While the term "executive car" is used widely elsewhere in the rest of the world, here in the U.S. we usually refer to these sedans as midsize luxury cars. No matter what you call them, these executive cars are commonly purchased by those on their way up the corporate ladder, either as a reward to themselves or as a way of showing off their newfound success. Here at Autobytel, we've created a list of 10 of the most interesting executive cars, so if you've just been promoted and are now in the market for such a vehicle, continue reading to see which of these impressive midsize luxury cars deserves a spot in your garage.
10 Favorite Executive Sedans
Photo Credit: Acura
1) Acura TLX
The Acura TLX is a midsize 4-door luxury sedan that first went on sale for the 2015 model year. Models powered by the inline-4 engine are front-wheel-drive only, while V6 models are available with either front-wheel drive or with Acura's torque-vectoring all-wheel-drive system. None of the models are particularly sporty, but handling is secure, the ride is smooth, and fuel economy is decent. The interior is comfortable and quiet, there's a good amount of room, and all the modern active safety systems are available. If you're looking for an affordable executive car and aren't too concerned with performance driving, the Acura TLX is worth a look.
Photo Credit: Audi
2) Audi A6
Though the current Audi A6 was introduced for the 2012 model year, it was refreshed for 2015 and remains an attractive and modern-looking midsize 4-door luxury sedan. Turbocharged 4-cylinder models are available with front- or all-wheel drive, while the supercharged V6 models (and the high-performance S6 with its powerful turbocharged V8) all come with all-wheel drive. Like other Audis, the A6 has a beautiful interior that uses high quality materials to give a truly luxurious feel. Most models have a comfortable ride, but sportier models trade some ride comfort for better handling. If you're looking to show off your executive status, the Audi A6 is a great way to do it.
Photo Credit: BMW
3) BMW 5 Series
This year brings a new model of the 4-door BMW 5 Series Sedan, and while this newest model is substantially lighter than the outgoing model, appearance-wise there isn't much to distinguish it if you haven't been paying close attention. Available engines include an inline-4 and an inline-6, both of which are turbocharged and available in either rear- or all-wheel drive. As you'd expect, the new BMW 5 Series features impressive ride quality and handling, although the steering is sometimes a bit on the light side. As in the past, the new BMW 5 Series continues as a benchmark executive sedan.
Photo Credit: General Motors
4) Cadillac CTS
Cadillac's CTS is one of the few American entries in the Autobytel list of executive cars, and, despite the fact that this generation was introduced in 2014, it still manages to out-class most of its European competition thanks to its still-modern styling and excellent handling. The CTS offers a range of engines, from mild (a turbocharged 4-cylinder or normally aspirated V6) to wild (a turbocharged V6 or the CTS-V with its supercharged V8), and both rear- and all-wheel-drive models are available. The interior is comfortable, but the rear is a bit cramped. Also, the materials should be of higher quality, and the CUE infotainment system would benefit from a few tweaks.
Photo Credit: Infiniti
5) Infiniti Q70
The Infiniti Q70 is a midsize luxury sedan that was last refreshed for the 2015 model year. The exterior styling is attractively swoopy and the interior has a nice clean design while offering good outward vision. Power comes from either a V6 or a V8 engine, both of which are available in either rear- or all-wheel drive, and an economical rear-wheel-drive hybrid model is also available. While the ride is smooth, the seats, while comfortable, are a bit firm for a luxury sedan. The Q70 handles in a secure fashion, but a lack of good steering feel takes some of the fun out of the drive.
Photo Credit: Jaguar
6) Jaguar XF
Jaguar introduced the latest generation of the XF for the 2016 model year, and it remains a modern and attractive looking midsize luxury sedan, inside and out. The Jaguar XF is one of the few executive cars available with a diesel, and the turbocharged 4-cylinder unit is quite economical. Also available is a supercharged V6, and both engines are available with rear- or all-wheel drive. While the Jaguar is a good-handling car with communicative steering as well as a fine ride, we wish the car's exhaust was a bit more aggressive, as in sportier Jags with the same engine.
Photo Credit: Lexus
7) Lexus GS
The Lexus GS is a 4-door midsize executive car that was refreshed for the 2016 model year. Power from the turbocharged 4-cylinder engine is sent to the rear wheels, while the V6 is also available with all-wheel drive. An economical hybrid version is also available, as is the powerful GS F, one of the few naturally aspirated V8-powered models still available in the class. Ride quality is very good, and handling is far better than you might expect from a Lexus. The interior makes use of high-quality materials and the seats are comfortable, but the infotainment system isn't as convenient to use as it should be.
Photo Credit: Lincoln
8) Lincoln MKZ
The Lincoln MKZ is a 4-door midsize luxury car that received an attractive facelift for the 2017 model year. Powertrain options include a turbocharged 4-cylinder and a powerful new turbocharged V6, both of which are available with front- or all-wheel drive. An economical hybrid model is also available for the same price as the turbo 4-cylinder. Handling is secure but not particularly sporty, and ride quality is good (though some might find it too firm with the sportier suspension). The MKZ comes standard with many features that are optional on its competitors, and though the interior on some models can be a bit underwhelming, this Lincoln offers remarkable value for the money.
Photo Credit: Mercedes-Benz
9) Mercedes-Benz E-Class
A new generation of the Mercedes-Benz E-Class Sedan was introduced for the 2017 model year, and, as previously, the new car seems to place comfort above all else. The latest E-Class has a pleasant interior, supportive seats, and a great ride, yet it is still quite capable when driven at its limits. Available drivetrains include a rear- or all-wheel-drive turbocharged 4-cylinder as well as an AMG version with a turbocharged V6 that sends power to all four wheels. Thanks to the Drive Pilot system, the Mercedes E is one of the few cars in its class that can almost drive itself, though you do have to keep your hands on the steering wheel.
Photo Credit: Volvo
10) Volvo S90
The Volvo S90 is a 4-door midsize luxury sedan that was introduced for the 2017 model year. The interior and exterior styling is clean and functional yet elegant. Power comes from a range of powerful yet frugal 4-cylinder engines, including a turbocharged unit that directs power to the front wheels and a turbocharged and supercharged version that sends power to all four wheels. Neither S90 is particularly sporty but the ride is smooth and the seats are especially comfortable. Volvo's Pilot Assist technology can take control of most driving duties, though you still have to keep your hands on the steering wheel.