Photo Comparison: BMW X5 M50D vs Audi SQ7 TDI

BMW X5 | March 4th, 2016 by 10
Bild Vergleich BMW X5 M50d F15 Audi SQ7 TDI Diesel SUV 2016 02 750x500

Monster diesel SUVs occupy a very small niche market, one so small, in fact, it makes cars like the BMW X6 M seem mainstream. However, …

Monster diesel SUVs occupy a very small niche market, one so small, in fact, it makes cars like the BMW X6 M seem mainstream. However, despite their rarity, big performance diesel SUVs actually make a bit more sense than gasoline-powered performance SUVs. The BMW X5 M50D, a tri-turbocharged behemoth, is a perfect example. BMW had reigned king in the world of diesel performance SUVs for quite some time. But now, there seems to be a new competitor, the Audi SQ7 TDI.

2014 BMW X5 M50d F15 M Sportpaket weiss Triturbo Diesel SUV 02 750x496

Based on the second-generation Audi Q7, the SQ7 packs a triple-turbocharged 4.0 liter V8 diesel engine. However, it’s a bit more complicated than that. Two of the SQ7’s turbochargers are sequential, meaning one is used for low-rpm stuff and the other for high-rpm stuff. But the third is electrically-driven, and is much smaller than the other two, allowing it to add boost at nearly zero rpm, thus providing extra grunt low down while the smaller gas-driven turbo spools up. It’s the first production car to ever use an electrically-driven turbocharger, according to Audi. This tri-turbo setup allows for 435 hp and a whopping 663 lb-ft of torque.

By comparison, the BMW X5 M50D uses a 3.0 liter tri-turbocharged inline six-cylinder diesel engine, which develops 381 hp and 546 lb-ft of torque. So the BMW is down significantly on power, considering the smaller engine. It gets better fuel economy, though. The BMW X5 M50D can get from 0-60 mph in 5.3 seconds, while the SQ7 can do the same spring in 4.8 seconds. So the added power does help the Audi.

2014 BMW X5 M50d F15 M Sportpaket weiss Triturbo Diesel offiziell 18 750x500

In terms of the way they drive, we’ve yet to sample either of them. We’ve driven the X5 M and it’s an outstanding car, so if that’s anything to go by then the SQ7 will have quite the uphill battle. However, having said that, we’ve also sampled the standard Audi Q7 3.0T and it’s a very good SUV with surprisingly sharp handling, excellent road manners and a very good chassis. So it’s possible that the Audi SQ7 brings some heat and really challenges the BMW X5 M50D.

In terms of looks, the X5 M50D is a very good looking car. The standard X5 is a stunner and, for me personally, is the more interesting looking car than the standard Audi Q7. I also think the SQ7 is also a very good looking car but, at least for me, lacks a bit of the visual drama and aggression that the M50D has.

Cockpit

On the inside, things are a bit different, as the M50D doesn’t look much different from the standard X5 with an M Sport package, which is a shame. It’s a very nice cabin, but doesn’t look any more special that the standard car, aside from those gorgeous leather/alcantara seats. On the flip-side, the Audi SQ7 looks very good on the inside, with a high-tech look and feel. It’s almost like sitting in the Starship Enterprise. However, it is a much newer cabin than the X5’s so it’s going to look fresher.

Both cars look really good, both have excellent interiors and both have stunning performance from triple-turbocharged diesel engines. So it will be very interesting to see which car is best.

10 responses to “Photo Comparison: BMW X5 M50D vs Audi SQ7 TDI”

  1. John says:

    The SQ7’s interior is really nice!

    • Alex Baloch says:

      Lmao no its not, its like the interior of BMW E83

      • Tom Chamian says:

        dont be a dick – it’s a nice interior

        • Senne says:

          It’s not a nice interior! Compare it (and almost all the other Audi interiors) to the VW Passat. They’re almost identical! With those air vents. As boring as the exterior of every Audi (= overpriced VW). Just look at the luxurious interior of the X5. Leather, everywhere you look (in these pictures the dash isn’t leather, but it is an option and it’s extremely good looking). Magnificent looking seats. Even the steering wheel is much, much better looking. And I hope BMW will never use those navigation/ multimedia screens that slide away, because to achieve that Audi uses awful looking rectangular screens. The way BMW does it, the screen is beautifully shaped. You can’t even compare the Audi interiors to BMW’s. They are cheep looking and boring. Compare BMW to Mercedes, at least that makes sense!

  2. Vitalino says:

    BMW is better..

  3. Madalin says:

    Ha, ha :) Funny you. Only BMW with 3.0 Diesel and 381 PS is a behemoth. Audi with 4.0 Diesel and 435 PS not..

  4. curamrda says:

    Both are terrible ugly :(

  5. rennsport4.4TV8 says:

    The BMW suv exterior designs are seriously lacking. Those random circle foglights don’t look good and the various seemingly random intakes don’t either. The XC90 looks a lot better than both of these cars and better than the LR4. But if it comes to these two the SQ7 is the easier choice. It will likely have better performance and it easier on the eyes even if it’s not the best looking vehicle. That’s just my opinion without testing them together.

  6. […] system cannot. One of them being an electric turbocharger. The reason we say that is because the new Audi SQ7 TDI uses a 48-volt system to power one, along with a few other […]

  7. […] system cannot. One of them being an electric turbocharger. The reason we say that is because the new Audi SQ7 TDI uses a 48-volt system to power one, along with a few other […]

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