Luxury cars – a class comprised in significant proportion of large traditional limousine saloons with one or two oversized hatchbacks and demure SUVs included – are the cars in which high-end executives choose either to drive or to be driven in.
That means they need to offer outstanding comfort both in the front and back seats, a silky smooth ride, excellent drivability and refinement, ample performance – and they must also serve as better status symbols than most things on four wheels. High levels of in-car technology and infotainment are a must, and connectivity systems that will allow such machines to be used as mobile offices are increasingly important.
This list takes in cars that are both incredibly comfortable, great to drive and great to be driven in; and the ones at the top of our rankings are capable of more besides. For our super luxury top ten, meanwhile, where you’ll find the even pricier Rolls-Royces, Bentleys and Mercedes-Maybachs of this world, click this way.
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The current, fourth-generationRange Rover is as revolutionary as any in the car’s history, with an aluminium monocoque chassis and an unashamedly luxurious agenda. Its imperious driving position, superlative luxuriousness and enduringly special cabin make it our top pick in this sub-£100,000 luxury car category.
That it is a luxury car first and 4x4 second is not to run down its capability offroad one jot, however. The spacious interior exudes quality and luxury, the seats are excellent and the driving position is first-rate, making it easy to drive for a car of its size. The heavy bodyshell provides excellent isolation from rough surfaces and, while it doesn’t offer the driving engagement of a Porsche Cayenne, it’s easy to make brisk progress enjoyable should the need arise; because just about any rate of progress feels special in a Range Rover.
Land Rover's engine range still includes six- and eight-cylinder petrol and diesel options, without a weak or under-endowed-feeling option among them. Solihull’s lately-added straight-six diesel engines ought to be a real draw for private motorists, but the one fleet operators will be interested in is the plug-in hybrid P400e (77g/km, 25 miles EV range) which qualifies for company car tax at just 19% BIK.
The Range Rover is big and heavy but its weight and size are small prices to pay for a car of its incredible breadth of ability. Few make you feel as special to ride in, none has better visibility or a more commanding or assured driving position, and very few put a better complexion on your day.