Compared: 2023 Audi Q5 vs. 2023 Volvo XC60

Will you have the usual or something altogether different?

Audi Q5 and Volvo XC60, top to bottom, comparisonAudi | Volvo

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There are more than a dozen compact luxury SUVs on sale. Unless you’re a brand loyalist, you’ll face a tough decision. We’ve picked two popular SUVs at each end of the alphabet: the Audi Q5 and the Volvo XC60. The Audi appears to adopt a strategy that’s designed to appeal to as many people as possible, while the Volvo treats the eye with distinctive Scandinavian style and more useful technology. Here’s how they compare.

2023 Audi Q5 drivingAudi

Audi Q5 vs. Volvo XC60: Price

The 2023 Audi Q5 comes in two body styles, four powertrains, and 17 trims. The base Q5 40 TFSI Premium starts around $45,000, while the 45 TFSI Premium costs $2,500 more. Both use a turbocharged, 2.0-liter four-cylinder with either 201 or 261 horsepower. The higher-output engine is standard in the Sportback, which starts around $52,000.

The SQ5 is the performance trim with a 3.0-liter, turbocharged V6 putting out 349 hp, priced from around $57,000 to the mid-$60,000s with options. The SQ5 Sportback Prestige starts at just under $70,000. Every Q5 comes with Quattro all-wheel drive and a seven-speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission (DCT). The SQ5 comes with an eight-speed conventional automatic.

2023 Volvo XC60Volvo

The 2023 Volvo XC60 starts around $45,000 for the B5 Core trim, with front-wheel drive and a 247-hp, turbocharged four-cylinder. All-wheel drive costs $2,300. Two more trims (Plus and Ultimate) raise the price by $4,250 and $10,050, respectively. The B6 Ultimate has 295 hp and adds $5,550 on top of that. Every XC60 B5 and B6 is a mild hybrid. The XC60 Recharge is a plug-in hybrid that starts just above $58,000 with 455 hp and up to 35 miles of electric range. With options, it can reach more than $76,000.

2023 Audi Q5 drivingAudi

Audi Q5 vs. Volvo XC60: Fuel Economy

The 2023 Q5 40 and 45 TFSI models are rated by the EPA to get 25 mpg in combined city and highway driving. The 2023 SQ5 in regular or Sportback style gets 21 mpg combined.

2023 Volvo XC60 plugged in and chargingVolvo

The 2023 XC60 gets 26 mpg combined in the B5 FWD, 25 mpg in the B5 AWD, and 23 mpg in the B6 AWD. The government has yet to release ratings for the 2023 XC60 Recharge, but 2022 models were rated at 25 mpg when operating on gasoline and electric-assist, and 57 MPGe with up to 19 miles of electric-only range. An extended-range version of the XC60 Recharge did even better at 28 mpg combined and 63 MPGe with an all-electric range of 36 miles.

2023 Audi Q5 interiorAudi

Audi Q5 vs. Volvo XC60: Features

The Q5 is a traditional SUV in design and feel. The Premium 40 TFSI has a 7-inch display between analog gauges, a touchscreen, parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring, and Traffic Jam Assist. The Premium 45 TFSI has a sportier S line exterior. The Premium Plus features 19-inch wheels, a Bang & Olufsen stereo, a digital instrument panel with full-screen maps, lane-keep assist, and a moonroof. The Prestige has upgraded headlights and cooled front sport seats. The SQ5 has larger brakes, a stiffer suspension, wider tires, and upgraded leather seats.

2023 Volvo XC60 interiorVolvo

The XC60 is unconventional. It uses a portrait-oriented touchscreen and a 12-inch digital instrument panel running Android Automotive, which natively runs Google’s operating system (such as Google Maps, Assistant, and more). The Core B5 comes with fabric seats, lane-keeping, blind-spot monitoring, auto-dimming and power-folding mirrors, 18-inch wheels, and a moonroof; a list of features the base Q5 doesn’t match. The Plus includes adaptive cruise, 19-inch wheels, a 360-degree camera, and power-folding rear headrests. The Ultimate includes an air purifier, four-zone climate control, a head-up display, and more. On the top Recharge trims, you can get wool fabric, a crystal gear selector, matte wood trim that curves around the doors and underneath the screen, and even 21-inch, forged wheels.

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Clifford Atiyeh
Clifford Atiyeh is an independent writer, photographer, and creative consultant. He has reported for dozens of websites, magazines, and newspapers in his 20-year journalism career, during which he has tested more than 650 new vehicles. His automotive expertise focuses on product development, market analysis, and the litigation and legislation affecting the industry. Clifford is vice president of the New England Motor Press Association and runs a marketing consultancy.