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Cars & travel.

Updated: 29 Dec 2021

Best luxury cars for 2022

The best luxury cars will whisk you from A to B in style, while also delivering reliability, and offering the refinement and comfort you deserve.
Daljinder Nagra
Best luxury cars 1

For a car to be truly luxurious it needs to be effortless to drive, with a buttery-smooth ride and fantastic interior comfort. But to become a Which? Best Buy, it must also offer reliability and reasonable running costs - something that luxury models can often struggle with.

Rather than Rolls-Royces or Bentleys, we focus on more attainable luxury models such as the Mercedes-Benz E-Class and S-Class, the BMW 5 series and 7 Series, and the Audi A6, A7 and A8. And then there are the homegrown Jaguar XF and XJ, and the groundbreaking electric Tesla Model S. 

Considering most of these extravagant cars cost over £40,000, you'd expect them to be universally excellent. Sadly, that's not the case. 

Awful fuel economy, poor handling and sub-standard boot space are just a few of the problems that separate the best luxury cars from the worst. Scroll down to find out which models exhibit these traits, so you know which to avoid.

Luxury shouldn't come at the expense of reliability or fuel economy. Our rigorous tests ensure you get a luxury car without something to hide. Below are the best luxury cars, both new and used.

Which? members can log in to see the luxury cars we recommend. If you're not already a member, join Which? to unlock our best luxury cars and all our online reviews - including our expert car reviews.

Best new luxury large cars

  • 79%
    £39900.00

    This upmarket, high-performance EV may be expensive, but it has the quality and luxury ambience to back it up. As we've seen in a number of EVs, its tested range doesn't match manufacturer claims, and all that power means it's a high energy consumer, but as an overall package, this is a seriously desirable electric saloon.

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  • 75%
    £34166.00

    It may not have the white-knuckle driver appeal of some of its closest rivals, but this spacious luxury saloon appeals in other ways. It's impeccably well built, comes with a robust standard equipment list and is impressively efficient. You can't tow with it, but for most people this will be a minor concern.

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  • 72%
    £58220.00

    Exclusivity isn't the only appeal of this left-field saloon. With a smart interior and keen drive, it's a match for its best rivals, but adds a serious sense of style to proceedings.

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  • 72%
    £92851.00

    This is a performance powerhouse - a saloon car with the performance to embarrass sports car drivers without breaking a sweat. It keeps the huge five-seat interior of the entry-level model and is no less comfortable on long distances. If you're brave enough, this could be all the car you ever need.

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  • 71%
    £83635.00

    This car proves it’s possible to make an electric car that not only goes fast in a straight line but is also truly rewarding to drive in other respects. It’s also very comfortable, with great refinement and ride quality, while the excellent cabin can seat four adults (although rear headroom is limited).

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  • 71%
    £52543.00

    Sitting at the very top of this premium manufacturer's model range, you'd expect this model to excel in every respect. Largely it does, being excellent to drive and sit in, as well as boasting the latest in driver safety technology. If you can afford the asking price, you won't be disappointed.

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Best new luxury large estates

  • 75%
    £40038.00

    This huge (and hugely impressive) luxury model stands out from rivals by being sharper and more fun to drive than you’d expect any enormous estate car to be. This dynamism hasn't come at the expense of practicality or long-distance comfort, either.

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  • 70%
    £41326.00

    If space and luxury are top priority, this estate won’t disappoint. It’s expensive to buy, but justifies the price with superb quality and high levels of technology. It’s reasonably involving to drive for such a large car, too.

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  • 70%
    £54272.00

    Classy styling, a well-appointed cabin and lashing of safety technology make this model a compelling choice. Add in impressive fuel economy (provided you can keep the battery topped up regularly) and this luxury estate is perfect for shorter distance trips.

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Best new luxury medium and large SUVs

  • 78%
    £48852.00

    If you’re looking for an extremely well-made luxury hybrid SUV, this model is our highest-scoring new hybrid overall. It’s not much of a mud-plugger, but it’s spacious, comfortable and incredibly refined. Tested fuel economy isn't bad for an SUV, especially around town. Factor in excellent reliability, based on our in-depth survey of owners, and it’s a cracking hybrid car.

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  • 74%
    £63778.00

    This impressive luxury SUV has only been improved by the addition of PHEV technology. There's potential for very low running costs - not something you'd normally associate with a full-fat four-wheel-drive car. Its impressive ride comfort, tech laden cabin and strong safety credentials ensure its position as a Best Buy model.

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  • 72%
    £50055.00

    This is a great all-round model, even if it doesn't quite have the interior quality to match the very best in the luxury SUV class. It is very spacious and comfortable, though, and will devour motorway miles with ease.

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  • 72%
    £66545.00

    This brand's first attempt at an all-electric SUV has been a success. This five-seater is as comfortable, opulent and as tech laden as its combustion-powered stablemates, but boasts improved refinement and zero tailpipe emissions.

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Best used luxury cars

There are plenty of luxury options when buying used, and our experts have selected the very best models on the market.

  • 84%
    £8954.00

    This brand has great experience with hybrid technology, and this old generation limousine shows it off to great effect. It’s supremely quiet and refined and returned acceptable fuel economy in our tests, despite the hybrid system being mated to a very large petrol engine. It’s also superbly well-made and backed up by the brand’s bomb-proof reliability record.

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  • 79%
    £13891.00

    Owners of this particular brand are amongst the happiest on the road, with it consistently scoring highly in our annual car survey. This generation of its large luxury saloon is a particularly fine example of the breed; combining sumptuous build quality with an understated and silky-smooth driving experience. It’s so good that it’s beaten far newer and more expensive luxury saloons for overall driver satisfaction.

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  • 78%
    £9110.00

    This oddly-shaped car sports superb engines, crisp handling and excellent dynamic feedback. Yet it's also superbly refined, with a composed ride and admirable noise suppression. It’s noticeably more practical than the model it’s based on, too.

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  • 77%
    £9164.00

    This popular luxury saloon is very good to drive, whether you opt for a petrol or diesel engine. The diesels are frugal but not quite as inspiring as the petrol versions. The handling and steering are top-drawer. The only real gripes concern visibility and an interior that can be daunting to get used to.

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  • 76%
    £6985.00

    Its styling certainly divided opinion, but in all other respects this was the best iteration of the model we’d yet seen, upon its launch in 2008. It’s supremely comfy and spacious and handles quite well for such a large car. Petrol engines are thirsty.

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Best used luxury large estates

  • 73%
    £13569.00

    This model gives you the practicality and superb luxury of the regular estate version, enhanced with some mild off-road ability. It won't climb every mountain, but four-wheel drive and a useful increase in ride height means it can go where most normal estates can't.

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Best used luxury medium and large SUVs 

  • 79%
    £9172.00

    What it lacks in choice of engines, this SUV makes up for with superior build-quality and comfort, and plenty of space for people and luggage. Just don’t expect it to mud-plug like a real off-roader.

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  • 78%
    £21086.00

    This large SUV drives fantastically well while providing a good level of ride comfort. It has a range of powerful engines, it's extremely spacious for five occupants, and even has a seven-seat option. It's an outstanding example of the luxury large SUV done well, and is a deserved Which? Best Buy.

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  • 76%
    £36529.00

    This is an exceptionally refined strong-performing luxury SUV that’s expensive but well-equipped, with a spacious interior. It’s a worthy Best Buy. It makes sense to choose this hybrid if you do a lot of short journeys. Our tests show that you can travel around 28 miles in electric-only mode with zero tailpipe emissions - plenty for quick trips around town. It’s a superb all-rounder, worthy of the plug-in hybrid crown.

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  • 76%
    £8119.00

    One of the best on-road 4x4s, with very sure-footed handling, although the ride can get a bit jittery on bad road surfaces. The diesel engines are sweet, refined and powerful, and the six-speed automatic gearbox shifts smoothly. It’s also comfortable and roomy, making it a good choice if you’re buying a family car. It’s got an attractive interior, too.

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  • 74%
    £12103.00

    Plenty of space inside and solid build quality mark this large SUV as a true premium player. Clean design and lots of technology further boost appeal. The comfortable interior means long journeys are never a chore. For a big SUV, it's very easy to drive, if a little dull, and the engines are very capable.

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Not seen the car for you? Browse all our luxury car reviews

What to avoid when buying a luxury car

Luxury cars should be without compromise; flawless and desirable with comfortable, lavish interiors overflowing with the latest technology. All those frills and high-quality materials don’t come cheap, which means many luxury cars will normally cost over £40,000. So you want to make sure you’re spending your money wisely.

No aspect of a luxury car should be overlooked and, when done right, they should be nigh on perfect.

Despite costing a small fortune, some luxury cars don’t fit the mould. Luxury equals space and most models will be comparable to large cars in size. But we’ve found cars with small boots you won’t have a hope of squeezing your golf clubs into.

It’s not just the look and feel of the car that should be luxurious - it needs to be effortless to drive, too. Unresponsive steering that means you need to make many small adjustments to keep the car straight is far from effortless and no fun either. Driving a luxury car should be a pleasure, but some models we’ve tested make it feel like a chore and that’s not what you pay a premium for.

After spending so much money, long-term fuel costs might not be a huge concern, but you can have your cake and eat it. If you choose the right model, you can have excellent performance and fuel economy. Some luxury cars manage more than 50 miles to the gallon - others can’t get over 25.

These are the cars that didn’t come close to meeting our expectations of what a luxury car should be.

Luxury cars to avoid

  • 55%
    £31196.00

    Poor brand-level reliability doesn't inspire confidence and the lack of good all-round visibility doesn't make it the easiest car in the world to drive. It's not the most practical SUV in the world either thanks to an average sized boot. We'd recommend looking elsewhere.

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  • 48%
    £52065.00

    Stunning off-road performance counts for nothing when poor reliability means you'll be spending more time on a garage ramp than forging through the wilderness. It’s also quite thirsty.

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We test cars more thoroughly than anyone else

Our tests go further than those carried out by other organisations, and because Which? is independent, you can trust our reviews to give you the full, honest and impartial truth about every car we test.

Every car we review is subjected to more than 100 individual tests in a lab, on a test track, and on real roads – and we really clock up the miles, driving around 500 miles in every car we test.

Testing in controlled lab conditions means the results we collect are directly comparable between cars, helping us determine exactly which models are better and why, and helping you find the perfect car for your needs.

And so you know which cars are likely to prove reliable for years to come, we also gather feedback from thousands of UK car owners through the Which? Car Survey, using it to generate detailed reliability ratings for the cars we test.

To take the guesswork out of choosing your next car, join Which? and you'll receive access to all our expert reviews and advice.