2019 Audi Q5 vs. 2019 Volvo XC60

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Q5. But it costs extra on the XC60.

Both the Q5 and the XC60 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, post-collision automatic braking systems, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

Reliability

The Audi Q5’s engine uses a cast iron block for durability, while the XC60’s engines use an aluminum block. Aluminum engine blocks are much more prone to warp and crack at high temperatures than cast iron.

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the Q5’s reliability 40 points higher than the XC60.

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’ 2018 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 13th in reliability, above the industry average. With 21 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 22nd.

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 Q5’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 15 lbs.-ft. more torque (273 vs. 258) than the XC60 T5’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

As tested in Motor Trend the Audi Q5 is faster than the Volvo XC60:

 

Q5

XC60 T5

XC60 T6

Zero to 60 MPH

5.9 sec

7.3 sec

6.6 sec

Quarter Mile

14.5 sec

15.5 sec

15 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

94.6 MPH

86.1 MPH

89.9 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Q5 Auto gets better city fuel mileage than the XC60 T5 AWD (22 city/27 hwy vs. 20 city/27 hwy).

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Audi Q5 uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended for maximum performance). The XC60 T5 requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

Transmission

The Q5 offers a standard sequential manual gearbox (SMG). With no clutch pedal to worry about and a fully automatic mode, an SMG is much more efficient than a conventional automatic but just as easy to drive. The XC60 doesn’t offer an SMG or a conventional manual transmission.

The Q5’s 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 XC60 doesn’t offer launch control.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Q5’s standard brake rotors are larger than those on the XC60:

 

Q5

XC60

Front Rotors

13.3 inches

12.7 inches

Rear Rotors

13 inches

11.9 inches

The Q5 stops shorter than the XC60:

 

Q5

XC60

 

70 to 0 MPH

161 feet

170 feet

Car and Driver

Suspension and Handling

The front and rear suspension of the Q5 uses coil springs for better ride, handling and control than the XC60, which uses transverse leafs springs in the rear. Coil springs compress more progressively and offer more suspension travel for a smoother ride with less bottoming out.

Passenger Space

The Q5 has 3.7 inches more front headroom, 1.3 inches more rear headroom and .2 inches more rear shoulder room than the XC60.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the Q5’s rear seats recline. The XC60’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

The Q5 has a larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the XC60 with its rear seat folded (53.1 vs. 50.6 cubic feet).

Towing

The Q5’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the XC60’s (4400 vs. 3500 pounds).

Servicing Ease

The engine in the Q5 is mounted longitudinally (North-South), instead of sideways, as in the XC60. This makes it easier to service and maintain, because the accessory belts are in front.

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 Q5’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 XC60’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the Q5 to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The XC60 doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Q5 has standard extendable sun visors. The XC60 doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the Q5 owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the Q5 with a number “5” insurance rate while the XC60 is rated higher at a number “10” rate.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Q5 is less expensive to operate than the XC60 because typical repairs cost much less on the Q5 than the XC60, including $21 less for front brake pads and $256 less for a fuel pump.

Recommendations

Consumer Reports® recommends the Audi Q5, based on reliability, safety and performance. The Volvo XC60 isn't recommended.

The Audi Q5 outsold the Volvo XC60 by over two to one during the 2018 model year.

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

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