If you've always been a fan of vehicles that offer "sport packages," due to their improved handling and swift acceleration, you may have recently begun to bemoan your lack of age-appropriate options. Many of today's sportiest vehicles appear to be designed with a young driver in mind, with low-slung seats, curvy styling, and other touches that may leave you missing the comfort of your less-sporty sedan. However, the luxury market still boasts a number of options for those who want fine-tuned performance without giving off the "midlife crisis" vibe. Read on to learn more about some of today's high-performance vehicles that can provide you with sporty handling and an impeccably-appointed interior in a decidedly mature package.
What should you consider when selecting your next vehicle?
Those looking for a sporty coupe or sedan that's equally at home on the racetrack or transporting clients to a meeting may need to list out some of these most-desired qualities prior to going car shopping.
If you're rarely accompanied in the car, you may want to focus your attention on vehicles that have well-appointed front seats in lieu of expansive back ones.
On the other hand, those who transport friends, children, business associates, or others on a regular basis may want to set their sights on vehicles that offer luxurious and comfortable back seats that can ensure none of your passengers feel cramped.
Even if you're sure that you want a responsive, zippy vehicle, the type of terrain you'll generally be traveling can dictate the type of engine and transmission you select or even how much your vehicle weighs.
For example, vehicles that are often driven in slick or snowy areas may benefit from some extra weight to help provide additional traction, even if all-wheel drive (AWD) is a listed option. Vehicles that are usually driven on the freeway are better off being as lightweight as possible to improve maneuverability and increase fuel economy.
And while standard shift transmissions continue to dwindle in popularity, many who peruse the luxury sports car market are interested in the ability to seamlessly shift gears themselves; however, not all vehicles offer this option (and some offer it only through a custom order), which means you'll need to ferret out this selection up front.
Which of today's vehicles have sporty performance and sleek styling?
Once you've narrowed down your criteria and have gotten a better idea of what is most important to you in a vehicle, you'll be able to engage in a more in-depth comparison between a few similar models.
The Lexus GS 350 has long been an award-winner in the luxury sport market, edging out many of its British and German counterparts in everything from 0 to 60 acceleration speed to braking distance, and even coming close to the numbers put up by far more expensive models.
This sedan has a number of close competitors among other luxury brands, including the BMW 535i, the Audi A6 2.0T, the Jaguar SF, and the Mercedes AMG C-63, all of which perform at a similarly high level under test conditions.
However, none of these British- and German-based luxury brands can compete with Toyota-owned Lexus when it comes to quality and reliability. When you've spent your hard-earned money on a luxury vehicle, you want to enjoy it as much as you can, rather than juggling repair schedules or shelling out for a rental vehicle each time your car is in the shop.
Taking each of these vehicles out for a spin at your local dealership can help you make your ultimate decision by putting all your comparisons and cost considerations through the "real feel" test.