New Audi SQ5 vs Mercedes-AMG GLC 43

The new Audi SQ5 performance SUV gets a twin-turbo V6 petrol engine. Let’s see how it fares against a Mercedes-AMG GLC 43 from the same mould...

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What Car? team
20 October 2016

Behind the wheel

Driving position, visibility, build quality

Both are a few millimetres closer to the ground than the regular large SUVs they’re based on, but not by enough that you’d notice. You still get a penthouse view of the road, along with a typical sit-up-and-beg SUV driving position.

The driver’s seat in each is fully electric, although the SQ5’s is more comfortable on long trips and holds you in place better through the corners. Likewise, the SQ5 has a more user-friendly dashboard. But we’d still recommend forking out for Audi’s Virtual Cockpit (£250); this replaces the instrument dials behind the steering wheel with a 12.3in screen that can be configured to display sat-nav maps and other important information.

New Audi SQ5 vs Mercedes-AMG GLC 43

Interior quality is where the SQ5 stands out, though. Everything you touch feels rock solid and built to last, and the switches, buttons and dials click like an expensive Swiss watch. The GLC’s interior looks smart enough, but it’s disappointing to hear creaks when you prod the interior panels, and some of the dashboard buttons feel comparatively lightweight.