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When shopping for a luxury crossover, the BMW X3 and the Audi Q5 are likely to pop up on your shopping list. The former is known for its engaging driving dynamics while the latter is known for being more “middle of the road” when it comes to driving comfort and performance. I have driven both and recently spent a week in the 2022 X3. I then came up with four reasons that you should pick it over the 2022 Audi Q5.

1. The BMW X3 underwent a mid-cycle refresh for 2022

2022 BMW X3 Front Corner
2022 BMW X3 Front Corner | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

The BMW X3 underwent a mid-cycle refresh for the 2022 model. According to Car and Driver, the notable changes made include new head and taillights, updated front and rear bumpers, new wheel designs, and different exhaust tips. Of course, beauty is the eye of the beholder and while the 2022 Audi Q5 looks great, I personally think the X3 looks more aggressive and a little better.

2. BMW offers free maintenance for the X3 for the first three years or 36,000 miles

2022 Audi Q5 Sportback coupe-style luxury SUV
2022 Audi Q5 Sportback | Audi

It’s no secret that maintaining any German car can get quite expensive and the X3 and Q5 are no exception. However, to help alleviate some of the financial stress on new owners, BMW includes free maintenance on the X3 for the first 3 years or 36,000 miles, whichever comes first. This includes services like oil changes, replacing the cabin filter, air filter, spark plug, and brake fluid.

That’s an exceptionally good deal considering Audi only includes one free 5,000-mile check-up for the Q5. That checkup is basically just a free oil change.

3. The 2022 X3 is more reliable than the Audi Q5

2022 BMW X3 side view
2022 BMW X3 side view | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

One qualm that prospective buyers may have when shopping for either of these cars is how reliable they are. Fortunately, J.D. Power is a credible source when it comes to gauging each car’s reliability. As such, the publication scored the 2022 X3 with an overall reliability rating of 81 out of 100. The 2022 Audi Q5, on the other hand, scored received a score of 63 out of 100.

4. The BMW X3 has more potent engine choices

2022 BMW X3 engine
2022 BMW X3 engine | BMW

The Quiet 2021 BMW X3 Has a Peaceful and Luxurious Interior

While the 2022 Q5 does have a lower starting MSRP of $43,300 (before destination) compared to the BMW’s $43,700 starting price, it also has weaker engine options. The base Q5 comes with a 201-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter engine while the entry-level X3 is equipped with a 248-hp turbo 2.0-liter.

If you need more power, then you can step up to the Q5’s more potent 261-hp version for an extra $2,500. However, the X3’s next step – the X3 M40i – has a larger turbocharged 3.0-liter engine that produces 382 hp. Of course, the Q5 does hold a candle to that racier X3 trim level with its SQ5 variant that produces 369 hp. But that’s where the performance road ends for the Audi.

Any well-heeled luxury crossover buyers can opt for the X3 M, which puts out a staggering 503 hp and can go from 0 to 60 mph in just 3.7 seconds. This max power variant costs over $70,000, but it’s sure to please even the most die-hard performance enthusiasts.

I will say that after driving the X3 XDrive30i around for a week, the car’s steering, handling, and power delivery felt much tighter and more composed than those of the Q5. So, if you like driving the BMW could be for you.