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View Poll Results: Which One?
BMW 2 Active Tourer xDrive 6 60.00%
Mercedes Benz B-Class 4Matic 4 40.00%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 10. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 26.04.2018, 15:15
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Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

Shopping for the next car, which has to meet following criteria:

4WD - for those few times a year, when we get stuck at the ski parking
automatic - for my better half only drives those
compact - 4.3m is the sweet spot (we already have big family car)
well built
buying second-hand 2013 or newer

After a few test drives, pretty much everything else (Hondas, VWs, Hyundai, etc) was removed from the shopping list.

First-hand experiences most welcome! Thank you.
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Old 26.04.2018, 19:16
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

I've driven both (Merc B class as a rental and the 2 series x-drive as a courtesy car) and there wasn't much in it to be honest, I disliked them both Just looks wise I would go for a second hand BMW X1. I would recommend the X2 but thats a brand new model so still expensive on the used market.
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Old 27.04.2018, 00:17
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

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I've driven both (Merc B class as a rental and the 2 series x-drive as a courtesy car) and there wasn't much in it to be honest, I disliked them both Just looks wise I would go for a second hand BMW X1. I would recommend the X2 but thats a brand new model so still expensive on the used market.
Was one of the first considered, as it fits the bill + offers decent (adult) enter/seating in the back. My next-door neighbour dessuaded me (owns a 2012MY), complaining of multiple lingering problems (engine, software, gearbox, electrics, etc).

Any pointers how to chose correct year/model/flavor of the X1, so I could actually compare/consider in the current fold? Thanks!
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Old 27.04.2018, 08:48
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

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Was one of the first considered, as it fits the bill + offers decent (adult) enter/seating in the back. My next-door neighbour dessuaded me (owns a 2012MY), complaining of multiple lingering problems (engine, software, gearbox, electrics, etc).

Any pointers how to chose correct year/model/flavor of the X1, so I could actually compare/consider in the current fold? Thanks!
According to many reviews the first model X1 was an absolute dog but the 2nd (since 2016 I think) is much better. I know a few who own recent cars and they are all quite happy with it.
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Old 27.04.2018, 09:46
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

A quick look at comparis shows only 2 BWMs for 2013 - 2014.
Where as theres plenty of Mercs on the market.
I voted for the BMW basically on looks.

Personally I would go for a Subaru or Skoda at half the price and half the maintenance cost.
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Old 27.04.2018, 09:50
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

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Personally I would go for a Subaru or Skoda at half the price and half the maintenance cost.
I think VW is going to have an increasingly difficult time differentiating the VW brand. These Skoda's are really really good and keep on getting better. As a brand it was comparable to what is Dacia today, but no longer. I personally would go either for a Skoda or a Honda. The two Hondas we owned (for a total of 8 years) basically visited the garage only for tire changes.
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Old 27.04.2018, 09:53
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

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Was one of the first considered, as it fits the bill + offers decent (adult) enter/seating in the back. My next-door neighbour dessuaded me (owns a 2012MY), complaining of multiple lingering problems (engine, software, gearbox, electrics, etc).

Any pointers how to chose correct year/model/flavor of the X1, so I could actually compare/consider in the current fold? Thanks!
As baboon said the first gen wasn't that inspiring and was pretty ugly. The second gen looks like a shrunken X5/X3 and has much nicer proportions. Price wise you're looking at upwards of 25k for a 2016 model. With that you still have a year of dealer warranty, 8 years of free servicing (usually labour only) and the later edition of iDrive etc..

I tend to use Comparis to search cars as it accumulates results from all the car sites and has a handy Comparis Rating sort. Here is the search I ran for the X1
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Old 27.04.2018, 10:06
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

Go for a pre-facelift X1 with the straight six.
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Old 27.04.2018, 10:41
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

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According to many reviews the first model X1 was an absolute dog but the 2nd (since 2016 I think) is much better. I know a few who own recent cars and they are all quite happy with it.
The research I did since my neighbor complained (e.g. autobild) seems to echo this summary; the 2016MY in proper specs are steep...

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I think VW is going to have an increasingly difficult time differentiating the VW brand. These Skoda's are really really good and keep on getting better. As a brand it was comparable to what is Dacia today, but no longer. I personally would go either for a Skoda or a Honda. The two Hondas we owned (for a total of 8 years) basically visited the garage only for tire changes.
We (both wife and I) drove the *new* Honda Jazz and, in the words of Obi1Kenoby: "this is not the car I remember" - plasticky, rattling, oozing cheap corner-cutting assembly... The space-like HR-V has the back doors stolen of an escape pod or discounted bunker hatch - good luck getting in without bumping head or doing away with one ear...
Skoda? I love what they did reviving the brand and agree, VW is having tough time squeezing between the "upmarket" Audi and the ever-better Skoda. I particularly liked the Yeti 4x4 but distinctly remember that couple of years back, a colleague compained about the 4x4 not being a "true" 4x4 in reverse? Story goes that he parked into a sloped parking (front pointing downhill) and at shitty 15cm of fresh snow could not pull the car out of the parking as, in reverse gear, only the front wheels were engaged. Whether true or not, I do not wish to find out myself - let alone get a call from my wife picking up the kids from ski school "uhm, honey, the 4x4 is broken"

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As baboon said the first gen wasn't that inspiring and was pretty ugly. The second gen looks like a shrunken X5/X3 and has much nicer proportions. Price wise you're looking at upwards of 25k for a 2016 model. With that you still have a year of dealer warranty, 8 years of free servicing (usually labour only) and the later edition of iDrive etc..

I tend to use Comparis to search cars as it accumulates results from all the car sites and has a handy Comparis Rating sort. Here is the search I ran for the X1
Much obliged for the kind pointers - 20k is OK, 25k is swallable but 30k is tough to swallow; the 2016 X1 models I picked from your lineup with moderate specs (like not having the 3-cylinder petrol i18)... Phew. But you raise some good points: the remaining warranty and free labor are to be had in mind.

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Go for a pre-facelift X1 with the straight six.
I would have loved to go for a 4-cylinder, smaller/midrange engine (taxes, insurance, etc). Given it will move kids from home to ski/home to birthdays... not really needed. In practice, I would favor @castro's premium for warranty+service than bigger engine spending. Thank you for the suggestion, valuable to share the thinking and context. Cheers
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Old 27.04.2018, 15:45
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

Not sure if it falls in your budget but have a look at the BMW Active Tourer 225xe. It's a hybrid that can run only on leccy, 4 wheel drive and outruns all my cars to 100! (6.7s quoted..)
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Old 27.04.2018, 16:36
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

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Was one of the first considered, as it fits the bill + offers decent (adult) enter/seating in the back. My next-door neighbour dessuaded me (owns a 2012MY), complaining of multiple lingering problems (engine, software, gearbox, electrics, etc).

Any pointers how to chose correct year/model/flavor of the X1, so I could actually compare/consider in the current fold? Thanks!
I have, and am about to get rid of, a previous generation BMW X1 23d...tbh I wasn't overly thrilled when I got it but over time I found out what an underrated car it is...fully able all year around and plenty of bootspace etc. whilst being great to drive and hasn't put a single foot wrong in over 2-years of ownership (it was built in 2010).

The X-drive system can take some getting used to in the snow/ice as it's predominantly got a rear wheel bias hence takes a split-second to kick in. The engine is great, but given it's age it doesn't offer the best economy when compared to the current crop of turbo diesels (30mpg in town, 40ish highway)

I'm not overly bias towards BMW over Mercedes, but the BMW would be nicer to drive and has a less-fussy and better built interior; I was never a fan of those weird tablet screens in the Merc's either, not to mention the Command system which is fiddly vs iDrive or Audi's MMI.

One thing I notice unique to BMWs is that they seem to age much better than Mercedes, could be the fact their interiors/exteriors are pretty restrained...
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Old 27.04.2018, 17:30
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

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I think VW is going to have an increasingly difficult time differentiating the VW brand. These Skoda's are really really good and keep on getting better. As a brand it was comparable to what is Dacia today, but no longer. I personally would go either for a Skoda or a Honda. The two Hondas we owned (for a total of 8 years) basically visited the garage only for tire changes.
That's true, but the latest crop of VWs (Arteon, new Touareg etc) seem to now be displacing Audi so it's interesting to see what they do with the brands overall...
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Old 27.04.2018, 21:31
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

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That's true, but the latest crop of VWs (Arteon, new Touareg etc) seem to now be displacing Audi so it's interesting to see what they do with the brands overall...
The new Alltracks look nice and seem to get decent reviews. Just might get one someday.
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Old 29.04.2018, 20:58
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

Apparently, the 2 series (alongside the new X1) share a new 8speed automatic from Aisin (toyota/lexus/porsche/volvo among clients). Given that it is not a DCT, it might be tipping the scales a bit in fav of the beamer.

Unrelated to my search - it is impressive to see BMW diverge from the long history of ZF excellence and bravely exploring less popular (marketing wise) but likely equally robust and/or better parts suppliers... Me likey
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Old 30.04.2018, 11:03
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

The 2er has a safety flaw, namely the front balks:



at times it is hard to see a pedestrian/traffic coming from the left or right.
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Old 30.04.2018, 11:36
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

my inlaws recently bought a 2 series, the 7 seat M spec, been in it once and that was more then enough for me, its a mini with a different badge, very bland inside and out, no space AT ALL inside, the extra 2 seats are totally useless unless you're a legless dwarf.

so far its not given them any issues so maybe bmw have sorted all the issues they had with minis ??

personally I'd take the merc every time.
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Old 30.04.2018, 18:18
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

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The 2er has a safety flaw, namely the front balks:



at times it is hard to see a pedestrian/traffic coming from the left or right.
OK, this was a dagger to the heart... But you have a point; given the Mrs will be primary driver here, very very important... Ouch.

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my inlaws recently bought a 2 series, the 7 seat M spec, been in it once and that was more then enough for me, its a mini with a different badge, very bland inside and out, no space AT ALL inside, the extra 2 seats are totally useless unless you're a legless dwarf.

so far its not given them any issues so maybe bmw have sorted all the issues they had with minis ??

personally I'd take the merc every time.
The ultimate feedback - firsthand. I thank you, sir and take your words to heart. Cheers for chiming in!
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Old 01.05.2018, 13:50
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

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The 2er has a safety flaw, namely the front balks:



at times it is hard to see a pedestrian/traffic coming from the left or right.
I don't like mini-vans and suvs in general but I had a rental 2er for a week and overall I kinda liked it. However, those front columns really block your vision!
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Old 07.05.2018, 20:35
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

I have found peace - signed a Merc B 4matic today; paperwork+plates in process. Thank you to all kind members who helped along the way!
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Old 13.11.2019, 09:39
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Re: Mercedes B vs BMW 2 Active Tourer

Reviving this old thread.

We need to change our family car, and I was looking at used cars, in the 20-25k range. These 2 models seem like a good fit for us (and especially for my wife, who is opposing any car made by Skoda, Toyota, Opel, Kia, or any French car).

We drove the Active Tourer once during a holiday, and since then Mrs. wants it.
I don't like it that much because of poor visibility for the driver (caused by windshield pillar A).
We never drove the Mercedes B. From the reviews it seems to have nicer interior, but less fun than the BMW when driving it (not that it matters much, since we have 2 small kids, and we're more interested in a smooth drive than in a sporty one).

Thoughts, opinions?
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