Aston Martin Rapide S – Base Price $198,250
Freshly redesigned for the 2014 model year, the four-door Aston Martin comes to market with even more speed, beauty, and grace. It also delivers a level of handcrafted luxury few other cars (read cars not on this list) can approach. Consider this; the grille of the Aston Martin Rapide S is honed from a single piece of aluminum—by hand. Similarly, the interior is entirely crafted and installed by hand, employing only the finest materials imaginable. The hand assembled V12 engine displaces 6.0-liters, produces 550 horsepower, 457 ft-lbs of torque, and a delightfully scintillating top speed of 203 mph.
Audi A8 L W12 – Base Price $137,900
A rolling paragon of technological achievement, the body of Audi’s all-wheel drive flagship is crafted of aluminum—as is its space frame. The first automobile to be so constructed, it introduced the world to the lightweight luxury car. The body is the only thing about it rightly considered “a lightweight” though. The Audi’s sumptuous interior is the envy of the automotive world. Further, the A8 can serve as a WiFi hotspot. Old-world luxury combined with cutting edge technology makes Audi’s A8 L W12 a singularly distinctive automobile. Its 6.3-liter 12-cylinder engine produces 500 horsepower and 463 ft-lbs of torque.
BMW 760Li– Base Price $141,200
Large in size, understated otherwise, the BMW flagship is spacious, elegant, and insanely fast. But that’s just a minor aspect of what the car is all about. Night vision, soft-closing doors, smart cruise control, side view cameras, iDrive, handwriting recognition, if you’re looking for tech, you’ll find more than enough here. But that doesn’t really capture the essence of the BMW 760Li either. Here’s the thing, the BMW is so good at everything, it comes across as a non-event—even while performing absolutely extraordinary feats. The BMW’s 6.0-liter twin turbocharged V12 produces 535 horsepower and 550 ft-lbs of torque.
Bentley Mulsanne – Base Price $298,900
Only one car even comes close to approaching the Bentley Mulsanne, the Rolls-Royce Phantom. But it costs considerably more, while being slower, less agile, more ostentatious, and frankly, less exclusive. So elite is the handbuilt Bentley, you might see one on the street in your lifetime. Consider this; it takes nine weeks to build a single Mulsanne, 170 hours of which is spent on the interior, 15 hours of which are spent sewing the leather on the steering wheel. And then, there is the power, 752 ft-lbs of torque and 505 horsepower from a 6.75-liter twin-turbocharged V8. Yeah. Nice.
Jaguar XJR LWB – Base Price $119,000
Personifying Sir William Lyons’ insistence every Jaguar car embrace pace, space, and grace, the Jaguar XJR LWB is one of the most distinctive automobiles you’ll ever see. On the pace front, we’re looking at a 550 horsepower supercharged V8 with 502 ft-lbs of torque, paired with one of the most agile suspension systems ever fitted to a luxury car. On the space front, LWB stands for long wheelbase, and the Jaguar flagship offers more than enough room for outstanding comfort in all four seating positions. Which brings us to grace. Only the finest materials adorn the stunningly beautiful interior.
Mercedes-Benz S65 AMG – Base Price $222,000
Specific attention to detail is another hallmark of the exceptional automobiles on this list of the most luxurious cars. Tray tables, and rear-seat controls for all of the comfort and convenience systems in the car are nice touches, but Mercedes-Benz goes one better with a cabin fragrance system dispensing an atomized bouquet into the car at periodic intervals. By now, the technological mastery of Mercedes-Benz automobiles is legend—so we won’t belabor it here. Absolute state of the art is a succinct description. The 2015 Mercedes-Benz S65 AMG’s handbuilt twin-turbocharged V12 makes 621 horsepower and 738 ft-lbs of torque.
Porsche Panamera Turbo S Executive – Base Price $200,500
The all-wheel drive, long wheelbase version of Porsche’s Panamera is almost laughably comfortable, luxurious, powerful, and agile. The Porsche also has the most distinctive appearance of the cars here (nothing else looks like it, save perhaps another Porsche), and it goes like crazy. The real beauty of the Porsche Panamera Turbo S Executive lies in the fact it pampers like an executive express is expected to, while delivering the level of excitement endemic to its marque. An ultra-luxury sedan? Yes, absolutely. A Porsche too? Through and through. Its twin-turbocharged 4.8-liter V8 makes 570 horsepower and 553 ft-lbs of torque.
Rolls-Royce Phantom Drophead Coupe – Base Price $474,600
Designed without compromise, Rolls-Royce motorcars certainly deserve their lofty reputation. At Rolls-Royce, the aim is to build nothing less than the best cars in the world. And yes, the best cars in the world mean very different things to different people. In this case, it means the finest materials, hand craftsmanship, outstanding comfort, competent handling, more than adequate performance potential, and a look capable of summing all of those attributes up with a single glance. Of the cars the company produces, we chose the Phantom Drophead here because absolutely nothing else says luxury the way this outstanding convertible does.
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