Certified Benz & Beemer Compares 2020 BMW X3 VS 2020 Mercedes GLC Near Scottsdale, AZ

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2020 BMW X3

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VS

2020 Mercedes GLC

Safety Comparison

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The X3 has standard PostCrash iBrake, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The GLC doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The X3 offers optional Active Park Distance Control that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The GLC doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

When descending a steep, off-road slope, the X3’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 X3’s 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 X3 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, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors, available all wheel drive, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and around view monitors.

Warranty Comparison

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The X3’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the GLC’s (12 vs. 5 years).

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 GLC.

Reliability Comparison

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A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the X3’s reliability 16 points higher than the GLC.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Mercedes vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 7th in reliability, above the industry average. With 12 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 13th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Mercedes vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks BMW 9 places higher in reliability than Mercedes.

Engine Comparison

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The X3’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 7 more horsepower (248 vs. 241) than the GLC 300’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder.

As tested in Motor Trend the BMW X3 turbo 4 cyl. is faster than the GLC 300 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.:

X3

GLC

Zero to 60 MPH

6.7 sec

6.9 sec

Quarter Mile

15.1 sec

15.2 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

91.5 MPH

89.6 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

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

MPG

X3

RWD

2.0 Turbo 4-cyl.

25 city/29 hwy

AWD

xDrive30i 2.0 Turbo 4-cyl.

24 city/29 hwy

M40i 3.0 Turbo V6

21 city/27 hwy

M 3.0 Turbo V6

14 city/19 hwy

M Competition 3.0 Turbo V6

14 city/19 hwy

GLC

FWD

2.0 Turbo 4-cyl.

22 city/29 hwy

AWD

2.0 Turbo 4-cyl.

21 city/28 hwy

Regenerative brakes improve the X3’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The GLC doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

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The X3 stops much shorter than the GLC:

X3

GLC

60 to 0 MPH

112 feet

126 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

138 feet

143 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels Comparison

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The X3’s optional 245/40R21 front and 275/35R21 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 AMG GLC 43’s 45 series front and 40 series rear tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the X3 offers optional 21-inch wheels. The GLC’s largest wheels are only 20-inches.

The X3 offers an optional space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the GLC; it requires you to depend on its run-flat tires, which limits mileage and speed before they are repaired. If a run-flat is damaged beyond repair by a road hazard your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

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The X3’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (50.4% to 49.6%) than the GLC’s (53% to 47%). This gives the X3 more stable handling and braking.

The X3 M40i xDrive handles at .85 G’s, while the GLC 300 4MATIC pulls only .80 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.

The X3 M40i xDrive executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.4 seconds quicker than the GLC 300 4MATIC (25.9 seconds @ .72 average G’s vs. 27.3 seconds @ .65 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the X3’s turning circle is tighter than the GLC’s:

X3

GLC

AWD 4dr Sport Utility

39.4 feet

39.7 feet

For greater off-road capability the X3 has a 3 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the GLC 300 (8 vs. 5 inches), allowing the X3 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged. The X3’s minimum ground clearance is 1.3 inches higher than on the AMG GLC 43 (8 vs. 6.7 inches).

Passenger Space Comparison

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The X3 has 3.3 inches more front headroom, .3 inches more front shoulder room and .6 inches more rear headroom than the GLC.

The front step up height for the X3 is 1.5 inches lower than the GLC (18.5” vs. 20”). The X3’s rear step up height is 4 inches lower than the GLC’s (18.5” vs. 22.5”).

Cargo Capacity Comparison

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The X3 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the GLC with its rear seat up (28.7 vs. 19.4 cubic feet). The X3 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the GLC with its rear seat folded (62.7 vs. 56.5 cubic feet).

Ergonomics Comparison

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The X3’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The GLC’s cruise control switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

Economic Advantages Comparison

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Insurance will cost less for the X3 owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the X3 will cost $435 to $2940 less than the GLC over a five-year period.

The X3 will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the X3 will retain 47.34% to 48.23% of its original price after five years, while the GLC only retains 44.66% to 45.7%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the X3 is less expensive to operate than the GLC because typical repairs cost much less on the X3 than the GLC, including $90 less for front brake pads, $8 less for fuel injection and $3969 less for front struts.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the BMW X3 will be $3022 to $6952 less than for the Mercedes GLC.

Recommendations Comparison

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Consumer Reports® recommends the BMW X3, based on reliability, safety and performance. The Mercedes GLC isn't recommended.

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