The average consumer might assume that both premium and luxury car brands would be beyond their reach, but what makes a premium car different to a luxury car? And just because you’ll probably never be able to afford a luxury car does that mean you’ll never be able to afford a premium car? Not necessarily.
The price tag
If there is one factor that gives it away, it’s the price tag. There is a significant difference between the cost of a premium model, like a Mercedes-Benz C-Class, and a luxury vehicle like a Bentley Continental that is worth well over £100,000. Premium cars from brands like Audi and BMW would be considered too expensive by most, but the price range of luxury brands like Aston Martin and Rolls Royce are on another level.
How many models have been produced? A major factor in luxury car desirability is how exclusive it is. If there are only 1000 in the world, for example, then it’s going to be much more desirable than if there were 50,000.
A luxury car is always going to be a piece of machinery which has been made with real skill and engineering. Think about how the steering wheel of a Bentley is stitched by hand in leather wrapping, how that stitching will be utterly unique to each craftsman who worked on your car. This means that every model is unique. A premium car, meanwhile, will probably still have been put together by a machine on a standard factory floor.
The finer details
Luxury is in the detail, so every aspect of a luxury car is expertly designed and crafted – lavish over cost-effective. There is no such thing as ‘too much’ when it comes to a luxury car. Only ‘not enough’. There’s also a definite ‘wow factor’ with many of these cars that set them apart. There’s a reason why, when you see a Lamborghini in the wild you’ll stop for a moment to admire it before getting on with your day. You probably wouldn’t do the same for a BMW.
Different things to different people
Ultimately, luxury means different things to different people. To some, a premium Audi might come across as luxury. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, after all. Then there’s the thin line between premium and luxury to consider. You might be able to, for example, get a fully loaded, top of the line premium car for the same price as a basic model luxury car.
Do comfort and usability matter to you more than status? These are the questions you’re going to have to ask yourself before you part with your hard-earned cash for a new vehicle.