Audi A8 vs. BMW 7-Series

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Automotive Editor

Justin Cupler has specialized as an automotive writer since 2009 and has been published in multiple websites and online magazines. In addition to contributing to CarsDirect, Justin also hosts a web-series car-review show and dabbles in the world of personal-finance writing.

His specialty is in the high-performance realm, but he has a deep love and understanding for all things automotive. Before diving into the world of writing, Justin was an automotive technician and manager for six years and spent the majority of his younger life tinkering with classic muscle cars.

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, Automotive Editor - October 11, 2018

Audi has steadily made strides to knock BMW and Mercedes-Benz off their platforms atop the luxury-car space. The all-new Audi A8 makes a great case against its competitors, including the iconic BMW 7-Series. Has Audi done enough to push the new A8 past the BMW 7-Series lineup? Keep reading to find out.

See a side-by-side comparison of the A8 & 7-Series »

What the A8 Gets Right

The 2019 Audi A8 rolls in with a brand-new design language that retains the classic, timeless shape the brand is known for while injecting a modern touch. This new look includes a larger Audi Singleframe grill, wider and thinner headlights, all-new LED headlights, and much more. Like all previous Audi designs, this look should remain relevant for many years.

The A8 boasts a new 3.0-liter turbocharged V6 engine that pushes 335 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque into the quattro all-wheel-drive system. This gives it a distinct advantage in power and traction, but the extra heft makes its sprint time to a few tenths of a second slower than the base BMW 740i. In the future, we’ll see a 449-hp A8 model that pairs a 4.0-liter V8 engine to a mild hybrid system to battle the 740e, but the jury is still out on performance numbers.

The A8’s 48-volt electrical system allows for an advanced fully active suspension system, giving this big sedan a delicate balance of handling and comfort. Speaking of comfort, the Audi A8 comes loaded with standard features to satisfy even the pickiest buyers, including the 12.3-inch Audi Virtual Cockpit, MMI navigation, a 16-speaker Bang & Olufsen 3D Premium Sound System, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, four-zone automatic climate control, a panoramic sunroof, ambient LED lighting, Valetta leather seats with heat and 18-way power adjustment, and much more.

What the 7-Series Gets Right

The 7-Series looks sharp and matches the Audi’s roominess on the inside. It also beats the A8’s luggage capacity by two cubic feet. On top of that, many buyers will feel better riding in a BMW than an Audi – brand cachet may not be important to all buyers, but it's a consideration for some.

The 7-Series also boasts higher-performing variants than the A8, including its 601-hp M760i and Alpina B7 that hit 60 mph in 3.6 seconds. Plus, with its standard rear-wheel drive, the BMW 7-Series feels more like a traditional luxury sedan than the all-wheel-drive-only A8. For those who prefer power at all four wheels, every 7-Series variant has available xDrive all-wheel drive.

Pure Performance Still Goes to Bimmer

While its competitors have gotten better in luxury and comfort, BMW still holds the performance title in the luxury segment. This rings true when comparing the A8 to the 7-Series as the latter reaches performance levels the Audi can’t touch.

Verdict: Audi A8

The Audi A8 is the latest and greatest in the luxury segment. It boasts the freshest looks, all the newest technology, and all the luxury any buyer could ever want. Add in respectable performance and a competitive price, and the Audi A8 is a clear winner when going head to head against the BMW 7-Series.

Take a closer look at the Audi A8 »

Take a closer look at the BMW 7-Series »

Side-by-side comparison of features, pricing, photos and more!

, Automotive Editor

Justin Cupler has specialized as an automotive writer since 2009 and has been published in multiple websites and online magazines. In addition to contributing to CarsDirect, Justin also hosts a web-series car-review show and dabbles in the world of personal-finance writing.

His specialty is in the high-performance realm, but he has a deep love and understanding for all things automotive. Before diving into the world of writing, Justin was an automotive technician and manager for six years and spent the majority of his younger life tinkering with classic muscle cars.

Follow On: Twitter

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