2010 Audi A5 Sportback [Live image update]

Audi has taken the wraps off its A5 Sportback at the Frankfurt Motor Show - the latest entrant into the growing segment of four-door "coupes." Though not bound for North America, the new model will slot in between the A4 and A6 in Europe, where the 33,650 euro A5 Sportback will go on sale later this month.

Audi's plan to catch sales and production up to BMW and Mercedes-Benz consists of enlarging the product range with 18 new models. That move will help the company reach one million vehicles sales in 2010, with a specific emphasis on niche vehicles like the A5 Sportback. The A5 Sportback will be positioned right below the future A7.

Though Audi says more engines will follow, including a new base powertrain, the A5 Sportback range starts with a 180-horsepower 2.0-liter TFSI four-cylinder turbo and culminates in a 265-horsepower 3.2-liter V6. Diesels are, of course, on offer, and include the base 2.0-liter TDI (170 horsepower) and top off in the 3.0 TDI with 240-horsepower.

Front-wheel-drive will be standard, but higher trim levels will get quattro all-wheel-drive. The 2.0-liters, in gas and diesel, get a start-stop system to conserve fuel and reduce emissions. A manual transmission, Multitronic CVT and a seven-speed S-Tronic automatic are available.

ESP and 17-inch wheels will be standard across the range, while 20-inchers and drive select dynamic suspension control with adaptive shock absorbers and a sport differential are on the options list.

The luggage hatch has a two-piece cover and, with the back seats folded, can carry 34.61 cubic feet of cargo.

The A5 is designed to be the third model in a full A5 range that includes the coupe and convertible. Audi says that rear seat room is nearly as large as the A4 despite the sloping roof line. The rear seats are mounted lower and more forward to take advantage of the space.

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