Which One is Better? A Mercedes or a BMW? Find Out Here
Luxury cars are an experience unto themselves, and when you’re looking for the most luxurious, sophisticated, upscale driving experience that you can find, one familiar adage is to “go German.” At least, that’s what the whole BMW-versus-Mercedes marketing campaign would have you believe.
Both automakers have been around for ages, allowing both to build a reputation for excellence, attention to detail, and a firm commitment to quality. Because of this vaunted history, both have built up a reputation for a high-class transportation experience, and their names have become synonymous with “must-have” for any luxury car owner.
Truth be told, they’ve each developed their own legion of fans.
However, if you’re in the market for an upscale vehicle, and class is king, which luxury car brand is the best? Should you aim for a BMW, with its agile road-handling and excellent ergonomics? Or should you go for the Mercedes-Benz, with its long-running obsession with sensuous comfort?
Let’s dive into the details here.
BMW or Mercedes: How are They the Same?
Before we delve into the specifics of each brand, it’s important to note several similarities between the two exist. Additionally, when it comes to these resemblances, both automakers shine like gold.
For self-explanatory reasons, both automakers have noticed the same things sell well: specifically, a smooth ride, excellent seating, and high-end materials to detail the body of each of their cars.
Both BMW and Mercedes-Benz have proven to be top-of-the-line options in this niche car market, and both have put a heavy emphasis on interior design and comfort overall.
They also owe this success in their respective markets to their forward-thinking approach to auto-inspired technology.
Each automaker has a vast collection of incredibly safe vehicles, with Mercedes-Benz being a standout in this arena. Although BMW has received high scores for their vehicles’ road handling, Mercedes’ PRE SAFE technology puts it a step above the rest.
New Updates, Features, and Electric Vehicles
Continuing their quest to provide the luxury car market with all their needs, both BMW and Mercedes-Benz have produced a slew of high-end updates for their newer car models.
For BMW, the focus has centered on technology, especially the kind that makes your car more efficient. The brand is well known for their sports cars and SUVs. Still, it's equally well-known for its electric vehicles, gaining popularity in recent years.
BMW's I-Series is the brand's electric lineup, with the original BMW i3 debuting in 2013. Since then, they've continued to build upon the line and improve it. Their other vehicles are nothing to sneer at, either, with the BMW 3-Series and the BMW-5 Series also receiving praise.
For Mercedes-Benz, the automaker has always been known for their commitment to sophistication and sheer presence on the road. That's reflected in their physical lineup of vehicles. Recent upgrades to their newer models included a complete redesign of the 2020 Mercedes-Benz CLA, which now comes with the option to upgrade to an AMG engine, among other features. The 2020 GLC received an upgrade to its infotainment systems. To compete with BMW, Mercedes has also increased its options for electric cars.
Among the newer environmentally conscious lineup is the all-electric EQC, which is slated to hit the market in 2021.
Mercedes-Benz vs. BMW: Tech and Interior Features
Now, if you’re thinking, “luxury cars mean luxury interior,” then you would be right. In this area, both brands deliver indeed. They just deliver on different things.
With BMW, you’re looking at an automaker that puts its primary focus on functional, streamlined interiors that improve the overall driving experience. Newer models feature the iDrive system, which can oversee a wide array of your vehicle’s functions.
Mercedes-Benz takes this marriage of interior luxury and technological advancements even further. Most of its cars feature leather seats and wood finishing. Instead of the iDrive system, Mercedes-Benz uses the M-Brace to control a vehicle’s operations through a smartphone.
Our verdict on BMW versus Mercedes? Both are technologically savvy and exude exquisiteness on the inside. Still, Mercedes usually pumps more money into its interior design while BMW focuses on a ride’s efficiency and comfort.
Is Mercedes Better than BMW for Fuel Economy?
For engine power and fuel economy, neither of these luxury car brands are slouches: the one that works for you depends on the sort of driving you're most likely to do. It can also depend on how environmentally friendly you want your ride to be.
For BMW, expect decent fuel economy. That's because BMW's vehicles often have a smaller, lightweight engine in comparison to the Mercedes-Benz. Overall, this also means BMWs run lighter and cleaner, with their reduced weight allowing them to take the curves on the road more quickly.
For Mercedes, you have cars that run more powerfully. Mercedes hardware is more extensive and heavier, too. While this gets the vehicles going faster, the engines can definitely gulp the gas due to their size. Their weight means they take the corners less smoothly.
That said, if having a high-performance engine is what you want, this shouldn't be a concern.
What’s More Expensive? BMW or Mercedes?
With luxury cars, it should come as no surprise that a luxury price tag is attached. Both BMW and Mercedes-Benz are considered specialty items, and their car parts are not as commonly carried as some other mass-market vehicles. That makes them more expensive to repair.
The individuals who fix these cars also have a specialized skill set, meaning bodywork repairs may incur a higher price. Both of these vehicles will cost more to insure, too. However, insurance prices can differ radically based on your age, gender, and location, so it’s not always a deal-breaker.
That said, both BMW and Mercedes build their cars with specialized components that are designed to last, which may cut down on how many times you need to go in for repairs. You can also find earlier models for sale, vastly reducing your upfront purchase costs.
For example, this list of the most reliable used cars can give you an excellent ballpark idea of the price of earlier-model vehicles.
At Shift, where the focus is on these kinds of offers, you can also buy a BMW or a Mercedes-Benz from the luxury of your home, fully aware that it has no hidden issues from their 150-point inspection. Additionally, you get a fair, up-front price on the car. It’s the perfect combination of both worlds and definitely a deal to watch.
Buy a BMW or Mercedes Today
Now that we’ve gone through the two-car brands in-depth, we need to ask which is better: BMW or Mercedes? Frankly, both are excellent, and while they outclass each other in specific categories, it isn’t by much.
If you want something sporty and modern in its innovations, go for a BMW. If you want something that’s as elegant as stylish, Mercedes-Benz is your choice. Either way, both carmakers will provide you with an excellent experience. If you want to read more, check out how much a Mercedes-Benz is and all you need to know about these premium vehicles.
The views expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of the author or Shift Technologies, Inc. Shift does not endorse or evaluate the accuracy of any claims made or data provided by third party sources referenced herein.
This article is for informational and educational purposes only and may contain copyrighted material, the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our effort to advance auto education. We believe this constitutes "fair use" of any such copyrighted materials as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law. The material in this [article/blog/website] is distributed without profit and only to those who have demonstrated an interest in receiving the included information for research or educational purposes.
All prices are based on vehicle availability and pricing as of
September 24, 2021
Pricing shown is not guaranteed and does not include taxes or other product fees.