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Performance (manual gearbox)
Performance (automatic gearbox)
Virtual Adviser's™ opinion
Two significantly similar cars, no doubt about that. Still, each one has something different to offer. Having both cars powered by diesel engines and utilizing the 5-door suv body style within the same 'SUV' segment, the only major difference here really is their wheel drive configuration (front for the Audi and 4 x 4 in the case of the BMW). The first one has a Volkswagen-engineered powertrain under the hood, a 4-cylinder, 16-valves 143hp unit, while the other one gets its power and torque from a 4-cylinder, 16-valves 143hp engine designed by BMW.Safety
Both vehicles got tested by European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP), with the Audi being a slightly better choice apparently. Still, apart from the official crash test results there are other things we need to be aware of. Both vehicles belong to the suv segment, which is generally a very good thing safety-wise, but that fact doesn't break the tie between the two cars. On the other hand, taking kerb weight as an important factor into account, BMW X3 offers a marginal difference of 4% more metal.Reliability
I don't like generalizing things when it comes to reliability, although it does seem that both brands display similar results in faults and breakdowns, all the models observed together. These are the official statistics, while our visitors describe reliability of Audi with an average rating of 4.2, and models under the BMW badge with 4.3 out of 5. The same official information place Q5 50% below average, and X3 is more or less at the same level.Above it all, drivers of cars with the same engine as Audi Q5 rank it on average as 4.1, while the one under the competitor's bonnet gets 4.3 out of 5.Performance & Fuel economy
BMW is a bit more agile, reaching 100km/h in 0.7 seconds less than its competitor. In addition to that it accelerates all the way to 195 kilometers per hour, 3km/h more than the other car. When it comes to fuel economy things look pretty much the same for both cars, averaging around 6 liters of fuel per 100 kilometers (47 mpg), in combined cycle.
BMW appears just a bit more reliable, although the difference is truly marginal. The most important thing when deciding between any two vehicles should always be safety, both passive and active. In my opinion, everything taken into account, Audi Q5 offers slightly better overall protection and takes the lead. From there things take a different direction, with BMW offering somewhat better performance, just enough to call it quicker. It does come at a cost though, and that's the fuel consumption... No mistake, whatever you decide here, but I'd still go for the Audi. In any case that's my personal view, built upon all the data available to me. What should decide here though is the way you feel about the two vehicles, and I hope you'll find my guidelines useful in the process. In case you have two minutes to spare I invite you to define your needs, desires and budget and see which car would be chosen by the virtual adviser™, among thousands of similar, yet so different vehicles.