DriveTrive community car of the decade - luxury & GT category
Insofar as the challenge of driving inhumane distances is concerned, a grand tourer has forever been the weapon of choice for those blessed with the money to afford one. The likes of Bentley, Aston Martin, and Rolls Royce have forever been shining beacons of luxury in the automotive world, and during this decade, things have been no different. And the nominations in the Luxury & GT category are...
Aston Martin DBS Superleggera
Out of all the cars currently in production, I can’t think of a single one more beautiful than the DBS Superleggera. With a 5.2L Twin-Turbo V12 developing 715bhp, it certainly has the engine to match its elegant yet muscular exterior. While it may not be as pretty on the inside as it is on the outside, it’s a mighty fine grand tourer all the same.
Aston Martin Vanquish S
Perhaps the biggest problem with the DBS however is its predecessor: the Vanquish S. To my eyes, it’s even more visually arresting, and its interior a much nicer place to spend time. Not to mention that with a naturally aspirated V12, the noise that shoots out the back is one of the nicest you’ll hear. While it may not be as cosseting as some of the other cars in this list, it’s a GT that inspires its driver to turn off the motorway and onto some delightful pieces of twisting heaven.
Bentley Continental GT (Mk III)
The third generation of Bentley’s Continental GT has already established itself as one of the most well rounded GT cars on sale. Using the same platform as the current Porsche Panamera, the Continental proves to be surprisingly engaging in the corners - despite its 2.2 tonne bulk. Not to mention that the interior has been described by numerous journalists as the nicest in any car on sale today.
Ferrari 812 Superfast
A name that was a source of endless complaining for people on the internet who’d never own one, the 812 Superfast has been described as a “front-engined hypercar” by a number of journalists who’ve driven one. The pursuit of harnessing the 789bhp from that 6.5L normally aspirated V12 has come at the price of comfort, with some members of the press saying they could only manage half an hour behind the wheel before being crippled in back pain. So, why the hell am I including it then? The answer: because if I don’t, every comment will read “where da 812?? Dat obvious, bro!”
Happily however, Ferrari do make a car that’s significantly more dedicated to grand touring than the 812. The GTC4Lusso is just one of those cars that make perfect sense. To start, it uses a 6.3L naturally aspirated V12 with 681bhp. Then, they add 4 seats, and an estate-like rear for plenty of practicality. With the unique 4WD system honed and improved over the now defunct FF, the GTC4Lusso is one of the most complete grand tourers there is.
On the other end of the scale however, you have the Lexus LC500 - which despite being expensive, is much more affordable than anything else you’ll find in this particular category. And don’t think the lower price means lower quality. The interior is a beautiful place to spend some hours, and the engine - a 5L naturally aspirated V8 - is a devise that turns dino-juice into blissful music. There are GT’s for twice the price of the LC500 that, frankly, aren’t anywhere near as good.
Mercedes S63 AMG
The moment you cop eyes on the Mercedes S63 - regardless of whether it be in coupe, convertible, or limo body style - it immediately imbues every fibre of your being with copious amounts of want. With seats developed by German back specialists, and air suspension that manages to deliver a stunning ride while preventing the car from rolling around in corners, the S-Class wafts around like a cloud on wheels. It may not necessarily be as special as some of the other entires, but from a tangible perspective, it beats all but one in the field of luxury.
Rolls Royce Phantom VIII
And that aforementioned “one” is, of course, the 8th generation Rolls Royce Phantom. Prior to the unveiling of this car, the question of how Rolls Royce could possibly improve upon the previous generation rang loudly in everyone’s ears. Simply put, they took everything that made the Phantom the best, and improved upon each and every element. In many ways, you have to think of the Phantom alongside luxury yachts and private jets, for it represents the pinnacle of its particular niche, and a facet of an oligarchical lifestyle.
And that folks concludes our business for the Luxury & GT category. Cast your vote below for your favourite luxury or GT car of the decade - the winner of which will go through to the final vote with the winners of the other 9 categories. Voting closes at 7pm GMT on Monday the 9th of December.