2018 BMW X5 xDrive40e vs. 2018 Volvo XC90

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the X5 xDrive40e. But it costs extra on the XC90.

A passive infrared night vision system optional on the X5 xDrive40e helps the driver to more easily detect people, animals or other objects in front of the vehicle at night. Using an infrared camera to detect heat, the system then displays the image on a monitor in the dashboard. The XC90 doesn’t offer a night vision system.

Both the X5 xDrive40e and the XC90 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and driver alert monitors.


There are over 15 percent more BMW dealers than there are Volvo dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the X5 xDrive40e’s warranty.


J.D. Power and Associates’ 2017 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that BMW vehicles are better in initial quality than Volvo vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 6th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 46 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 30th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2016 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Volvo vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 14th in reliability, above the industry average. With 10 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 16th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ April 2017 Auto Issue reports that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Volvo vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks BMW 11 places higher in reliability than Volvo.


The X5 xDrive40e’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. hybrid produces 58 more horsepower (308 vs. 250) and 74 lbs.-ft. more torque (332 vs. 258) than the XC90 T5’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. The X5 xDrive40e’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. hybrid produces 37 lbs.-ft. more torque (332 vs. 295) than the XC90 T6’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl.

As tested in Car and Driver the BMW X5 xDrive40e is faster than the XC90 T6:


X5 xDrive40e


Zero to 30 MPH

2 sec

2.3 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

6.2 sec

6.4 sec

Zero to 80 MPH

10.3 sec

10.5 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

16.2 sec

17.3 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

6.6 sec

7.4 sec

Passing 30 to 50 MPH

3.2 sec

3.4 sec

Passing 50 to 70 MPH

4.2 sec

4.7 sec

Quarter Mile

14.7 sec

15 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

95 MPH

94 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

The X5 xDrive40e has 8.7 gallons more fuel capacity than the XC90 Hybrid’s standard fuel tank (21.9 vs. 13.2 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The X5 xDrive40e has 3.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the XC90’s standard fuel tank (21.9 vs. 18.8 gallons).


The X5 xDrive40e’s optional 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 XC90 doesn’t offer launch control.

Brakes and Stopping

The X5 xDrive40e stops much shorter than the XC90:


X5 xDrive40e



70 to 0 MPH

165 feet

184 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the X5 xDrive40e has larger standard tires than the XC90 (255/50R19 vs. 235/55R19).

The X5 xDrive40e’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the XC90 T5’s standard 60 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the X5 xDrive40e has standard 19-inch wheels. Smaller 18-inch wheels are standard on the XC90 T5.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the X5 xDrive40e can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The XC90 doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

The X5 xDrive40e has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The XC90’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

The rear suspension of the X5 xDrive40e uses air springs for a smoother, controlled ride than the XC90, which uses transverse leafs springs in the rear. Air springs maintain proper ride height and ride more smoothly.

The X5 xDrive40e 4dr Sport Utility handles at .82 G’s, while the XC90 T6 AWD pulls only .77 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.


As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the X5 xDrive40e 4dr Sport Utility is quieter than the XC90 T6 AWD:


X5 xDrive40e


At idle

41 dB

48 dB


69 dB

74 dB

Passenger Space

The X5 xDrive40e has 2.8 inches more front shoulder room and 1.8 inches more rear shoulder room than the XC90.

Servicing Ease

The engine in the X5 xDrive40e is mounted longitudinally (North-South), instead of sideways, as in the XC90. This makes it easier to service and maintain, because the accessory belts are in front.

A Condition-Based Service Display is standard on the X5 xDrive40e to save the owner time and money by calculating maintenance intervals for oil changes and spark plug replacement, vehicle inspection based on actual driving conditions. This takes the guesswork out of keeping your vehicle in top condition and helps it last longer. Volvo doesn’t offer a maintenance reminder on the XC90.


The X5 xDrive40e’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 XC90’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.

The X5 xDrive40e has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The XC90 doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the X5 xDrive40e has standard extendable sun visors. The XC90 doesn’t offer extendable visors.

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

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