2019 Audi e-tron vs. 2019 Volvo XC90

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

To allow off-road and deep snow capability, Four-Wheel Drive is standard on the e-tron. But it costs extra on the XC90.

An active infrared night vision system optional on the e-tron helps the driver to more easily detect people, animals or other objects in front of the vehicle at night. Using an infrared camera and near-infrared lights 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 e-tron and the XC90 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras and rear cross-path warning.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Audi vehicles are better in initial quality than Volvo vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 25th in initial quality. With 17 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 29th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Volvo vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 80 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 29th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Audi vehicles are more reliable than Volvo vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Audi 22 places higher in reliability than Volvo.

Engine

The e-tron’s electric motor produces 152 more horsepower (402 vs. 250) and 232 lbs.-ft. more torque (490 vs. 258) than the XC90 T5’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. The e-tron’s electric motor produces 86 more horsepower (402 vs. 316) and 195 lbs.-ft. more torque (490 vs. 295) than the XC90 T6’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. The e-tron’s electric motor produces 2 more horsepower (402 vs. 400) and 18 lbs.-ft. more torque (490 vs. 472) than the XC90 T8’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the e-tron gets better fuel mileage than the XC90 T8 running on electricity (74 city/73 hwy vs. 59 city/56 hwy MPGe).

The e-tron’s maximum EPA estimated driving range is 204 miles on a full charge. The XC90 T8 can only travel about 17 miles before it has to start its internal combustion engine.

Environmental Friendliness

In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Audi e-tron higher (10 out of 10) than the Volvo XC90 (5 to 7). This means the e-tron produces up to 19.8 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the XC90 every 15,000 miles.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the e-tron’s brake rotors are larger than those on the XC90:

 

e-tron

XC90 T5/T6

XC90 T8

Front Rotors

14.8 inches

13.6 inches

14.4 inches

Rear Rotors

13.8 inches

12.6 inches

13.4 inches

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the e-tron has larger standard tires than the XC90 (255/50R20 vs. 235/55R19).

The e-tron’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 e-tron has standard 20-inch wheels. Smaller 18-inch wheels are standard on the XC90 T5.

Suspension and Handling

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

Chassis

The design of the Audi e-tron amounts to more than styling. The e-tron has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .3 Cd. That is lower than the XC90 (.33) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the e-tron get better fuel mileage.

The front grille of the e-tron uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The XC90 doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

The e-tron has .9 inches more front headroom, .9 inches more front shoulder room, .1 inches more rear headroom, 2.1 inches more rear legroom and .7 inches more rear shoulder room than the XC90.

Servicing Ease

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Audi service is better than Volvo. J.D. Power ranks Audi third in service department satisfaction. With a 29% lower rating, Volvo is ranked 14th.

Ergonomics

The e-tron’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.

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

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Audi e-tron has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The XC90 doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Audi e-tron has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The XC90 doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

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

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