To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the X4. But it costs extra on the GLC.
When descending a steep, off-road slope, the X4’s standard Hill Descent Control allows you to creep down safely. The GLC doesn’t offer Hill Descent Control.
To help make backing safer, the X4’s optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The GLC doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.
Both the X4 and the GLC 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 crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and around view monitors.
The X4’s corrosion warranty is 8 years and unlimited miles longer than the GLC’s (12/unlimited vs. 4/50,000).
BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the X4 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 GLC.
There are over 12 percent more BMW dealers than there are Mercedes dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the X4’s warranty.
To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the X4 has a standard 210-amp alternator. The GLC’s 150-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.
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.
The X4 M40i’s standard 3.0 turbo 6 cyl. produces 114 more horsepower (355 vs. 241) and 70 lbs.-ft. more torque (343 vs. 273) than the GLC’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.
Regenerative brakes improve the X4’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The GLC doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.
For better traction, the X4 has larger standard tires than the GLC (245/50R18 vs. 235/60R18).
The X4 xDrive28i’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the GLC’s standard 60 series tires. The X4’s optional 245/40R20 front and 275/35R20 rear tires have a lower 40 series front and 35 series rear profile than the GLC’s 45 series tires.
The X4’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (49.4% to 50.6%) than the GLC’s (53% to 47%). This gives the X4 more stable handling and braking.
The X4 xDrive28i handles at .85 G’s, while the GLC300 4MATIC pulls only .82 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.
The X4 executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the GLC300 4MATIC (26.2 seconds @ .71 average G’s vs. 26.6 seconds @ .66 average G’s).
Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the X4 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 GLC.
In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The X4 offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The GLC doesn’t offer headlight washers.
J.D. Power and Associates rated the X4 second among compact premium SUVs in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The GLC was rated third.
The X4 is ranked first in its class and received the 2015 “Total Quality Award.” The GLC is not ranked.