2019 Volvo XC60 vs. 2019 Audi Q5

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The XC60 has a standard Whiplash Protection System (WHIPS), which use a specially designed seat to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the WHIPS allows the backrest to travel backwards to cushion the occupants and the headrests move forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. At the same time the pretensioning seatbelts fire, removing slack from the belts. The Q5 doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The XC60’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 Q5 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the XC60 and the Q5 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 all wheel drive, blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, its standard front crash prevention system, and its headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the XC60 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2018, a rating granted to only 100 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Q5 was a “Top Pick” for 2017, but no longer qualifies under the tighter 2018 guidelines.

Warranty

Volvo pays for scheduled maintenance on the XC60 for 3 years and 36,000 miles. Volvo will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Audi only pays for the first scheduled maintenance visit on the Q5.

Engine

The XC60 T6’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 68 more horsepower (316 vs. 248) and 22 lbs.-ft. more torque (295 vs. 273) than the Q5’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. The XC60 T8’s standard 2.0 DOHC 4 cyl. hybrid produces 152 more horsepower (400 vs. 248) and 199 lbs.-ft. more torque (472 vs. 273) than the Q5’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

As tested in Motor Trend the XC60 T8 is faster than the Audi Q5:

 

XC60

Q5

Zero to 60 MPH

5.4 sec

5.9 sec

Quarter Mile

14 sec

14.5 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

97.1 MPH

94.6 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the XC60 T8 running on electricity gets better fuel mileage than the Q5 (59 city/57 hwy MPGe vs. 22 city/27 hwy).

On the EPA test cycle the XC60 T8 running its gasoline engine gets better fuel mileage than the Q5 (25 city/28 hwy vs. 22 city/27 hwy).

The XC60 T8 can drive on battery power alone for up to 17 miles. The Q5 must run its internal combustion engine to move.

The XC60 has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Q5 doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Environmental Friendliness

In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Volvo XC60 higher (5 to 7 out of 10) than the Audi Q5 (3). This means the XC60 produces up to 24.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Q5 every 15,000 miles.

Transmission

An eight-speed automatic is standard on the Volvo XC60, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a seven-speed automatic is available for the Q5.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the XC60 T6/T8’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the Q5:

 

XC60 T6/T8

Q5

Front Rotors

13.6 inches

13.3 inches

The XC60 stops much shorter than the Q5:

 

XC60

Q5

 

60 to 0 MPH

115 feet

136 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

129 feet

144 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the XC60 R-Design offers optional 21-inch wheels. The Q5’s largest wheels are only 20-inches.

Suspension and Handling

The XC60 offers an available driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Q5’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

The XC60 T6/T8 has a standard automatic front and rear load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The XC60’s height leveling suspension allows the driver to raise ride height for better off-road clearance and then lower it again for easier entering and exiting and better on-road handling. The Q5 doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the XC60’s wheelbase is 1.8 inches longer than on the Q5 (112.8 inches vs. 111 inches).

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the XC60 is 1.7 inches wider in the front and 2.2 inches wider in the rear than the track on the Q5.

The XC60 T6 AWD Inscription handles at .87 G’s, while the Q5 Premium Plus pulls only .81 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The XC60 T5 AWD Momentum executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Q5 Prestige (26.6 seconds @ .64 average G’s vs. 27.2 seconds @ .65 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the XC60’s turning circle is 1 foot tighter than the Q5’s (37.4 feet vs. 38.4 feet).

For greater off-road capability the XC60 has a greater minimum ground clearance than the Q5 (8.5 vs. 8.2 inches), allowing the XC60 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Passenger Space

The XC60 has .5 inches more front legroom, .5 inches more front shoulder room and .2 inches more rear legroom than the Q5.

Cargo Capacity

The XC60 has a much larger cargo volume than the Q5 with its rear seat up (30.2 vs. 25.1 cubic feet).

Ergonomics

The XC60 has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Q5 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

Unlike the driver-only memory system optional at extra cost in the Q5, the XC60 R-Design/Inscription has a passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the XC60 has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the Q5 only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

Consumer Reports rated the XC60’s headlight performance “Very Good,” a higher rating than the Q5’s headlights, which were rated “Fair.”

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The XC60’s headlights were rated “Acceptable” by the IIHS, while the Q5’s headlights are rated “Marginal” to “Poor.”

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The XC60 offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The Q5 doesn’t offer headlight washers.

To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the XC60 offers optional cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The Q5 doesn’t offer cornering lights. The XC60 also offers optional adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle.

Model Availability

The XC60 is available in both front-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The Q5 doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

Economic Advantages

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the XC60 is less expensive to operate than the Q5 because it costs $63 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the XC60 than the Q5, including $208 less for a water pump, $396 less for a muffler, $129 less for a starter, $8 less for fuel injection, $157 less for front struts, $430 less for a timing belt/chain and $13 less for a power steering pump.

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

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