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For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Audi RS 5 have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The Cadillac ATS-V doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.
The RS 5’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The ATS-V doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.
The RS 5’s standard pretensioning seatbelts also sense rear collisions and remove slack from the seatbelts to help protect the occupants from whiplash and other injuries. The ATS-V doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.
The RS 5 has standard Pre Sense City, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The ATS-V offers an available collision warning system without the automated brake feature that would prevent or reduce the collision if the driver fails to react.
The RS 5 has all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The ATS-V doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.
The RS 5 offers an optional Top and Corner View Cameras to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The ATS-V only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.
Both the RS 5 and the ATS-V have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras and available lane departure warning systems.
The RS 5’s corrosion warranty is 6 years longer than the ATS-V’s (12 vs. 6 years).
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Cadillac vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 13th in reliability, above the industry average. With 45 more problems per 100 vehicles, Cadillac is ranked 27th.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Cadillac vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Audi 21 places higher in reliability than Cadillac.
Regenerative brakes improve the RS 5’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The ATS-V doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.
In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Audi RS 5 higher (5 out of 10) than the Cadillac ATS-V (3). This means the RS 5 produces up to 16.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the ATS-V every 15,000 miles.
The Audi RS 5 comes standard with an automatic transmission, for driver comfort, especially in the city. Automatic costs extra on the ATS-V.
To facilitate fast shifting and allow the driver to focus on the road, the RS 5 has a standard up-shift light to indicate when the engine is approaching redline. The ATS-V doesn’t offer an up-shift light.
All-wheel drive, available in the RS 5, provides the best traction for acceleration in wet, dry, and icy conditions. In corners, all-wheel drive allows both outside wheels to provide power, balancing the car. This allows for better handling. The Cadillac ATS-V is not available with all-wheel drive.
For better stopping power the RS 5’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the ATS-V:
The RS 5 offers optional heat-treated ceramic brake rotors, which last ten to twenty times as long as conventional cast iron rotors, don’t rust, don’t fade during repeated high speed braking, and their lighter weight contribute to better braking, handling and acceleration. The ATS-V doesn’t offer ceramic brake rotors.
For better traction, the RS 5 has larger standard tires than the ATS-V (265/35R19 vs. 255/35R18). The RS 5’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the ATS-V (275/30R20 vs. 255/35R18).
The RS 5’s optional tires provide better handling because they have a lower 30 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the ATS-V’s 35 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the RS 5 has standard 19-inch wheels. Only 18-inch wheels are available on the ATS-V. The RS 5 offers optional 20-inch wheels.
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the RS 5 is 2.4 inches wider in the front and 1.1 inches wider in the rear than on the ATS-V.
The RS 5 has 1.4 inches more front headroom, 1 inch more front shoulder room, 1 inch more rear headroom and 4.2 inches more rear shoulder room than the ATS-V.
The RS 5 has a much larger trunk than the ATS-V (11.6 vs. 10.4 cubic feet).
With its coupe body style, valet key, locking rear seatbacks and remote trunk release lockout, the RS 5 offers cargo security. The ATS-V’s non-lockable folding seat defeats cargo security.
To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the RS 5’s trunk can be opened just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The ATS-V doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its trunk, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.
If the windows are left open on the RS 5 the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can also lower the windows the same way. The driver of the ATS-V can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
The RS 5’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The ATS-V’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.
Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the RS 5 to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The ATS-V doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.
In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The RS 5 has standard headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The ATS-V doesn’t offer headlight washers.
Optional air-conditioned seats in the RS 5 keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The ATS-V doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.
On extremely cold winter days, the RS 5’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The ATS-V doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.
To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the RS 5 offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The ATS-V doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.
The RS 5’s optional Park Steering Assist can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The ATS-V doesn’t offer an automated parking system.
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