2019 Lexus RC F vs. 2019 Audi RS 5

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The RC F’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The RS 5 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the RC F and the RS 5 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front and rear seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available blind spot warning systems, rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the RC F its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2019, a rating granted to only 36 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The RS 5 has not been tested, yet.

Warranty

Lexus’ powertrain warranty covers the RC F 2 years and 20,000 miles longer than Audi covers the RS 5. 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 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Lexus vehicles are better in initial quality than Audi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lexus 8th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 21 more problems per 100 vehicles, Audi is ranked 25th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Lexus vehicles are more reliable than Audi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Lexus first in reliability, above the industry average. With 42 more problems per 100 vehicles, Audi is ranked 13th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Lexus vehicles are more reliable than Audi vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Lexus first in reliability. Audi is ranked 7th.

Engine

The RC F’s 5.0 DOHC V8 produces 23 more horsepower (467 vs. 444) than the RS 5’s 2.9 turbo V6.

Fuel Economy and Range

The RC F has 2.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the RS 5 (17.4 vs. 15.3 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Tires and Wheels

For better traction and acceleration, the RC F has larger rear tires than the RS 5 (275/35R19 vs. 265/35R19).

Suspension and Handling

For better maneuverability, the RC F’s turning circle is 3 feet tighter than the RS 5’s (35.4 feet vs. 38.4 feet).

Chassis

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

Ergonomics

The RC F 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 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

Unlike the driver-only memory system in the RS 5, the RC F offers an optional driver and passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

The RC F’s optional easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The RS 5 doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The RC F’s standard power windows have a locking feature to keep children from operating them. Audi does not offer a locking feature on the RS 5’s standard power windows.

If the front windows are left open on the RC F the driver can close them at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. (This window function must be activated by your Lexus service department.) The driver of the RS 5 can’t use the remote to operate the windows.

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

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