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Young Ninja Group (ages 3-5)

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Greyson Garcia
Greyson Garcia

How To Buy A Luxury Car ((HOT))

Is buying a luxury car worth it during these economic downtimes? Yes, if you're looking for a car that's possibly safer, has the latest gadgets and, in some cases, is customizable. Here are 10 reasons why buying a luxury car can be worth the extra expense.

how to buy a luxury car

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They aren't always safer (lightweight, superfast convertibles, being the obvious exception), but luxury cars tend to offer more safety features than their non-deluxe counterparts, which translates into better crash-test results. According to Consumer Reports, 71% of 2009 vehicles with standard stability control, traction control, anti-lock braking systems, side-front airbags and curtain airbags cost at least $30,000. Forty-four percent of the vehicles chosen as top safety picks by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety have an estimated base price of more than $30,000.

Each year, Kelley Blue Book rates the cars with the best resale values for their class. For 2009, eight out of 15 segment winners came from a luxury brand or cost more than $30,000. Standouts include the distinctive and quick-selling Mini Cooper, which starts at $18,700 but is one of the most expensive options in the compact class and is made by luxury automaker BMW. Other winners were the high-performance $76,840 Nissan GT-R and $40,240 Cadillac CTS sedan.

Or queen, as the case may be. From straight-grained East Indian rosewood trim in the Rolls-Royce Phantom tungsten to thick lambswool rugs in the Bentley Continental GT, luxury cars take opulence to the next level. Even if the silver champagne flutes in the $451,250 Maybach 62 S are out of your range, $1,200 will get you a semi-aniline leather-trimmed interior with African bubinga wood interior trim in the 2009 Lexus LX SUV.

Historically, luxury cars have offered the latest and greatest safety features (anti-lock brakes, review cameras) and entertainment technology (in-headrest TV screens, Bluetooth) before these options trickle down to the masses. In this year's 2009 luxury models, you can get everything from remote starters, electronic parking aids and rain-sensing windshield wipers to a fully integrated iPod music interface.

When it comes to sheer power, luxury cars come with plenty--without even having to upgrade the engine. Out of 353 2009 models evaluated by Consumer Reports, only six of them had at least 300 horsepower and cost under $30,000. Fifty-two had at least 300 horses under their belt and cost more than $30,000. Leading them are BMW's M-line, with models that bring 400 to 500 horsepower.

I am a Manhattan-based writer covering luxury travel and luxury residential real estate. I was a contributing writer at Barron's Penta magazine where I penned the Trendspotting column and also covered luxury real estate, pursuits, collecting and other topics. I am co-editor of Pursuitist, the luxury lifestyle site and served as co-editor of Luxist, the luxury lifestyle and travel website at AOL where I oversaw the Luxist Awards, a program that honored the very best in fine living. For 13 years I was a staff writer at Forbes magazine, where I covered real estate, insurance and personal finance, among other areas. I am also the author of six books, including \"The Closet Entrepreneur\" and \"The Business of America is Business.\" Follow me on Twitter at @carriecoolidge and Instagram at @carrie.coolidge1 041b061a72


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