Comparison: 2017 Lexus RX 350 vs 2017 Audi Q5

Comparison: 2017 Lexus RX 350 vs 2017 Audi Q5

Family drivers in Los Angeles love the SUV as a stylish alternative to the minivan, but not all luxury SUVs are good enough for your family. When comparison shopping, be sure to check out safety ratings and the availability of driver assistance technology.

In the face-off between the 2017 Lexus RX 350 and the 2017 Audi Q5, it’s a close call, but there is a clear winner. Read on to find out, then visit our El Monte location to test drive the RX 350.

Safety Ratings and Tech

Lexus RX 350

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awarded the 2017 RX 350 with a Top Safety Pick+ title, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave it a best-possible 5-Star Overall Rating.

Plus, the RX is nicely equipped with a range of active and passive safety features. Each model has the Lexus Safety System+ (including a Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, All-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, intelligent high-beam headlights, Lane Keep Assist, and Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist). Other standard safety features include a backup camera, 10 airbags, bi-LED headlamps, LED fog lamps, daytime running lights, an electronic parking brake, Vehicle Stability Control, and Lexus Enform Safety Connect.

Audi Q5

While the 2017 Q5 was named a Top Safety Pick+ by the IIHS, it earned just a 4-Star Overall Rating form the NHTSA. It lost points in frontal crash and rollover categories.

While the Q5 does feature driver assistance technology, you’ll need to choose an upper trim or individual options to get it. Standard safety features on the Audi SUV include airbags, Electronic Stability Control, anti-lock brakes, and a tire pressure monitoring system. Available features include auto-dimming mirrors, adaptive cruise control, Audi side assist, and a parking system plus with rearview camera.

Performance and Fuel Economy

Lexus RX 350

Under the hood, the RX 350 features a 3.5-liter V6 engine with an 8-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters, making 295 horsepower and 267 lb-ft of torque. It’s available with all-wheel drive, and features Drive Mode Select so you can adjust performance to optimize for driving conditions.

According to EPA estimates, front-wheel drive models get 20 MPG city and 27 MPG highway, and AWD models get up to 19 MPG city and 26 MPG highway. The RX 350 can use regular unleaded gasoline.

Audi Q5

The 2017 Q5 comes standard with a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 engine that makes 220 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque, and you can upgrade to a 3.0-liter supercharged V6 that makes 272 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque. It’s standard with all-wheel drive and has an 8-speed automatic transmission.

The base Q5 gets up to 20 MPG city and 27 MPG highway and the V6 gets 18 MPG city and 26 MPG highway. One big difference between this and the RX 350 is the Audi’s requirement for premium fuel.

Pricing

Lexus RX 350

Starting at $43,220 MSRP

Audi Q5

Starting at $40,900 MSRP

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Comparison: 2017 Lexus RX 450h vs 2016 Audi Q5 Hybrid

Comparison: 2017 Lexus RX 450h vs 2016 Audi Q5 Hybrid

If you’re on the search for a luxury crossover with a hybrid engine, make sure you look beyond the superficial. Bells, whistles, and attractive styling features abound in the luxury segment, so don’t lose sight of what you want: a safe, comfortable ute that gets great fuel economy.

Los Angeles drivers often ask us the difference between the 2017 Lexus RX 450h and its Audi counterpart, the Q5 Hybrid. These two crossovers are a fair match, but one comes out ahead when you look closely at safety ratings and fuel economy. Read our full comparison to find out:

Engine and Fuel Economy

Lexus RX 450h

The 2017 RX 450h is powered by a 3.5-liter Atkinson-cycle engine combined with an electric motor, shifting power seamlessly between the two with the Lexus Hybrid Drive System. It makes a net 308 horsepower and 247 lb-ft of torque, going from zero to 60 in 7.9 seconds. The model has standard all-wheel drive, and the engine is mated to a continuously variable automatic transmission. According to EPA estimates, the Lexus hybrid crossover gets 31 MPG city, 28 MPG highway, and 30 MPG combined.

Audi Q5 Hybrid

The 2016 Q5 Hybrid has a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-4 engine combined with an electric motor and generator. It makes a combined 245 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque, getting from zero to 60 a little speedier than the Lexus, at 6.8 seconds. However, for Los Angeles drivers who stay mainly in the city, the fuel economy difference may be a deal breaker. The Q5 Hybrid gets an EPA-estimated 24 MPG city and 30 MPG highway.

Safety

Lexus RX 450h

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named the 2017 Lexus RX a Top Safety Pick+ after it earned perfect scores on all crash tests. Additionally, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave it a 5-Star Overall Rating.

The RX comes standard with the Lexus Safety System+, which includes a Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, All-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control, intelligent high-beam headlamps, Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist, and Lane Keep Assist. Additionally, all models feature a backup camera and LED foglamps.

Audi Q5 Hybrid

The 2016 Q5 was also named a Top Safety Pick+ by the IIHS, but the NHSTA gave it just a 4-Star Overall rating. It lost points in tests for frontal crash and rollover.

The 2016 Q5 is also lacking considerably in the driver assistance tech department. While it does come with a rearview camera and available parking assistance, blind spot detection, and adaptive cruise control, it does not come available with a pre-collision braking system or lane keeping assistance.

Pricing

Lexus RX 450h

Starting at $53,035 MSRP

Audi Q5 Hybrid

Starting at $52,500 MSRP