Not to be outmatched by Volkswagen, BMW too have launched four brand new models at a launch last week. There was the X4 M Competition which is an absolute beast that can reach 100 km/h from rest in 4.1 seconds, the exquisite and expensive M8 Coupe and Gran Coupe, and finally our star, the X3 M Competition.
The BMW X3 M Competition is the Bavarian’s latest performance SUV, competing against the Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 and the Porsche Macan. But we’re going to focus this battle as a 2-way battle between the two eternal rivals, so sorry you’re not invited for this round, Porsche.
Let’s start this short and quick comparison with the price. Both the X3 M Competition and GLC 63 are fully imported and are priced very closely. The X3 M Competition starts at RM 886,551 while the GLC 63 S starts at RM 884,542. Both prices are on-the-road excluding insurance and are exempted from SST which is valid until 31 December 2020.
The GLC 63 S is RM 2,009 cheaper than the X3 M Competition but interestingly both SUVs have the same horsepower – 510 PS. That lower price is probably due to the local GLC 63 S being a pre-facelift model.
But that’s where the similarities end. The engine size for the X3 M Competition is smaller than the GLC 63 S – a 3.0-litre twin-turbocharged S58 straight-six engine compared to a 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged M177 V8.
Both SUVs are all-wheel drive but the GLC 63 S trumps the X3 M Competition in both torque (700 Nm to 600 Nm) and the number of gears (9-speed to 8-speed).
Then there are the numbers that matter in a performance SUV. The X3 M Competition does 0-100 km/h in 4.1 seconds and top speed is limited to 250 km/h. Meanwhile, the quicker and slightly cheaper GLC 63 S does the century sprint from rest in 3.8 seconds and top speed is limited to 270 km/h.
Both German performance SUVs are adequately packed with features. Well, if you are paying nearly a million ringgit for a car, you’ve got to expect the best.
In terms of infotainment, the X3 M Competition comes equipped with a larger 10.25-inch screen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support. It even comes with Harmon Kardon surround sound system which is connected to 16 speakers.
The GLC 63 S on the other hand has an 8.4-inch touchscreen set-up with Burmester surround system connected to 13 speakers.
Safety-wise, both performance SUVs come with ADAS including autonomous braking, front collision warning, active cruise control, lane-departure warning, and a 360-degree camera.
What it comes down to in the end is whether you’re into Beemers or Mercs. Both the X3 M Competition and GLC 63 S are very similar in price and very similar in power output.
The GLC 63 S has a very stately and exclusive aura around it – fitting of the three-star badge. The X3 M Competition on the other hand, gives off a performance vibe even though it loses out to the GLC 63 S on paper.