1. Who are we comparing?
Its Merc C-Class vs BMW 3-Series vs Audi A4!
Variants: C220 CDI Diesel, BMW 320D Diesel and the A4 2.0 TDI Diesel.
Red – no points.“
2. How heavy on Pockets?
The brand new C220 CDI costs Rs 39.9 lacs making it the highest out of its competition. The 3-series and the A4 are similarly priced at 35.9 and 36.4 lacs respectively.
3. Power, Engine volume, torque and transmission?
All three vehicles are powered by 2 liter, 4 valve turbocharged engines with fully automatic transmission. The C220 has the least power for the same engine displacement yet with highest torque figures out of the three.
BMW churns out an unparalleled 184 bhp with the A4 trailing behind at 174 bhp. The Merc flats out at 167 bhp. The Merc belts out 400 NM of torque which beats the BMW and A4 which are rated at 380 NM each.
Except the A4, the other cars are Rear wheel drives. A4 and BMW sport 8 speed automatic transmission while the C-Class is equipped with 7 speed automatic shifting.
4. Standard Features
All three saloons come with heavy-duty standard fittings. A comprehensive list includes the following standard fitments –
Power steering, Power windows front and rear, Automatic climate control, Air Quality control, Remote trunk opener, Remote fuel lid opener, Low fuel warning light, Accessory power outlet, Trunk light, Vanity mirror, Rear reading lamp, Rear seat headrest, Rear seat center arm rest, Height adjustable front seat belts, Cup holders (front and rear), Rear A/C vents, Alloy wheels, Rain sensing wipers, fog lights, multi-function steering, smart access card entry, engine start/stop button and fully functional Bluetooth connectivity and USB support.
The cars are not equipped with heated seating as they’re not much of a requirement in Indian weather conditions. Also, only the C-class is equipped with a fold-able tray for passengers in the back seat.
0-100 kms/hr dash is a tough job with the contenders almost abreast until the end. However the C-Class hits 100 kms/hr in 7.4 seconds closely followed by the BMW o.2 second behind and finally the A4 arriving at the mark in 7.9 seconds.
The highest Top speeds is a tie between the BMW and C-class at 235 kms/hr. The A4 touches 222 at it’s top.
6. Economy – Fuel Consumption; city and highway
The C-Class flounders in this round with an appalling figure of 8.3 kmpl while the A4 and BMW return 13 and 14.5 kmpl respectively in city driving. One the highway, these figures go up by +4.0 kmpl for the A4 and BMW and by +3.0 for the C-class clearly indicating its non-economic performance.
The fuel tank capacity of the C220, BMW and A4 are 66, 60 and 63 liters respectively.
7. Safety – All that you pay for
All three vehicles are equipped with Anti-lock Braking system or ABS, braking assist, power door locks, central locking and child lock. They also come equipped with both driver and passenger air-bags to minimize casualties in case of a mishap.
Surprisingly, the door ajar warning is missing in the A4 and even more surprisingly the C220 lacks the traction control feature, anti-theft device and the engine check warning that exists in the A4 and BMW. Some crucial if not critical features seem to be missing for the price one pays in buying a Mercedes C220 CDI.
C-Class wins with its super classy looks. BMW appears more sporty, while the A4 is simple and elegant.
9. Who wins?
BMW 14; A4 11; C-Class 10
The BMW is an all-rounder ride which wins the competition with a decent margin. The A4 and the C-Class end in a close squabble with A4 winning marginally. The Mercedes loses out on economy, money and power while the A4 compensates its losses with a sturdier build and more space along with features for the money you pay. But the BMW has got it all.