2020 Mercedes GLB vs. 2020 Audi Q3

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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The GLB’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Q3 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the GLB and the Q3 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, 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, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and around view monitors.

Warranty

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There are over 26 percent more Mercedes dealers than there are Audi dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the GLB’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 Audi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 12th in initial quality. With 12 more problems per 100 vehicles, Audi is ranked 22nd.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the GLB 250 4MATIC Auto gets better fuel mileage than the Q3 (23 city/31 hwy vs. 19 city/27 hwy).

Transmission

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The GLB 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 Q3 doesn’t offer an SMG or a conventional manual transmission.

Tires and Wheels

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Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires available on the GLB can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Q3 doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

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The GLB offers an optional driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Q3’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

The GLB’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 Q3 doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the GLB’s wheelbase is 5.9 inches longer than on the Q3 (111.4 inches vs. 105.5 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the GLB is 1 inch wider in the front and 1.3 inches wider in the rear than on the Q3.

Chassis

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The Mercedes GLB may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs up to about 250 pounds less than the Audi Q3.

The design of the Mercedes GLB amounts to more than styling. The GLB has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .32 Cd. That is significantly lower than the Q3 (.36) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the GLB get better fuel mileage.

Passenger Space

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The GLB offers optional seating for 7 passengers; the Q3 can only carry 5.

The GLB has 1.1 inches more front headroom, 1.1 inches more front legroom, 1.7 inches more rear headroom and 2 inches more rear legroom than the Q3.

Cargo Capacity

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The GLB’s cargo area provides more volume than the Q3.

GLB

Q3

Third Seat Folded

24 cubic feet

n/a

Third Seat Removed

n/a

23.7 cubic feet

Second Seat Folded

62 cubic feet

48 cubic feet

Servicing Ease

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J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Mercedes service is better than Audi. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes fifth in service department satisfaction. With a 13% lower rating, Audi is ranked 8th.

Ergonomics

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The GLB 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 Q3 doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

When three different drivers share the GLB, the memory system makes it convenient for all three. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver and front passenger’s seat positions, steering wheel position (with optional power wheel adjuster) and outside mirror angle. The Q3 doesn’t offer a memory system.

The GLB offers an optional 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 Q3 doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The GLB’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 Q3’s cruise control switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the GLB offers optional cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The Q3 doesn’t offer cornering lights. The GLB also offers optional adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle.

Optional air-conditioned seats in the GLB keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Q3 doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold winter days, the GLB’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the vehicle heater warms up. The Q3 doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

The GLB offers optional massaging front seats in order to maximize comfort and eliminate fatigue on long trips. Massaging seats aren’t available in the Q3.

The GLB’s optional Active Parking Assist can parallel park by itself, stopping and changing direction automatically. The Q3 Prestige’s automatic parking system requires operating the brakes and transmission to safely park.

Model Availability

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The GLB is available in both front-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The Q3 doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.

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