Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2016 Audi RS 7 VS 2016 BMW M5 Near Phoenix, AZ

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2016 Audi RS 7

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VS

2016 BMW M5

Safety Comparison

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For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Audi RS 7 have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The BMW M5 doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

The RS 7’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The M5 doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Audi RS 7 are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW M5 doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

Both the RS 7 and M5 have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The RS 7 has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The M5’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.

The RS 7 has a standard Secondary Collision Brake Assist, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The M5 doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

The RS 7 has all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The M5 doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

Both the RS 7 and the M5 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available crash mitigating brakes, night vision systems and lane departure warning systems.

Reliability Comparison

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J.D. Power and Associates’ 2015 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Audi vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 14th in reliability, above the industry average. With 8 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 18th.

Engine Comparison

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The RS 7’s standard 4.0 turbo V8 produces 16 lbs.-ft. more torque (516 vs. 500) than the M5’s standard 4.4 turbo V8. The RS 7’s 4.0 turbo V8 produces 16 lbs.-ft. more torque (516 vs. 500) than the M5’s optional 4.4 turbo V8. The RS 7 Performance’s standard 4.0 turbo V8 produces 30 more horsepower (605 vs. 575) and 53 lbs.-ft. more torque (553 vs. 500) than the M5’s optional 4.4 turbo V8.

As tested in Motor Trend the Audi RS 7 4.0 is faster than the BMW M5 (automatics tested):

RS 7

M5

M5

Zero to 30 MPH

1.3 sec

1.6 sec

n/a

Zero to 60 MPH

3.2 sec

4 sec

3.7 sec

Zero to 80 MPH

5.3 sec

6.5 sec

n/a

Zero to 100 MPH

8 sec

9.5 sec

n/a

Passing 45 to 65 MPH

1.7 sec

1.8 sec

n/a

Quarter Mile

11.6 sec

12.4 sec

11.9 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

120.4 MPH

114.2 MPH

122.2 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

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An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the RS 7’s fuel efficiency. The M5 doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

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For better stopping power the RS 7 Performance’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the M5:

RS 7 Performance

M5

M6 Carbon Brakes

Front Rotors

16.5 inches

15.7 inches

16.1 inches

The RS 7 stops much shorter than the M5:

RS 7

M5

80 to 0 MPH

192 feet

209 feet

Road & Track

60 to 0 MPH

111 feet

122 feet

Road & Track

Tires and Wheels Comparison

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For better traction, the RS 7 has larger tires than the M5 (275/35R20 vs. 265/40R19).

The RS 7’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the M5’s standard 40 series front tires. The RS 7’s optional tires have a lower 30 series profile than the M5’s optional 35 series front tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the RS 7 has standard 20-inch wheels. Smaller 19-inch wheels are standard on the M5. The RS 7’s optional 21-inch wheels are larger than the 20-inch wheels optional on the M5.

The RS 7 has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the M5, it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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The front and rear suspension of the RS 7 uses air springs for a smoother, controlled ride than the M5, which uses coil springs. Air springs maintain proper ride height and ride more smoothly.

The RS 7 has a standard automatic front and rear load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The RS 7’s height leveling suspension allows the driver to raise ride height for better off-road clearance and then lower it again for easier entering and exiting and better on-road handling. The M5 doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the RS 7 is .2 inches wider in the front and 1.7 inches wider in the rear than on the M5.

The RS 7 handles at .93 G’s, while the M5 pulls only .92 G’s of cornering force in a Road & Track skidpad test.

The RS 7 executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1 seconds quicker than the M5 (24.2 seconds @ .83 average G’s vs. 25.2 seconds @ .78 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the RS 7’s turning circle is 1.7 feet tighter than the M5’s (39 feet vs. 40.7 feet).

Chassis Comparison

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To almost totally eliminate engine vibration in the passenger area, the RS 7 has an electronically controlled liquid-filled engine mounts. A computer controlled electric current in the liquid changes its viscosity, allowing the mount to dampen the engine completely at all RPMs. The M5 uses conventional solid rubber engine mounts.

The design of the Audi RS 7 amounts to more than styling. The RS 7 has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .3 Cd. That is lower than the M5 (.33) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the RS 7 get better fuel mileage.

Passenger Space Comparison

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Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the RS 7 is rated a Large car by the EPA, while the M5 is rated a Mid-size.

Ergonomics Comparison

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To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the RS 7 has standard extendable sun visors. The M5 doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Economic Advantages Comparison

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The RS 7 will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The Intellichoice estimates that the RS 7 will retain 45.61% of its original price after five years, while the M5 only retains 41.98%.

Recommendations Comparison

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The RS 7 was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” for 3 of the last 4 years. The M5 has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

The RS 7 was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” in 2014. The M5 hasn’t been picked since 2006.

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