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A sports sedan or a sports saloon is a descriptive term applied to a sedan automobile that is designed to look and feel "sporty", offering the motorist more connection with the driving experience, while providing the comfort and amenities expected of a luxury sedan.[1] A wider definition that includes related coupé, convertibles, crossovers is known as sport luxury. Most vehicles in this category overlap with the compact executive car and executive car classifications, while the sporty small family sedans are called sport compacts (mostly used in North America).

History

The term was originally introduced in the 1930s and applied to lighter, more streamlined closed body coachwork fitted by car makers.[citation needed] Rover, for example, had Sports Saloon versions of several of their models.

It was later applied by manufacturers to special versions of their vehicles that allowed them to enter production cars in motor races with extra modifications not normally permitted by the regulations.[citation needed] Such regulations required cars to be homologated typically by selling them in minimum numbers to the public. Some of the earlier examples were the Alfa Romeo 1900,[2] Triumph Dolomite and Lotus Cortina.

Traditionally sports sedans have a manual transmission and tachometer in order to provide that "sports look and feel" and are rear wheel drive, have good handling characteristics, and adequate power. Because of the US move to automatic transmission and front wheel drive these types are now also to be found in the sport sedan category. Recent sport sedans such as the latest iterations of the BMW M5 and BMW M3 had implemented semi-automatic transmissions.

Concept

The term "sport sedan" is not an absolute term, rather it is relative.

In North America, most luxury import sedans are often considered "sport sedans" because of their higher performance, handling, and expensive available amenities relative to that of mass market cars. There is some price overlapping, for instance as an entry-level BMW 328i has a similar (manufacturer's) suggested retail price to a Toyota Camry XLE V6.

The term "sport sedan" also came into being, when comparing luxury import sedans (i.e. BMW, Audi, and Mercedes-Benz), which were smaller cars popular with young buyers that focused on performance and handling, to domestic luxury marques such as Cadillac and Lincoln, for older customers and which emphasized size and comfort. In the 1980s and 1990s, the change in consumer demographics towards smaller and sportier luxury cars, along with Japanese luxury brands, led to a decline in the prestige of domestic luxury marques, whose chief offerings were the Cadillac DeVille and Lincoln Town Car. However, since the 2000s, Cadillac and Lincoln have begun producing competitive models such as the Cadillac CTS and Lincoln LS. Buick was retained as General Motors's traditional luxury brand and emphasized comfort and amenities instead of driving experience.[3]

Luxury performance sedans sold in North American have a smaller range of engines, tending towards the high-powered side, compared to their European lineups. For instance Mercedes-Benz advertises all of the 2009 US/Canadian models of the Mercedes-Benz C-Class as a "sport sedan", not just the high-performance C63 AMG.[4]

In the midsize sedan category in North America, the 2008 Nissan Altima has been described as the sportiest in its classification, compared to the Honda Accord or Toyota Camry.[5][6] The first-generation Mazda6 and Mazda3 were also known as[7] sport sedans as well,as well as the Volkswagen Jetta and Volkswagen Passat, when tested against other vehicles in their size class.

Examples of modern sports sedans

Cadillac CTS-V

FPV (Ford Performance Vehicles) Falcon GT

Mercedes-Benz C63

BMW M5

MG ZS

Lexus IS-F

Subaru Impreza WRX

Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution

  • Acura CSX Type S
  • Acura RL A-Spec
  • Acura TL A-Spec/Type-S
  • Acura TSX
  • Alfa Romeo 156 GTA
  • Aston Martin Rapide
  • Audi S4, Audi RS4
  • Audi S5, Audi RS5 Sportback
  • Audi S6, Audi RS6
  • Audi S8
  • BMW Alpina B3
  • BMW Alpina B5
  • BMW Alpina B7
  • BMW M3
  • BMW M5
  • Buick Regal GS
  • Cadillac CTS-V
  • Cadillac STS-V
  • Chevrolet Cobalt SS
  • Chrysler 300C SRT-8
  • Dodge Charger SRT-8
  • Dodge Neon SRT-4
  • Eagle Vision
  • FPV F6
  • FPV GT
  • Ford SVT Contour
  • Ford Fusion Sport
  • Ford Focus ST (American version)
  • Ford Taurus SHO
  • Honda Civic Type R - sedan variants
  • Honda Civic Si - sedan variants
  • Honda Accord Type R, Honda Accord Euro R
  • HSV Clubsport
  • HSV Grange
  • HSV Senator
  • Infiniti G35/37
  • Infiniti M35/37/45/56
  • Jaguar XFR
  • Jaguar XJR/Supersport
  • Jaguar S-Type R
  • Lexus IS-F
  • Lincoln LS
  • Lotus Carlton
  • Maserati Quattroporte
  • Mazda6 MPS
  • Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG
  • Mercedes-Benz CLS63 AMG
  • Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG
  • Mercedes-Benz S65 AMG
  • Mercury Marauder
  • MG ZS
  • MG ZT
  • Mitsubishi Galant VR-4
  • Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution
  • Nissan Maxima
  • Nissan Skyline GT-R - sedan variants
  • Oldsmobile Aurora
  • Opel Insignia OPC
  • Pontiac G8 GXP
  • Pontiac Grand Prix GXP
  • Porsche Panamera
  • Saab 9-3
  • Saab 9-5
  • Škoda Octavia vRS
  • Subaru Impreza WRX STI
  • Toyota TRD Aurion
  • Toyota Chaser Tourer V
  • Toyota Cresta Tourer V
  • Toyota Mark II Tourer V and iRV
  • Toyota Verossa VR25
  • Vauxhall VXR8
  • Volkswagen Jetta GLI
  • Volkswagen Passat R36
  • Volvo 850 R
  • Volvo S60 R
  • Volvo S70 T5
  • Volvo S60 T5

References

Smallwikipedialogo.png This page uses some content from Wikipedia. The original article was at Sports sedan. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Tractor & Construction Plant Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons by Attribution License and/or GNU Free Documentation License. Please check page history for when the original article was copied to Wikia


  1. "2000 Mercedes Benz E55 AMG". Derekspratt.com (2010-06-23). Retrieved on 2010-10-18.
  2. "1950 Alfa Romeo 1900". supercars.net. Retrieved on 2009-02-08.
  3. "2010 Buick LaCrosse CXS vs 2010 Lexus ES 350 Comparison". Motor Trend (2007-02-26). Retrieved on 2010-03-27.
  4. Trim Name. "2010 Mercedes-Benz C-Class | New Mercedes-Benz Sedans, Sports Cars - Yahoo! Autos". Autos.yahoo.com. Retrieved on 2009-09-03.
  5. "Nissan Altima Review". Edmunds.com. Retrieved on 2009-09-03.
  6. "Comparison Test: 2007-2008 V6 Family Sedans". Edmunds.com (2007-12-09). Retrieved on 2009-09-03.
  7. "sport sedans". w-i-s-t.com. Retrieved on 2010-04-04.[dead link]

External links

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