The past few years have seen a strong increase in small SUV/Crossover popularity, so much so that these compact “off-roaders” have become some of the most popular cars on the market. Given the fact that both Mercedes and Porsche offer fiercely competitive cars from this segment, it’s only logical to square them off in a classic head-to-head matchup.
In the left corner stands the 4,350lbs Porsche Macan, an entry-level Porsche SUV that aims to satisfy the most demanding luxury crossover buyers out there. In the right corner, stands the Macan’s most competitive rival, the 3,977lbs Mercedes GLC that aims to undercut the Macan on price, but offer the very same levels of luxury excellence.
Even though the GLC is able to stand its own against the Macan, it is safe to say that the Macan is the undisputed luxury small SUV/crossover because it offers the best powertrains, the highest quality interior, the most dynamic driving experience, and a lustful Porsche badge.
The Macan does come with a price premium, but it is well worth it, especially when you consider that the Macan holds its value a lot better than all of its rivals.
2022 Porsche Macan – The best luxury compact SUV
The 2022 Porsche Macan starts at $54,900 and it offers a 2.0L inline 4-cylinder engine with 261hp that is not all that fitting for a Porsche badge. As such, upgrading to the $65,400 Macan S is well worth it because it offers a much more Porsche-like 2.9L twin-turbo V6 with 375hp. This very engine can be found with the new range-topping Macan GTS that costs $79,990 and it offers 434hp.
Porsche has decided to drop the Turbo model for the 2022 model year, but they are likely going to introduce a brand-new Macan T model soon. The Macan looks and feels like a true Porsche should which means that it looks and feels dynamic, upmarket, and extremely well-engineered.
It is safe to say that the Macan is a true Porsche and that it is not just a re-bodied Audi Q5. The moment you step inside the Macan, you will be greeted with a high-quality interior that might not be able to rival the GLC’s interior for design, but it destroys the GLC from the quality of materials aspect.
Reliability is also the strong suit of the Macan because it is a lot more reliable than the GLC. Furthermore, the Macan holds its value considerably better when compared to the GLC which means that the high entry price is indeed well worth it in the end.
2022 Mercedes GLC – The most popular compact luxury SUV
The allure of the three-pointed star is something hardly anyone can dispute and that is why the GLC is one of, if not the most popular compact luxury SUV on the market. The GLC range kicks off with the $43,850 GLC300 that offers a 2.0L inline 4-cylinder turbo with 255hp. You can upgrade to the 4MATIC AWD system for an additional $2,000.
The GLC300 is unable to rival any Porsche Macan model for performance besides the very entry-level one. If you want a GLC that is able to rival the Macan S and upwards, you will have to go through the $60,000+ AMG department, but only the range-topping $76.900-$84,500 GLC 63 non-S and S versions are worthy of comparison.
Design-wise, the GLC fits in perfectly with the Mercedes SUV lineup and it offers more cargo space than the Macan. Interior space is relatively similar and the interior design in the GLC seems more exciting, but the quality is nowhere near as good as in the Macan.
The GLC is available with more efficient engines, but the differences are rather marginal. It’s safe to say that the range-topping 4.0L BiTurbo V8 available with the GLC is the best engine option of them all, and the fact that the GLC is also available as a coupe certainly makes this comparison a lot more interesting.
Conclusion – The Macan is better
The difference in price between the Macan and the GLC is justifiable for a myriad of different reasons. Firstly, the Macan holds its value considerably better which means that after a few years of ownership, the price difference virtually vanishes.
Secondly, the Macan is a lot more dynamic, offers higher-quality materials, is available with faster engines, comes with AWD from the factory, and the Porsche PDK dual-clutch gearbox is the best one on the market. Space-wise, there is little between the two because the GLC offers more cargo room, while the Macan offers more seating space.
Reliability-wise, it’s a clear victory for the Macan is it is one of the most reliable cars from its segment while the GLC is mediocre. All in all, the Macan does seem like a level above the GLC.
Is the 2022 Porsche Macan more efficient than the Mercedes GLC?
No, it is not. The GLC engine range is more efficient throughout, but the range-topping 4.0L BiTurbo V8 is the thirstiest engine of the bunch. The two most comparable engines between the two are the 2.0L inline 4-cylinder turbo engines.
The 2.0L 4-cylinder in the GLC is rated at 22MPG in the city and 27MPG on the highway while the one in the Macan is rated at 19MPG in the city and 25MPG on the highway. These differences are not large enough for them to justify calling the GLC a truly more efficient car as the way you drive both of them is likely going to either emphasize that or make it redundant.
Does the 2022 Porsche Macan hold its value better than the Mercedes GLC?
According to a few credible online sources, the Porsche Macan is likely not going to lose more than 45-50% of its original value over the first five years of ownership while the Mercedes GLC is likely going to lose between 50% and 60% of its value.
This is enough to justify the price hike necessary to get into the Macan, especially because the Macan is worthy of its price tag.
Is Porsche better than Mercedes?
Germany is home to quite a few impressive luxury car brands such as Audi, BMW, Porsche, and Mercedes. However, it seems like Mercedes and Porsche are just a little bit more desirable when compared to the other two.
Between the two, Porsche makes superiorly engineered cars that can rival Mercedes for luxury, but not for technology. Mercedes is a better luxury brand while Porsche is the better sports car brand and the brand that makes higher quality cars overall.