Top 10 Luxury Cars in America
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UPDATED: Jul 23, 2019
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If you’re in the market for a luxury car, you can expect to have it all in terms of performance and comfort. However, some cars are a bit stronger in one category or another, and some automakers have added unique features to set their vehicles apart from the pack.
Read this review to explore the highlights of the top 10 most luxurious cars available in America today.
Need a vehicle more within your budget – check out our list of the Top Best selling cars in the USA
#1: 2010 Porsche Panamera
With an MSRP starting at $89,800, the 4-door Porsche Panamera’s combination of luxury and performance has awed reviewers. It can accelerate from zero to 60 mph in less than five seconds, and the turbocharged version can accomplish this feat in four seconds.
Reviewers from Edmunds wrote that the car’s handling is “light-years” beyond any other 4-door sedan, and the opulent interior is “truly gorgeous,” according to Motor Trend. One drawback of this model, according to U.S. News and World Report, is that the dashboard controls can initially seem daunting.
The average cost of car insurance for the Porsche Panamera is around $2,550 a year or $212.50 a month for good drivers.
#2: 2010 Lexus LS
The Lexus LS is the only non-European car to make U.S. News and World Report’s top-10 list, but its place is well-deserved. With a starting MSRP of $65,380, critics like New Car Test Drive note that its sumptuous interior is the “near-ultimate” among luxury cars, and Consumer Guide lauds the elegant simplicity of its control interface.
Although it does not rival the power of its European counterparts, its 4.6-liter V8 engine places it solidly in the luxury category. This vehicle also features an optional Mark Levinson sound system, which is generally considered the best available in the luxury class.
The average cost of car insurance for the Lexus LS is around $2,230 a year or $185 a month for good drivers.
#3: 2010 Mercedes-Benz S-Class
Drivers of the Mercedes-Benz S-Class, which starts at $87,950, can select a V8 engine or twin-turbo V12 engine, which delivers performance comparable to that of a luxury sports car.
Although federal and insurance industry organizations do not typically rate high-end luxury vehicles, U.S. News and World Report states that the S-Class has the most advanced safety features of any luxury car, including a driver drowsiness monitor.
On the downside, Consumer Guide and Edmunds both note that the car’s user interface is painfully complex.
The average cost of car insurance for the Mercedes-Benz S-Class is around $2,400 a year or $200 a month for good drivers.
#4: 2010 BMW 7-Series
With an MSRP starting at $82,000, the BMW 7 Series is critically noted for its smooth lines, superior performance and Driving Dynamics Control System, which allows the driver to adjust the suspension and steering settings to match the amount of performance required.
Automobile Magazine and other reviewers have applauded the sleek new exterior design as a massive improvement over the previous generation, and Car and Driver notes that the interior styling has been upgraded as well, and the new iDrive interior control system is much more user-friendly than previous iterations.
The average cost of car insurance for the BMW 7 Series is around $2,650 a year or $221 a month for good drivers.
#5: 2010 Mercedes-Benz S-Class Hybrid
The second Mercedes-Benz S-Class on the list, this gas-electric hybrid is the most fuel efficient vehicle in its class. It gets up to 19 miles per gallon in the city and 26 miles per gallon on the highway, and although it can’t compete with its gasoline-powered cousins in terms of performance, its V6 engine provides a respectable 295 horsepower, which is exceptional for a hybrid.
Despite having less horsepower than other vehicles in its class, Motor Trend describes the car’s acceleration as “liquidy-smooth,” and estimates that it can reach 60 mph in 7.1 seconds.
The average cost of car insurance for the Mercedes-Benz S-Class Hybrid is around $2,240 a year or $187 a month for good drivers.
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#6: 2010 Lexus LS Hybrid
With a suggested retail price of $108,800, this hybrid exceeds the sticker price of its #2-ranked, gas-powered cousin by about $40,000, and its overall fuel efficiency of (20/22mpg) is slightly lower than that offered by the #5-ranked Mercedes-Benz S-Class Hybrid.
This car is designed to be a “no-compromise” hybrid that offers green technology coupled with red-meat performance.
In this sense, this hybrid delivers, with a V8 engine and electric motor combining to produce 438 horsepower, more than 100 hp above that offered by the Mercedes hybrid. For drivers who want to go green without sacrificing performance, this car is a top pick.
The average cost of car insurance for the Lexus LS Hybrid is around $2,700 a year or $225 a month for good drivers.
#7: 2010 Mercedes-Benz CLS
If your primary concern in owning a luxury vehicle is exterior styling, the Mercedes-Benz CLS is the car for you. Although its styling creates an unreasonably cramped back seat and trunk, drivers flock to this car because it is, as Automobile Magazine puts it, a “sex object.” Car and Driver raves about the CLS’ “true beauty.”
Beauty comes with a price though, and in this case, that price starts at about $72,400. Although this vehicle does not rival its higher-ranked peers in terms of performance and interior decadence, reviewers don’t for a moment question its qualifications as a super-luxury vehicle.
According to Car and Driver, it “goes as good as it looks,” and the interior is “richly appointed,” says Forbes.
The average cost of car insurance for the Mercedes Benz CLS is around $2,260 a year or $188 a month for good drivers.
#8: 2010 Audi A8
Starting at $74,550, the Audi A8 is among the lower-priced vehicles in the super-luxury class. U.S. News and World Report lauds the A8 for having one of the “finest interiors” in the luxury class, with genuine wood and Valcona leather, as well as an electronics interface that is more intuitive than most.
It features Audi’s signature Quattro All-Wheel-Drive, and precise handling that sets it apart from its rivals. If you’re looking for power, though, the A8 is not the car for you. It comes with only one standard engine option, a 4.2 liter V8, which produces 350 horsepower.
While this is still a high-performing automobile, these numbers place the A8 near the bottom of the luxury class, below even the hybrids.
The average cost of car insurance for the Audi A8 is around $2,050 a year or $171 a month for good drivers.
#9: 2011 Jaguar XJ
The 2011 Jaguar XJ has a lot to make up for. Sales of previous super-luxury Jaguar models have lagged behind competitors due to outdated styling and a poor reputation for reliability.
The new 2011 Jaguar XJ, with an MSRP starting at $72,500, definitely addresses concerns about styling, with a new look that is both “rakish” and “sultry,” according to U.S. News and World Report.
The 5.0 liter V8 engine delivers 385 horsepower that does not rival most other super-luxury cars, but a Motor Trend reporter lauded the vehicle’s ability to handle high speeds and quick acceleration effortlessly. If 385 horsepower just won’t do it for you, the Jaguar XJ can be upgraded with a turbocharged 470 or 520 horsepower engine.
The average cost of car insurance for the Jaguar XJ is around $2,450 a year or $204 a month for good drivers.
#10: 2011 Fisker Karma (Unreleased)
The Fisker Karma is a super-luxurious electric car scheduled to be released in late 2011. The basic model is expected to retail for $95,500, and although it is a 4-door sedan, its outward appearance evokes that of a sports car.
The Karma’s electric power comes from Quantum Technologies’ Q-Drive system, and the vehicle is expected to have an all-electric range of about 50 miles.
Its top speed is expected to be 125 mph, and it will accelerate from zero to 60 mph in approximately six seconds. Lithium-ion batteries will be recharged by its solar-powered roof, which will also regulate the car’s internal climate.
The average cost of car insurance for the Fisker Karma has not yet been published since the car is still not released but we would expect this vehicle to have average auto insurance rates around $2,700 annually for most good drivers.
Conclusion: Best of the Best?
Reviewers like Motor Trend and Car and Driver emphasize that every vehicle in this class is exceptional. However, if performance is your priority, your best bets in the luxury class will be the Porsche Panamera, the BMW 7 Series or the turbocharged Mercedes-Benz S-Class.
These vehicles all rank at least 9.3 out of 10 on U.S. News and World Report’s rating scale for overall performance.
In terms of pure interior decadence, all of these vehicles ranked very close together (between 8.8 and 9.0), with the exception of the Panamera, which scored a 9.6. The Panamera is the clear front-runner in the super-luxury category, but every car on this list delivers an inspired driving experience.
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