2019 BMW X5 vs. 2019 Mercedes E-Class Wagon

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

The X5 has standard Active Protection, which automatically apply the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The E-Class Wagon 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.

A passive infrared night vision system optional on the X5 helps the driver to more easily detect people, animals or other objects in front of the vehicle at night. Using an infrared camera to detect heat, the system then displays the image on a monitor in the dashboard. The E-Class Wagon doesn’t offer a night vision system.

Both the X5 and the E-Class Wagon have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, all wheel drive, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors and available around view monitors.

The BMW X5 weighs 514 to 871 pounds more than the Mercedes E-Class Wagon. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.

Warranty

The X5’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the E-Class Wagon’s (12 vs. 5 years).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the X5 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 E-Class Wagon.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 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 11th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 5 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 14th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 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 8th in reliability, above the industry average. With 20 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 15th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ April 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

The X5 xDrive50i’s standard 4.4 turbo V8 produces 94 more horsepower (456 vs. 362) and 110 lbs.-ft. more torque (479 vs. 369) than the E-Class Wagon’s 3.0 turbo V6.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the X5 xDrive40i gets better fuel mileage than the E 400 4MATIC Wagon (20 city/26 hwy vs. 19 city/26 hwy).

Regenerative brakes improve the X5’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The E-Class Wagon doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

Transmission

The X5’s launch control uses engine electronics to hold engine RPM’s precisely in order to provide the most stable and rapid acceleration possible, using all of the available traction. The E-Class Wagon doesn’t offer launch control.

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the X5 has larger standard tires than the E-Class Wagon (265/50R19 vs. 245/45R18). The X5’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the E-Class Wagon (F:275/40R21 & R:315/35R21 vs. F:245/45R18 & R:275/40R18).

The X5’s optional 275/35R22 front and 315/30R22 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series front and 30 series rear profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the E-Class Wagon’s optional 40 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the X5 has standard 19-inch wheels. Smaller 18-inch wheels are standard on the E-Class Wagon. The X5’s optional 22-inch wheels are larger than the 19-inch wheels optional on the E-Class Wagon.

The X5 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 E-Class Wagon; 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

The X5 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 E-Class Wagon doesn’t offer an active sway bar system.

The X5 offers an available adjustable active suspension system, which counteracts cornering forces actively, limiting body roll and improving handling and stability. Mercedes doesn’t offer an active suspension on the E-Class Wagon.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the X5’s wheelbase is 1.4 inches longer than on the E-Class Wagon (117.1 inches vs. 115.7 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the X5 is 3.4 inches wider in the front and 3.5 inches wider in the rear than on the E-Class Wagon.

The X5’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (50.1% to 49.9%) than the E-Class Wagon’s (51.7% to 48.3%). This gives the X5 more stable handling and braking.

Chassis

The front grille of the X5 uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The E-Class Wagon doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

The X5 has 3.3 inches more front headroom, 2.2 inches more front shoulder room, 1.6 inches more rear legroom and 1 inch more rear shoulder room than the E-Class Wagon.

Third row passengers in the X5 sit facing forward, making them more comfortable and giving them a better view. The third row passengers in the E-Class Wagon face rearward.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the X5’s available third row seats recline. The E-Class Wagon’s third row seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

The X5 has a much larger cargo area with its rear seat folded than the E-Class Wagon with its rear seat folded (72.3 vs. 64 cubic feet).

Both the X5 and the E-Class Wagon offer second row automatic folding seats. The X5’s optional third row seats also fold down at the press of a button. The E-Class Wagon doesn’t offer automatic folding third row seats.

The X5’s rear cargo window opens separately from the rest of the tailgate door to allow quicker loading of small packages. The E-Class Wagon’s rear cargo window doesn’t open.

Ergonomics

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the X5 has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the E-Class Wagon only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the X5 has standard extendable sun visors. The E-Class Wagon doesn’t offer extendable visors.

The X5 has standard heated front seats. Heated front seats cost extra on the E-Class Wagon. The X5 also offers optional heated second row seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated second row seats aren’t available in the E-Class Wagon.

Recommendations

The BMW X5 outsold the Mercedes E-Class by 1982 units during the 2018 model year.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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