2020 Infiniti QX50 vs. 2020 Mercedes GLA

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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Over 200 people are killed each year when backed over by motor vehicles. The QX50 has standard Rear Automatic Braking that uses rear sensors to monitor and automatically apply the brakes to prevent a rear collision. The GLA doesn’t offer backup collision prevention brakes.

To help make backing safer, the QX50’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 GLA doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

Compared to metal, the QX50’s plastic fuel tank can withstand harder, more intrusive impacts without leaking; this decreases the possibility of fire. The Mercedes GLA has a metal gas tank.

Both the QX50 and the GLA have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front and rear seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive and around view monitors.

The Infiniti QX50 weighs 467 to 934 pounds more than the Mercedes GLA. The NHTSA advises that heavier vehicles are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts.

Warranty

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The QX50 comes with a full 4-year/60,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire truck and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The GLA’s 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty expires 10,000 miles sooner.

Infiniti’s powertrain warranty covers the QX50 2 years and 20,000 miles longer than Mercedes covers the GLA. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 6 years or 70,000 miles. Coverage on the GLA ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

The QX50’s corrosion warranty is 2 years longer than the GLA’s (7 vs. 5 years).

Reliability

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To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the QX50 has a standard 130-amp alternator. The GLA’s 115-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Infiniti vehicles are more reliable than Mercedes vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Infiniti 11th in reliability, above the industry average. With 6 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 13th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Infiniti vehicles are more reliable than Mercedes vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Infiniti 8 places higher in reliability than Mercedes.

Engine

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The QX50’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder produces 60 more horsepower (268 vs. 208) and 22 lbs.-ft. more torque (280 vs. 258) than the GLA’s 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder.

As tested in Motor Trend the Infiniti QX50 is faster than the Mercedes GLA:

QX50

GLA

Zero to 60 MPH

6.3 sec

6.9 sec

Quarter Mile

14.8 sec

15.3 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

93.6 MPH

89.8 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

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The QX50 has 1.2 gallons more fuel capacity than the GLA (16 vs. 14.8 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Transmission

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The QX50 has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The GLA doesn’t offer a CVT.

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the QX50’s brake rotors are larger than those on the GLA:

QX50

GLA

Front Rotors

13 inches

12.6 inches

Rear Rotors

12.1 inches

11.6 inches

The QX50’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the GLA are solid, not vented.

The QX50 stops shorter than the GLA:

QX50

GLA

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

130 feet

142 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the QX50 Sensory/Autograph’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the GLA (255/45R20 vs. 235/50R18).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the QX50 has standard 19-inch wheels. Smaller 18-inch wheels are standard on the GLA 250. The QX50 Sensory/Autograph’s 20-inch wheels are larger than the 19-inch wheels optional on the GLA.

The QX50 has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The GLA doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling

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For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the QX50’s wheelbase is 3.9 inches longer than on the GLA (110.2 inches vs. 106.3 inches).

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the QX50 is 3 inches wider in the front and 2.6 inches wider in the rear than the track on the GLA.

For greater off-road capability the QX50 has a 3.3 inches greater minimum ground clearance than the GLA (8.6 vs. 5.3 inches), allowing the QX50 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis

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The QX50 uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The GLA doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

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The QX50 has 13.4 cubic feet more passenger volume than the GLA (104.4 vs. 91).

The QX50 has 1 inch more front headroom, 3.1 inches more front shoulder room, .7 inches more rear headroom, 4.8 inches more rear legroom and 4 inches more rear shoulder room than the GLA.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the QX50’s rear seats recline. The GLA’s rear seats don’t recline.

The front step up height for the QX50 is 1.2 inches lower than the GLA (17.2” vs. 18.4”). The QX50’s rear step up height is 1.8 inches lower than the GLA’s (17.7” vs. 19.5”).

Cargo Capacity

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The QX50 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the GLA with its rear seat up (31.4 vs. 17.2 cubic feet). The QX50 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the GLA with its rear seat folded (65.1 vs. 43.6 cubic feet).

A low lift-over cargo hatch design makes loading and unloading the QX50 easier. The QX50’s cargo hatch lift-over height is 26.6 inches, while the GLA’s liftover is 29.5 inches.

The QX50’s cargo area is larger than the GLA’s in every dimension:

QX50

GLA

Length to seat (2nd/1st)

39”/71.7”

31.6”/63”

Max Width

54.5”

41.8”

Min Width

41.5”

41”

Height

31.2”

28.3”

Towing

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The QX50 AWD Autograph offers up to a 3000 lbs. towing capacity. The GLA has no towing capacity.

Servicing Ease

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The QX50 uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The GLA uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Infiniti service is better than Mercedes. J.D. Power ranks Infiniti fourth in service department satisfaction. With an 8% lower rating, Mercedes is ranked fifth.

Ergonomics

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The QX50 (except Pure/Luxe)’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 GLA doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The QX50 (except Pure/Luxe/Essential) offers an available heads-up display that projects speed and navigation instruction readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The GLA doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The QX50’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 GLA’s cruise control switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

To improve rear visibility by keeping the rear window clear, the QX50 has a standard rear fixed intermittent wiper with a full on position. The rear wiper standard on the GLA only has an intermittent setting, so in a hard rain visibility isn’t as good.

Consumer Reports rated the QX50’s headlight performance “Good,” a higher rating than the GLA’s headlights, which were rated “Poor.”

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the QX50 detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The GLA doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the QX50 (except Pure/Luxe) offers optional adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The GLA doesn’t offer cornering lights.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the QX50 has standard extendable sun visors. The GLA doesn’t offer extendable visors.

When the QX50 with available tilt-down mirrors is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The GLA’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the QX50 (except Pure/Luxe/Essential) keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in Summer. The GLA doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the QX50 Essential’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The GLA doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

Economic Advantages

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According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the QX50 is less expensive to operate than the GLA because typical repairs cost much less on the QX50 than the GLA, including $141 less for a water pump, $150 less for a muffler, $155 less for front brake pads, $185 less for a starter, $250 less for fuel injection, $51 less for a fuel pump and $137 less for front struts.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Infiniti QX50 will be $1161 to $11515 less than for the Mercedes GLA.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/07/10

Consumer Reports® recommends the Infiniti QX50, based on reliability, safety and performance. The Mercedes GLA isn't recommended.

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