One of the hottest automotive segments in the industry is the mid-size premium SUV segment. Filled with cars like the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class, it’s one of the most popular segments for customers to shop in and it’s one of the most important for premium brands. So it’s only natural that the cars that occupy this space are all excellent and they’ve never been better. In this new video review from Carwow, we take a look at the three best — the Audi Q5, BMW X3 and brand-new Volvo XC60.
All three cars in this class have four-cylinder diesel engines, automatic gearboxes and all-wheel drive. So the only way for these cars to separate themselves from each other is in the way they drive and how comfortable and practical they are.
The Audi Q5 is a car that we like but don’t love. Objectively, it’s very good and does everything well. But it just doesn’t blow our skirt up with excitement. The BMW X3 is a car that we actually like a lot. In terms of practicality and interior comfort, the Audi Q5 is the better car but there’s something about the way the X3 drives that makes us want to keep going. The Volvo XC60 is an unknown to us, though, as we haven’t yet tested it. So this video should be quite illuminating.
In terms of styling, it’s clear that the Volvo is the best looking car of the three. Volvo’s new design language is excellent and it’s no different here. While the BMW X3 is also quite good looking, although it can look a bit odd at times, such as its massive Kidney Grilles. The Audi Q5 is a handsome car but it’s a bit too boring and blend into traffic too much.
On the inside, all three cars are excellent. The Audi Q5 is so solidly built and its technology is really impressive. All of the materials feel top notch and its MMI infotainment system works great. Although, the BMW X3 is maybe just a touch ahead of the Q5, with slightly nicer materials in more places and an even better infotainment system. Though, it’s a bit boring to look at. As for the Volvo XC60, it looks great inside, with a typical Scandinavian calmness. It might lack a bit of quality to the Germans but it’s still lovely. Its touchscreen infotainment system is a bit finicky, though.
As for how they all drive, it’s quite interesting. The Volvo XC60 is the calmest car of the three, with the lightest, calmest steering and the most relaxed ride. The Audi Q5 strikes a good balance between comfort and sportiness, though it does tend to err on the side of comfort. While the BMW X3 is clearly the sportiest car of the bunch to drive and it doesn’t compromise on comfort to do so.
In the end, Carwow’s Mat Watson names the BMW X3 the winner by a very thin margin. All three are excellent but the X3 edges them in driving enjoyment, interior quality and technology. We haven’t driven the Volvo XC60 but we would still probably agree with this result.