2020 Mercedes AMG GLC vs. 2020 BMW X3 M

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Mercedes AMG GLC 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 M doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Mercedes AMG GLC 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 M doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

Both the AMG GLC and the X3 M have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, all wheel drive, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors, available lane departure warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

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There are over 10 percent more Mercedes dealers than there are BMW dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the AMG GLC’s warranty.

Reliability

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J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Mercedes vehicles are better in initial quality than BMW vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 12th in initial quality. With 8 more problems per 100 vehicles, BMW is ranked 20th.

Engine

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The AMG GLC 63’s standard 4.0 turbo V8 produces 37 lbs.-ft. more torque (479 vs. 442) than the X3 M Competition’s standard 3.0 turbo 6-cylinder.

Fuel Economy and Range

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

MPG

AMG GLC

43 3.0 turbo V6

18 city/24 hwy

63 4.0 turbo V8

16 city/22 hwy

X3 M

3.0 turbo 6-cyl.

14 city/19 hwy

Competition 3.0 turbo 6-cyl.

14 city/19 hwy

Environmental Friendliness

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In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Mercedes AMG GLC higher (5 out of 10) than the BMW X3 M (3). This means the AMG GLC produces up to 16.5 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the X3 M every 15,000 miles.

Transmission

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A nine-speed automatic is standard on the Mercedes AMG GLC, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the X3 M.

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the AMG GLC’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the X3 M (F:265/45R20 & R:295/40R20 vs. F:255/45R20 & R:265/45R20).

The AMG GLC 43’s standard 285/40R20 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the X3 M’s standard 45 series tires. The AMG GLC’s optional 295/35R21 rear tires have a lower 35 series profile than the X3 M Competition’s 40 series tires.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires available on the AMG GLC can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The X3 M doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

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The front and rear suspension of the AMG GLC uses air springs for a smoother, controlled ride than the X3 M, which uses coil springs. Air springs maintain proper ride height and ride more smoothly.

The AMG GLC has a standard automatic front and rear load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The AMG GLC’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 M doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.

The AMG GLC’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The X3 M doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the AMG GLC is 1.5 inches wider in the front and 2.4 inches wider in the rear than the track on the X3 M.

For better maneuverability, the AMG GLC’s turning circle is 1.7 feet tighter than the X3 M’s (39.7 feet vs. 41.4 feet).

Chassis

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The Mercedes AMG GLC may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 50 to 450 pounds less than the BMW X3 M.

Passenger Space

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The AMG GLC has .4 inches more front legroom, .9 inches more rear legroom and .5 inches more rear shoulder room than the X3 M.

Cargo Capacity

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To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the AMG GLC’s available liftgate can be opened and closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The X3 M doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its liftgate, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.

Servicing Ease

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J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Mercedes service is better than BMW. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes fifth in service department satisfaction. With a 23% lower rating, BMW is ranked 11th.

Ergonomics

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The AMG GLC has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The X3 M doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

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

The AMG GLC’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel and glides the driver’s seat back, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The X3 M doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

Heated windshield washer nozzles are standard on the AMG GLC to prevent washer fluid and nozzles from freezing and help continue to keep the windshield clear in sub-freezing temperatures. The X3 M doesn’t offer heated windshield washer nozzles.

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

The AMG GLC’s available GPS navigation system has a real-time traffic update feature that plots alternative routes to automatically bypass traffic problems. (Service not available in all areas.) The X3 M’s navigation system doesn’t offer real-time traffic updates.

The AMG GLC has a 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The X3 M doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

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