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Used test: Audi A7 vs BMW 5 Series vs Jaguar XF costs

Luxury cars are now more diverse than ever, but can either the sleek Audi A7 Sportback or sharp-to-drive Jaguar XF beat the big-selling BMW 5 Series as a used buy?...

Jaguar XF vs Audi A7 Sportback vs BMW 5 Series

Buying and owning

Costs, equipment, reliability, safety

The first and most obvious difference here is that the 5 Series is cheapest to buy. True, the difference to the XF is only a few hundred quid, but the near-£3700 premium for an A7 of similar age and mileage is harder to stomach. 

Car tax is pretty similar for all, with the A7 being marginally cheaper at £150 annually compared with £165 for both the 5 Series and XF.

Jaguar XF vs Audi A7 Sportback vs BMW 5 Series

All of these cars are suitably well equipped, with sat-nav, Bluetooth, leather upholstery, auto lights and wipers, cruise and climate controls, front and rear parking sensors and heated front seats. However, the 5 Series is the only one that doesn’t get keyless entry and it has smaller alloy wheels than its rivals, although it is alone in having metallic paint as standard. The XF has a reversing camera, but is otherwise eclipsed by the A7, which gets four-zone climate control and full LED headlights and tail-lights.

Reliability shouldn't be a concern if you're driving this 5 Series because it tops the list of luxury cars in the latest What Car? Reliability Survey. The XF wasn't far off in terms of its overall score. However, the Audi A6 (a car that shares many parts with the A7) came out as the worst overall.

Jaguar XF vs Audi A7 Sportback vs BMW 5 Series

The Jaguar XF is the only one to have been crash tested by Euro NCAP under the current, more stringent regime. This means that it benefits from numerous modern safety features, including lane departure warning, automatic emergency braking (below 50mph), and a system that displays the speed limit in front of the driver. The A7 came with the least safety kit as standard, while the 5 Series did get a five star rating in its day.

All three are rated equally highly by Thatcham for resisting break-ins and being stolen.

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