Want to project an image of success but stick to your budget? No need to sacrifice luxury with three midpriced yet high-profile company cars: the Acura TSX, the Toyota Avalon and the Jaguar X-Type.
The five-passenger TSX announces you're onto one of the hottest-selling sedans in the industry. With a swept-back roofline, wide stance and aerodynamic lines, this car is serious enough for business and sporty enough for an enjoyable ride. Acura has built in advanced technology, including a Bluetooth phone system with steering wheel buttons to program and link six different phones to up to 50 numbers, an auxiliary jack, satellite radio, maintenance monitor, ABS/ stability/traction control and cruise control. The 2.4-liter engine teams with manual or automatic transmission to produce 205 horsepower. Miles per gallon: 22 city/31 highway. Trunk volume: 13.2 cubic feet. Price: $28,090.
Toyota's Avalon remains a favorite for those seeking an elegant sedan with plenty of comfort. It comes in four grades: XL, Touring, XLS and Limited. The exterior styling says affluence without glitz, and heated leather seats in the Limited model cosset clients, with the rear seats reclining 10 degrees. All four models house a V-6 engine delivering 268 horsepower, with a 5-speed automatic transmission. The base Avalon XL is loaded with standard features including ABS/stability/traction control, cruise control and two outlets. The XLS adds a moonroof, and the Limited includes a power rear sunshade. MPG: 22 city/31 highway. Trunk volume: 14.4 cubic feet. Price: $26,875 to $34,065.
Smaller but among the most sophisticated, distinctive and desirable of sedans is Jaguar's X-Type. Its quality and reliability considerably improved over the past few years; the 2007 model includes leather seats and Sapele wood trim. Bluetooth and satellite radio are options, but the moonroof is standard, as are ABS/stability/traction control, all-wheel drive, 5-speed automatic transmission and split-fold rear seats. MPG: 18 city/24 highway. Trunk volume: 16 cubic feet. Price: $34,995.
Jill Amadio is an award-winning automotive journalist and author.