The SQ5’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The X5 M doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.
For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Audi SQ5 are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW X5 M doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.
The SQ5 has standard Secondary Collision Brake Assist, which automatically apply the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The X5 M doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.
To help make backing safer, the SQ5’s cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The X5 M doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.
Both the SQ5 and the X5 M have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, all-wheel drive, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available lane departure warning systems and around view monitors.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2016 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Audi vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 11th in reliability, above the industry average. With 8 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 14th.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ April 2017 Auto Issue reports that Audi vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Audi fourth in reliability. BMW is ranked 8th.
On the EPA test cycle the SQ5 gets better fuel mileage than the X5 M (19 city/24 hwy vs. 14 city/19 hwy).
For better maneuverability, the SQ5’s turning circle is 3.6 feet tighter than the X5 M’s (38.4 feet vs. 42 feet).
For greater off-road capability the SQ5 has a greater minimum ground clearance than the X5 M (8.2 vs. 8.1 inches), allowing the SQ5 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.
The Audi SQ5 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 850 pounds less than the BMW X5 M.
The SQ5 is 8.8 inches shorter than the X5 M, making the SQ5 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.
The design of the Audi SQ5 amounts to more than styling. The SQ5 has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .35 Cd. That is lower than the X5 M (.38). A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the SQ5 get better fuel mileage.
The SQ5 has 1.2 inches more front headroom, .6 inches more front legroom, .5 inches more rear headroom and 1.2 inches more rear legroom than the X5 M.
For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the SQ5’s rear seats recline. The X5 M’s middle row seats don’t recline.
Pressing a switch automatically lowers the SQ5’s rear seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The X5 M doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.
The SQ5’s liftgate lifts up in one piece, completely out of the way of loading and unloading, while sheltering the cargo loading area. The X5 M’s tailgate’s top part raises up, but the bottom part lowers, getting in the way of loading and making an uneven surface for sliding cargo.
To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the SQ5’s cargo door can be opened and closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The X5 M doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its cargo door, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.
To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the SQ5 Prestige offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The X5 M doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.
Insurance will cost less for the SQ5 owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the SQ5 will cost $2165 to $3270 less than the X5 M over a five-year period.
The SQ5 will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the SQ5 will retain 52.36% to 52.55% of its original price after five years, while the X5 M only retains 42.03%.
IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Audi SQ5 will be $36669 to $42268 less than for the BMW X5 M.