Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Unsung Flagship Sedans Part 2

Well here’s part 2 of my favorite unsung flagship sedans, a celebration of the large, pricey and awesome land barges that we all love!  

This is it, the big Volvo!  The flagship offering from one of my top 2 favorite Swedish brands is both technically and design wise… well, older than all the other Volvos currently on the market.  However, I would also like to point out that when it first debuted it was a pretty awesome car.  It had style combined with good functionality.  It came standard with a straight-six (the only one in my group of favorites) and at different times had a V8 option and/or a turbocharged straight-six.  You can also get it with AWD, giving its owner sure-footed safety in all sorts of weather conditions. 

The biggest benefit of owning a Volvo is that there probably isn’t another car that you will most likely survive a crash in.  Nor will you likely find a more comfortable seat.  In fact, it’s a well known fact that those guys that lie on beds-of-nails can only endure it because they are able to trick their sub-conscious into believing they are sitting in an S80.  True story. 

Well this one is a bit of a mystery to me.  I’m not including it because I know much about it, but rather because I have been told so much about it by people that have either owned them or spent considerable time in them – which isn’t as many people as I’m making it sound.  We’re talking probably 3 total.  But they raved about it and I’ve liked every Infiniti I’ve driven, so here it is.

And really, what’s not to like?  It’s a big, luxurious sedan that handles well and has a powerful V8 driving the rear wheels.  This is the formula used with great success by the likes of BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Jaguar.  Add to that some superior Japanese build quality and you’ve got yourself a winner.   Apparently the automotive press agreed with that and the reviews for the Q45 were very favorable.  However, people just didn’t buy them.  Some say it’s because of the lackluster exterior design, others because at the time the Infiniti brand didn’t have the same prestige it enjoys now.  Likely a combination of the two holds the key to the car’s lack of success.  Luckily, with the passing of the Q45 we were treated to the M45... a good trade off by any measure.   

Well that’s it for now.  Feel free to post about some of the big boats you’re fond of in the comments section below! 

Oh, one more thing!  Tomorrow I’m off to my first car auction.  I don’t plan on buying anything (the wife gave me permission to spend up to $100 - whoopee!), but I will be taking some mental notes about my experience, so expect a report to show up here on the pages of Automophiliac in the near future. 


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