BMW vs. Audi Reliability: A Detailed Comparison

BMW vs Audi Reliability

Are you trying to choose a new car and you are stuck between choosing between BMW and Audi? BMW and Audis are classified as luxury cars with German origins, and they match an impressive standard of excellence, speed, and performance.

However, when it comes to reliability, Audis are as reliable as BMW!

Both cars offer similar warranty periods and are expensive to maintain. Audi, however, changes the story by offering improved features on vehicle dependability.

This includes better overall safety, improved performance, better designs, lower maintenance cost, and a higher reliability rating than BMW. Meanwhile, BMWs offer better engines, and more durability, with cars optimized for drive experience.

It is hard to place one of these brands above the other, as they perform greatly in different categories.

Here's all you need to know about BMW vs Audi reliability and why we believe none is better than the other.

BMW vs. Audi Reliability: Detailed Comparison

Sporty; Performance and Handling - Optimizes Drive Experience
Interior Comfort and Ergonomics - Optimizes Drive Quality
Gas Mileage
BMWs last up to 200,000 to 250,000 miles, with an average lifespan of at least 15 years.
An Audi can last up to 150,000 to 200,000 miles; some may even last over 200,000 miles, with an average life span of 10 to 15 years.
Repair and Maintenance Cost

BMW vs. Audi Reliability: Which is better?

Deciding between BMW and Audi’s reliability which is better, is not an easy feat. BMW is more reliable when it comes to matching the demands of a luxury car, smooth rides, handling, performance, and sporty drive experience.

Audi does better by offering reliable technology, traction, great interiors, and amazing infotainment.

The disparity in these brands is noticeable in their different categories and models. For instance, BMW has more reliable small, midsize, and large luxury cars, while Audi offers better Luxury sports cars and Luxury Hybrid and electric vehicles.

The reliability ratings for these car brands vary across different platforms. RepairPal gives Audi a reliability rating of 3.0 out of 5.0, taking the 28th position out of 32 car brands. This is higher than BMW, which has a 2.5 out of 5.0 rating, ranking 30th out of 32 car brands.

On the other hand, BMW has a better reliability rating on the Reliability Index. Audi is ranked 34th out of 40 car brands; this is against BMW, which is ranked 31st on the reliability rating.

We can’t make conclusions from the contradictory reports of survey forums. From my experience driving both cars, I believe the difference in reliability lies in the individual models of both cars.

BMWs were doing well with their Inline six engines until they decided to try out V8, N20, N54 and N63 engines.

On an overall scale, BMWs are optimized for the sheer pleasure of driving while Audi takes into consideration comfort, technology and driving dynamics.

However, the high maintenance cost places both car brands on a tie. While BMW boasts of its Inline six engines, Audi has the Quattro technology to its rescue.

It all depends on your preferences and what features you are interested in.

BMW vs. Audi Reliability: Design

Audi offers better Designs than BMW. BMW is just concerned about matching the appeal of its users. This leads it to produce majorly sporty cars. These cars are usually bold and muscular, with an attractive exterior. But a good car design goes beyond “fancy rides.”

Audi leads a design philosophy that optimizes aesthetic intelligence, merging innovative and progressive design to create reliable customer designs. Audi designs place more emphasis on comfort and ergonomics.

The cabin design, seat fittings and structure, infotainment, and Audi integrate cutting-edge technology to make designs that users don’t just love but feel safe and comfortable in.

BMW’s designs are modern, not plain, but too mechanical. Although BMW is improving in its design strategies, as seen in the BMW 7 and X3 series. However, the Audi A series, R8, Q3, A5, and TT are leading cars in interior design.

Winner: Audi

BMW vs. Audi Reliability: Safety

BMW and Audi cars have high safety ratings, but Audi does better with safety than BMW.

We understand that the BMW active driving assistant and Audi’s Pre-Sense suite offer similar safety supports like forward collision avoidance, cruise control, parking assist, lane departure warning, emergency braking, hill assist, and blind spot monitoring.

BMW and Audi do not have any pending cases or alarming issues threatening users’ safety.

Many BMW cars have earned the top safety pick award, just as Audi has. However, Audi has more cars with the IIHS top safety pick award than BMW. Audi has 10 vehicles that earned the Top Safety Pick + award, while BMW doesn’t have any.

There are 14 Audi cars on the IIHS safety ratings, with 4 on the top safety pick rating. But, BMW has only three top safety pick cars.

Winner: Audi

BMW vs. Audi Reliability: Engine

BMWs have better engines than Audi. Although Audis have the Quattro technology to boast of, BMWs performance is unmatchable. The BMW engine offers more performance and extreme durability.

However, Audis has improved in the last few years on its engine performance, but BMWs are still taking the lead with their inline 6 engines. BMW seemed to get stuck with this engine, replicating its use in most models.

Winner: BMW

BMW vs. Audi Reliability: Repair and Maintenance Cost

There aren’t many noticeable differences in the repair and maintenance costs of Audis and BMWs.

If you are looking at buying a car brand with cheaper repair and maintenance costs, then BMWs and Audis shouldn’t be on your list. It would be best to look at how frequently these cars will break down.

Audi has an average annual repair and maintenance cost of $987, while BMW has an average annual repair and maintenance cost of $968.

While this looks like a win for BMW, they also have a 15% probability of severe damage and a 0.9 chance of visiting the repairman. Audis have a 13% probability of a severe breakdown and a 0.8 chance of visiting the mechanic.

Audis offer longer warranty periods than BMWs; 4 years/50,000 miles new vehicle, 2 years/unlimited miles limited pre-owned warranty, 12 years corrosion warranty, and 4 years/unlimited miles roadside assistance.

This is better than BMW, which offers a standard two-year contract, a three-year new vehicle warranty, and 12 years unlimited corrosion warranty. Users can rely on the warranty period before the real maintenance costs.

Winner: Both

BMW vs. Audi Reliability: Gas Mileage

In terms of fuel economy and gas Mileage, there isn’t much difference between Audi and BMW. Both car brands deliver impressive fuel efficiency across their different models.

The differences in gas mileage between Audi and BMWs boil down to the engines used for each car. Audis and BMWs also offer plug-in hybrid, electric, and energy-efficient models.

Winner: Both

BMW vs. Audi Reliability: Technology

BMW matches Audi on a head-to-head comparison of their technology packages. You must understand that BMW optimizes its cars to achieve a drive experience and a sporty feel, while Audi optimizes drive quality.

These car brands integrate technologies that help them match their goals. The BMW technology package covers a heads-up display, enhanced wireless and Bluetooth technology, supports for wireless charging, etc. While Audi integrates the navigation plus system and connects prime.

BMW lacks Audi virtual cockpit technology. However, they make up for this with the iDrive system.

Winner: Both

BMW vs. Audi Reliability: Durability

The durability margins for BMWs and Audis are too slim that we find it difficult to find a winner in this category. Both cars are less reliable on a long-term scale, with a high cost of ownership. However, we noticed that there are more old BMW cars on the streets than Audis.

BMW has a longer lifespan than Audis. BMWs last up to 200,000 to 250,000 miles, with an average lifespan of at least 15 years. Audis last up to 150,000 to 200,000 miles, with an average life span of 10 to 15 years.

Winner: BMW


Which is better, Audi or BMW? With advanced infotainment, sophisticated technology and components, sporty designs, and a cool driving experience, the similarities between these two big car brands are so close that it is difficult to spot the differences.

However, your choice between BMW and Audi should boil down to your personal preference.

Do you want a car that will give you the sheer joy of driving, packed up with performance and driving experience? Choose BMW. But if you prefer comfort and amazing interior design, with emphasis on driver dynamics, ergonomics, and drive quality, choose Audi.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do people choose Audi?

There are quite a lot of reasons why people choose Audis. But we believe that it seems everyone wants an Audi because of the comfort and technology packages they offer. This includes prestige, luxurious standards, sleek looks, and a premium feel.

What’s so special about a BMW?

The feeling attached to owning a BMW, the amazing drive experience from their all-wheel drive systems, the turbo performance and handling. BMW’s engine, steering, and handling are part of the things that make it stand out amongst competitors.