How Does BMW’s New X5 Compare To Porsche Cayenne, Volvo XC90 And Audi Q7?

Regardless of how the all-new 2019 BMW X5 stacks against its predecessor, automakers will always be more interested in how new models are perceived within their specific segments. The X5 needs to worry less about the past and more about the likes of the Audi Q7, Volvo XC90 and Porsche Cayenne.

Why you ask? Sales, of course. Two of these three models (the Q7 and the XC90) have ran almost neck and neck with the old X5 in European sales, while the race has have been reasonably close in North America too.

The Cayenne isn’t as popular on the sales chart, but that’s only because of it costs more, especially when you pile up extras, pretty much everywhere in the world. Still, we can’t overlook the Porsche in any sort of comparison when it comes to BMW’s SUV.

A quick word on why we skipped Mercedes‘ GLE

As in any other segment BMW is present these days, one of the X5’s chief rivals comes from Mercedes-Benz. The reason why we didn’t include the GLE here is that it would have been an unfair comparison, as it’s living on borrowed time, having been in production since 2011. An all-new model is just around the corner, with an anticipated world premiere this fall at the Paris Motor Show.

Read: 2019 Mercedes-Benz GLE: Everything You Need To Know From Design, Tech To Engines

The more things change…

BMW’s all-new X5 is bolder than its predecessor, looking more modern than the car it leaves behind, albeit not by much. It’s still instantly recognizable as a BMW from most angles.

At the same time, you could argue that if you take away the badges, you could call it anything, especially a far as its rear-end styling is concerned. Will we miss the X5’s well known L-shaped taillights? That remains to be seen.

In the Audi Q7, we have an SUV that already looks modern, as this latest-generation model is only 3 years old. This makes it more capable of holding its own against a newly launched X5, than say the Mercedes-Benz GLE – eagerly awaiting its own generational shift.

Moving on to the third-generation Porsche Cayenne, it came out last year and features an evolutionary design compared to its predecessor. Its styling is a lot simpler than that of the new X5, as there aren’t as many angular creases within the bodywork. So choosing between the two from a visual perspective will always come down to personal taste.

What about the Volvo XC90 you ask? Well, say what you will, but it’s proven to be an immensely popular SUV. It’s been called boxy, stylish, elegant, you name it. Next to the X5, it definitely looks less sporty, but you could make a case for it as being more imposing.

Altogether, we’d say that the BMW and the Porsche look the most dynamic, as expected, while the Audi and the Volvo stand out a little less, especially when looking at their rears or profiles.

So many bells and whistles, we need to cover our ears

We’ll admit that the Volvo XC90 is a bit too “2015” when it comes to on-board tech and overall dashboard aesthetics.

Don’t get us wrong, the Swedish SUV looks great inside, and the build quality is top notch, but the interior of the Audi Q7 just looks more modern. Meanwhile, the 2018 Cayenne represents the very best Porsche has to offer today, and the same can be said about the all-new BMW X5.

Again, choosing your favorite ambiance out of the four comes down to personal taste, although, whichever model you sit down in, it should feel plenty luxurious.

According to BMW, the all-new X5 features higher quality materials than its predecessor, to go with the new switchgear and 2018-worthy tech. The steering wheel is the same as on the new 5-Series, while that little climate control display between the air vents is a fresh new touch.

Speaking of which, the Audi’s dashboard looks like it’s one big air vent (yet it works, visually), while the Porsche’s mirrors that of a 911, best it can. As for the XC90, it definitely has the most minimalist interior design.

But wait, there’s more!

As we mentioned before, this year will also mark the arrival of the all-new Mercedes-Benz GLE, which should look something like this:

Rendering Copyright: CarScoops / Josh Byrnes

So technically speaking, the 2019 BMW X5 won’t enjoy much of a sales head start against its upcoming rival from Mercedes.

Your turn now. Which one of these four premium SUVs do you think looks best?

  • PK

    i’m curious what the new mercedes benz gle will be like.

    • Andrewthecarguy

      Me too, but I think this G05 is so on point it will be a tough battle.

    • krusshall

      Probably like an enlarged GLC.

      • PK

        with a lot of new techs in it. can’t wait!

  • D3X

    Tough line up, with stiff competition. All of these cars are top notch, and it’s great to be a buyer right now !

  • Christian

    they forget the mercedes gle duh..

    • Shtekeris

      That awkward moment when you haven’t read the article

      • Christian

        Ohhhh ya…. WHOPS

        • Andrewthecarguy


  • Kaisuke971

    The X5’s design makes more sense when you compare it to other cars or its predecessor. I’m still not sure about the fascia, looks a bit goofy, but the rest is pretty damn good. The interior looks very BMW but still modern (you can tell it’s the newest car here), and even the rear that at first looked like we’ve seen it somewhere, now it’s starting to really look X5. Maybe they should’t have put the tail lights upside down though, to keep that typical L shape

    • alexxx

      To be honest,bmw latest l-shapped lights on some models were plain ugly…and I am a bmw fan… I like these one though

  • TrevP

    The Volvo is still the prettiest in my eyes. That’s what I’d get.

  • wintergraan

    The new Touareg is missing!

    • PK

      i think this list is luxury suvs. volkswagen isn’t luxury.

      • wintergraan

        The Touareg certainly is since it‘s based on the same platform as the q7/Cayenne and features the same tech and engines 🙂

        • Bob

          So can we argue that VAG is already well-represented here?

          • wintergraan

            Sure:) but nevertheless it would be interesting to see how the new Touareg stacks up design-wise against the other SUVs.

  • Moveon Libtards

    Volvo still looks the best.

    BMW interior is nice but that is a top spec version.

    Audi is not nice in grey. Exterior ho hum.

    Porsche interior too spartan and price climbs fast with feature add ons.

  • TheBelltower

    It’d be down to the Porsche and the 5 and how they both drive. Neither are lookers from the front, but both look smart from all other angles. I’d scratch the Volvo off the list because of the engine, and the Q7 for the generic style.

    • Andrewthecarguy

      Performance wise I think the answer is the X5. I am biased though so grain of salt.
      The Porsche sucks as an SUV. Drove one and couldn’t believe how much of a VW it was. Besides the Turbo and GTS the other versions are nothing.
      Volvo looks good and that’s it. Drives like crap.
      Q7 I have not driven but fails in the looks department, so no.

  • Jason Panamera

    I’d take Maserati Levante for sure.

  • Andrewthecarguy

    #1: X5
    #2: X5
    #3: X5
    #4: 3 way tie

  • Tony

    I have 2 questions. One, is there a 3rd row in the new X5? Two, can adults sit back there, or just kids? Theee, which one would you rather be in when some millennial is texting while driving, and plows into you when they run a light or a stop sign? Ok, that was three questions. I’ll take the Sweede.

  • Pond Fish

    I bought a 2016 CPO XC90 T6, magic blue w/blonde interior, B&W stereo. First car I ever owned that I truly love. Pilot Assist 2 makes driving 1000 miles to FL almost as easy as being a passenger. Can’t wait for the next generation in 2021.

  • Autoexperte

    other cars in this size:
    Tesla Model X, Infiniti QX70, Alfa Romeo Stelvio, Maserati Levante, Range Rover Sport, Lincoln Nautilus, Jeep Grand Cherokee

    Nissan Murano, Kia Sorento, Ford Edge, Chevrolet Equinox, GMC Acadia, Buick Envision

    • Some ol’ bloke

      Fair point, though I think they are trying to get cars in the same price range. The model x, QX70, Range Rover Sport all cost a lot more, whilst the rest are about 10K less

    • Andrewthecarguy

      Your ‘experte’ status needs to be revoked.
      How is the Stelvio and Levante in the same class? Let alone the rest of what you posted?

      • Autoexperte

        I don’t say they are in the same class

  • no25

    so you give a reason as to why you skipped the GLE, but where is the RX, then? Like it or not, it is the top seller…

  • rodriguez256

    For me it’s between the Audi and Volvo. I like both but I think the Volvo edges it just enough for me to take it as number one.

  • iea96

    I think the easiest thing we can agree on is how dull the Q7 is looking

  • erly5

    1. X5 – Impressive update of lacklustre previous version
    2. XC90 – Scandinavian cool
    3. Cayenne – A bit too evolutionary, but looks slightly better than predecessor
    4. Q7 – Does not stand comparison in the looks department, was dull and dated from the moment it arrived

  • krusshall

    This comparison is worthless if we are basing it on these images. Some images are real, most are photoshopped media creations. Trim levels are all over the place. The profile image of the Q7 uses tiny wheels but all others have uplevel wheels. I will say that the rear of the X5 has very little BMW DNA. It’s just generic. Without the propeller badge you wouldn’t know it’s a BMW.

  • Andrewthecarguy


    But…I’ll bite.
    XC90 looks good in and out, in fact I think it is the impetus for this G05 and the shortened-by-2-years life span of the F15. Add the crystal shift knob and yes, Volvo brought it with the XC90 and put the Germans and Japanese on notice. Sold very well too. But there is one thing it is not: a drivers’ vehicle. Very few Volvos have ever come close to what the Germans and BMW specifically have and can do with SUVs. The T8 is supecharged and turbocharged and hybridized, but it is a 4 banger. The X5 ///M in the E70 iteration is said to defy the laws of physics. The F85 is ridiculous. Show me an SUV that could touch it at launch and one that looks better and is faster now after several years.

    So, my point remains: performance wise, the X5 is it.

  • Andrewthecarguy

    Erm…X5 40e maybe, but not X5 M50d

  • Philip George

    Cayenne looks good. shame they’re with VAG. Porsche deserve to be by themselves doing well, not getting chucked together with dirty VAG and their dirty parts and filthy engines.

    • PK

      i agree! same with audi, lambo, bugatti and bentley! they should all get out of vw group as fast as possible! i don’t trust vw ever since the diesel emission scandal!

  • J C1

    My wife and I recently bought a new SUV and were positive we were going to buy the Volvo XC90 (since we have a Volvo S60 and love it). We test drove every SUV on this list plus SUVs from Lexus, Infinity, GMC/Buick, Acura, Land Rover, etc. In the end we went with the Audi Q70. While it may not be the best in any one category, it essentially has no weakness and does everything well. (incidentally our rankings were Q7, XC90 and Land Rover Discovery). Eight months down the road and we still love our Q7 and know we may the right choice.

  • Toronado_II

    I like this kind of post. Keep posting !

  • Vassilis

    XC90. Easily.

  • botornot387

    I will take that last SQ7 for sure. Based on what you see here its a toss up between the Q7 and X5 for me, but knowing that the Q7 will get updated with newer styling and the new Audi interior, it continues to move forward past the X5 for me, if it gets styling tweaks from the Q8. This is X5 is truly well done though. I don’t even put the GLE near these let alone the Porsche. Not a current Merc fan at all in terms of styling interior or out.

  • Andrewthecarguy

    Oh man, so much to say.
    Yes I did drive an XC90 when I was convinced it is the answer to replace my E70, and after 1 (ONE) test drive I crossed it off my list for good. I have not driven a T8 and it sounds like I need to.
    I don’t agree that the Polestar XC90 is better looking than an X5 ///M. That is a matter of taste but I will argue that more people agree with me than you on this one 🙂
    In the UK, the Japs do not have the lux SUV presence they do in the US so I am not shocked at your statement. If you spend time in a Lexus LX570, you’d understand. There is a reason that thing holds value like you read about. Even an MDX is compelling for it’s price point, and the QX80 looks the part, but I think it depends on what you are used to. For example, some people believe the Escalade is luxurious; I do not agree.

  • Andrewthecarguy

    Those 0-60 times are news to me. Didn’t realize the T8 was that quick off the line. I stand corrected then. I will be driving a T8 pronto…might be THE XC90 to get.

  • Andrewthecarguy

    Wow, so you are a troll.

    But…just for your SA…that is situational awareness, comparing and commenting based on 1 market, yours, is myopic at best and vacuous on the other end of the spectrum. I’ll let you decide where you fit.
    On the Lexus comment: you do realize that Toyota makes Lexus and Toyota is the progenitor of one of the longest lasting and arguably most desirable SUV EVER created? But anyway, considering your comments thus far you one is wont to call you an ignoramus with cretinoide understanding…but I won’t.

    I’m out.

    • David

      You Andrew have been put in your place. My work here is done.

      Bye, bye😘

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