In all three forms (coupe, cabriolet, and sportback), the S5 is beautiful. Balanced proportions are sharpened by a creased “power dome” on the hood and tight character lines down the side. The coupe’s chunky rear pillars are charming, but our favorite of the three is the Sportback, which builds a stunning shape from echoes of the larger S7. The interior is decked out with technology, including the IIHS-lauded “pre sense city,” which features automatic emergency braking at lower speeds. Other highlights are heated and massage-capable front seats, automatic climate control, and leather upholstery. Rear leg room isn’t exceptional, but it'll do for quick trips.
Oddly enough, it’s the front seat that suffers real space problems. Taller drivers may struggle to get the seats to sink low enough. The problem isn’t helped by the low roof and mediocre visibility. Cargo space is average among performance coupes, though the Sportback has the best of the lot thanks to its extended wheelbase. And as a minor quibble, the lack of a touchscreen is a little off putting on a car this tech-savvy, especially when trying to connect a smartphone.