Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2014 BMW 3 Series VS 2014 Volvo S60 Near Scottsdale, AZ

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2014 BMW 3 Series

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VS

2014 Volvo S60

Safety Comparison

The 3 Series Sedan’s optional front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The S60 doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

The 3 Series Sedan has standard BMW Assist, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to remotely unlock your doors if you lock your keys in, help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The S60 doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the 3 Series Sedan and the S60 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding and available all wheel drive.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the BMW 3 Series Sedan is safer than the Volvo S60:

3 Series Sedan

S60

Passenger

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

150

277

Chest Compression

.6 inches

.6 inches

Neck Stress

115 lbs.

119 lbs.

Neck Compression

44 lbs.

62 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the BMW 3 Series Sedan is safer than the Volvo S60:

3 Series Sedan

S60

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Chest Movement

1.1 inches

1.1 inches

Abdominal Force

232 G’s

299 G’s

Hip Force

184 lbs.

419 lbs.

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

326

410

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Hip Force

513 lbs.

682 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty Comparison

The 3 Series Sedan’s corrosion warranty is 2 years and unlimited miles longer than the S60’s (12/unlimited vs. 10/100,000).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the 3 Series Sedan for 1 year and 14,000 miles longer than Volvo pays for maintenance for the S60 (4/50,000 vs. 3/36,000).

Reliability Comparison

To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the 3 Series Sedan has a standard 900 amp battery. The S60’s 520 amp battery isn’t as powerful.

The battery on the 3 Series Sedan is in the trunk, which protects it from hot underhood temperatures which can degrade battery life. By keeping the 3 Series Sedan’s battery 20 to 30 degrees cooler, its life is increased by years. The S60’s battery is in the hot engine compartment.

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without their vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports predicts that the 3 Series Sedan’s reliability will be 63% better than the S60.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2013 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Volvo vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 16th in reliability. With 16 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 24th.

Engine Comparison

The ActiveHybrid 3’s 3.0 turbo 6 cyl. hybrid produces 10 more horsepower (335 vs. 325) than the S60 T6 R-Design’s optional 3.0 turbo 6 cyl.

The 3 Series Sedan’s 2.0 turbo diesel produces 14 lbs.-ft. more torque (280 vs. 266) than the S60 T5’s standard 2.5 turbo 5 cyl.

As tested in Motor Trend the 328i is faster than the S60 T6 (automatics tested):

3 Series Sedan

S60

Zero to 60 MPH

5.5 sec

5.7 sec

Quarter Mile

14.1 sec

14.2 sec

As tested in Motor Trend the 335i is faster than the S60 T6 R-Design (automatics tested):

3 Series Sedan

S60

Zero to 30 MPH

1.5 sec

1.9 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

4.4 sec

5.3 sec

Zero to 80 MPH

7.4 sec

8.6 sec

Passing 45 to 65 MPH

2.3 sec

2.6 sec

Quarter Mile

13 sec

13.8 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

105.4 MPH

101.3 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the ActiveHybrid 3 gets better fuel mileage than the S60 T5:

3 Series Sedan

S60

2WD

Auto

25 city/33 hwy

21 city/30 hwy

AWD

Auto

n/a

20 city/29 hwy

On the EPA test cycle the 328d gets better fuel mileage than the S60 T5:

3 Series Sedan

S60

2WD

Auto

32 city/45 hwy

21 city/30 hwy

AWD

Auto

31 city/43 hwy

20 city/29 hwy

On the EPA test cycle the 3 Series gets better fuel mileage than the S60:

3 Series Sedan

S60

2WD

320i/Manual

23 city/36 hwy

n/a

328i/Manual

22 city/34 hwy

n/a

335i/Manual

20 city/30 hwy

n/a

320i/Auto

24 city/36 hwy

n/a

328i/Auto

23 city/35 hwy

21 city/30 hwy

T5

335i/Auto

22 city/32 hwy

n/a

AWD

335i/Manual

20 city/28 hwy

n/a

320i/Auto

23 city/35 hwy

n/a

328i/Auto

22 city/33 hwy

20 city/29 hwy

T5

335i/Auto

20 city/30 hwy

18 city/25 hwy

T6

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the 3 Series Sedan’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The S60 doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the 3 Series Sedan’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the S60:

320i/328i

335i

S60 T5

S60 T6 R-Design

Front Rotors

12.3 inches

13.4 inches

11.8 inches

13.2 inches

Rear Rotors

11.8 inches

13 inches

11.9 inches

11.9 inches

The 3 Series Sedan’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the S60 are solid, not vented.

The 3 Series Sedan stops much shorter than the S60:

3 Series Sedan

S60

70 to 0 MPH

164 feet

182 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

107 feet

120 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

141 feet

147 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the 3 Series Sedan has larger standard tires than the S60 (225/50R17 vs. 215/50R17).

The 3 Series Sedan’s optional 255/35R19 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the S60’s optional 40 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the 3 Series Sedan offers optional 19-inch wheels. The S60’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the 3 Series Sedan can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. Run-flat tires aren’t available on some tire packages on the S60.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The 3 Series Sedan has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The S60’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the 3 Series Sedan’s wheelbase is 1.3 inches longer than on the S60 (110.6 inches vs. 109.3 inches).

The 3 Series Sedan’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (49.9% to 50.1%) than the S60’s (61.7% to 38.3%). This gives the 3 Series Sedan more stable handling and braking.

The 328i handles at .90 G’s, while the S60 T5 pulls only .85 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The 335i xDrive executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.2 seconds quicker than the S60 T5 (25.6 seconds @ .75 average G’s vs. 26.8 seconds @ .64 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the 3 Series Sedan’s turning circle is tighter than the S60’s:

3 Series Sedan

S60

2WD

37.1 feet

37.1 feet

AWD

37.1 feet

39 feet

Chassis Comparison

The BMW 3 Series Sedan may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs up to about 300 pounds less than the Volvo S60.

As tested by Road & Track, the interior of the 328i is quieter than the S60 T6 AWD:

3 Series Sedan

S60

At idle

39 dB

46 dB

Full-Throttle

70 dB

70 dB

50 MPH Cruising

60 dB

64 dB

70 MPH Cruising

65 dB

66 dB

Passenger Space Comparison

The 3 Series Sedan has 4 cubic feet more passenger volume than the S60 (96 vs. 92).

The 3 Series Sedan has 2 inches more front headroom, .1 inches more front legroom, .3 inches more rear headroom and 1.6 inches more rear legroom than the S60.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The 3 Series Sedan has a larger trunk than the S60 (13 vs. 12 cubic feet).

To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the 3 Series Sedan’s available trunk can be opened just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The S60 doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its trunk, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Ergonomics Comparison

The 3 Series Sedan (except 320i) offers an available heads-up display which projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts onto the windshield, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The S60 doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

If the windows are left down on the 3 Series Sedan w/Comfort Access the driver can raise them all using the key in the outside lock cylinder. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from outside the vehicle using the key in the outside lock cylinder or the keyless remote. The driver of the S60 can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the 3 Series Sedan to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. Heated windshield washer nozzles cost extra on the S60.

A power rear sunshade is optional in the 3 Series Sedan (except 320i) to help block heat and glare for the rear passengers. The S60 doesn’t offer a rear sunshade.

Optional BMW Apps for the 3 Series Sedan allows the driver and passengers access to select programs on their smartphones, including reading text messages aloud, playing internet radio stations, tagging songs to buy them later, following twitter accounts and other connected activities without taking their eyes off the road or their hands from the wheel. The S60 doesn’t offer factory integrated smartphone program access.

The 3 Series Sedan (except 320i)’s optional Parking Assistant can parallel park or back into a parking spot by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The S60 doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Economic Advantages Comparison

The 3 Series Sedan will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The Intellichoice estimates that the 3 Series Sedan will retain 44.99% to 45.66% of its original price after five years, while the S60 only retains 36.96% to 42.62%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the 3 Series Sedan is less expensive to operate than the S60 because it costs $567 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the 3 Series Sedan than the S60, including $73 less for an alternator, $126 less for fuel injection and $328 less for a fuel pump.

Recommendations Comparison

The BMW 3 Series Sedan has won recognition from these important consumer publications:

3 Series Sedan

S60

Consumer Reports® Recommends

Top Pick

TRUE

Car Book “Best Bet”

TRUE

FALSE

Motor Trend performed a comparison test in its September 2013 issue and they ranked the BMW 335i xDrive first. They ranked the Volvo S60 T6 R-Design AWD fifth.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the 3 Series Sedan third among compact premium cars in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The S60 isn’t in the top three.

The 3 Series was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” for 19 of the last 19 years. The S60 has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

The 3 Series was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” for 12 of the last 17 years. The S60 hasn’t been picked since 2011.

The 3 Series was selected by Automobile Magazine as their 2006 Car of the Year. The S60 has never been chosen.

The BMW 3 Series outsold the Volvo S60 by over five to one during 2013.

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