Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2017 BMW X3 VS 2017 Mercedes GLE Near Scottsdale, AZ

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2017 BMW X3

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VS

2017 Mercedes GLE

Safety Comparison

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Both the X3 and the GLE 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, available all wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and around view monitors.

Warranty Comparison

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The X3’s corrosion warranty is 8 years and unlimited miles longer than the GLE’s (12/unlimited vs. 4/50,000).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the X3 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 GLE.

There are over 12 percent more BMW dealers than there are Mercedes dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the X3’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

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J.D. Power and Associates rated the X3 third among compact premium SUVs in their 2016 Initial Quality Study. The GLE isn’t in the top three in its category.

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.

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

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On the EPA test cycle the X3 xDrive28i gets better fuel mileage than the GLE550e running its gasoline engine (21 city/28 hwy vs. 18 city/22 hwy).

On the EPA test cycle the X3 gets better fuel mileage than the GLE:

 

 

X3

GLE

 

2WD

sDrive28i/Auto

21 city/28 hwy

18 city/23 hwy

350/Auto

4WD

xDrive28i/Auto

21 city/28 hwy

18 city/22 hwy

350/Auto

 

xDrive35i/Auto

19 city/26 hwy

18 city/23 hwy

400/Auto

Regardless of its engine, regenerative brakes improve the X3’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. Mercedes only offers a regenerative brake system on the GLE Hybrid.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

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The X3’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs standard on the GLE350 are solid, not vented.

The X3 stops much shorter than the GLE:

 

X3

GLE

 

60 to 0 MPH

114 feet

130 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels Comparison

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The X3’s optional 245/40R20 front and 275/35R20 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series front and 35 series rear profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the GLE’s optional 45 series tires.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the X3 can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The GLE doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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The X3 xDrive28i xDrive handles at .82 G’s, while the GLE550e 4MATIC pulls only .71 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The X3 xDrive28i xDrive executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 2.9 seconds quicker than the GLE550e 4MATIC (26.9 seconds @ .77 average G’s vs. 29.8 seconds @ .57 average G’s).

Chassis Comparison

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The BMW X3 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 600 to 1250 pounds less than the Mercedes GLE.

The X3 is 5.5 inches shorter than the GLE, making the X3 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space Comparison

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The X3 has 1.8 inches more front headroom and .6 inches more rear headroom than the GLE.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

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To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the X3’s available cargo door can be opened and closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The GLE doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its cargo door, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Ergonomics Comparison

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The X3 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 GLE doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The X3 offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The GLE doesn’t offer headlight washers.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the X3 has standard extendable sun visors. The GLE doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Economic Advantages Comparison

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According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the X3 is less expensive to operate than the GLE because it costs $368 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the X3 than the GLE, including $249 less for a water pump, $86 less for front brake pads, $185 less for a starter, $302 less for fuel injection, $32 less for front struts and $1049 less for a power steering pump.

Recommendations Comparison

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Consumer Reports® recommends both the BMW X3 and the Mercedes GLE, based on reliability, safety and performance.

The BMW X3 outsold the Mercedes GLE-Class by 54% during 2015.

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