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Published November 03, 2023

Unbreakable elegance: Discovering the most reliable luxury sedans

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BMW 3 Series Sedan

When it comes to finding the right luxury car for you, there is a lot to consider. First, you may be concerned with the level of luxury that a vehicle provides; for many drivers who are interested in luxury vehicles, it’s important that they provide the amenities and comforts that we’ve come to expect from highly sought-after luxury manufacturers.

Other factors you might consider include the performance of vehicles you’re interested in, the appearance and style of various luxury vehicles, and additional factors specific to one’s needs, such as storage space, gas mileage, drivetrain, and transmission.

However, one factor often stands out as important regardless of all other buying considerations: reliability. For many drivers and owners, it’s crucial to find a vehicle that carries the potential to hold up over the years, offering reliable performance that they can depend on. That’s why we’ve decided to take a look at three luxury sedans that stand out in terms of reliability. Our picks include Most Reliable Car, Best Value Luxury Car, and our Runner Up. Let’s explore.

The importance of reliability

While reliability may not be the first thing that comes to mind when searching for luxury sedans, its importance is nonetheless difficult to overstate. Reliability can significantly impact the experience of car buying. More reliable vehicles can save their owners headaches associated with maintenance costs, disruption to their transportation, and unsatisfying driving experiences. As such, when searching for the perfect luxury sedan, it can be important to consider not only metrics such as power, speed, comfort, and ride but also reliability and maintenance costs.

Finding a reliable luxury sedan - what we look for

There are a number of factors that contribute to the ultimate reliability of a vehicle, and for those searching for their perfect luxury sedan, it can be important to have an idea of what to look for in their options. Some of the factors that we’ve considered and that you might consider include:

The manufacturer’s track record

One of the first considerations many buyers take is the track record of the manufacturer in question. Companies with a culture of excellence and a reputation for delivering high-quality, dependable, and reliable vehicles can be an excellent starting point in the quest for your perfect luxury sedan. To learn which brands are the most reliable luxury car brands, there are a few places to look. Organizations such as JD Power Associates and Consumer Reports are a great place to start. They offer helpful insights about not only car models but makers as well.

Long term dependability

Another vital factor to consider is the dependability of the model in question. For new year models, there may be less data available, but consumers can often find a wealth of information related to the dependability of lightly used luxury sedans.

Maintenance and ownership costs

Another vital factor to consider is the potential costs associated with ownership and maintenance. Vehicles that require a high degree of expensive maintenance may be reliable as long as their maintenance needs are met but can present significant unexpected costs, which can, unfortunately, make their reliability conditional.

Customer reviews

An often overlooked source of helpful information, customer reviews can lend you a lot of insight into the best-used luxury cars. Customer reviews can illuminate common maintenance and reliability issues and help buyers better understand the level of satisfaction that other customers have gotten from a car.

Build quality

Not all vehicles are built the same, and the build quality of a vehicle can significantly impact its reliability and longevity. It can be helpful to look for luxury sedans that consumer insights organizations tout for their superior build quality and those whose manufacturers have a track record of building well-engineered vehicles that tend to perform well over time.

Industry ratings

Another helpful factor to consider is industry ratings. A number of organizations provide ratings each year in various categories of vehicles using their own metrics. Some such organizations include JD Power and Consumer Reports.

Our top picks
2019 BMW 4 door 4 Series - Runner Up

BMW 3 Series
BMW 3 Series

The 2019 BMW 4 series represents a high-reliability iteration of one of BMW’s most successful lines of cars — and for good reason. The 4 series has been in production since 2013, when BMW expanded its offerings out from the 3 series — offering convertible and 2-door variations of one of its most popular lines.

It’s important to note that not all BMW 4 series are sedans. However, the 2019 BMW 4-door 440i is a serious contender when it comes to reliable, high-quality luxury, especially in a sporty and capable 4-door format — as is the slightly toned-down 4-door 430i.

Featuring a 3.0 liter, 6-cylinder turbocharged inline engine that produces 320 horsepower at 5500 RPM, the 440i is far from a slacker in the power department. At just over 3700 pounds, this 4 series has more than enough power to take off when you need it to.

The 430i is no slacker either — with a 2.0 liter inline 4 (turbocharged as well) that manages to put out 248 horsepower at 5200 RPM. With rear-wheel drive, this car is designed to be fun to drive — and by most accounts, it is.

What makes this a luxurious ride

Despite its power engine, the 4 series is still a luxurious ride. The 4 series comes equipped with all the mainstays that consumers have come to expect from luxury manufacturers — including a gorgeous interior made up of high-quality materials that features:

• Optional leather seats with adjustable lumbar support and memory

• Integrated navigation, Apple CarPlay, Bluetooth, and backup camera

• A large, beautiful, easy-to-read digital instrument cluster

• Optional heated steering wheel

• Integrated garage door opener

• Satellite radio

Exterior capabilities also equip this luxury sedan to handle anything you might throw at it, with:

• Optional adaptive headlights

• Heated mirrors

• Powered trunk release

• Power folding mirrors

• Rain-sensing wipers

Standard and optional safety features make this vehicle well-equipped for on-the-road safety:

• Optional blindspot alert

• Optional collision warning system

• Optional pedestrian warning system

• Optional side-view cameras

• Optional top-down camera

• Standard traction control system

Why it made our top three

The 4 series is a serious contender for some of the most reliable used luxury sedans one can get, and there’s good reason for that. This vehicle made our top picks for a few reasons.


BMW has a clear reputation for manufacturing high-quality cars that exist at the intersection of performance and luxury. Many BMW owners are attracted to these stylish, sporty, and luxurious vehicles because BMW has a well-established track record of producing cars that have held up well over the years in terms of performance, reliability, and comfort.

Industry ratings

While BMW has a well-established track record, it’s still important for discerning buyers to ensure that each model lives up to that reputation. As such, the 4 series’ accolades are an important factor in making this one of our top three. The 2019 4-series was well-received and rated highly among critics. Since our focus here is on reliability, we’ll explore the industry ratings that make it a top contender:

JD Power: Importantly, JD Power named the 2019 4 series number 2 in the Compact Premium Car category. What we were particularly interested in, however, was its quality and reliability score — an incredible 84 / 100. JD Power looks at problems that owners experience three years into ownership and, based on their data, awards the 2019 4 Series their Dependability Award.

Edmunds: Edmunds, another reputable organization that provides automotive consumer insights, had high praise for the 2019 4 Series, rating it an overall 7.9 / 10, with an 8 /10 rating for technology.

Car and Driver: Car and Driver noted of the 2019 4 Series: “A highly capable chassis seamlessly transitions between relaxed and athletic.”

Kelley Blue Book: KBB ratings for the 2019 4 Series include a 4.8-star Consumer Rating and an impressive 4.1-star Expert Rating.

U.S. News & World Report: U.S. News and World Report awards the 2019 4 Series an impressive 7.7 / 10, citing handling, engine power, and cargo space.


One of the reasons we selected the 4 Series as one of our top picks is that, in addition to this car’s luxury and power, it’s considered a highly reliable luxury vehicle, having earned JD Power’s Dependability Award, based on owner data after three years of ownership.

2019 Lincoln MKZ - Best value luxury car

Lincoln MKZ
Lincoln MKZ

The 2019 Lincoln MKZ is a powerful, capable, sleek, nonetheless luxurious vehicle. The MKZ line started off as a revival of Lincoln’s beloved Zephyr, a namesake that dates all the way back to the early 1940s and late 1930s when Lincoln produced the original Zephyr luxury sedan. However, the MKZ quickly took off and became its own beloved line.

The 2019 MKZ represents a serious contender when it comes to some of the most reliable luxury sedans and combines innovative power with luxury features that are hard to overlook. The 2019 MKZ is available with a number of optional trim packages, and buyers can choose from a turbocharged 4-cylinder inline engine, a turbocharged V6 engine, and a hybrid-electric drivetrain.

With the all-wheel-drive drivetrain option, the twin-turbocharged V6 spits out an incredible 400 horsepower at 5500 RPM. At just around 3,900 pounds, the MKZ has enough power to take off — and then some. The turbocharged inline 4-cylinder is hardly a slouch either, pumping out an incredibly efficient 245 horsepower at 5500 RPM.

Finally, the hybrid drivetrain offers the efficiency and acceleration of electric motors, combined with the power and reliability of an Atkinson cycle inline 4-cylinder engine, pushing out an impressive 188 horsepower at 6000 RPM. Combined with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) this option has some serious power and efficiency.

What makes this a luxurious ride

Like the other options we’ve explored, the 2019 MKZ is no stranger to power — offering buyers a range of options, all just as spectacular as the last, each in its own way. But the MKZ doesn’t just offer power. It’s a comfortable ride, too, chock full of luxurious amenities that make this vehicle the head-turner that it is.

Lincoln has long been associated with luxury, and the MKZ is not the exception to the rule — if anything, rather, it’s an exemplar. Buyers will enjoy a number of luxurious mainstays, including a beautiful spacious interior, ready to seat 5. Other interior perks include:

• Front heated seats

• Seat memory settings

• Multi-zone air conditioning

• Auto-dimming rearview mirror

• Adjustable lumbar support

• 8-inch touchscreen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and MP3 player

• Integrated navigation

Exterior perks make this luxury vehicle particularly well-equipped for home and the road:

• Heated mirrors

• Rain-sensing wipers

• Remote engine ignition

• Proximity sensing entry system

• Remote control trunk release

And the safety features this advanced ride offers to equip it to get you there safely:

• Traction control

• Blindspot alert

• Lane departure warning system

• Collision warning system

Why it made our top three

The 2019 Lincoln MKZ is another serious contender for one of the best and most reliable luxury sedans. There are a few reasons why this model made our top three. Let’s explore.


Lincoln has been a mainstay of luxury in domestic manufacturers in the United States for years. As Ford’s beloved luxury line, Lincoln has had a solid reputation for combining the performance and engineering of Ford vehicles with its own luxurious spin since 1922. Consumers trust Lincoln to produce vehicles that combine comfort, luxury, and style — and the MKZ is no exception.

Industry ratings

Lincoln holds a solid reputation for producing high-quality vehicles, yet for the discerning buyer, it is still essential to see what the industry experts say about any model before buying. Fortunately, the MKZ has been — unsurprisingly — well-received by critics and has the accolades to show for it. For this vehicle, some of the industry ratings it received were important for making it one of our top picks.

JD Power: Importantly, JD Power awarded the 2019 MKZ a consumer rating of an 83 /100 — a great sign. However, we were particularly interested in its Quality and Reliability score — an incredible 89 /100. JD Power also named the MKZ #2 in the Compact Premium category, tying it — for that metric at least — with the BMW 4 Series.

Edmunds: Edmunds rated the 2019 MKZ with an impressive 7.4 / 10 Expert Rating, citing impressive comfort, coming in at 7.5 points out of 10, an appealing interior, coming out at 7.5 / 10, and strong technology, coming out at an impressive 8 / 10 points.

Kelley Blue Book: KBB rates the 2019 MKZ an impressive 4.6-star Consumer Rating (our of five), and an impressive 3.7-star Expert Rating, touting a “finely focused approach in the new MKZ…”


As we’re exploring some of the most reliable luxury sedans on the market, we can’t overlook dependability, and that’s one of the reasons why this pick made our top three, easily. With a JD Power Quality and Reliability score of 89 / 100, the MKZ performs incredibly well in the reliability and dependability department, placing it squarely in our top three picks.

2019 Lexus ES

Lexus ES
Lexus ES

The 2019 Lexus ES line started off as a line of luxury sedans touting high-performance V6 engines and impressive levels of comfort and luxury. Newer models, while offering more drivetrain and engine options than in the past, are still some of the most comfortable, appealing, and high-quality luxury sedans on the road today.

Buyers have an impressive range of choices for the 2019 Lexus ES, with several available trim packages and a choice between a 3.5 liter V6 and an inline 4 cylinder, as well as a hybrid electric drivetrain option.

With the 3.5 liter V6, buyers will enjoy an impressive 302 horsepower at 6600 RPM. Combined with an efficient front-wheel drive drivetrain and weighing in at less than 3,600 pounds, this luxury sedan offers an immense amount of pickup power. Combined with an automatic 8-speed transmission with overdrive, drivers can enjoy a combination of power and efficient mileage on freeways.

The 2.5-liter inline 4-cylinder engine offers a fair amount of power, too — spitting out 215 horsepower at 5700 RPM. Combined with an efficient continuously variable transmission and overdrive, buyers won’t need to choose between performance and mileage.

What makes this a luxurious ride

Lexus is no stranger to luxury, and the 2019 ES is no exception. This vehicle offers some of the incredible amenities and comforts that luxury buyers have come to expect and appreciate in modern luxury sedans. The ES boasts an impressively attractive interior featuring:

• Onboard Wi-Fi

• Power seats

• Adjustable lumbar support - passenger and driver

• Integrated garage door opener

• Multi-zone air conditioning

• Siri Eyes Free, Apple CarPlay, and Amazon Alexa

Exterior features that make this model home and road-ready include:

• Variable speed intermittent wipers

• Rear spoiler

• Remote trunk release

• Mirror-integrated turn signals

And safety features that help you get where you’re going safely include:

• Automated emergency braking system

• Lane assist system

• Automated high-beam headlights

• Stability control

• Side airbags

Why it made our top three

With an impressive range of features and capabilities, it’s perhaps unsurprising why this choice made our top three — but let’s dive into why.


We could hardly make a list of the most reliable luxury sedans without including a Lexus model. Toyota, Lexus's parent company, holds an immaculate track record for producing some of the most reliable vehicles ever manufactured. The 2019 Lexus ES is certainly no exception, having garnered an impressive amount of accolades for its reliability.

Industry ratings

With an impressive track record and impressive features and capabilities, it isn’t surprising that the 2019 ES received favorable industry ratings.

JD Power: Like the other vehicles we’ve discussed, the 2019 ES is tied as number 2 in Compact Premium Car by JD Power. However, we were particularly enamored with JD Power’s Quality and Reliability rating for this vehicle — an impressive 84 /100.

U.S. News & World Report: U.S. News and World Report rated the 2019 ES with an incredible 8.1 / 10, citing outstanding predicted reliability, trunk space, a roomy interior, and numerous driver assistance features.

Car and Driver: Of the 2019 ES, Car and Driver had this to say: “The sleek 2019 Lexus ES is not only elegant inside and out, it also provides peaceful, worry-free cruising.”

Kelley Blue Book: KBB ratings include an incredible 4.8-star Expert rating, as well as an impressive 4.1-star Consumer Rating.

The bottom line

When it comes to finding the perfect luxury sedan, buyers surely have a lot to think about. From the interior and exterior styling to the numerous amenities and comforts that set a high-quality luxury vehicle apart from other cars on the road, there are myriad factors to consider.

While performance, style, interior design, comfort, and even brand reputation can be important considerations for many buyers of luxury sedans, it’s important not to overlook one crucial factor that can significantly impact the experience of any car — reliability.

The benefits of reliability go far beyond convenience and cost-effectiveness; in addition to helping drivers avoid unnecessary costs for repairs, a reliable car can also be thought of as safer and less likely to fail when on the road or when it matters the most. As such, it can be crucial to approach luxury sedan buying from a perspective that takes into account not only luxurious amenities, comfort, style, and performance but reliability and dependability as well.

That’s why we’ve explored some of the most reliable luxury cars on the road today. Our top picks include the 2019 Lincoln MKZ, the 2019 Lexus ES, and the 2019 BMW 4 Series.

At EchoPark, we’re devoted to driving happiness. If you’re interested in learning more about these models and a range of other amazing luxury sedan options, be sure to check out our listings for vehicles near you or book an appointment! At EchoPark, we rely on a comprehensive 190-point inspection checklist that helps us ensure that we can offer the most reliable used luxury cars.

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