Secondhand Showdown: Audi Q5 vs BMW X3

by Bronson Motor Speedway | Tuesday, May 30, 2017 | 360 views

Car speeding fast on a road curveBraving cold winters is scary, but they don’t have to be if you’ve got a warm and safe SUV to take you places. Used upmarket SUVs provide some of the best value regarding comfortable interiors and riding pleasure, making them worthy investments for any prospective car owner.

Audi and BMW, the two most recognizable names in German automotive manufacturing slug it out over which deserves your hard-earned cash, their billboard wars notwithstanding.

The Contenders

The pre-facelift BMW X3 xDrive20d Auto is notably accessible, as it is possible to acquire average-mileage units for less than $22,000. The Audi Q5 2.0 TDI 170 Tronic is pricier by comparison but retains popularity thanks to its sleek looks and responsive driving.

Power and Handling

Power-wise, the X3 has 181bhp with an eight-speed automatic gearbox, contributing to perky and responsive acceleration. The Q5’s seven-speed twin clutch gearbox is sluggish in delivering torque to the wheels, resulting in some delay when launching from a standstill. Gear changes are smooth once the Q5 gets moving, though.

Throw these two on a couple of curves, and stark differences arise. The X3 controls tightly, provides plenty of grip, and steers well despite some muted feedback. The Q5 is a lot more agile, with a stronger grip and less rolling in bendy roads. Comfort gets sacrificed though, as the Q5 lets you feel a lot of road bumps and other irregularities.


Anyone who’s been inside a modern BMW knows to expect precise, durable switchgear that’s easy to use, and the X3 is no exception. It also adds just enough luxury with the choice of materials, and the supportive seats add to its appeal.

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Audi’s interior design consists of truly upmarket touches in the high-class materials and intuitive design. While A/C controls aren’t the most user-friendly, the front seats feel great, and the steering wheel adjusts nicely.

Fuel Consumption

Concerning fuel economy, Bavarian Motor Cars agree that the BMW X3 wins this one. The X3 achieves a frugal 50.4mpg on average compared to the Audi Q5’s 40.4 mpg. The X3’s lower servicing costs and tax rates adds great value to this SUV, making the Q5 more expensive to own and maintain.


Adding up the pros and cons, the Audi Q5 simply isn’t up to snuff in terms of ride comfort, fuel economy, and reliability, despite its marginally better driving feel. The BMW X3, with its solid driving dynamics, comfortable ride, and impressive fuel economy makes it the victor in this secondhand SUV showdown.

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