Some of the best used luxury cars under $25,000 can supply an incredible range of upscale features for well under what you’d pay for the average new vehicle today. With the average new vehicle transaction cost topping $34,000 at the end of 2016, opting for a premium pre-owned car can save you thousands of dollars. Yet you can still enjoy supple leather seating, real wood trim, and sophisticated technologies, in many cases paired with equally premium powertrains. True, older choices may not have all the latest driver-assistance measures, but think of it this way: For the price of a brand-new, well-equipped compact car from a mainstream automaker, you could be behind the wheel of one of the following vehicles.
10 Best Used Luxury Cars under $25,000
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons
2011 Audi A8 L
The best used luxury cars under $25,000 include fullsize flagship sedans like the 2011 Audi A8. Both regular- and extended-wheelbase editions are available under our $25K ceiling, and that compares to an MSRP of $82,500 for the 2017 A8 L. On its part, the 2011 A8 L showcases range-topping levels of luxury and technology. In the mix here: climate-controlled, leather-surfaced, 22-way multi-contour front seats, along with Bose surround sound audio, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assistance, navigation, a rearview camera, and a heated and leather-wrapped steering wheel. Beneath the hood of the 2011 A8 L is a 372-horsepower V8 that sends power to all four corners using Audi’s quattro all-wheel drive technology. And that’s good for 0-60 acceleration of 5.3 seconds.
Photo Credit: BMW
2011 BMW 7 Series
Another of Germany’s best used luxury cars under $25,000 is the 2011 BMW 7 Series. Like its competition, a car such as the 2011 BMW 750 Li provides massive savings over its current counterpart, but it also furnishes a memorable package of premium content. Thus, the 2011 750 Li can have heated and cooled front seats, a cabin trimmed in real aluminum and wood, lan departure warning, active blind spot detection, a 10-speaker audio system, a heads-up display, and an iDrive infotainment system with navigation and a 10.2-inch screen. Some examples also slip under our pricing limit with an M Sport package, which adds a further dash of athleticism to the car’s 400-horsepower twin-turbo V8 engine.
Photo Credit: Cadillac
2016 Cadillac XTS
Meanwhile, the Cadillac brand has a particularly impressive value play, even among the rest of the best used luxury cars under $25,000. That’s because a vehicle as new as the 2016 Cadillac XTS qualifies. The XTS is a spacious and inviting fullsize luxury sedan, and customers can pick one up for under $25K with heated and cooled front seats, heated outboard rear seats, real wood cockpit trim, soft Soleil Keisel leather upholstery, a heated and leather-wrapped steering wheel, a Bose premium audio system, and a CUE infotainment system with navigation and an 8-inch touchscreen. At the same time, the XTS enables an appropriately uplevel and engaging driving experience, thanks to a 304-horsepower V6 and a Magnetic Ride Control suspension.
Photo Credit: Hyundai
2013 Hyundai Equus
As Hyundai works to develop its new Genesis luxury division, let’s next go back to an earlier lux effort from the company. The 2013 Hyundai Equus was designed to take on the best luxury cars of the time when it was introduced, and it remains one of the best used luxury cars under $25,000 today. In fact, the 2013 Equus Signature edition meets our cost criteria with key features such as heated and cooled driver and front-seat passenger seats, heated rear seats, a heated steering wheel, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, and a rearview camera. Also notable: The Equus is a rear-wheel drive performer, backed by a 5.0-liter V8 engine that makes 429 horsepower and 376 lb.-ft. of torque.
Photo Credit: Infiniti
2013 Infiniti M37
The 2013 Infiniti M37 is an additional alternative for customers who prefer rear-wheel drive in the best luxury cars under $25,000. Although, truth be told, all-wheel drive M37 editions can be had for that price, as well. In any case, also included can be the usual array of luxury cues, from heated and cooled front-row seating, to a heated and leather-wrapped steering wheel, to a rearview camera system. The 2013 M37 also matches its rivals with revved-up performance: Bolstered by a 330-horsepower V6 engine, the car can sprint from 0-60 in a bare 5.3 seconds. Oh, and the car was an IIHS Top Safety Pick, too, with a 5-Star Overall Safety Score from NHTSA.
Photo Credit: Jaguar
2013 Jaguar XF
All of the best used luxury cars under $25,000 will attract their share of attention, yet the 2013 Jaguar XF—with its sleek and aggressive shape—is distinctive even in that company. The fullsize XF luxury sedan can be upgraded with Jaguar’s Woodgrain interior package, soft-to-the-touch leather seating, multi-stage heating for the driver and front-seat passenger, a power-opening moonroof, and a premium Meridian sound system—and despite all that content and more, the 2013 XF still reaches dealerships for less than $25,000. Moreover, those examples can serve up a supercharged V6 engine that’s complemented by 340 horsepower, all-wheel drive, and an 8-speed automatic transmission. Per Jag, the XF jumps from 0-60 in 5.3 seconds with that powertrain.
Photo Credit: Lexus
2012 Lexus LS
Though many of the best used luxury cars under $25,000 are configured with rear- or all-wheel drive, a 2012 Lexus LS 460 gets the job done with front-wheel drive—and the brand’s impeccable attention to detail. The detailed cabin in the 2012 LS 460, for instance, checks the boxes for leather surfaces, heated front and rear seats, a power-opening trunk, a 10-speaker surround-sound audio system, and a rearview camera. Nor is the LS 460 any slouch when it comes to motivation. Regardless of its front-wheel drive setup, the Lexus flagship sails from 0-60 in 5.5 seconds with a standard 380-horsepower V8 engine and 8-speed automatic transmission. All-wheel drive, of course, also happens to be on the car’s options list.
Photo Credit: Lincoln
2014 Lincoln MKS
It may not have the same reputation as some of the other best used luxury cars under $25,000, but the 2014 Lincoln MKS does have a lot of the same benefits. Right off the bat, that $25K sticker price can include heated and cooled driver and front-row passenger seats, covered in premium perforated leather; also wrapped in leather is the MKS steering wheel. Tech-wise, the MKS touts standard content such as a SYNC voice-controlled infotainment system, a rearview camera, and a 10-speaker sound system. What really distinguishes the MKS, however, is that models can be priced below our limit while still carrying a 3.5-liter twin-turbo EcoBoost engine that leverages 365 horsepower, 350 lb.-ft. of torque, and all-wheel drive.
Photo Credit: Mercedes-Benz
2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class
If you want to go outside the box with the best used luxury cars under $25,000, the 2012 Mercedes-Benz SLK-Class may be the ideal choice. Unlike the sedan entries that fill out the rest of our honor roll, the SLK-Class is a 2-seat roadster with a power-retractable hard top. Then, with a little luck, you’ll be able to track down a 2013 SLK350. That nomenclature indicates the presence of a 3.5-liter V6, which in turn pumps out 302 horsepower and 273 lb.-ft. of torque—for dynamic drop-top driving. You won’t have to worry about chilly weather, either, since these sub-$25K SLKs can come with heated leather seats and a standard wind blocker.
Photo Credit: Volvo
2015 Volvo S80
The 2015 Volvo S80 caps off today’s gallery of the best used luxury cars under $25,000, delivering the brand’s inimitable focus on safety. More specifically, S80 editions from this vintage, at that price, can assist drivers with a rearview camera, blind spot monitor, and Volvo’s City Safety low-speed collision-avoidance technology with automatic braking. It’s also safe to say that Volvo can satisfy customer demand for luxury in the S80. After all, the same cars will be outfitted with leather seating, walnut-wood inlays, LED daytime running lamps, a power moonroof, a Sensus infotainment system with a 7-inch screen, “high-performance” audio, and—for on-road performance—all-wheel drive and a turbocharged, 300-horsepower 6-cylinder engine.