Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2012 Audi S5 VS 2012 Lexus IS Near Phoenix, AZ

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2012 Audi S5

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2012 Lexus IS

Safety Comparison

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Audi S5 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 Lexus IS C doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

The S5 has a standard Audi Backguard System, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Audi Backguard System moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The IS C doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The S5 has all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The IS C doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

The S5 Prestige’s blind spot warning system uses digital cameras monitored by computer to alert the driver to moving objects in the vehicle’s blind spots where the side view mirrors don’t reveal them. The IS C doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver's blind spots.

Compared to metal, the S5’s plastic fuel tank can withstand harder, more intrusive impacts without leaking; this decreases the possibility of fire. The Lexus IS C has a metal gas tank.

Both the S5 and the IS C have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control and electronic stability systems to prevent skidding.

Warranty Comparison

The S5’s corrosion warranty is 6 years longer than the IS C’s (12 vs. 6 years).

Audi pays for scheduled maintenance on the S5 for 1 year and 5000 miles. Audi will pay for oil changes, tire rotation, lubrication and any other scheduled maintenance. Lexus doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the IS C.

There are over 33 percent more Audi dealers than there are Lexus dealers, which makes it easier to get service under the S5’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without their vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports predicts that the S5’s reliability will be 18% better than the IS C.

Engine Comparison

The S5 Cabriolet’s standard 3.0 supercharged V6 produces 129 more horsepower (333 vs. 204) and 140 lbs.-ft. more torque (325 vs. 185) than the IS 250 C’s standard 2.5 DOHC V6. The S5 Cabriolet’s 3.0 supercharged V6 produces 27 more horsepower (333 vs. 306) and 48 lbs.-ft. more torque (325 vs. 277) than the IS 350 C’s standard 3.5 DOHC V6. The S5 Coupe’s standard 4.2 DOHC V8 produces 48 more horsepower (354 vs. 306) and 48 lbs.-ft. more torque (325 vs. 277) than the IS 350 C’s standard 3.5 DOHC V6.

As tested in Car and Driver the S5 Cabriolet is faster than the IS 350 C (automatics tested):



Zero to 60 MPH

5.1 sec

5.2 sec

Quarter Mile

13.6 sec

13.9 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

103 MPH

101 MPH

For more instantaneous acceleration and better engine flexibility in any gear, the S5’s engines produce their peak torque at lower RPM’s than the IS C:


S5 Cabriolet 3.0 supercharged V6

2900 RPM

S5 Coupe 4.2 DOHC V8

3500 RPM

IS 250 C 2.5 DOHC V6

4800 RPM

IS 350 C 3.5 DOHC V6

4800 RPM

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the S5’s brake rotors are larger than those on the IS C:


IS 250 C

IS 350 C

Front Rotors

13.6 inches

11.7 inches

13.2 inches

Rear Rotors

13 inches

12.2 inches

12.2 inches

The S5 stops much shorter than the IS C:



80 to 0 MPH

204 feet

236 feet

Road & Track

70 to 0 MPH

158 feet

185 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

114 feet

133 feet

Road & Track

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the S5 has larger tires than the IS C (255/35R19 vs. 225/45R17). The S5’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the IS C (255/35R19 vs. 225/40R18).

The S5’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the IS C’s standard 45 series tires. The S5’s tires are lower profile than the IS C’s optional 40 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the S5 has standard 19-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the IS C. The IS C’s largest wheels are only 18 inches.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The S5 offers an optional 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 IS C’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the S5 is 2.3 inches wider in the front and 1.9 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the IS C.

The S5 Cabriolet handles at .91 G’s, while the IS 350 C pulls only .82 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The S5 Cabriolet has a much larger trunk with its top down than the IS C with its top down (10.2 vs. 2.4 cubic feet). The S5 Cabriolet has a much larger trunk with its top up than the IS C with its top up (12.3 vs. 10.8 cubic feet).

The S5’s standard rear seats fold to accommodate long and bulky cargo. The IS C doesn’t offer folding rear seats.

Ergonomics Comparison

The S5’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The IS C’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.

If the windows are left down on the S5 the driver can raise them all using the key in the outside lock cylinder; on a hot day the driver can lower the windows. The driver of the IS C can only raise the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The S5’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 IS C’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the S5 to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The IS C doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the S5 Prestige has standard adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The IS C doesn’t offer cornering lights.

A power rear sunshade is optional in the S5 Prestige Coupe to help block heat and glare for the rear passengers. The IS C doesn’t offer a rear sunshade.

The S5 has a standard center folding armrest for the rear passengers. A center armrest helps make rear passengers more comfortable. The IS C doesn’t offer a rear seat center armrest.

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