioned is the exclusivity of the Audi R lineup in the United States. They are quite rare. Only about 2500 B7 RS4s made it to the United States. I would only assume that number would be similar for the RS5. This could come into play when purchasing the vehicle. I would expect to pay a minimum of MSRP if you're lucky. But, you would be one of the few lucky people to own the car. However, the M3 in your neck of the woods is also pretty rare. I have only seen 1 E90 M3 where I live and 0 E92s.

One last thing to consider. The Audi RS5 engine is an FSI model. This engine is notorious for excessive oil consumption and carbon build up. Do a Google search on the engine before purchasing the car. They are extremely annoying issues and one of the reasons I now own an M3.

The RS5 is gorgeous and would most likely make a wonderful daily driver. It will make you feel confident as you push it to the limit. It would probably be a blast on the track especially if your a novice. And it's rare.

The M3 is the driver's choice. We have seen the comparisons and the M3 has always won (Top Gear, Car and Driver, MotorTrend). Once the novelty of RS5 ownership wears off you will begin to wonder what it is about the M3 that makes it a perennial favorite of automotive enthusiasts and critics everywhere. Drive one and you will see. It's just that good.

Either way you can't go wrong.
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      05-31-2012, 11:12 PM   #20
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You know how the best driver's cars always feel like more than the sum of their parts? Well the M3 has always felt like that to me - all generations. It's true even for my cheap-ass Miata.

From what I've read, the RS5 is not like that - people seem to have trouble finding a sweet spot between transmission, suspension, engine and steering settings, and the overall comments are that it never really gels into an Aha! moment.

I haven't driven one, so I don't know if that is quite true. What I do know is that I absolutely hate under steer, street or track. And this has been my limiting factor on track, so speaking for me personally I believe I would be faster over a whole session in the M than in the RS, even though initial laps may go down to the Audi. Could be wrong of course...

I would never buy one because of different reasons though - lack of manual tranny, and very poor packaging in the rear (I have a kid). If you try to get in the back of an A5/S5, you will understand...

I don't quite understand the market for it, honestly. If you wanted auto and grunt, wouldn't you go C63? And if you fancied AWD, wouldn't a certified used GT-R be much better? As is , it's for people who want a sort of M3 but with AWD and crappier feel. It's got to be a very narrow niche if you think about it...

Not trying to be obnoxious. I understand other RS models really - RS3, TT-RS, RS6...
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      06-01-2012, 09:30 AM   #21
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Thank you for all of the feedback and particularly the comments from LarThaL and Hurricane. It is always beneficial to review feedback from someone who has had experience with the specific or similar vehicle.

I would be considered a novice track driver. While I planned to run some, it would only be for the experience and not competitive reasons (I say that now).

I do have another car as my DD, a MY11 Jeep GC Overland. I plan on keeping it for another few years.

I have read a few articles in the last 24 hrs on the RS5. Specifically was the long-term review of both the M3 and RS5 from CAR magazine. There were good points for each but in the end the M3 was favored due to better driving dynamics. IMO, the RS5 is a great package. I wish one was available for a test drive. According to some of the Audi forums, AoA hasn't published the allocation numbers. For now I suspect dealers will get MSRP or higher. This would give an advantage to the M3. While at the end of the production cycle the M3 still has the right combination of style, performance and it factor. Most likely I will stay on the path and order one in December/January for delivery at the Performance Center.

Thanks again for all of the feedback.
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      06-01-2012, 10:58 AM   #22
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given all the reviews out there, neither the RS5 nor the M3 are leaps and bounds better than the other, given who wrote the review. It comes down to preference in style, overall driving experience you're looking for, drivetrain, and brand.
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