2019 Cadillac CTS-V vs. 2019 Audi RS 5 Sportback

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the front shoulder belts of the Cadillac CTS-V are height-adjustable, and the rear seat shoulder belts have child comfort guides to move the belt to properly fit children. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages children to buckle up. The Audi RS 5 Sportback has only front height-adjustable seat belts.

Both the CTS-V and the RS 5 Sportback have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, collision warning systems, daytime running lights, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras, rear cross-path warning and available crash mitigating brakes.

Warranty

Cadillac’s powertrain warranty covers the CTS-V 2 years and 20,000 miles longer than Audi covers the RS 5 Sportback. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the RS 5 Sportback ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are almost 3 times as many Cadillac dealers as there are Audi dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the CTS-V’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Cadillac vehicles are better in initial quality than Audi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Cadillac 12th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 15 more problems per 100 vehicles, Audi is ranked 25th, below the industry average.

Engine

The CTS-V’s 6.2 supercharged V8 produces 196 more horsepower (640 vs. 444) and 187 lbs.-ft. more torque (630 vs. 443) than the RS 5 Sportback’s 2.9 turbo V6.

Fuel Economy and Range

An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the CTS-V’s fuel efficiency. The RS 5 Sportback doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

The CTS-V has 3.7 gallons more fuel capacity than the RS 5 Sportback (19 vs. 15.3 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

The CTS-V has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The RS 5 Sportback doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Transmission

The CTS-V’s launch control uses engine electronics to hold engine RPM’s precisely in order to provide the most stable and rapid acceleration possible, using all of the available traction. The RS 5 Sportback doesn’t offer launch control.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the CTS-V’s standard brake rotors are larger than those on the RS 5 Sportback:

 

CTS-V

RS 5 Sportback

Front Rotors

15.4 inches

14.8 inches

Rear Rotors

14.4 inches

13 inches

Tires and Wheels

For better traction and acceleration, the CTS-V has larger rear tires than the RS 5 Sportback (295/30R19 vs. 265/35R19). The CTS-V’s optional rear tires are larger than the largest rear tires available on the RS 5 Sportback (295/30R19 vs. 275/30R20).

The CTS-V’s 295/30R19 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 30 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the RS 5 Sportback’s standard 35 series tires.

Suspension and Handling

The CTS-V has a standard driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads. The RS 5 Sportback’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the CTS-V’s wheelbase is 3.4 inches longer than on the RS 5 Sportback (114.6 inches vs. 111.2 inches).

Chassis

The CTS-V uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The RS 5 Sportback doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

The CTS-V has 1 inch more front headroom, 4.4 inches more front legroom, 1.2 inches more front shoulder room, .5 inches more rear headroom, .3 inches more rear legroom and .3 inches more rear shoulder room than the RS 5 Sportback.

Ergonomics

The CTS-V has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The RS 5 Sportback doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

The CTS-V’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The RS 5 Sportback doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The CTS-V’s standard power windows have a locking feature to keep children in the rear seat from operating them. Audi does not offer a locking feature on the RS 5 Sportback’s standard power windows.

On a hot day the CTS-V’s driver can lower all the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the RS 5 Sportback can’t use the remote to operate the windows.

A power rear sunshade is optional in the CTS-V to help block heat and glare for the rear passengers. The RS 5 Sportback doesn’t offer a rear sunshade.

Both the CTS-V and the RS 5 Sportback have standard heated front seats. The CTS-V also offers optional heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the RS 5 Sportback.

The CTS-V has a standard heated steering wheel to take the chill out of steering on extremely cold winter days before the car heater warms up. A heated steering wheel costs extra on the RS 5 Sportback.

The CTS-V offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The RS 5 Sportback doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Recommendations

The CTS V-Sport was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” for 6 of the last 12 years. The RS 5 Sportback has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

Motor Trend selected the CTS as their 2014 Car of the Year. The RS 5 Sportback has never been chosen.

The CTS-V was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” in 2014. The RS 5 Sportback has never been an “All Star.”

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

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