Purchasing a luxury car comes with a set of pros and cons unique to this most expensive segment of the automotive market. Since buyers pay a premium price for new luxury cars that are often inflated compared to economical cars that perform nearly as well, these high-priced vehicles tend to rapidly depreciate in value. As a result, many shoppers choose to wait until luxury cars appear on the used car market for more reasonable asking prices. As much better values now than when first introduced to the public, used luxury cars have several other advantages including the fact that they generally have less mileage and were meticulously cared for by previous owners.
While there are plenty of reliable luxury cars on the used car market in excellent condition, the risks of buying a luxurious lemon are potentially debilitating maintenance and repair costs. These extravagant cars tempt shoppers by only costing marginally more than budget-friendly options, but replacement parts and repair costs remain significantly higher than other cars. Thorough research is especially critical when targeting a pre-owned luxury brand like BMW, Lexus, or Cadillac. The following vehicles have proven themselves the most durable luxury cars and include SUVs, sports cars, and traditional full-sized sedans.
10 2009 Porsche Cayenne
Announced in 1998 and sharing the same chassis as the Volkswagen Touareg, Porsche’s first SUV came with the upgraded performance and technology Porsche buyers demanded. The Porsche Cayenne finally reached dealerships in 2003 and redefined what a Porsche could be with four doors and ample room for five passengers.
The 2009 model introduced an optional enhanced Porsche Communication Management system with Bluetooth connectivity and was one of the best luxury SUVs of its time. It’s not uncommon to encounter a 12-15-year-old Porsche Cayenne in excellent condition on roadways today with over 200,000 miles, a testament to its reliability.
9 2002 Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG
In 1995, the Mercedes-Benz W210 underwent some significant styling changes, losing the boxy exterior that had defined the company’s sedans in previous generations. Mercedes-Benz’s W210 functions as their mid-tier model, but its E-class was full of cutting-edge technology features including the Parktronic (PTS) parking aid utilizing ultrasound and electronic keys for ignition and doors.
The E55 AMG sold between 1999 and 2002 was not only a legitimate luxury 4-door sedan but also had some serious performance specs with a variety of naturally aspirated V8 engines. The 2002 Mercedes-Benz E55 AMG has proved to be a mileage king, with users calling it one of the most reliable luxury sedans at Edmunds.com.
8 1994 Jaguar XJ6
Since 1968, the Jaguar XJ series has embraced its role as the flagship model for the company and was one of the last Jaguar designs endorsed by the company’s founder, Sir Williams Lyons. In 1987, Jaguar unveiled the 4th generation of the XJ, and ditched the increasingly curvier appearance of the previous cars, in favor of more traditional straight lines.
After Ford acquired Jaguar in 1989, they sent engineers to Coventry, England to improve the manufacturing process of the British automaker and sure up quality control measures on the 4th generation XJ cars. Their efforts resulted in higher reliability ratings including the 1994 Jaguar XJ6 which boasts a 4.7/5.0 reliability rating at Cars.com, making it one of the most durable luxury sedans.
7 2002 Cadillac Escalade
The Cadillac Escalade is a full-size luxury SUV that has been a favorite choice to transport large parties in style since 1999. Despite its reputation for gas-guzzling, the Escalade has persevered through 5 generations, though its first two years were largely placeholders for the vehicle we know today.
The 2002 Escalade underwent some dramatic changes in its exterior with a more angular look, and its interior featured wood paneling, and traditional Cadillac leather, and was one of the first vehicles to come equipped with satellite radio. The Escalade has logged serious miles without breaking a sweat, earning a 4.9/5.0 reliability score at Cars.com.
6 2006 BMW E90 330i
As BMW commemorated the 30th anniversary of its 3 series in 2004, they introduced a brand-new line of E90 cars, and the compact saloons would go on to win numerous awards for the best executive sedans of its time. The E90 330i was the last to use BMW’s naturally aspirated inline-six N53 engine which is especially efficient at highway driving speeds.
The BMW E90 was the first 3 series car to include the well-received iDrive infotainment system and also had run-flat tires which continued to perform well even when losing tire pressure. Reliability and the BMW E90 are synonymous, with the 2006 model scoring a 4.7/5.0 at Edmunds.com.
5 2004 Volvo V70
The Volvo V70 may look like a luxury station wagon, but in the mid-1990s, Volvo tried to bring its recently retired 850 into the realm of MPVs. The first V70 in 1996 featured numerous additions worthy of its luxury status, such as a leather interior, CD changer, and a basic navigation system.
In 2000, the slightly larger second generation of the V70 saw improvements with more solid overall construction and the latest in safety features including side impact protection (SIPS) and whiplash protection (WHIPS). The well-built 2004 Volvo V70 boasts an exceptional 4.7/5.0 rating at Edmunds.com.
4 2007 Lexus GS
North American fans of the 4-door luxury sedan may not realize that the Lexus GS originated as the Japanese Toyota Aristo in 1991. The first generation of the car had a uniquely sleek European look for a Japanese car but only experienced modest sales before a revamped second generation arrived in 1998.
The Lexus GS had established a reputation for quality construction and innovation by the time its third generation debuted in 2006. The 2007 Lexus GS is part of a series of vehicles that included V8 engine options and the V6 hybrid GS 450h. The Lexus GS also sported a space-age dashboard with exceptionally high ratings for reliability from J.D. Power and is one of the most durable luxury cars you can find in used condition.
3 1994 Cadillac DeVille
Even when it debuted at GM’s 1949 Motoroma show, the Coupe de Ville which the DeVille evolved from, wowed audiences with luxurious options like power windows and a telephone. Featured in popular movies and TV shows like Mad Men, the Cadillac DeVille would serve as one of GM’s longest-running nameplates for the next 47 years.
Starting in 1985, the massive DeVille would undergo a period of downsizing before its retirement in 2005, but not before offering night vision and LED lamps. Among the used Cadillac DeVille options, the 7th generation from 1994 to 1999 is highly regarded for their workhorse V8 engines leading to their status as an exceptionally durable luxury sedan.
2 2007 Acura TL
Replacing the Japanese Acura Vigor in 1996, the Acura TL would become the brand’s best-selling model over the next 10 years, competing valiantly against the BMW 3 Series luxury sedan. By 1999, Acura would shift production of the TL to the United States, and it shared the same platform as the Honda Accord.
The 2007 Acura underwent some minor changes in its design and ushered in a high-performance Type-S version with a V6 engine capable of outputting 286 horsepower and touchscreen navigation. The Acura TL is one of the most durable luxury cars on the used car market, with a 4.6/5 reliability score from Cars.com.
1 2003 Lincoln Town Car
In 1980, Lincoln plotted to bring a limousine-style luxury sedan into the mainstream, with its brand-new Town Car. Although it wasn’t quite as large as a stretch limousine, the Lincoln Town Car still was one of the longest American 4-door sedans produced during its 30-year run.
By 2003, the days of the Town Car were already numbered. Still, Lincoln modernized the car with a more aerodynamically-friendly front bumper, wrap-around taillights, and modern technologies like a connection for mobile phones. The full-sized luxury car has a well-deserved reputation for durability, commonly passed down through generations of owners, and the 2003 Lincoln Town Car scored a 4.9/5 in reliability at Cars.com.