Tuesday, 23 July 2024

 

 

In the luxury realm, one of the biggest battles waged every year is between the crème de la crème heavy hitters in the large luxury sedan category.

All the major luxury brands have a flagship sedan that is decked out to the gills with the latest design innovations, powerful engines, advanced tech features and safety equipment, and aims to reach that select group of buyers who can afford to shell out six figures for these high-end rides.

For BMW, that entry is its 7-series sedan, which took its assignment seriously with an impressive redesign for 2023.

The new 7-Series generation debuts for 2023 with a complete redesign, inside and out, and with some impressive new tech and safety features.

I recently spent some time behind the wheel of the 2023 BMW 760i xDrive sedan, a vehicle that is truly fit for a king, a VIP executive, or anyone else who wants to pamper themselves. It’s the type of vehicle that’s so classy, a chauffeur would be a good fit. Read on for a full report on what it has to offer.

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Genesis took many in the automotive industry by surprise when it launched as a standalone luxury brand out of the Hyundai camp. From the get-go, their sedans and SUVs had the goods to compete in many areas with long-established luxury brands with decades of experience.

Now a well-recognized competitor and not just the new kid on the block, Genesis is stepping up its game even further in 2023, leading the way in luxury vehicle technology and design on its flagship sedan — the Genesis G90.

Completely redesigned for 2023, the G90 now looks and feels like a vehicle from the future, and one you would be proud to use to chauffeur around not just your family, but also top VIPs. It’s easily on a level with other flagship luxury vehicles like the Audi A8, Mercedes S Class, and BMW 7 series, and arguably better in many areas.

I recently tested a 2023 G90, and it’s a vehicle that offers many positives — from looks to performance to futuristic tech and more — and very few issues of concern. The price can creep up to as much as $100K, but after driving it, you’ll understand why.

Read on to learn more about a vehicle that should put all of its competitors on notice, and will be enticing to all buyers in the market for a luxury sedan.

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In the realm of luxury cars, there is a wide variety of SUVs available as plug-in hybrids. But when you turn to the sedan side of things, the numbers are pretty thin.

One company that remains committed to this type of model, which bridges the gap between gas-only rides and full EVs, is Volvo, which offers multiple plug-in hybrid sedan options.

I recently tested the 2023 Volvo S60 Recharge, a stylish entry-level luxury sedan that oozes class and is packed with technology and safety features.

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Back in the day, owning a luxury sedan was the ultimate goal of many up-and-coming car buyers looking to impress. But goals have changed with the SUV revolution of recent years.

If we’re talking about endangered species among U.S. automakers, the sedan would definitely be near the top of that list. One by one, sedan models are being dropped from lineups in favor of crossovers and SUVs, leaving precious few remaining. And the vast majority of sedans sold today will come from Asian and European automakers.

Cadillac, however, is not throwing in the towel, and continues to put out its CT4 and CT5 sedan models.

I recently was able to test out a 2023 Cadillac CT5, a midsize offering that’s the larger of Cadillac’s two sedan options.

Packed with groundbreaking technology, fun driving characteristics, and a sharp design, it’s understandable why Cadillac is sticking around in this segment, as the CT5 has a lot to offer buyers to woo them away from foreign luxury makes.

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WIth so many automakers making commitments to going fully electric in the years to come, one question is what will happen to hybrids once all the dust settles. WIll they still have a place in the automotive landscape?

I believe they will, though it will be a more limited role and only the best ones will survive and thrive. Not everyone will want to go electric in the short-term, so having quality hybrid options is a nice middle ground for this group.

On the luxury end of the world of sedans, one gem that is likely to continue shining is the Lexus ES 300h, a sedan that is a rare combination of roominess, strong fuel economy and an enjoyable ride. It has few true competitors as a midsize hybrid sedan, and is priced well in comparison to the few hybrids it does battle (Audi A6, Benz E-Class).

Changes for 2022 include the addition of the F Sport trim level to the hybrid ES, improved safety features, updates to the tech setup, and slight design changs.

I recently spent a week in the ES hybrid, an F Sport version to be exact, and I’m back with a full report.

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The Genesis G70 made a bold entry into the compact luxury sedan segment a couple years back, another new offering from the upstart luxury brand launched in the 2017 model year by Hyundai.

Going up against heavy hitters like the Benz C-Class, Audi A4, BMW 3-series, Cadillac CT4 and Lexus IS, the G70 has quite a challenge on its hands.

Realistically it’s not going to win the name recognition battle, so as a new luxury brand it has to dazzle in nearly every category to draw luxury car buyers away from the longtime European and Asian traditional go-to brands.

The 2022 model features some updates to the front and rear styling, an updated dashboard design, larger infotainment screen, and moves deeper into semi-automated driving technology.

The pure driving experience offered by the G70 rivals the best in this tough class, but is it a complete enough package to draw buyers to the Genesis brand?

I recently tested a 2022 Genesis G70 AWD 3.3T model, and I’m back with a full report.

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Automakers worldwide are making steps — at different speeds — toward a lineup full of electric vehicles, and BMW has been among the leaders in that regard in the luxury realm.

The 3-series has long been a success for BMW, and it’s been around for nearly 50 years with no sign of disappearing anytime soon, but there are now new versions of this iconic ride to match the times, including the 2021 BMW 330e plug-in. I recently spent some time in this eco-friendly ride and I’m back with a full report on whether it lives up to the BMW 3-series name.

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The 2021 BMW 330e features an attractive and sleek exterior design, and my test vehicle had a clean Alpine White paint job.

It’s low to the ground, and has a distinctive and eye-catching grille. It’s the type of car you love to look at. Interior and exterior design live up to BMW name and expectations. This is a smaller luxury ride, but inside there is decent room for everyone, even in the back seat, considering the segment. Quality seating materials offer extreme comfort.

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With the rise of SUVS, the sedan is a vehicle type that has had its obituary written by many, but that’s a bit premature. While it’s true that many sedans are ceasing production or being converted into SUVs, the ones that have remained are still very strong.

Toyota is arguably the leader for the sedan, primarily through its strong-selling Camry. But at the top of their sedan arsenal is the Avalon, a full-size sedan — that rare breed of vehicle which is truly a dying breed.

Hybrids are an even rarer vehicle type to find in the full-size sedan realm, outside of luxury models, making the 2021 Toyota Avalon hybrid an extremely unique offering. There are some vehicles — including the Honda Accord hybrid and Hyundai Sonata hybrid — that come close in size to the Avalon hybrid, but lack the sophistication and performance it offers.

I recently sent time in a 2021 Avalon hybrid, and here is a full report.

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The luxury sport sedan segment is one of the most brutal in the business. Featuring strong entries from everyone from Audi and BMW to Mercedes-Benz and Genesis, success in this field requires a near-perfect effort from rival automakers.

Volvo’s entry in this category, the S60, manages to shine despite the prominent foes it is facing. I recently tested a 2020 Volvo S60 and I’m back with a full report on what stands out.

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After a strong redesign for 2019, the look of the S60 carries over for the 2020 model.

The exterior design of the S60 is simple and elegant, yet also smooth and eye-catching, with a low design and nice side lines. It stands out in a segment known for good-looking rides.

Moving inside, Volvo really nails the luxury look and feel that’s needed to succeed in this segment. The Nappa leather seats are incredibly plush and comfortable, even on longer trips.

The R-Design trim level that I tested featured standard four-zone climate control, interior lighting and a tailored dashboard. For 2020, a virtual instrument panel is now standard for all models.

Among other features that boost the luxury in the S60 include a panoramic moonroof with power sunshade, leather steering wheel and gear shift knob, auto dimming interior & exterior mirrors and metal mesh aluminum inlays.

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If you have the need for speed, and a luxurious design to go along with it, there are plenty of sedans to choose from among the elite luxury brands.

For Mercedes-Benz, one such crown jewel offering is the AMG E53 (a high-end version of its E-class sedan), which I recently was able to experience. Read on for full details on how it measures up.
 

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Long, low and shapely by anyone’s definition, the E53 boasts a simply beautiful exterior design, which is typical of a Mercedes offering.
You can also opt for attractive 5-spoke wheels with black accents (a $750 option) and a panorama sunroof ($1,000).

The Interior, with extremely comfortable seating and a smooth design that flows well, is equally impressive and one of the best in class. 

Published in CAR REVIEWS
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