When the Audi Q8 first debuted, it was only the latest addition to a fairly popular segment of coupe-like SUVs. The original was the first-gen BMW X6, which created a segment that the industry didn’t even know customers wanted. Now, the X6 is in its third-generation, so it seems as if customers wanted such cars badly. Its styling is all new and is the most aggressive it’s been in its three generations. So how does it stack up against the newcomer Audi Q8?
Because we haven’t yet driven the new BMW X6, considering it was revealed five minutes ago, we only have looks to go on. So we’re just going to compare the two cars’ styling and interior. (We’re also going to use the performance versions of both (SQ8 and X6 M50i) because that’s the version BMW is using in its press photos)
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From the front, both cars are very in-your-face, with large grilles, aggressive headlights and big front air intakes. But I think it has to be the Audi SQ8 that takes the frontal win. It’s just more sorted, while the X6 seems a bit of a mess up front, with too many lines, angles and shapes. Admittedly, the SQ8 is no beauty up front, either. It’s just less messy and more handsome than the X6.
In profile, the Audi SQ8 is the boxier, tougher looking car. While the BMW X6 is a bit smoother, with a more sweeping roofline and curvier. Both are muscular looking and both are sporty, it really just comes down to personal preference, as all styling choices do to be honest. To these eyes, the Audi SQ8 is better looking, as the Q8 in general is just a good looking car.
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Out back, the BMW X6’s high beltline and squinty taillights make it look a bit odd. It also gets two spoilers in M50d-spec, which is just messy looking. The Audi SQ8 is cleaner, tidier and more handsome. Its taillights look better and its quad exhausts are cooler looking than the X6’s rectangles.
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As for the inside, it’s a bit of a wash. Both have very good looking cabins, with high-quality materials and top-notch technology. We’re not going to say one’s better than the other, simply because both are so good but also so different that they will appeal to different customers. The Audi SQ8 is more modern, more high-tech looking, with its dual-touchscreen MMI system and the best digital dials in the world. While the BMW X6 is more about great ergonomics, ease-of-use and subtle luxury.
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Overall, the Audi SQ8 TDI is the better looking car than the new BMW X6 M50d. The X6 is an interesting car with styling that its owners will love. But it just isn’t great looking and the Audi SQ8 is far more handsome.