Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2013 Audi S5 VS 2013 BMW M3 Near Scottsdale, AZ

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2013 Audi S5

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VS

2013 BMW M3

Safety Comparison

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For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Audi S5 have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The BMW M3 doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

The S5 has a standard Audi Backguard System, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Audi Backguard System moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The M3 doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The S5 Prestige offers an optional collision warning system, which detects an impending crash through forward mounted sensors and flashes a bright light and sounds a loud, distinctive tone to warn the driver to brake or maneuver immediately to avoid a collision. The system also pre-charges the brakes to begin deceleration more quickly. The M3 doesn't offer a collision warning system.

The S5 has all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The M3 doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

The S5 Prestige’s blind spot warning system uses digital cameras monitored by computer to alert the driver to moving objects in the vehicle’s blind spots where the side view mirrors don’t reveal them. The M3 doesn’t offer a system to reveal objects in the driver’s blind spots.

Both the S5 and the M3 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control and electronic stability systems to prevent skidding.

Reliability Comparison

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The M3’s redline is at 8400 RPM, which causes more engine wear, and a greater chance of a catastrophic engine failure. The S5 has a 7000 RPM redline.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2012 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Audi vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Audi 15th in reliability. With 6 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 20th.

Engine Comparison

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The S5’s 3.0 supercharged V6 produces 30 lbs.-ft. more torque (325 vs. 295) than the M3’s 4.0 DOHC V8.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

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The S5 stops shorter than the M3:

S5

M3

80 to 0 MPH

204 feet

205 feet

Road & Track

70 to 0 MPH

158 feet

163 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

105 feet

110 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels Comparison

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For better traction, the S5 has larger standard tires than the M3 (245/40R18 vs. 235/35R19). The S5’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the M3 (255/35R19 vs. 245/40R18).

The S5 has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the M3, it requires you to depend on roadside assistance and your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the S5 is 2 inches wider in the front and 1.5 inches wider in the rear than on the M3.

For better maneuverability, the S5’s turning circle is 1 foot tighter than the M3’s (37.4 feet vs. 38.4 feet).

Cargo Capacity Comparison

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The S5 Coupe has a much larger trunk than the M3 Coupe (12.4 vs. 11.1 cubic feet).

The S5 Cabriolet has a much larger trunk with its top down than the M3 Convertible with its top down (10.2 vs. 7.4 cubic feet).

The S5’s standard folding rear seats are split to accommodate bulky cargo. The M3 Convertible’s standard single piece folding rear seat is not as flexible; long cargo and a passenger can’t share the rear seat.

Ergonomics Comparison

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The M3’s power locks don’t automatically lock the doors. The S5’s standard power locks automatically lock the doors when a certain speed is reached. This is an important feature for occupant safety. Locked doors are proven to open less often in collisions, and they are also effective in preventing crime at traffic lights. (The power lock’s automatic feature may have to be activated by your dealer.)

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the S5 has standard extendable sun visors. The M3 doesn’t offer extendable visors.

The S5 Cabriolet’s optional air conditioned front seats cool the driver and front passenger and help take the sting out of hot leather in Summer. The M3 doesn’t offer air conditioned front seats.

Economic Advantages Comparison

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Insurance will cost less for the S5 owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the S5 will cost $1105 to $3120 less than the M3 over a five-year period.

The S5 will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. Kiplinger’s estimates that the S5 will retain a greater percentage of its original price after two and four years than the M3.

S5

M3

Four Year

39%

37%

Two Year

58%

54% to 55%

Intellichoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Audi S5 will be $10092 to $19766 less than for the BMW M3.

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