It’s a luxury sedan battle when the Mercedes-Benz C-Class stands up against the BMW 3 Series to give us a classic competition of luxury.
This classic matchup of compact luxury sedans dates back several car generations, giving us fun, elegance, performance, and prestige with each contest. The 2022 model year versions of these cars clash in a battle of will, driving prowess, and technology to decide which one is the car you should drive. Are you leaning toward the Merc with its sinfully seductive styling, or does the athleticism of the Beemer hold a special place in your heart?
A Quick Pro/Con List
BMW 3 Series
- Spectacular engines
- Ride/handling balance
- Quality interior
- Top models get pricey
- Manual only offered in the M3
- Acquired taste/dated style
- Classic shape
- Sensational cabin
- Augmented video navigation
- No six or eight-cylinder engines
- No coupe or cabrio
- Lack of air suspension
Which Luxury Sedan has a Better Powertrain Lineup?
You’ll find three powertrains offered for the BMW 3 Series models. The 330i uses a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine to give you 255 horsepower, while the 330e hybrid offers a turbocharged 2.0-liter engine plus an electric motor to return 288 horsepower for your drive. If you opt for the M340i, you’ll have the venerable inline six-cylinder engine that reaches 385 horsepower for your driving pleasure.
Only one powertrain makes its way to the engine bay of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class. This engine is new for 2022, and it’s a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that uses a mild-hybrid system to provide 275 horsepower. This is 20 additional horsepower compared to the 2021 version of the C-Class.
There’s no contest under the hood; the 3-Series clearly has more options for power and reaches a higher level of potency with two of the three engines offered.
Is One Car More Stylish than the Other?
The G20 generation of the 3 Series has been around the block a few times, signaling that it might be time for an upgrade. The latest version does have a smaller grille than previous models, giving this car more style and less of a dual nostril front face. The 2022 version doesn’t add any styling elements compared to the 2021 model.
New design features find their way to the C-Class to bring us a sporty, aggressive new look that makes you smile. This new appearance brings this car in line with the design of other Mercedes-Benz models, giving you the consistency you desire when you look at your luxury car.
The C-Class clearly wins the style competition with a new, sporty design and excellent luxury elegance.
Which Luxury Car Performs Better?
For many years, the BMW 3 Series has set the bar high in the performance and handling category. The 2022 model doesn’t intend to give up that crown, bringing plenty of athleticism and driving dynamics to every model. Every discussion about this car revolves around the handling, which is exceptional.
Don’t turn your back on the Mercedes-Benz C-Class and its performance. This car has won the favor of many drivers for its refined smoothness on any road. This car might not have the cornering ability of the BMW, but if you’re looking for a comfortable luxury car to drive, this is the one for you.
Both cars offer unique performance qualities that appeal to specific drivers. For athletic, corner-carving fun, the BMW is the right choice. When you want a smooth and comfortable drive, the Mercedes-Benz is the car for you.
What are the Interiors Like in These Cars?
BMW doesn’t go out of its way to add extra style where it’s not needed. The cabin area of the 3 Series contains high-quality materials, excellent finishes, and simple but stylish designs. The result is an attractive and functional cabin that fits the performance feeling of this luxury sedan.
The brand-new Mercedes-Benz takes style and futuristic tech and blends them well to give you an excellent cabin. This area has upscale materials, sleek and streamlined shapes, a large central touchscreen, and very few buttons. The design is smooth, uninterrupted, and sophisticated, which makes the C-Class a car you’ll love from the driver’s seat.
Unless you have an issue with clean lines and futuristic styling, you’ll want to choose the cabin of the Mercedes-Benz, which offers a look and feel that should last many years.
Does the BMW 3 Series or Mercedes-Benz C-Class have a Better Safety Package?
Although the BMW receives a safety rating of 5 stars from the NHTSA, that is for models equipped with every safety item available for this car. The only standard items are forward-collision warning and automatic emergency braking. The standard package for the Mercedes-Benz adds lane assist, pedestrian detection, and cruise control to the mix.
If you’re adding the warranty to the safety package or call it the confidence package, the BMW takes the lead. The 3 Series comes with three years of complimentary maintenance as part of the warranty plan; Mercedes-Benz doesn’t offer a maintenance plan with their warranty. Both cars have a standard warranty of four years/50,000 miles.
Do Both Cars Still Offer Performance Variants?
What would the BMW 3 Series be without the M3 in the lineup? The same goes for the Mercedes-Benz C-Class with the C63 and C43 models. These high-performance variations keep the house down with the fun and sporty driving qualities offered. You can get your driving thrills with either of these luxury performance cars.
Which Car Should You Drive?
The nagging question comes to roost, and you need to decide to buy either the Mercedes-Benz C-Class or the BMW 3 Series. If you’re ready for performance driving every time you hit the road, the BMW is the right choice for you. On the other hand, when you want a composed and sophisticated drive, you’ll want to select the Mercedes-Benz model. Both cars are excellent at what they do, but they also offer several differences that separate them when you’re comparing them together.
Will you choose the futuristic styling of the C-Class or the downright driven performance of the 3 Series?
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