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Audi Q7, Buick Enclave, Mercedes GL or BMW X5?
Which is better for a family? Which rides better and gets better gas mileage? Which is the quietest? Which offers better insurance rates? Which offers long term reliability? Which looks the best? Which is the best value? Who has driven any of these and can offer their opinion?


Best Answer -

Let me begin by answering your questions in the order you asked and then summarize the findings based on our reviews and consumer reports of customer satisfaction, reliability and usefulness. All models are six cylinder with the exception of the Mercedes which is a 4.6L V8.

Q. Which is better for a family?
A. Buick Enclave. It offers the most passenger space, cargo room and practical space for moving large objects like furniture, baby cribs and 4x4 plywood sheets. The third row folds with ease. The second closely placed vehicle would be the Mercedes, followed by the Audi and then BMW which is the least practical of all SUV's but one of the most sporty.
Score out of 100--Buick 97, Mercedes 96, Audi 90, BMW 77.

Q. Which rides better and gets better gas mileage?
A. The Buick Enclave for both questions. Although the EPA mileage for the BMW is 17/23, real world figures put it in around 13/19 while the Buick is rated at 16/22 and real world figures put it in at 16/24. The least efficient at 14/19 is the heavy weight Audi which real world figures place it at 12/17.
Buick 89, Mercedes 87, BMW 81, Audi 73.

The ride of the Buick is smooth yet well planted. When I was invited to join a group to test drive these models (including the Acura MDX, Lincoln MKX and Lexus RX350) most found the Buick to be the most surprising- we expected the least yet found it to be the best out of all in ride quality and sound. They managed to make it sporty yet smooth unlike the BMW which is only sporty and makes the ride stiff and not well suited for a family. Buick 96, Mercedes 91, Audi 90, BMW 68

Q. Which is the quietest?
A. Buick Enclave by far, at 66 decibls. The next closest is the Mercedes at 71. The Mercedes also tended to have wind noise and the wide tires on the BMW make road roar abundant. Buick 98, Mercedes 92, Audi 88, BMW 87

Q. Which offers the best insurance rates?
A. Buick Enclave. It has the lowest parts cost and least likely to be stolen. It also rated 5 star in crash tests with the Audi Q7. The MB and BMW came in fair but suffered the most damage. Buick 88, Audi 86, Mercedes 83, BMW 79

Q. Which offers long term reliability?
A. That is a toss up. BMW has been having many electrical problems as of late. Audi has been having electrical problems as well but also transmission problems. Mercedes has all of those issues. Buick placed 2nd place behind Lexus in a recent qulaity test. Buick 90, Mercedes 90, Audi 88, BMW 72

Q. Which looks the best?
A. That is purely opinion. The Audi is a stunner. Beautiful from every angle. The Buick is not bad looking but tends to look large and ungainly. The BMW also looks great and sporty but has poor utility design. The Mercedes just looks plain boring and old already. I would say the Audi by far wins this test. Audi 99, BMW 96, Buick 91, Mercedes 77

Q. Which is the best value?
A. The MB will hold the highest resale value followed by BMW, Buick and Audi respectively. However, the cost of ownership for the Europeans is very high. Expect to pay $72k-$94k over the course of 5 years of ownership for the European models while the Buick will run
$58k including depreciation, insurance and gas. Saving $10-$30k is a big factor to consider.

After driving these vehicles all side by side, my choice for this type of vehicle is the Buick Enclave although I would expand that to include the Acura MDX. People buy these vehicles for what they are- family haulers. The BMW fails miserably in utility but makes up in sport. The Audi is a great all around performer but tends to get pooky around corners as it weighs as much as 3 Mini Coopers and cost of repairs is very high. Also the rear seat is uncomfortable and the V6 feels underpowered. The Buick also has the best warranty and if you can get past the old man image is the best deal here. The Acura is a strong contender and would place a tie with the Buick. Test drive them all and see for yourself.

http://answers.yahoo.com/question/?qid=20071030100740AA0T9Ih
 

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Interesting take.

Being more of a Mercedes person than most, I would differ a little by saying the Mercedes GL320 CDI, which is the diesel version, gets 18/24 mpg which would in real life be a bit better than Enclave, but not enough to justify this as the reason for choosing one over the other.

The styling of most Mercedes is timeless and does not grow old, so I would disagree with the writer. The ride and handling of the Mercedes is a bit better than the Enclave - we test drove both, the Mercedes feeling vault solid, while the Enclave a little smoother and car-like.

For $20,000 more than our Enclave, we could have bought the Mercedes with a little less room, slightly fewer features, better resale value, and probably better build quality in the details such as door action, sunroof function, computer/stereo/climate control function (not by much) etc. and a vehicle that in the long run would sell for $5,000-10,000 more than the Enclave used.

But we liked the local dealer and the lower initial cost, so here we are with GM after a long hiatus.

TM
 

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WOW, it's tough to beat this review. So much for all reviews having a foriegn bias. The more reviews like this, the more our enclaves retain resale. I for one am glad GM seems to be keeping the supply behind the demand as this also retains value. Heck, I might trade my 08 for an 09 at this rate :cheers: :cheers: Go Yahoo
 

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bsox said:
I for one am glad GM seems to be keeping the supply behind the demand as this also retains value. Heck, I might trade my 08 for an 09 at this rate :cheers: :cheers: Go Yahoo
Hey bro, Im with you here! It took me alot of work to get mine but I'll have it Friday. At this rate, if I'm happy with it, and the 09 has better performance, etc. then I may fork it over myself.
 
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