Targeting respiration and ATP synthesis has received strong interest as a new strategy for combatting drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Mycobacteria employ a respiratory chain terminating with two branches. One of the branches includes a cytochrome bc 1 complex and an aa 3 -type cytochrome c oxidase while the other branch terminates with a cytochrome bd-type quinol oxidase. In this communication we show that genetic inactivation of cytochrome bd, but not of cytochrome bc 1, enhances the susceptibility of Mycobacterium smegmatis to hydrogen peroxide and antibiotic-induced stress. The type-II NADH dehydrogenase effector clofazimine and the ATP synthase inhibitor bedaquiline were bacteriostatic against wild-type M. smegmatis, but strongly bactericidal against a cytochrome bd mutant. We also demonstrated that the quinone-analog aurachin D inhibited mycobacterial cytochrome bd at sub-micromolar concentrations. Our results identify cytochrome bd as a key survival factor in M. smegmatis during antibiotic stress. Targeting the cytochrome bd respiratory branch therefore appears to be a promising strategy that may enhance the bactericidal activity of existing tuberculosis drugs.