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Thursday Throwdown: 2014 Luxury Midsize Cars

In today’s Thursday Throwdown, our matchup consists of luxury midsize cars. These are usually four-door sedans with a starting above $35,000. These vehicles are from premium brands that focus on luxurious interior materials, exceptional build quality and refined looks.

Our top picks are chosen for their refinement, efficiency and safety. These 2014 models are beginning to appear as used car and dealer demonstration vehicles now, so be sure to check our Used Car Listings to find one for yourself.

2014 Top Luxury Midsize Cars Picks

Lowest Entry Price: Hyundai Genesis
Best Fuel Economy: Audi A6
Quietest Ride: Mercedes-Benz E-Class
Most Refined Overall: Mercedes-Benz E-Class, Jaguar XF
Most Refined Interior: Lexus GS
Most Fun To Drive: BMW 5-Series, Jaguar XF

2014 Audi A6

Noted mainly for its high-end technology options and well-mannered handling, the Audi A6 is a German offering with a high-quality interior and excellent engine offerings. It also has relatively high crash test ratings and contemporary exterior styling.

Base price new: $43,100
EPA mpg (city/highway): 25/33
Crash test ratings: IIHS – G/N/G/G/G, NHTSA – 5-Stars

[Read: CARFAX Finds: Rugged Outdoor SUVs]

2014 BMW 5-Series

Known primarily for its sporty handling and powerful engine offerings, the BMW 5-Series also has a comfortable, if spartan, cabin and beautiful Teutonic styling. Trunk space is small and rear-seat legroom is sometimes tight, but the 5-Series is a popular choice in this segment and offers good safety and luxury in this class.

Base price new: $49,500
EPA mpg (city/highway): 20/30
Crash test ratings: IIHS – G/N/G/G/G, NHTSA – 5-Stars

[Read: Best Used Car Deals for March 2015]

2014 Hyundai Genesis

The Hyundai Genesis is the top-of-the-line offering from the Korean automaker who’s foray into luxury surprised many in the industry. An attractive cabin, surprisingly powerful engine offerings and a low price point make it an understated option for the luxury buyer.

Base price new: $35,200
EPA mpg (city/highway): 18/27
Crash test ratings: IIHS – G/N/G/G/G, NHTSA – N/A

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2014 Jaguar XF

The XF is a sport sedan with a luxurious interior that only Jaguar can offer. It’s agile, fleet-footed and posh. Rear seating is cramped, however, and trunk space is smaller than others in this class. However, the Jaguar XF is a beautifully made automobile with contemporary styling and British aplomb.

Base price new: $46,975
EPA mpg (city/highway): 19/30
Crash test ratings: IIHS – N/A, NHTSA – N/A

[Read: Five Great Used SUVs Under $25,000]

2014 Lexus ES

Lexus has made its mark with entry-level luxury vehicles like the excellent ES. A spacious interior is well-appointed and comfortable. The Lexus ES, however, suffers from a lackluster presence on the road and sluggish driving dynamics, but the balanced and efficient hybrid option is well-loved.

Base price new: $36,620
EPA mpg (city/highway): 21/31
Crash test ratings: IIHS – G/N/G/G/G, NHTSA – 5-Stars

[Read: Thursday Throwdown: 2014 Affordable Hatchbacks]

2014 Lexus GS

More agile than its ES counterpart, the Lexus GS is comfortable and more dynamic in appearance. A top-shelf interior can be offset with beautiful bamboo trim and a hybrid option for this car improves both ride quality and efficiency thanks to better weight distribution. The GS sells very well, and for good reason.

Base price new: $47,700
EPA mpg (city/highway): 19/29
Crash test ratings: IIHS – G/N/G/G/G, NHTSA – N/A

[Read: How to Store Your Vehicle Long Term]

2014 Mercedes-Benz E-Class

The generous cabin of the Mercedes-Benz E-Class is complemented by a very well-mannered ride and composed handling. The powerful engine purrs as it propels the E-Class forward, becoming a dominating force when the accelerator is pressed. The E-Class’ interior appointments are some of the best you’ll find. The E-Class also offers some of the strongest crash test ratings on our list.

Base price new: $51,400
EPA mpg (city/highway): 24/30
Crash test ratings: IIHS – TSP+, NHTSA – 4/4/5/5

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