2019 BMW X5 vs. 2019 Audi Q8

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The X5’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Q8 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the X5 and the Q8 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, all wheel drive, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, post-collision automatic braking systems, rearview cameras, available night vision systems and around view monitors.

Warranty

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the X5 for 3 years and 36,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Audi only pays for the first scheduled maintenance visit on the Q8.

There are over 13 percent more BMW dealers than there are Audi dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the X5’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that BMW vehicles are better in initial quality than Audi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 11th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 18 more problems per 100 vehicles, Audi is ranked 25th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Audi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 14 more problems per 100 vehicles, Audi is ranked 13th.

Engine

The X5 xDrive50i’s standard 4.4 turbo V8 produces 121 more horsepower (456 vs. 335) and 110 lbs.-ft. more torque (479 vs. 369) than the Q8’s 3.0 turbo V6 hybrid.

Transmission

The X5’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 Q8 doesn’t offer launch control.

Tires and Wheels

The X5’s optional 275/35R22 front and 315/30R22 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series front and 30 series rear profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Q8’s optional 40 series tires.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires available on the X5 can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Q8 doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

The X5 offers active sway bars, which help keep it flat and controlled during cornering, but disconnect at lower speeds to smooth the ride and offer greater off-road suspension articulation. This helps keep the tires glued to the road on-road and off. The Q8 doesn’t offer an active sway bar system.

The X5 offers an available adjustable active suspension system, which counteracts cornering forces actively, limiting body roll and improving handling and stability. Audi doesn’t offer an active suspension on the Q8.

For better maneuverability, the X5’s turning circle is 2.1 feet tighter than the Q8’s (41.4 feet vs. 43.5 feet).

For greater off-road capability the X5 has a 2.9 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the Q8 (8.7 vs. 5.8 inches), allowing the X5 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis

The front grille of the X5 uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Q8 doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

The X5 offers optional seating for 7 passengers; the Q8 can only carry 5.

The X5 has 2.6 inches more front headroom, .5 inches more front shoulder room and .6 inches more rear headroom than the Q8.

Cargo Capacity

The X5 5-Passenger has a much larger cargo area with its rear seat up than the Q8 with its rear seat up (33.9 vs. 28.6 cubic feet). The X5 has a much larger cargo area with its rear seat folded than the Q8 with its rear seat folded (72.3 vs. 67.5 cubic feet).

Pressing a switch automatically lowers the X5’s optional second and third row seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Q8 doesn’t offer automatic folding second row seats.

The X5’s rear cargo window opens separately from the rest of the tailgate door to allow quicker loading of small packages. The Q8’s rear cargo window doesn’t open.

Ergonomics

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the X5 has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the Q8 only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

The X5’s optional Parking Assistant can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Q8 doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

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

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