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Compare the2022 BMW Z4VS 2021 Mercedes AMG C-Class Cabriolet

2022 BMW Z4
2021 Mercedes AMG C-Class Cabriolet

Safety

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The Z4 has standard Post-Crash Braking, which automatically apply the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The AMG C-Class Cabriolet doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

Both the Z4 and the AMG C-Class Cabriolet have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, driver alert monitors, available lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty

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The Z4’s corrosion warranty is 7 years longer than the AMG C-Class Cabriolet’s (12 vs. 5 years).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the Z4 for 3 years and 36,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Mercedes doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the AMG C-Class Cabriolet.

Reliability

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J.D. Power and Associates’ 2020 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that BMW vehicles are better in initial quality than Mercedes vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 18th in initial quality. With 26 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 30th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2021 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Mercedes vehicles. J.D. Power ranks BMW 10th in reliability, above the industry average. With 14 more problems per 100 vehicles, Mercedes is ranked 15th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ January 2021 Auto Issue reports that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Mercedes vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks BMW 8 places higher in reliability than Mercedes.

Engine

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As tested in Car and Driver the Z4 M40i 3.0 turbo 6-cylinder is faster than the AMG C 63 S Cabriolet 4.0 turbo V8:

Z4

AMG C-Class Cabriolet

Zero to 60 MPH

3.8 sec

3.9 sec

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the Z4 gets better mileage than the AMG C-Class Cabriolet:

MPG

Z4

2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

25 city/32 hwy

3.0 turbo 6-cyl.

22 city/29 hwy

AMG C-Class Cabriolet

RWD

63 Cabriolet 4.0 turbo V8

17 city/25 hwy

63 S Cabriolet 4.0 turbo V8

17 city/25 hwy

AWD

3.0 turbo V6

19 city/27 hwy

Regenerative brakes improve the Z4’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The AMG C-Class Cabriolet doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

Brakes and Stopping

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The Z4 stops shorter than the AMG C-Class Cabriolet:

Z4

AMG C-Class Cabriolet

70 to 0 MPH

146 feet

155 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction and acceleration, the Z4 has larger standard rear tires than the AMG C-Class Cabriolet (255/40R18 vs. 245/40R18).

Suspension and Handling

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For better handling and stability, the average track (width between the wheels) on the Z4 is 1 inch wider in the rear than the average track on the AMG C-Class Cabriolet.

The Z4’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (49.9% to 50.1%) than the AMG C-Class Cabriolet’s (53.5% to 46.5%). This gives the Z4 more stable handling and braking.

The Z4 M40i handles at 1.02 G’s, while the AMG C 63 S Cabriolet pulls only .97 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

For better maneuverability, the Z4’s turning circle is 1.1 feet tighter than the AMG C 63 Cabriolet’s (36 feet vs. 37.1 feet). The Z4’s turning circle is 2.4 feet tighter than the AMG C 43 Cabriolet’s (36 feet vs. 38.4 feet).

Chassis

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The BMW Z4 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 800 to 950 pounds less than the Mercedes AMG C-Class Cabriolet.

The Z4 is 1 foot, 2.1 inches shorter than the AMG C 43 Cabriolet, making the Z4 easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The design of the BMW Z4 amounts to more than styling. The Z4 offers aerodynamic coefficients of drag from .29 to .31 Cd (depending on bodystyle and options). That is lower than the AMG C-Class Cabriolet (.32 to .35) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the Z4 get better fuel mileage.

Passenger Space

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The Z4 has .1 inches more front headroom and .2 inches more front legroom than the AMG C-Class Cabriolet.

Cargo Capacity

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The Z4 has a much larger trunk with its top down than the AMG C-Class Cabriolet with its top down (9.9 vs. 7 cubic feet). The Z4 has a much larger trunk than the AMG C-Class Cabriolet with its top up (9.9 vs. 8.8 cubic feet).

Ergonomics

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On extremely cold winter days, the Z4’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The AMG C-Class Cabriolet doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

Economic Advantages

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Insurance will cost less for the Z4 owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Z4 will cost $3820 to $8335 less than the AMG C-Class Cabriolet over a five-year period.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the BMW Z4 will be $23289 to $24226 less than for the Mercedes AMG C-Class Cabriolet.

Recommendations

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Consumer Reports® recommends both the BMW Z4 and the Mercedes AMG C-Class Cabriolet, based on reliability, safety and performance.

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