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10 Most Popular Luxury Cars

By: Jeff Youngs, 6/16/2014
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Lately, economic indicators point to a strengthening economy, which means more Americans are choosing luxury cars than in recent years. If you're considering an upgrade to a premium car, this buyer's guide provides details about the 10 most popular* luxury cars in America. 

* Popularity based on April 2014 new-vehicle sales


2014 BMW 3 Series/4 Series
The most popular choice when it comes to luxury cars, the BMW 3 Series and 4 Series lineups offer coupes and convertibles, sedans and station wagons, and even a 5-door hatchback called the Gran Turismo. Turbocharged 4-cylinder and 6-cylinder engines are the most common, but BMW also offers a turbo-diesel and a hybrid. All-wheel-drive (AWD) is optional.

Base Price--$33,675
Initial Quality Rating--Better than Most
Predicted Reliability Rating--About average
Overall Vehicle Appeal Rating--Among the Best
Fuel Economy Range (city/highway mpg)--20/45
NHTSA Crash Test Rating--5 stars (4 Series not tested)
IIHS Crash Test Rating--Not a "Top Safety Pick" (4 Series not tested)
Cargo Volume--7.8 cu. ft. to 56.5 cu. ft. (depending on model and configuration)


2014 Mercedes-Benz E-Class
The Mercedes E-Class is the second most popular choice for a luxury car in America. Available as a coupe, convertible, sedan, or station wagon, the E-Class can be fitted with gasoline, diesel, and hybrid powertrains. All-wheel drive is optional, and the E63 AMG model is a high-performance version of the mainstream model.

Base Price--$52,325
Initial Quality Rating--Better than Most
Predicted Reliability Rating--Better than Most
Overall Vehicle Appeal Rating--About Average
Fuel Economy Range (city/highway mpg)--15/42
NHTSA Crash Test Rating--4 stars (Coupe and Cabriolet not tested)
IIHS Crash Test Rating--Not a "Top Safety Pick" (Cabriolet not tested)
Cargo Volume--8.8 cu. ft. to 57.4 cu. ft. (depending on model and configuration)


2014 Lexus ES
The Lexus ES is the third most popular luxury car in the United States. For a 268-horsepower, 3.5-liter V-6 engine, choose the ES 350 model. Maximum fuel economy is provided by the ES 300h, which is equipped with a gas-electric hybrid powertrain.

Base Price--$37,530
Initial Quality Rating--Better than Most
Predicted Reliability Rating--Among the Best
Overall Vehicle Appeal Rating--Better than Most
Fuel Economy Range (city/highway mpg)--21/40
NHTSA Crash Test Rating--5 stars
IIHS Crash Test Rating--Not a "Top Safety Pick"
Cargo Volume--12.1 cu. ft. to 15.2 cu. ft. (depending on model)


2014 Mercedes-Benz C-Class
The 2014 Mercedes C-Class is the fourth most popular luxury car in the United States, and is available in coupe or sedan body styles with a choice between a turbocharged 4-cylinder, V-6, and, in the C63 AMG, a V-8 engine. All-wheel drive is an option for the C-Class. Also, keep in mind that the C-Class Sedan is redesigned for 2015, so if you like the current style, get it while you can.

Base Price--$36,725
Initial Quality Rating--About Average
Predicted Reliability Rating--Better than Most
Overall Vehicle Appeal Rating--About Average
Fuel Economy Range (city/highway mpg)--13/31
NHTSA Crash Test Rating--5 stars (Coupe not tested)
IIHS Crash Test Rating--Not a "Top Safety Pick"
Cargo Volume--11.7 cu. ft. to 12.4 cu. ft. (depending on model)


2014 BMW 5 Series
The fifth most popular luxury car in America, the BMW 5 Series lineup offers a sedan or a 5-door hatchback called the Gran Turismo. Buyers select between three turbocharged gasoline engines, a turbo-diesel engine, and a gas-electric hybrid powertrain. All-wheel drive is an option, and a performance-tuned version called the M5 is also available.

Base Price--$50,425
Initial Quality Rating--About Average
Predicted Reliability Rating--Better than Most
Overall Vehicle Appeal Rating--Among the Best
Fuel Economy Range (city/highway mpg)--14/38
NHTSA Crash Test Rating--5 stars
IIHS Crash Test Rating--Not a "Top Safety Pick"
Cargo Volume--10.1 cu. ft. to 60.0 cu. ft. (depending on model and configuration)


2014 Lexus IS
The sixth most popular luxury car in America is the Lexus IS. For 2014, Lexus redesigned the IS 250 and IS 350 sedans, but the IS 250C and IS 350C convertibles are the same as in 2013. The high-performance IS F sedan is also carried over. The new IS features a choice between V-6 engines with rear-wheel (RWD) or all-wheel drive.

Base Price--$37,010
Initial Quality Rating--About Average (2014 IS Sedan not rated)
Predicted Reliability Rating--Better than Most
Overall Vehicle Appeal Rating--The Rest (2014 IS Sedan not rated)
Fuel Economy Range (city/highway mpg)--16/30
NHTSA Crash Test Rating--5 stars (Convertible and IS F not rated)
IIHS Crash Test Rating--Not a "Top Safety Pick"
Cargo Volume--2.4 cu. ft. to 13.8 cu. ft. (depending on model and configuration)


2014 Cadillac CTS
The seventh most popular luxury car in the United States, the Cadillac CTS lineup includes a coupe, sedan, and a wagon, as well as high-performance CTS-V variants of the coupe and wagon. The CTS sedan is redesigned for 2014, and offered with a turbocharged 4-cylinder, V-6, or a twin-turbocharged V-6 engine. Coupes and wagons carry over with V-6 or V-8 engines. All-wheel drive is optional for all three body styles.

Base Price--$40,420
Initial Quality Rating--Among the Best (Sedan not rated)
Predicted Reliability Rating--Better than Most
Overall Vehicle Appeal Rating--The Rest (Sedan not rated)
Fuel Economy Range (city/highway mpg)--12/30
NHTSA Crash Test Rating--5 stars (Coupe and Sedan not tested)
IIHS Crash Test Rating--Not a "Top Safety Pick" (Coupe and Sport Wagon not tested)
Cargo Volume--10.5 cu. ft. to 58.0 cu. ft. (depending on model and configuration)


2014 Audi A4/S4
The Audi A4 and its performance-tuned S4 twin are the eighth most popular luxury cars in America. The A4 is equipped with a turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, and AWD is optional. The S4 features a supercharged V-6 engine and standard AWD.

Base Price--$34,695
Initial Quality Rating--Better than Most
Predicted Reliability Rating--Better than Most
Overall Vehicle Appeal Rating--Among the Best
Fuel Economy Range (city/highway mpg)--17/32
NHTSA Crash Test Rating--5 stars
IIHS Crash Test Rating--Not a "Top Safety Pick"
Cargo Volume--12.4 cu. ft.


2014 Lincoln MKZ
Available with a turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, V-6 engine, or a gas-electric hybrid powertrain, the 2014 Lincoln MKZ is the ninth best-selling luxury car in America. All-wheel drive is optional.

Base Price--$35,085
Initial Quality Rating--The Rest
Predicted Reliability Rating--Better than Most
Overall Vehicle Appeal Rating--Among the Best
Fuel Economy Range (city/highway mpg)--18/45
NHTSA Crash Test Rating--5 stars
IIHS Crash Test Rating--"Top Safety Pick"
Cargo Volume--11.1 cu. ft. to 15.4 cu. ft. (depending on model)


2014 Cadillac ATS
A new entry-level luxury sport sedan, the 2014 Cadillac ATS is the tenth most popular luxury car in America. It is available with a 4-cylinder, turbocharged 4-cylinder, or a V-6 engine and with RWD or AWD. In 2015, a new ATS Coupe joins the lineup.

Base Price--$33,990
Initial Quality Rating--The Rest
Predicted Reliability Rating--Better than Most
Overall Vehicle Appeal Rating--About Average
Fuel Economy Range (city/highway mpg)--18/33
NHTSA Crash Test Rating--5 stars
IIHS Crash Test Rating--Not tested
Cargo Volume--10.4 cu. ft.

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