Regardless of whether you are just looking to make the neighbors jealous or you need to log some serious road trip hours, a high-filootin’ luxury sedan can usually get the job done. If you are like me, and have to worry about budget limitations, this article should give you some inspiration. Every one of these top-shelf sedans can be found for anywhere between $5k and $15k. Check out used car websites like BestRide.com to find millions of listings on cars just like these.
With Mercury going down the tubes and many perspective consumers left wondering about the future of Lincoln, it’s no wonder that the depreciation bug has bitten the LS hard. That’s great news for you if you’re a used car buyer because this luxury sedan features powerful V6 and V8 engine options coupled with more than adequate handling and a comfortable ride. Expect to find a low mileage version in you area for around $5k or even a little less.
If European sport sedans strike your fancy, then the BMW 3-Series may be your cup of tea. Since the 3-Series has been in production for years, a used version can be found to accommodate virtually any budget. No matter which one you decide upon, it’s going to be a blast to drive and instantly recognizable to rubber-neckers. 2005 to 2011 models can be had for around $10,000, and the generation before that is even cheaper.
What the BMW is to performance the Lexus is to reliability. There are basically two generations of the IS available in the used market. Both will prove inexpensive to maintain, and while the Lexus badge isn’t quite as prestigious as the BMW badge, it’s still a luxury brand. It should only take approximately $15k to obtain a clean, late-model version of the second generation in your driveway.
When you realize that the Volkswagen Phaeton is a Bentley Flying Spur with different bodywork, things get very interesting. Considering that laying your hands on a Flying Spur could take in the area of $100k. The VW logo on the hood means that the Phaeton is much more affordable, with some of the V8 models dipping below $10,000. It may well cost more to maintain than the rest of the cars on this list, but none of those cars have a Flying Spur underneath.
It was hard to beat the Type-S Acura TL from 2004 to 2008. It is incredibly fun to drive and sells for somewhere between $10,000 and $15,000. For that price, you can get a powerful car that’s incredibly fun to drive and a classic design that resembles newer Acura models. In my opinion, Acura took a huge step backwards (aesthetically) after 2008 so stick with the classic models
The original G35 sedan version was a bit frumpy in appearance but the 2006 model got a new design that improved its looks dramatically. Later it received a larger engine as well. A nicer interior and a more powerful V6 engine make the G37 a great used car buy – even if it lacks the handling to take on a BMW 3 Series. Its superior reliability make this sedan hard to resist if you can find it for a little under $15k.
Volvo is the go-to automaker especially for the budget-conscious luxury car buyer who also cares about safety. The first-generation S60 is still a spectacular car but the S60 R is the true star of the lineup. The S60 R should still only cost a little under $10,000. Basic trim versions can be had for closer to $5,000, but if you can afford the better-handling, more powerful Volvo S60 R, you won’t be disappointed.
The Lexus LS was the first model that the Japanese luxury car company introduced to North America, and it launched with a great deal of fanfare. This sedan was marketed specifically for competing with the BMW 7 Series and Mercedes S-Class and it proved to be one of the best cars ever built. For buyers on a tight budget, selecting a first-generation or second-generation LS will cost less than $5,000. Early versions of the third generation can be had for closer to $10,000.
A new version of the Mercedes S-Class is a very prestigious car but prices begin at nearly $100,000 and late model used versions have major reliability issues. However, the version of the S-Class built from 1998 to 2005 is one of the best ever and they have proven to be extremely reliable. Early versions cost well under $10k and being able to say that you drive an S-Class sedan carries serious prestige that other car-lines just cannot rival.
From 1995 to 2003, BMW built what was arguably the best car in the world and by the time the 530i was introduced (in 2001), the 5 Series was considered nearly perfect. All these years later, a 530i that’s been well maintained continues to ride, drive, and handle like a new car. Better yet, a clean version will only cost you around $5,000.