In my subjective tests, without measurements, Safari 5 seems a good bit faster than the previous version of the browser. It seems at least as fast as the recently released Chrome 5 browser for Mac. The real difference for me is that Chrome offers more customization. There are a lot of themes and extensions available for Chrome. Safari 5 does now support extensions however there are only a few available right now. The website that hosted a few extensions yesterday seems to be down now.
John H. Armwood