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The concept of vehicular ad-hoc networks enables the design of emergent automotive safety applications, which are based on the awareness among vehicles. Recently, a suite of 802.11p/WAVE protocols aimed at supporting car-to-car communications was approved by IEEE. Existing cellular infrastructure and, above all 3GPP LTE, is being considered as another communication technology appropriate for vehicular applications. This letter provides a theoretical framework which compares the basic patterns of both the technologies in the context of safety-of-life vehicular scenarios. We present mathematical models for the evaluation of the considered protocols in terms of successful beacon delivery probability.