Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2015 BMW 7 SERIES VS 2015 Mercedes S-Class Near Phoenix, AZ

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2015 Mercedes S-Class

Safety Comparison

When descending a steep, off-road slope, the 7 Series xDrive’s standard Hill Descent Control allows you to creep down safely. The S-Class doesn’t offer Hill Descent Control.

Both the 7 Series and the S-Class have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors, available crash mitigating brakes, night vision systems, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and around view monitors.

Warranty Comparison

The 7 Series’ corrosion warranty is 8 years and unlimited miles longer than the S-Class’ (12/unlimited vs. 4/50,000).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the 7 Series for 4 years and 50,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Mercedes doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the S-Class.

There are over 12 percent more BMW dealers than there are Mercedes dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the 7 Series’ warranty.

Reliability Comparison

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 7 Series’ reliability will be 110% better than the S-Class.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2014 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that BMW vehicles are better in initial quality than Mercedes vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 8th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 7 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 13th.

Engine Comparison

As tested in Car and Driver the Alpina B7 is faster than the S600:

7 Series


Zero to 60 MPH

3.7 sec

4.7 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

8.8 sec

10.6 sec

5 to 60 MPH Rolling Start

4.9 sec

5.1 sec

Quarter Mile

12.1 sec

13.1 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

116 MPH

112 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the ActiveHybrid 7 gets better fuel mileage than the S550 RWD (22 city/30 hwy vs. 17 city/26 hwy).

On the EPA test cycle the 740Ld gets better fuel mileage than the S550 4Matic (23 city/31 hwy vs. 17 city/26 hwy).

On the EPA test cycle the Alpina B7 xDrive gets better fuel mileage than the S63 AMG (16 city/24 hwy vs. 15 city/23 hwy).

Regenerative brakes improve the 7 Series’ fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The S-Class doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

The 7 Series stops much shorter than the S-Class:

7 Series


70 to 0 MPH

155 feet

171 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

104 feet

119 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels Comparison

The Alpina B7’s 245/35R21 front and 285/30R21 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series front and 30 series rear profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the S-Class’ optional 40 series front and 35 series rear tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Alpina B7 has standard 21-inch wheels. The S-Class’ largest wheels are only 20-inches.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the 7 Series 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 S-Class.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The 7 Series offers active sway bars, which help keep it flat and controlled during cornering, but disconnect at lower speeds to smooth the ride and offer greater off-road suspension articulation. This helps keep the tires glued to the road on-road and off. The S-Class doesn’t offer an active sway bar system.

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the 7 Series is .4 inches wider in the front and 1.8 inches wider in the rear than on the S-Class.

The 740i handles at .91 G’s, while the S550 pulls only .83 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The 740i executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the S550 (25.8 seconds @ .73 average G’s vs. 26.5 seconds @ .7 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the 7 Series SWB’s turning circle is .4 feet tighter than the S65 AMG’s (40 feet vs. 40.4 feet).

Chassis Comparison

The BMW 7 Series may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs up to about 300 pounds less than the Mercedes S-Class.

The 7 Series SWB is 6.5 inches shorter than the S-Class, making the 7 Series easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space Comparison

The 7 Series LWB has 3 cubic feet more passenger volume than the S-Class (115 vs. 112).

Ergonomics Comparison

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The 7 Series has standard headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The S-Class doesn’t offer headlight washers.

Economic Advantages Comparison

Insurance will cost less for the 7 Series owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the 7 Series will cost $2840 less than the S-Class over a five-year period.

Intellichoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the BMW 7 Series will be $21889 to $80212 less than for the Mercedes S-Class.

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