2019 Audi RS 5 vs. 2019 Dodge Challenger

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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 Dodge Challenger 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 Challenger doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

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 Challenger offers an available collision warning system without the automated brake feature that would prevent or reduce the collision if the driver fails to react.

To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the RS 5. But it costs extra on the Challenger.

The RS 5’s optional lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane and gently nudges the vehicle back towards its lane. The Challenger doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

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 Challenger only offers a rear monitor and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the front or sides.

Both the RS 5 and the Challenger have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.

Warranty

The RS 5 comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Challenger’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

The RS 5’s corrosion warranty is 7 years and unlimited miles longer than the Challenger’s (12/unlimited vs. 5/60,000).

Reliability

For smoother operation, better efficiency and fewer moving parts, the RS 5 has an overhead cam design, rather than the old pushrod design of some of the engines in the Challenger.

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 Dodge vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 13th in reliability, above the industry average. With 25 more problems per 100 vehicles, Dodge is ranked 23rd.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Dodge vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Audi 14 places higher in reliability than Dodge.

Engine

The RS 5’s 2.9 turbo V6 produces 139 more horsepower (444 vs. 305) and 175 lbs.-ft. more torque (443 vs. 268) than the Challenger’s standard 3.6 DOHC V6. The RS 5’s 2.9 turbo V6 produces 72 more horsepower (444 vs. 372) and 43 lbs.-ft. more torque (443 vs. 400) than the Challenger R/T automatic’s standard 5.7 V8. The RS 5’s 2.9 turbo V6 produces 69 more horsepower (444 vs. 375) and 33 lbs.-ft. more torque (443 vs. 410) than the Challenger R/T manual’s standard 5.7 V8.

Fuel Economy and Range

Regenerative brakes improve the RS 5’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Challenger doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

Environmental Friendliness

In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Audi RS 5 higher (5 out of 10) than the Dodge Challenger (1 to 3). This means the RS 5 produces up to 39 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Challenger every 15,000 miles.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the RS 5’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Challenger:

 

RS 5

RS 5

Challenger SXT

Challenger Hellcat

Front Rotors

14.8 inches

15.7 inches

12.6 inches

15.4 inches

Rear Rotors

13 inches

13 inches

12.6 inches

13.8 inches

The RS 5’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs standard on the Challenger SXT are solid, not vented.

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 Challenger doesn’t offer ceramic brake rotors.

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the RS 5 has larger standard tires than the Challenger (265/35R19 vs. 235/55R18).

The RS 5’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Challenger SXT’s standard 55 series tires. The RS 5’s optional tires have a lower 30 series profile than the Challenger Widebody’s 35 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the RS 5 has standard 19-inch wheels. Smaller 18-inch wheels are standard on the Challenger SXT.

Chassis

The RS 5 is 11.5 inches shorter than the Challenger, making the RS 5 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The design of the Audi RS 5 amounts to more than styling. The RS 5 has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .32 Cd. That is lower than the Challenger (.337 to .398). A more efficient exterior helps the RS 5 go faster and keeps the interior quieter. It also helps the RS 5 get better fuel mileage.

For excellent aerodynamics, the RS 5 has standard flush composite headlights. The Challenger has recessed headlights that spoil its aerodynamic shape and create extra drag.

Cargo Capacity

With its coupe body style, valet key, locking rear seatbacks and remote trunk release lockout, the RS 5 offers cargo security. The Challenger’s non-lockable folding seat and non-lockable remote release defeat 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 Challenger doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its trunk, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Servicing Ease

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Audi service is better than Dodge. J.D. Power ranks Audi third in service department satisfaction. With a 90% lower rating, Dodge is ranked 30th.

Ergonomics

When two different drivers share the RS 5, the memory system makes it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position, outside mirror angle and climate settings. The Challenger doesn’t offer a memory system.

The RS 5 offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Challenger doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The RS 5’s front and rear power windows all open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Challenger’s power windows’ switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully.

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 Challenger can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The RS 5 has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The Challenger doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.

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 Challenger’s standard intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.

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 Challenger 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 Challenger doesn’t offer headlight washers.

When the RS 5 is put in reverse, the passenger rearview mirror tilts from its original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirror into its original position. The Challenger’s mirror doesn’t automatically adjust for backing.

The RS 5 has standard automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Challenger has an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

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 Challenger doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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