THE BMW X5 VS. THE MERCEDES-BENZ GLE350 AND THE PORSCHE CAYENNE
|2016 BMW X5 xDrive35i||2016 Mercedes-Benz GLE350d 4MATIC||2016 Porsche Cayenne|
BATTLE OF THE GERMAN HEAVYWEIGHTS – BMW TAKES ON ITS RIVALS FROM MERCEDES-BENZ AND PORSCHE
Discerning customers from across Edmonton, Stony Plain, Sherwood Park, Leduc, and St. Albert are well catered for when it comes to fine German motoring instruments. With companies like BMW, Mercedes- Benz, and Porsche all competing for your attention – which one to choose?
Bavaria BMW breaks down these competitors into their various segments to see who comes out on top. Ready? Let’s go!
If you’re seeking maximum thrills in a small package, these are the cars for you.
BMW offers drivers its engaging 2-Series coupe, which starts at just $36,200 and provides ample thrills with rear-wheel drive balance. Even the standard 2.0L turbo I4 will still race to 100kph in just 5.7 seconds, with both automatic and manual transmissions available. Those seeking additional performance will fall for the M235i’s 322 horsepower 3.0L turbocharged inline six or even the M2’s massive 365 horsepower. BMW’s legendary XDrive system is also on call for those seeking all-weather performance, while the Cabriolet serves those seeking open-top fun.
Mercedes-Benz’s smallest sports car is the new SLC, which is available only as a folding hardtop and thus bumps the asking price to $58,800 – far above the 2-Series. Yet in spite of the enlarged asking price, the standard engine is no bigger or more powerful than the BMW’s – a 2.0L turbo I4 with 241 horsepower. A 5.8 second sprint to 100kph is just behind its BMW rival, yet the SLC doesn’t offer AWD at any price – relegating it to summer-only. A more powerful SLC43 AMG is the only option for those seeking more performance, but the lack of a manual transmission and the $70,900 asking price will dissuade many prospective buyers.
Porsche and its Cayman is the entry-level sports compact for this renowned brand. Prestige doesn’t come cheap though, and even the base Cayman costs $61,500. While its 2.0L turbocharged 4-cylinder engine is more powerful, with 300 horsepower and a 5.1 second sprint to 100kph, the Porsche clearly emphasizes performance over practicality. Its mid-engine design means no rear seats, and cargo space reduced to a small rear hatch and an unusual ‘frunk’ up front. Its low-slung design and lack of AWD also means this car is more of a fun summer toy than an everyday driver’s car.
LUXURY SPORTS SEDANS
Sport sedans are supposed to offer the ideal blend between luxury, performance, and practicality. How do these German four-doors stack up?
BMW and its renowned 3-Series has been the sport sedan king for ages, and for good reason. With a starting price of $39,990, the 3-Series offers drivers a luxurious leather-lined cockpit with ample rear seat and trunk for everyday tasks. However, switch your 3-Series into the Sport+ driving mode suddenly you’re in a pure sports car with razor-sharp reactions and deft reflexes. Keen drivers will love the M3 and its 425 horsepower 3.0L straight-six engine, while those seeking extra practicality will choose the 3-Series Wagon or Gran Turismo.
Mercedes-Benz and the classic C-Class has long been a contender for the 3-Series’ sport sedan crown. The latest C-Class starts at $43,800 and is clearly aimed more at luxury than sport. Its interior is well-trimmed, but the vehicle’s dynamics are softer than the 3-Series and the driving engagement more muted. The C63 AMG offers a massive 469 horsepower from its 4.0L biturbo V8, but this sedan is clearly meant more for the Autobahn than Albertan highways. Plus the lack of a manual transmission in the range as well as a wagon model will have many looking elsewhere.
Porsche is a bit late to the sport sedan game, and its only offering, the Panamera, is a full size larger than the 3-Series. The base price is also larger, starting at an eye-watering $89,500 for a 310 horsepower V6 that at 6.3 seconds to 100kph, is outrun even by the base 328i. The interior is a step above its rival (as it should be, considering the price), but in order to get a Panamera that performs on the level of the M3 requires stepping into the Turbo model and its $161,500 price tag. The Turbo’s 520 horsepower turbocharged V8 outguns the BMW’s straight-six, but is it really worth more than twice the price?
Perhaps the pinnacle of everyday performance, these coupes offer their drivers sumptuous luxury along with blistering speed.
BMW and its 6-Series is a serious performance Grand Tourer with a cockpit filled to the brim with technology and leather, and an 445 horsepower V8 ready to whisk you to your destination with ease. A base price of $100,500 is actually quite affordable in this segment. The 6-Series is also available as a cabriolet for open-top fun or even a four-door Gran Coupe for those who want to bring their friends along for the ride. Serious drivers will prefer the M6 because of its monstrous 560 horsepower 4.4L twin-turbo V8, upgraded suspension, dual-clutch transmission, and carbon-ceramic brakes.
Mercedes recently unveiled its S-Class Coupe, which is the two-door version of its ubiquitous ultra-lux sedan. The Mercedes features some serious technology inside, as well as a pair of serious engines. Buyers can pick from 577 horsepower V8 or a 621 horsepower V12 for motivation, both are paired with AWD in order to put all that power to the ground. However, the S-Class Coupe is build more for straight-line speed than driving enjoyment, and its $151,300 entry price is quite steep.
Porsche and the 911 have been a household name for years, and with good reason. Its combination of performance, driving enjoyment, and luxury has proven hard to beat. A recent switch to a turbocharged 3.0L boxer engine may have given this Porsche a weak spot. While its 370 horsepower output is healthy, many have complained about a loss of throttle response and the classic Porsche wail. Not to mention you might be expecting more for your $102,200, especially given that the 911’s rear seats will only fit small children and the ‘frunk’ will only fit some light baggage.