Now that Audi is rolling with e-tron electric vehicles, it’s moving into the world of plug-in hybrids as well. It’s about damn time, to be honest. The first hybrid Audi ever sold was the A3 e-tron and it was, frankly, quite bad. Now, though, the four-ringed brand has a new suite of hybrid vehicles and it’s time to see if they can hang with the other hybrids that have already been quite successful. So in this test from Autocar, the all-new Audi Q5 TFSI e takes on the Volvo XC60 T8.
The Audi Q5 TFSI e is the brand’s first hybrid Q5 but Volvo has been making hybrids for some time now. So this really is a battle of a rookie versus a veteran. But before we get into which is best, let’s check the specs.
In the Swedish corner, the Volvo XC60 T8 uses a 2.0 liter four-cylinder “Twin-Engine”, which is actually twin-charged. It uses both a turbocharger and a supercharger, combined with an electric motor, to make about 400 hp and 411 lb-ft of combined power. So it’s a punchy but complicated powertrain setup.
In the German corner, the Audi Q5 TFSI e uses a 2.0 liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, paired with an electric motor. It makes a combined 362 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque. So it’s a bit down on power versus the Volvo. Despite that, the Q5 is actually a tenth faster to 62 mph, doing the deed in 5.3 seconds versus the Volvo’s 5.4 seconds. That’s likely due to weight, as the Audi is a bit lighter.
As for how they drive, the Audi Q5 TFSI e is actually said to be the smoother, more refined car, especially in terms of how its hybrid powertrain switches the internal combustion engine on and off. You’d expect Volvo, the brand that’s been doing hybrids longer, to have a bit more finesse in this area but, according to Autocar, it’s actually the rookie Audi.
The Audi is also cheaper. So when you also consider the fact that it drives better and is more refined, it seems like an easy choice. While both cars are relatively bland to drive (they’re hybrid crossovers, what did you expect) and quite good at what they do, it’s the Audi Q5 TFSI e that wins the test.