Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2017 BMW 6 SERIES VS 2017 Mercedes SL-Class Near Scottsdale, AZ

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2017 BMW 6 SERIES

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VS

2017 Mercedes SL-Class

Safety Comparison

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The 6 Series offers all-wheel drive to maximize traction under poor conditions, especially in ice and snow. The SL-Class doesn’t offer all-wheel drive.

The 6 Series offers an optional Surround View to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The SL-Class only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

Both the 6 Series and the SL-Class have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, front and rear parking sensors, available crash mitigating brakes, night vision systems, lane departure warning systems and blind spot warning systems.

Warranty Comparison

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The 6 Series’ corrosion warranty is 8 years and unlimited miles longer than the SL-Class’ (12/unlimited vs. 4/50,000).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the 6 Series for 3 years and 36,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Mercedes doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the SL-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 6 Series’ warranty.

Reliability Comparison

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J.D. Power and Associates’ 2016 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 fifth in initial quality, above the industry average. With 17 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 15th, below the industry average.

Engine Comparison

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As tested in Motor Trend the M6 is faster than the SL550 (automatics tested):

6 Series

SL-Class

Zero to 60 MPH

3.9 sec

4.1 sec

Quarter Mile

12.3 sec

12.5 sec

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

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On the EPA test cycle the 640i Convertible RWD gets better fuel mileage than the SL450 (20 city/29 hwy vs. 20 city/28 hwy).

Regenerative brakes improve the 6 Series’ fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The SL-Class doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

The 6 Series M6’s standard fuel tank has 1.3 gallons more fuel capacity than the SL-Class (21.1 vs. 19.8 gallons).

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

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For better stopping power the M6 Carbon Brakes’ brake rotors are larger than those on the SL-Class:

M6 Carbon Brakes

SL450/550

SL63/SL65

Front Rotors

16.1 inches

14.2 inches

15.8 inches

Rear Rotors

15.6 inches

12.6 inches

14.2 inches

The 6 Series stops shorter than the SL-Class:

6 Series

SL-Class

60 to 0 MPH

105 feet

109 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels Comparison

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For better traction, the M6’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the SL-Class (F:265/40R19 & R:295/35R19 vs. F:255/35R19 & R:285/30R19).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the 6 Series offers optional 20-inch wheels. The SL-Class’ largest wheels are only 19-inches in the front and 20-inches in the rear.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the 6 Series can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The SL-Class doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the M6’s wheelbase is 10.4 inches longer than on the SL-Class (112.2 inches vs. 101.8 inches).

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the 6 Series is .3 inches wider in the front and 1.5 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the SL-Class.

The M6 Convertible handles at .98 G’s, while the SL550 pulls only .94 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The M6 Convertible executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.1 seconds quicker than the SL550 (24.6 seconds @ .85 average G’s vs. 25.7 seconds @ .78 average G’s).

Chassis Comparison

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As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the 640i Convertible is quieter than the SL63 AMG:

6 Series

SL-Class

At idle

40 dB

49 dB

Full-Throttle

73 dB

83 dB

70 MPH Cruising

68 dB

68 dB

Passenger Space Comparison

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The 6 Series has standard seating for 4 passengers; the SL-Class can only carry 2.

The 6 Series Convertible has 37.5 cubic feet more passenger volume than the SL-Class (88 vs. 50.5).

Cargo Capacity Comparison

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The 6 Series Convertible has a much larger trunk with its top down than the SL-Class with its top down (10.6 vs. 8.5 cubic feet).

Ergonomics Comparison

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The 6 Series offers an optional heads-up display which projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The SL-Class doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

On extremely cold Winter days, the 6 Series’ optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The SL-Class doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

Economic Advantages Comparison

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Intellichoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the BMW 6 Series will be $10349 to $91623 less than for the Mercedes SL-Class.

Recommendations Comparison

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Motor Trend performed a comparison test in its October 2012 issue and they ranked the BMW 650i Convertible higher than the Mercedes SL550.

The BMW 6 Series outsold the Mercedes SL-Class by over two to one during 2015.

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