In peak shape

Patrick Morda, Birte Mußmann (copy) & Jens Rüßmann (photos)
Forst special beer brewery in Algund, Merano. The company’s new brewhouse catches the eye with its unusual geometric shapes, transparent membranes and opaque elements — a mélange of concrete, steel and glass. This is a place where the traditional and the contemporary meet — the craft of brewing has been practiced here since 1857. Today, the brewery boasts state-of-the-art technology enveloped in cuttingedge design — by Walter Pichler & Partner. Latitude: 46.676988 | Longitude: 11.116769 | Altitude: 379 meters
The new Audi A5 ...

... is a fusion of elegance and grandezza, dynamism and power that puts the fun into high-tech functionality. In the South Tyrolean Alps, the coupé shows the depth of emotion that Vorsprung durch Technik can evoke and where else compelling design reaches new peaks.

 

 

Margreid fire station in South Tyrol. Black-coated steel blends with concrete and glass folding doors in a design penned by bergmeisterwolf Architects. The fire station creates the perfect backdrop for the balanced proportions of the Audi A5, its long hood, stretched wheelbase and short overhangs underscoring the coupé’s sporty credentials. Latitude: 46.282576 | Longitude: 11.209267 | Altitude: 236 meters

A first cursory glance is all it takes to recognize the sporty elegance and driving potential in the coupé’s curves and contours. The new Audi A5 has grown 47 millimeters in length and 13 millimeters in wheelbase. At 1.37 meters, its height remains virtually unchanged. Together with the emphatically short overhangs, the result is a triumph of sporty proportions. Much of what made the first generation of the coupé a style icon has been retained and refi ned in the new Audi A5 Coupé. Take, for instance, the sharply drawn wave-like shoulder line whose threedimensional feel now conjures a play with light and shade. This is perfectly complemented by the sweeping line above the wheel arches whose muscular flare hints at the optional quattro technology.

 

The short rear end of the Audi A5 has distinctly horizontal lines. Separate reflectors in the lower section of the rear spoiler emphasize the car’s broad stance. Its slim, 3D-shaped taillights are fitted as standard with LED technology and the third brake light extends the full width of the rear window. The redesigned front end of the new Audi A5 also sports distinctly horizontal lines that segue seamlessly into the finely contoured headlights, optionally available with Audi Matrix LED technology. These are now positioned slightly above the Singleframe grille, which is flatter, wider and similarly
three-dimensionally sculpted.

Mirror Houses in Bolzano. Contemporary architecture by Peter Pichler Architecture, planted in the heart of apple orchards. The guesthouses with a view of the mountains boast an impressive facade that reflects the surroundings like a giant projection screen, capturing the magnificence of not just the Dolomites but also the Audi A5 in every detail. The design marries straight and organically flowing lines. Latitude: 46.462385 | Longitude: 11.312557 | Altitude: 239 meters

Beneath the stretched wraparound hood beats the heart of the Gran Turismo: A new generation of TFSI and TDI engines generates more power compared with the predecessor model — between 140 kW and 185 kW  — while fuel consumption has been reduced by up to 22 percent. This is helped by such enhancements as a body up to 60 kilograms lighter, a drag coefficient of 0.25 and a fine-tuned start-stop system that comes as standard. When the car approaches a red light, the start-stop system deactivates the engine as soon as the speed drops below 7 km/h (with S tronic transmission). Power is distributed to the wheels either manually via a six-speed gearbox or via the seven-speed S tronic. Audi quattro all-wheel technology is optionally available with the other power units.

Timmelsjoch Pass Museum by architect Werner Tscholl can be found on the High Alpine Road at an altitude of 2,509 meters. While the museum’s foundations stand on North Tyrolean soil, the rest floats 16 meters out over South Tyrol. Akin to an ice cave, the interior provides insights into the history of the pass road. The shape and color of the museum allow it to blend seamlessly into the natural surroundings. Latitude: 46.905296 | Longitude: 11.09732 | Altitude: 2,509 meters

As a first for the Audi A5 with manual transmission, the new quattro drive features ultra technology. It harnesses all the benefits of front-wheel drive whenever possible, but rear-wheel drive is permanently on call. To determine specific requirements, the system continuously records and evaluates a wide range of information one hundred times per second. The switch to all-wheel drive is triggered both predictively and reactively. During cornering, for instance, the control unit calculates what’s happening roughly 0.5 seconds in advance, basing its predictions on driving style, the status of the ESC stabilization system and thedriving mode chosen with Audi drive select. Whenever a driving situation cannot be predicted — such as when the car suddenly hits sheet ice — the system switches to quattro all-wheel drive reactively.

The tour: on the move in the South Tyrolean Alps

The Audi A5 is not just a style icon, it’s a car designed to be enjoyed on the move. On our trip through the South Tyrolean Alps, the sheer feeling of freedom and independence it inspires is paired with an elegant athleticism. Crossing the Brenner Pass, the peaks of the Dolomites slowly come into view. They are arguably the most impressive part of the Alps region. Huge stone pinnacles with strange rock formations jut into the sky. The majestic line of peaks includes Marmolada, Schlern, Langkofel, the Sella group and the Drei Zinnen, the “three peaks.” Le Corbusier once dubbed the Dolomites the “most beautiful architecture in the world.”

 

Today, it would seem their imposing aura is a source of inspiration for more and more building owners as modern architecture — pioneered by Le Corbusier among others — increasingly fi nds its way into the Alpine region. Wood and stone are among the typical materials used in construction, along with steel, concrete and glass. Towns like Brixen, Bolzano and Merano in South Tyrol are good starting points to view such compelling feats of architecture. They include the Forst brewery with its new brewhouse, the Margreid fi re station carved into the mountainside, the Perathoner woodcarving workshop decorated with shingles, the Mirror Houses and the Timmelsjoch Pass Museum in the shape of a larger-thanlife glacial boulder. Find out more about the itinerary in our Audi Magazine app.

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Hot on the heels of the second-generation Audi A5 Coupé, the new Audi A5 Sportback is also about to make its market debut. The four-door sedan will likewise feature an evolution in exterior styling coupled with technical highlights in the interior. The Sportback was premiered at the Paris Motor Show in October 2016.

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