2019 BMW X7 vs. 2019 Mercedes GLE

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the middle seat shoulder belts of the BMW X7 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 Mercedes GLE doesn’t offer height-adjustable middle seat belts.

The X7 has standard Post-Crash Braking, which automatically apply the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The GLE 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.

To help make backing safer, the X7’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 GLE doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

Both the X7 and the GLE 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.

Warranty

The X7’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the GLE’s (12 vs. 5 years).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the X7 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 GLE.

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 15th.

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

The X7 xDrive40i’s standard 3.0 turbo 6 cyl. produces 6 more horsepower (335 vs. 329) than the GLE 400’s standard 3.0 turbo V6. The X7 xDrive50i’s standard 4.4 turbo V8 produces 71 more horsepower (456 vs. 385) and 95 lbs.-ft. more torque (479 vs. 384) than the AMG GLE 43’s standard 3.0 turbo V6.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the X7 xDrive40i gets better fuel mileage than the GLE 400 (20 city/25 hwy vs. 17 city/23 hwy).

Regardless of its engine, regenerative brakes improve the X7’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. Mercedes only offers a regenerative brake system on the GLE Hybrid.

Transmission

The X7’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 GLE doesn’t offer launch control.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the X7’s brake rotors are larger than those on the GLE:

X7 xDrive50i

X7 M Sport

GLE

AMG GLE 43

Front Rotors

14.7 inches

15.6 inches

13.8 inches

14.8 inches

Rear Rotors

14.6 inches

14.6 inches

13 inches

13.6 inches

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the X7 has larger standard tires than the GLE (285/45R21 vs. 255/50R19). The X7’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the GLE (F:275/40R22 & R:315/35R22 vs. 265/45R20).

The X7’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 GLE’s standard 50 series tires. The X7’s optional 315/35R22 rear tires have a lower 35 series profile than the AMG GLE 43’s optional 40 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the X7 has standard 21-inch wheels. Smaller 19-inch wheels are standard on the GLE. The X7’s optional 22-inch wheels are larger than the 21-inch wheels optional on the AMG GLE 43.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the X7 can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The GLE doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

The front and rear suspension of the X7 uses air springs for a smoother, controlled ride than the GLE, which uses coil springs. Air springs maintain proper ride height and ride more smoothly.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the X7’s wheelbase is 7.4 inches longer than on the GLE (122.2 inches vs. 114.8 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the X7 is 1.3 inches wider in the front and 1.6 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the GLE.

For greater off-road capability the X7 has a greater minimum ground clearance than the GLE (8.7 vs. 8 inches), allowing the X7 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis

The front grille of the X7 uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The GLE doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

Passenger Space

The X7 has standard seating for 7 passengers; the GLE can only carry 5.

The X7 has 3 inches more front headroom, 1.5 inches more front shoulder room and .2 inches more rear headroom than the GLE.

Cargo Capacity

The X7’s cargo area provides more volume than the GLE.

X7

GLE

Third Seat Folded

48.6 cubic feet

n/a

Third Seat Removed

n/a

38.2 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

90.4 cubic feet

80.3 cubic feet

The X7’s cargo area is larger than the GLE’s in almost every dimension:

X7

GLE

Length to seat (3rd/2nd/1st)

18.5”/45”/81.5”

n.a./39.5”/68”

Max Width

48”

49”

Min Width

43.5”

40.5”

Height

32”

35.5”

Pressing a switch automatically lowers or raises the X7’s second and third row seats, to make changing between cargo and passengers easier. The GLE doesn’t offer automatic folding second row seats.

The X7’s rear cargo window opens separately from the rest of the tailgate door to allow quicker loading of small packages. The GLE’s rear cargo window doesn’t open.

Towing

The X7’s standard towing capacity is much higher than the GLE’s (7500 vs. 7200 pounds).

Ergonomics

The X7 offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The GLE doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the BMW X7 has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The GLE doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

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

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