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Premium Car Large: Gold Star Value Awards

By James Whitbourn, 16 Oct 2014 Best Value Cars

Lexus GS300h

The dominant Germans have been upstaged by Lexus

­The dominant Germans have been upstaged by Lexus

1. Lexus GS300h
TRADITIONAL Lexus qualities such as a 12-month service interval and a four-year warranty team with newfound polish and appeal in the Japanese brand’s fourth-gen GS series. The luxo sedan brings a beautifully crafted interior, greatly improved (though still not fantastic) chassis dynamics and, as our calculations reveal, a class-leading value equation.

The four-cylinder hybrid GS, at 5.2L/100km on the combined cycle, brings diesel-rivalling fuel efficiency and the brand’s hard-won reputation for reliability is reflected in a 56 percent three-year retained value. Meanwhile, the fact the GS300h was the priciest to insure, at $1582, failed to unravel its ultimately successful tilt at Gold Star glory.

2. Mercedes-Benz E220 CDI
OUTDONE by the Lexus on some counts, but the Mercedes’ three-year resale – top-of-the-class at 61 percent – counts for plenty if you turn your car over often.

3. BMW 520i
BMW’s entry-level large sedan performed well everywhere for a close-run third. Condition-based servicing a best-case scenario because it means the minimum number of trips to the mechanic.

Premium Large  Purchase Price Comb. Fuel (L/100km) Fuel RON (min. rec.) 3-year fuel cost Redbook resale (%) 3-year deprec. AAMI insurance prem. Service interval (months) Warranty (years)
Lexus GS300h $78,163 5.2 95 $3160 56 $34,392 $1582.21 12 4
Mercedes-Benz E220 CDI $82,900 4.9 D $2961 61 $32,331 $1370.68 12 3
BMW 520i $80,400 6.2 98 $3982 58 $33,768 $1397.90 12 3

Notable classmates: Audi A6 2.0 TDI, Jaguar XF 2.0T Luxury / Number of cars crunched: 5