Luxury automakers are expanding into new segments with more affordable models being offered in 2015. But that’s not all. Several familiar and popular luxury vehicles are getting major updates this year.
What’s New for Luxury Cars This Year?
Last year saw the introduction of several affordable vehicles from luxury automakers. The Mercedes-Benz CLA and Audi A3 caught on quickly with their $30,000 price tag, but there are better luxury cars out there if you’re looking for value. Acura is updating its ILX for 2015, with a new powertrain, refreshed styling and adding driver assistance features.
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The all-new Jaguar XE will be introduced in 2015, marking the automakers return to the entry-level luxury segment. We know it will arrive with a 3.0-liter supercharged V6 that will enable the car to sprint to 60 mph in just 4.9 seconds. Thanks to unibody aluminum construction, the XE will be about 300 lbs lighter than the BMW 335i.
Luxury sedans have seen a few updates. The refreshed Audi A8 comes to mind, now offering a sensible diesel V6 engine alongside its twin-turbo V8 engine options and exotic W12. The Infiniti Q70 saw a mild refresh. It’s available with a 3.7-liter V6 engine, a 3.5-liter hybrid and a 5.6-liter V8 engine. There’s also the new Genesis from Hyundai, which certainly is good enough to be mentioned with the likes of these premium brands. We like it so much, we gave it our Car of the Year award.
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The big-daddy of luxury sedans, the Mercedes S-Class has also been updated for the 2015 model year. Available with a 4.7-liter turbocharged V8 or a 6.0-liter twin turbo V12 engine, the S550 and S600 represent the very best in the luxury car segment. With its airmatic suspension, the big luxury car glides on the road, and if that’s not relaxing enough for you, it can even be equipped with massaging seats.
A few new coupes are also available for 2015. Lexus is taking on the BMW 4 Series and Audi A5 with the new RC. It’s offered with a tame 3.5-liter V6 engine that makes just 306 horsepower or a fire breathing 5.0-liter V8 engine that makes 467 HP.
When it comes to sporty luxury cars, Cadillac is introducing two new V models: the ATS-V and the CTS-V. Available as either a sedan or coupe the ATS-V hides a twin-turbo V6 engine under its hood. That motor makes 450-hp and can be had with either a manual or automatic transmission. The bigger CTS-V uses a 6.2-liter supercharged V8 to make 640-hp and is offered exclusively with an eight-speed automatic transmission.
On the other end of the luxury coupe market is the new Mercedes S-Class coupe. Replacing the CL-Class nameplate, the S-Class Coupe is essentially a two-door version of the ever-aspirational S-Class. Its luxury to the nth degree and it rarely gets out-done.
We’re expecting to see a few new generation models pop up this year, including a new Mercedes C-Class coupe. The production versions of the Infiniti Q30 and QX30 should be unveiled as well. Cadillac will be revealing a new flagship vehicle named the CT6, which will sport a new “SuperCruise” semi-autonomous driving technology. Of course the previously mentioned Jaguar XE S will arrive in North America late this year. Mercedes will be unveiling a new luxury SUV called the GLE, while Audi will introduce the next generation Q7. Land Rover is set to unveil a new range of Discovery models, which will accommodate between five and seven passengers.