2019 Porsche Macan vs. 2019 BMW X3

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Porsche Macan 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 X3 doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Porsche Macan 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 X3 doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

To provide maximum traction and stability on all roads, All-Wheel Drive is standard on the Macan. But it costs extra on the X3.

Both the Macan and the X3 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, post-collision automatic braking systems, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available crash mitigating brakes, blind spot warning systems and around view monitors.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Porsche vehicles are better in initial quality than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Porsche fourth in initial quality, above the industry average. With 8 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 11th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2018 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Porsche vehicles are more reliable than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Porsche second in reliability, above the industry average. With 27 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 8th.

Engine

The Macan’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 15 lbs.-ft. more torque (273 vs. 258) than the X3 s/xDrive30i’s standard 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

Fuel Economy and Range

The Macan has 2.6 gallons more fuel capacity than the X3’s standard fuel tank (19.8 vs. 17.2 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The Macan has 2.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the X3 M40i’s standard fuel tank (19.8 vs. 17.7 gallons).

Transmission

The Macan offers a standard sequential manual gearbox (SMG). With no clutch pedal to worry about and a fully automatic mode, an SMG is much more efficient than a conventional automatic but just as easy to drive. The X3 doesn’t offer an SMG or a conventional manual transmission.

Brakes and Stopping

For better stopping power the Macan’s brake rotors are larger than those on the X3:

 

Macan

Macan S

X3

X3 M40i

Front Rotors

13.6 inches

14.2 inches

13 inches

13.7 inches

Tires and Wheels

For better traction, the Macan has larger standard tires than the X3 (F:235/60R18 & R:255/55R18 vs. 225/60R18). The Macan’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the X3 (F:265/40R21 & R:295/35R21 vs. F:245/45R20 & R:275/40R20).

The Macan’s standard 255/55R18 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the X3 xDrive30i’s standard 60 series tires.

Suspension and Handling

The Macan has a standard automatic front and rear load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The Macan’s height leveling suspension allows the driver to raise ride height for better off-road clearance and then lower it again for easier entering and exiting and better on-road handling. The X3 doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.

For better maneuverability, the Macan’s turning circle is .7 feet tighter than the X3 xDrive30i’s (38.7 feet vs. 39.4 feet). The Macan’s turning circle is 1 foot tighter than the X3 M40i’s (38.7 feet vs. 39.7 feet).

For greater off-road capability the Macan has a greater minimum ground clearance than the X3 (9 vs. 8 inches), allowing the Macan to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Payload

The Macan has a much higher standard payload capacity than the X3 (1435 vs. 910 lbs.).

The Macan has a much higher maximum payload capacity than the X3 (1435 vs. 937 lbs.).

Servicing Ease

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Porsche service is better than BMW. J.D. Power ranks Porsche second in service department satisfaction. With a 17% lower rating, BMW is ranked 8th.

Ergonomics

Unlike the driver-only memory system in the X3, the Macan offers an optional driver and passenger memory, so that when drivers switch, the memory setting adjusts the driver’s seat, steering wheel position, outside mirror angle and climate settings and the front passenger seat also adjusts to the new passenger’s preset preferences.

The Macan’s optional easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The X3 doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the Macan keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The X3 doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

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

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