Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2018 Acura ILX VS 2018 BMW 3 Near Phoenix, AZ

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2018 Acura ILX

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VS

2018 BMW 3

Safety Comparison

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For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Acura ILX 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 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

Using vehicle speed sensors, smart airbags in the ILX deploy with different levels of force or don’t deploy at all to help better protect passengers of all sizes in different collisions. The ILX’s side airbags will shut off if a child is leaning against the door. The 3 Series Sedan’s side airbags don’t have smart features and will always deploy full force.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tests front crash prevention systems. With a score of 5 points, IIHS rates the Collision Mitigating Braking System optional in the ILX as “Superior.” The 3 Series Sedan scores at most only 3 points and is rated only “Advanced.”

To help make backing safer, the ILX’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 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

Both the ILX and the 3 Series Sedan have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available lane departure warning systems and blind spot warning systems.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Acura ILX is safer than the BMW 3 Series Sedan:

 

ILX

3 Series Sedan

 

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

227

232

Neck Injury Risk

26%

36%

Neck Stress

257 lbs.

345 lbs.

Neck Compression

56 lbs.

113 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

57/324 lbs.

321/434 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

A significantly tougher test than their original offset frontal crash test, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety does 40 MPH small overlap frontal offset crash tests. In this test, where only 25% of the total width of the vehicle is struck, results indicate that the Acura ILX is safer than the 3 Series Sedan:

 

ILX

3 Series Sedan

Overall Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Restraints

GOOD

GOOD

Head Neck Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Head injury index

264

549

Peak Head Forces

0 G’s

0 G’s

Chest Evaluation

GOOD

GOOD

Hip & Thigh Evaluation

GOOD

ACCEPTABLE

Femur Force R/L

1.3/0 kN

3.4/3.4 kN

Hip & Thigh Injury Risk R/L

0%/0%

1%/1%

Lower Leg Evaluation

ACCEPTABLE

GOOD

Tibia forces R/L

1.7/1 kN

3.4/4.2 kN

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Acura ILX is safer than the BMW 3 Series Sedan:

 

ILX

3 Series Sedan

 

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

234

258

Chest Movement

.9 inches

1.1 inches

Abdominal Force

143 G’s

232 G’s

 

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

324

326

Spine Acceleration

64 G’s

64 G’s

 

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

14 inches

17 inches

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

Warranty Comparison

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Acura’s powertrain warranty covers the ILX 2 years and 20,000 miles longer than BMW covers the 3 Series Sedan. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the 3 Series Sedan ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

Reliability Comparison

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J.D. Power and Associates’ 2016 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Acura vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Acura 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 13 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 14th.

Engine Comparison

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The ILX’s 2.4 DOHC 4 cyl. produces 21 more horsepower (201 vs. 180) than the 320i’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

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On the EPA test cycle the ILX gets better fuel mileage than the 320i RWD Auto (25 city/35 hwy vs. 24 city/35 hwy).

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Acura ILX uses regular unleaded gasoline (premium recommended for maximum performance). The 3 Series Sedan requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

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The ILX stops shorter than the 3 Series Sedan:

 

ILX

3 Series

 

70 to 0 MPH

184 feet

191 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels Comparison

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The ILX’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the 3 Series Sedan’s standard 50 series tires.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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For better maneuverability, the ILX’s turning circle is .3 feet tighter than the 3 Series Sedan’s (36.8 feet vs. 37.1 feet). The ILX’s turning circle is 1.6 feet tighter than the 3 Series Sedan xDrive’s (36.8 feet vs. 38.4 feet).

Chassis Comparison

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The Acura ILX may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 250 to 700 pounds less than the BMW 3 Series Sedan.

The ILX uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space Comparison

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The ILX has .3 inches more front legroom and .5 inches more front shoulder room than the 3 Series Sedan.

Ergonomics Comparison

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The ILX offers a 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 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the ILX has standard extendable sun visors. The 3 Series Sedan doesn’t offer extendable visors.

Economic Advantages Comparison

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Insurance will cost less for the ILX owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the ILX will cost $55 to $5010 less than the 3 Series Sedan over a five-year period.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the ILX is less expensive to operate than the 3 Series Sedan because it costs $369 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the ILX than the 3 Series Sedan, including $340 less for a water pump, $61 less for an alternator, $99 less for front brake pads, $266 less for fuel injection, $739 less for a timing belt/chain and $104 less for a power steering pump.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Acura ILX will be $7544 to $17685 less than for the BMW 3 Series Sedan.

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