2020 Mercedes SLC vs. 2020 Ford Mustang

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

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The SLC’s optional pre-crash front seatbelts will tighten automatically in the event the vehicle detects an impending crash, improving protection against injury significantly. The Mustang doesn’t offer pre-crash pretensioners.

The SLC has standard NECK-PRO Head Restraints, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the NECK-PRO Head Restraints system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Mustang doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.

The SLC offers optional Parktronic™ to help warn the driver about vehicles, pedestrians or other obstacles behind or in front of their vehicle. The Mustang doesn’t offer a front parking aid.

Both the SLC and the Mustang have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available lane departure warning systems and blind spot warning systems.

Warranty

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The SLC comes with a full 4-year/50,000-mile basic warranty, which covers the entire car and includes 24-hour roadside assistance. The Mustang’s 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty expires 1 year and 14,000 miles sooner.

Reliability

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J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Mercedes vehicles are more reliable than Ford vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes 13th in reliability, above the industry average. With 12 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ford is ranked 16th.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the SLC 300 gets better fuel mileage than the Mustang:

MPG

SLC

RWD

Auto

2.0 Turbo 4-cyl.

23 city/32 hwy

Mustang

RWD

Manual

2.3 Turbo 4-cyl.

20 city/28 hwy

HO 2.4 Turbo 4-cyl.

19 city/26 hwy

Auto

2.3 Turbo 4-cyl.

20 city/28 hwy

HO 2.3 Turbo 4-cyl.

20 city/27 hwy

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the SLC’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Mustang doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

Transmission

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The Mercedes SLC comes standard with an automatic transmission, for driver comfort, especially in the city. Automatic costs extra on the Mustang.

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction and acceleration, the SLC has larger rear tires than the Mustang (245/40R17 vs. 235/55R17).

The SLC 300’s standard 225/45R17 front and 245/40R17 rear tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series front and 40 series rear profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Mustang’s standard 55 series tires.

Chassis

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The SLC is 2 feet, 1.7 inches shorter than the Mustang, making the SLC easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The SLC’s standard power retractable hardtop allows a seamless transition from an open car, to a completely sealed coupe. The Mustang doesn’t offer a retractable hardtop.

Cargo Capacity

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With its convertible body style, valet key and remote trunk release lockout, the SLC offers cargo security. The Mustang’s non-lockable remote release defeats cargo security.

Servicing Ease

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The SLC uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Mustang 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 Mercedes service is better than Ford. J.D. Power ranks Mercedes fifth in service department satisfaction. With a 59% lower rating, Ford is ranked 24th.

Ergonomics

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Unlike the driver-only memory seat and mirrors optional at extra cost in the Mustang Premium/BULLITT, the SLC has standard driver and 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 SLC’s standard easy entry system raises the steering wheel, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. An easy entry system costs extra on the Mustang, and is not available on all models.

The SLC’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Mustang has a lever-type parking brake that has to be strenuously raised to engage properly. It has to be lifted up more and a button depressed to release it.

The SLC’s front and rear power windows all lower with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Mustang’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open them fully.

If the windows are left open on the SLC the driver can close them all at the outside door handle or from a distance using the remote (remote must be aimed at door sensor). On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Mustang can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

In case of a sudden change of weather, the SLC offers an optional remote convertible top that can be raised from a distance to protect the interior of the vehicle from damage. The Mustang doesn’t offer a remote top, so the driver will have to run to the car, get in, turn the ignition on and raise the top to prevent the interior from being damaged.

The SLC has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The Mustang doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.

The SLC’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Mustang’s standard intermittent wipers change speed with vehicle speed, but can’t turn on and off or change speed based on changing rainfall.

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

In poor weather, headlights can lose their effectiveness as grime builds up on their lenses. This can reduce visibility without the driver realizing. The SLC offers available headlight washers to keep headlight output high. The Mustang doesn’t offer headlight washers.

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

The SLC’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Ford only offers heated mirrors on the Mustang Premium.

When the SLC is put in reverse, the passenger rearview mirror tilts from its original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirror into its original position. The Mustang’s mirror doesn’t automatically adjust for backing.

The SLC’s standard rear and side view mirrors have an automatic dimming feature. These mirrors can be set to automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Mustang has an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

Economic Advantages

© 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 2020/04/03

Insurance will cost less for the SLC owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the SLC will cost $340 less than the Mustang over a five-year period.

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

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