Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2017 Mercedes Benz GLE VS 2017 BMW X5 Near Scottsdale, AZ

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2017 Mercedes Benz GLE

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2017 BMW X5

Safety Comparison

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Mercedes GLE have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The BMW X5 doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

The GLE’s pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The X5 doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Mercedes GLE are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The BMW X5 doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

Both the GLE and the X5 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, available all-wheel drive, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and around view monitors.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the GLE its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2017, a rating granted to only 54 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The X5 has not been fully tested, yet.

Warranty Comparison

There are over 11 percent more Mercedes dealers than there are BMW dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the GLE’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2016 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Mercedes vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 12th in reliability, above the industry average. With 7 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 14th.

Engine Comparison

As tested in Motor Trend the GLE400 3.0 turbo V6 is faster than the X5 s/xDrive35i 3.0 turbo 6 cyl.:




Zero to 60 MPH

5.6 sec

5.9 sec

Quarter Mile

14.1 sec

14.5 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

97.3 MPH

95.1 MPH

As tested in Motor Trend the GLE550e 3.0 turbo V6 hybrid is faster than the X5 s/xDrive35i 3.0 turbo 6 cyl.:




Zero to 60 MPH

5.2 sec

5.9 sec

Quarter Mile

13.7 sec

14.5 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

100.6 MPH

95.1 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the GLE550e running on electricity gets better fuel mileage than the X5 xDrive35d (39 city/50 hwy vs. 23 city/29 hwy).

The GLE550e can drive on battery power alone for up to 18.6 miles. The X5 must run its internal combustion engine to move.

The GLE’s standard fuel tank has 2.2 gallons more fuel capacity than the X5 (24.6 vs. 22.4 gallons).

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

The GLE stops shorter than the X5:





60 to 0 MPH

126 feet

129 feet

Motor Trend

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The GLE 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 X5 doesn’t offer an active sway bar system.

The GLE’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The X5 doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For better maneuverability, the GLE’s turning circle is 3 feet tighter than the X5’s (38.7 feet vs. 41.7 feet).

For greater off-road capability the GLE AIRMATIC has a 1.8 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the X5 (10 vs. 8.2 inches), allowing the GLE to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis Comparison

The GLE is 4.1 inches shorter than the X5, making the GLE easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Passenger Space Comparison

The GLE has 1.8 inches more rear legroom and .1 inches more rear shoulder room than the X5.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The GLE has a much larger cargo area with its rear seat up than the X5 with its rear seat up (38.2 vs. 12 cubic feet). The GLE has a much larger cargo area with its rear seat folded than the X5 with its rear seat folded (80.3 vs. 76.7 cubic feet).

The GLE’s liftgate lifts up in one piece, completely out of the way of loading and unloading, while sheltering the cargo loading area. The X5’s tailgate’s top part raises up, but the bottom part lowers, getting in the way of loading and making an uneven surface for sliding cargo.

Ergonomics Comparison

The GLE has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The X5 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

Unlike the driver-only memory system in the X5, the GLE offers an optional passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position and outside mirror angle and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

Heated windshield washer fluid is optional on the GLE to defrost the washer nozzles and quickly clear ice and frost from the windshield without scraping. The X5 doesn’t offer heated windshield washer fluid. Its standard heated washer nozzles will defrost the washer fluid but not the windshield.

To better shield the driver and front passenger’s vision, the GLE has standard dual-element sun visors that can block glare from two directions simultaneously. The X5 doesn’t offer secondary sun visors.

The GLE offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The X5 doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Economic Advantages Comparison

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the GLE is less expensive to operate than the X5 because typical repairs cost much less on the GLE than the X5, including $631 less for an alternator and $563 less for a timing belt/chain.

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