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August 28, 2014

Comfort and Handling: Top of the Line Luxury Cars

Top of the Line Luxury Cars

A great car is a many splendor-ed thing. Some are compact and cheap, some brawny and rugged, some sleek and speedy. But for a certain subset of the uber rich there is one factor that outweighs them all: opulence. Sure, there are luxury cars like the Audis and BMWs of the world, but those are for the masses. No, the cars on this list are saved for a special breed of person, who accepts no compromise when it comes to comfort and has a spare half million or so burning a hole in their pocket. These are the three most luxurious cars that money can buy.

3. Mercedes S-Class
MSRP: S550 – $92,000; S550 4MATIC – $95,900; S63 AMG – $139,500
Horsepower: 449 – 577 HP
Top Speed: limited at 130 MPH
MPG: 17 city/25 highway

Mercedes is a class leader when it comes to luxury and automotive technology. And the S-Class is the very pinnacle of achievement coming out of Stuttgart. It is said that whatever new technology appears on the S-Class will make it’s way to the cars of the masses… in about ten years or so.

The S-Class truly lives up to the Mercedes motto of “the best or nothing.” It scans the road for bumps and adjusts the suspension accordingly. It stops itself for you if you are in danger of a collision. It can melt your face of with blistering speed or sooth your senses with a built in fragrance dispenser. The car is also packed with technology: navigation, touch displays, blue tooth, surround sound, and three kinds of radio. The car even has its own wifi hotspot. As a hybridization of technology and luxury, there is nothing better.

2. Bentley Mulsanne
MSRP: $306,425
Horsepower: 505 HP
Top Speed: 187 MPH
MPG: 11 city/16 highway

Bentleys have a storied history of royalty, luxury, and British stoicism. This is the kind of car the queen would have in her fleet. And in fact, the queen was given a Bently (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bentley_State_Limousine) as her official state limousine in 2002. Bentley’s are for those that want to exist in a realm of quiet comfort as they are ferried along.

Bentley’s old world charm shines through in the Mulsanne, named for the famous straight at Le Mans. Passengers (for the Bentley is predominantly a car to be driven in) will find themselves coddled in sumptuous leather and wood trim. A champagne cooler and flutes are built into the seats. The car rides on an adaptive air suspension, smooth as silk. All the seats will massage you as you ride, and rear passengers may avail themselves of fold down picnic tables. The Mulsanne is the zenith of old world class.

1. Rolls Royce Phantom
MSRP: $335,350 – $472,295
Horsepower: 453 HP
Top Speed: 148 MPH
MPG: 11 city/18 highway

Rolls Royce has been building cars and airplane engines since the early 1900’s. This is a company that knows luxury, comfort, and engineering. Owning a Rolls has been and likely always will be a major status symbol. And the Phantom is arguably their masterstroke.

The Rolls Royce Phantom takes the old world British class of the Mulsanne and adds a healthy dose of modern je-ne-sais-quoi. The cabin features art deco lighting throughout. The hood is two-toned, half painted and half brushed aluminum. There are umbrellas hidden away inside the front doors. The interior is furnished in only the absolute finest materials, and has automatic privacy curtains to shut out the bustling bourgeoisie. This car is as much for a queen as for a king. King (LeBron) James that is; he owns one.

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