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2009 Audi S5 Long Term Road Test

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2009 Audi S5: Parts Counter Experience

May 11, 2010


Karl first noticed the turn signal bulb was out in our 2009 Audi S5. We had our sights set on a DIY change so we stopped by the dealership to order a new one. While there we also planned to order up a new set of floormats.

"Oh. We're going to have to special order that bulb," started the parts counter clerk. "We have everything else, just not the bulb you need. These floormats will need to be ordered also." The ETA was two days and we could live with that. So we asked him to order them up. "No problem, sir. I will call you when the parts arrive. The front mats will cost $170 and the bulb is about $20."

The mats showed up on time but still no bulb. It's been a week now. I hope it shows up before the car is scheduled to be turned in.

Mike Schmidt, Vehicle Testing Manager @ 22,141 miles

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2009 Audi S5: Makes Me Feel Successful

May 04, 2010


The other day I let my neighbor Bill drive our long-term 2009 Audi S5. He had been asking for a while and caught me in a weak moment, so I threw him the key.

Like most poeple that drive the V8-powered coupe, he loved it. But he expressed in a way I hadn't heard or really considered before. "When I'm in it," he said, "it makes me feel successful. Like I made the right decisions in my life. It feels like a reward for all my hard work."

I couldn't agree more.

Too often these days people think about cars as conveyance and not as a pleasurable part of daily life. People that do are missing out. More of them should sample an Audi S5.

Scott Oldham, Editor in Chief

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2009 S5: One Great Car That I'll Miss

April 27, 2010


Last night was probably the last time I'll drive our S5, and that made me sad. It's time with us is winding down, so I gave it a good shake-down run on my favorite roads above Malibu. What a great car. What a great sound. That's all I can say. Here are some outtakes from my first S5 blog post last July. I'm going to go curl up in the trunk and weep.

Mark Takahashi @ 26,225 miles

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2009 Audi S5: Lights Out!

April 26, 2010

Audi S5 Headlight Warning.jpg

Our long-term Audi S5 lit up a warning light the other day. Ironically, in this case the warning light was telling me about an exterior light being out, but it didn't specify which one.

I'd seen this warning icon a few days earlier and forgot to check it. By the time I finally remembered the warning icon was out, so I figured it was a fluke (or maybe a loose bulb).

This morning the little light bulb with an "X' through it returned, and before I turned the car's engine off or turned out the lights I parked the S5 and did a quick walk-arould. It didn't take long to spot the problem.

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2009 Audi S5: Such a Sleeper

April 22, 2010


After all these months, I still can't believe the 2009 Audi S5 looks like this (beautiful, refined, understated, clean...) yet sounds like a muscle car. I lightly blipped the throttle during a downshift on the way to work, and the exhaust note was every bit as deep and yummy as if I'd done it in our Camaro or Challenger.

For those who can spend $60 grand (and I know that's no small sum), is there a better sleeper performance car out there right now?

Erin Riches, Senior Editor

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2009 Audi S5: Non-iPod Interface

April 20, 2010

S5 Alternate Audio Jack

Who the hell uses something other than an iPod? I'm not really sure, actually, at least for MP3 files. However, I have a portable satellite radio.

Wait, doesn't the S5 have Sirius? Why yes it does, however, the MLB channels have not yet made the migration over there from XM. As such, I still need my Samsung Helix ... and a standard auxiliary audio jack to plug it in.

Thankfully, Audi provides a variety of different audio connections with its multi-media interface (though I'm not sure what the other ones in that little mesh pouch are for). The iPod wire popped out with a few tugs and the standard 3.5mm connector replaced it easily. As a bonus, Audi built in that little holder onto the glovebox door, which fit my Helix perfectly.

Of course, that iPod wire is far too short. How are you supposed to grab that from the driver seat (and sorry, that's a problem even if you're doing it while stopped)? It's not that big of a deal when listening to a baseball game, but even then, it requires that I leave the glovebox door open. If I were to drive the car more (or with a passenger) I'd have to buy an aux jack extension thingy from Radio Shack, but still, at least I get to listen to my baseball game.

James Riswick, Automotive Editor @ 21,031 miles

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2009 Audi S5: 20,000 miles

April 01, 2010

Milestone Banner.jpg Thumbnail image for 2009_audi_s5_20k_1_1600.jpg

We made it. After 11 months with the 2009 Audi S5 we finally broke through the 20,000-mile mark. It happened at 75 mph on the highway, so we missed the money shot. But in truly un-S5-like fashion, we snapped this shot at the drive-through for In-N-Out Burger. Boo for us. Hooray for Double-Doubles.

Mike Schmidt, Vehicle Testing Manager @ 20,019 miles

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2009 Audi S5: Stalk Cruise Control is Easy

March 29, 2010

Audi S5 Stalk Cruise.JPG

I normally don't use cruise control: it makes me lose interest in my driving and possibly sleepy. But on last week's trip to Vegas for the CTIA Wireless conference, I didn't want to run afoul of The Law, so I used it quite a bit.

There has been a trend lately towards steering wheel pad mounted cruise switches. That's because they're visible so intial use is very intuitive: you just look at the switches and press them. But you do have to look at them to operate.

Our long-term 2009 Audi S5's cruise control switches, however, are stalk mounted and incredibly easy to use. Press the switch on the end of the stalk to set speed, tap up/down to adjust set speed by 1 mph pitch, pull towards you to resume, away to cancel, and away past the detent to turn off.

After using 1 or 2 times, you can use the cruise control with blind operation: no looking required, unlike the steering wheel pad switches.

And this way the steering wheel pad and spokes leave room for the audio and other functions, as well as a cleaner appearance.

Which cruise setup do you prefer?

Albert Austria, Senior Engineer @ 19,800 miles

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2009 Audi S5: Satellite Radio has Expired

March 26, 2010

Sirius expiration.jpg

When I got into our long-term 2009 Audi S5 for my trip to CTIA Wireless in Vegas this week, I tried the satellite radio and was greeted with this screen: our subscription has expired.

Regular readers know that this means two things: 1. The test term of our vehicle is also about to expire; and 2. If you take a long drive, you have to bring along your iPod.

The thing is, I prefer satellite radio to the iPod. So much so that I don't even own an iPod.
I like how with satellite radio you can always get pleasantly surprised by a song that comes up on your trip, and the variety of stations and genres that are available.

With the iPod, even if you have a million songs on it, there are no surprises with the playlists because you loaded them all.

So I planned on bringing some good-ole fashioned CDs for my trip, but of course forgot them.
I had to listen to -- FM radio!

How about you? Anybody else out there who shuns the iPod?

Albert Austria, Senior Engineer @ 19,400 miles

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