Car and Driver: 2014 Audi S5 vs. 2014 BMW 435i
Car and Driver had pitted the 2014 BMW 435i vs. the 2014 Audi S5 in a recent comparison. They actually selected the 435i M Sport for the test, to make sure they had the best possible model to dance with the S5. The 435i comes with a 3.0 liter TwinPower Turbo inline-6 that produces 300 hp and 300 torques driving the rear wheels, where the S5 utilizes Audi's quattro all-wheel drive and has a 3 liter supercharged V6, putting out 333 hp and 325 torques. So, they aren't too far apart, especially since the Audi is pulling along an extra 225 pounds. Let's see how things turned out in some exerpts from Car and Driver's article.
I'll start with a couple high points, as it seems that there weren't a lot of compliments paid to the 435i in this particular comparison. The high points seem to sit with the detailed styling, inside and out and the manual gearbox. They also liked the serene, relaxed ride inside, however, that was also a downfall. It seems like it was too serene, almost detached. On to the comparison.
-pic Audi USA
The driver is isolated from wheel and suspension movements, and the slow steering seems so numb that it's the pulsing of the inside-front brake rather than any feedback through the wheel that indicates you've reached the cornering limit. At 0.90 g, that limit is handily topped by the Audi, which feels like the better balanced and *livelier car. This is especially surprising given the S5's greater forward weight bias. The BMW's numbness saps driver confidence, as the car doesn't provide enough information to form a complete picture of what's happening at the tires.
In isolation, the 435i is a very satisfying car-fast, smooth, and beautiful. None of our complaints come into stark relief until you spend a fair bit of time in both it and the S5. If the S5 didn't exist, the 435i would feel great. BMW's problem is that the S5 does exist.
Where the BMW is aloof and isolated, the S5 feels alive and vivid. There's more sound and more sensation in the Audi driver's chair than there is in the BMW's.
Its steering reacts more quickly, with a degree of feedback that's absent in the BMW. At all times, the S5 feels like a car, not a simulation. Despite its forward weight bias, it dives into turns more adroitly and feels better balanced than the BMW.
Even with a 225-pound weight handicap (and carrying an extra 281 pounds on its front tires), the Audi pummeled the 4-series in every performance test, launching harder, turning sharper, and stopping shorter.
In the end, this comparison had the Audi on top. Their verdict stated that "BMW is going soft on its old priorities, just as others are zeroing in." I'm sure there are a lot of thoughts and opinions on this, so lets have them!
Read the full article from Car and Driver here.
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