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New BMW 320d F30 2012 vs Mercedes C 220 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY 2012

The goal for the new BMW 3 Series has clearly stated: it is to define the standard for the new middle class.

New BMW 320d F30 2012 vs Mercedes C 220 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY 2012

Bayern have looked closely at the competition and provided a new model from scratch on the wheels. Now the BMW 320d Color Your World and the first comparison test against the duration of rival Mercedes C 220 CDI show whether the work has paid off.


Promise the dimensions in the technical data - and the first impression is confirmed: The new 3 Series has its place. About nine inches in length and more outside the wheelbase stretched by five inches compared to its predecessor not only provide more freedom of movement over the last generation, but significantly exceed the available space, especially the C-Class.

This applies to the driver and front passenger, but especially for the rear passengers. While the Mercedes head and knees of the passengers going to rush contact with roof and front seats, the BMW crew was pleased with the airy space utilization. Also, the trunk volume is now greater than that of the C-Class. And thanks to three-piece fold-down seats reaps the BMW 3 Series a more direct counter. 

Standard on the 3 Series is the easy-grip, logical grouping of controls. The menu structure of the complex iDrive system is also designed intuitively pleasing. The Mercedes, however, the functions are distributed on the activated via steering wheel buttons control display in the speedometer and the controllable from the central knob Comand system in addition to the round gauges. Exemplary is the safety equipment that offers the Mercedes C-Class customers. It ranks almost at the level of luxury.

Even if BMW has rapidly gained ground here, the 3 Series, the still not available in the rear side airbags cost important points. Even when working with the Stuttgart is so fast no one front. When Mercedes is in contrast to the BMW also the plate in the engine and painted in the trunk nicely. In addition, the Munich bother the hard plastic surface above the ashtray, which is touched every time you open with your fingernail and tarnishes the otherwise noble impression.


But not only processing of the Stuttgart carmaker understand something. The comfort is also one of the core competencies of the brand - the same goes for the Mercedes C-Class. The suspension tuning can be confidently described as skillfully. The passive adaptive damping to cope with properly chosen spring rate each task.

They speak highly sensitive to all the edges and transverse joints in the asphalt and see the same degree on rough bumps.

It is this characteristic has distanced the C-Class in the history of BMW. But Bayern have refills. Even if the cost of the switch driving experience (1,100 €) controllable adaptive damper on the new BMW 3 Series extra, they do their job well.

It likes the comfort of configuration as well as position the sport, which also equalizes gross IMPERFECTIONS. However, the BMW talks because of its larger 18-inch wheels (1,550 €) is not quite as sensitive to and is under full load in comfort mode more than in the knee with ample reserves equipped C-Class.

When the action was hardly sitting at BMW. However, the spoil sport seats (630 €) of the new generation with a higher and better contoured backrest. The multi-contour seats (512 €) of the Mercedes do offer a good comfort, turn out to be significantly smaller. 

A full six inches longer, the rest of the BMW 320d, and the retractable seat offers four more inches of leg rest. Nevertheless, the comfort chapter in Mercedes-hand. Not least because of the new BMW 3 Series in contrast to the C-Class more pleasantly quiet wind and tire noise produced.

Engine and transmission

Although BMW has devoted much later, the diesel principle, include the drives with self-ignition of Bavarian production of the best on the market. This is true no ifs and buts for the two-liter turbo diesel with 184 hp in the 320i. Few other works in diesel so pleasurable approach from the revs up to redline.

With the new ZF eight-speed automatic, which is extremely safe, gentle and above all, quickly providing the right translation, which is now even better. Right here loses the beefy turbo diesel Mercedes, because the very smooth seven-speed automatic, the gear changes sometimes a little slow to implement.

There is no question that the addition 14 hp stronger at the BMW performance in the lead. But not only there. The consumption is low with 6.4 liters per 100 km. The Mercedes of offers but also the seven-liter mark, but still requires 0.4 liters more. Thus the first chapter of victory goes to the new middle class of Bavaria.


Although closely related to the BMW 3 Series for new suspension comfort to the Mercedes C-Class has moved, the new generation has lost none of the agility of the detached series. Quite the contrary: The BMW 320d sets the bar a little higher. For the Mercedes C 220 CDI, at least it is too high. Although the C-Class after the facelift gained momentum, it depends on the new BMW 3 Series at will.

Where the Mercedes reveals its limit with the onset of understeer, followed by the BMW effortlessly perfect as if on rails. Trims can now drive, chassis, and variable steering (450 €) per switch driving experience (Series) on sport, the BMW 3 Series emphasizes the traditional values ​​of the dynamic brand to perfection. The adaptive suspension (1.100 €) already includes a lowering by four inches, the center of gravity compared to the C 220 CDI lowers (1,620 kg) very light 320d (1,540 kg) again.

Free to view the electro-mechanical steering with variable ratio acts with impressive precision. The chassis is any command to directly and accurately. The limit is reached, pressing the tail slightly outward - from the sovereign DSC (ESP) regulates and controls not exaggerated. The Mercedes, however prevents the premature control activity because its dynamic talents to better set the scene. The shorter braking distances and the soulful sound of the brake metering system compared to the C-class round out the good impression of the BMW 320d.

Environment and cost

The new BMW is certainly not a cheap car. But at least it costs about 1,500 euros less than the Mercedes C 220 CDI. There remains room for additional equipment. Even the loss of value to the new 3 Series, according to DAT perform better prognosis. In addition, take the cheaper shop and fuel costs to the fact that the 320d of this chapter is almost entirely to their credit - even though the show Mercedes can lower insurance premiums and better scores with the warranty conditions.


In the years of head-to-head battle of two German mid-size sedans from BMW and Mercedes, the new 3 Series is currently in the lead. First, it makes successful penetrating comfort, ample space and an extensive safety equipment deep into the territory of the Mercedes C-class. On the other hand BMW is building the superiority in driving dynamics even further.

The package is supplemented by a powerful yet economical engine, complemented by a better balance of the cost. Against the new Bavaria, has not only beaten Mercedes. Even with competition from Ingolstadt and Wolfsburg would bring the three sleepless nights in the future. 

Author: Lucian Dumitrescu
Source: Autoaltest & AZ



Test efectuat la: 14.03.2012 | 12:00 EET


Test efectuat la: 14.03.2012 | 12:00 EET

  Serie 3Classe C
DISPLACEMENT (cmc)19952145
MAX POWER(hp/rpm)184/4000163/3000
WIDTH C(mm)18111770
MASS EMPTY (kg)15051510
PERFORMANTE V Max (km/h)230231
0-100 km/h (secunde)7.68.1
Average Fuel Consumption (liters)4.64.8
PRET Without taxes (euro)--
With taxes (euro)--
CAROSERIE Inside Space910
Quality of materials910
Standard Equipement77
Trunk Space89
CONFORT Confort810
Seats front/rear10/810/9
Air Conditioning Quality1010
DINAMICA Engine Rafinement910
80-120 km/h109
Fuel Consumption109

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Ultimul test efectuat la: 27.03.2016 | 12:00 EET

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