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The New Status Symbol: Four Doors

Cars with four doors and racecar DNA are the rage among high-end automakers.

So you've made your first million. Forget buying a sports car to celebrate. What you really want is a sedan: Low-slung four-doors with racecar DNA are now all the rage among high-end automakers. They're drawing waiting lists, commanding high prices and generally stealing the thunder from their rowdier two-door brothers. The Porsche Panamera rolled into dealerships in October, and it will be chased by a highly coveted convoy straight through the new year. Here's a look at some of the sweetest saloons.


Rolls-Royce Ghost
Spring 2010
Price: $245,000
Zero to 60 mph: 4.8 seconds
Cool detail: Three words: Night-vision camera. It's in the grill and detects objects up to about 330 yards away.
Statement: I've given my chauffeur the night off. And no, that has nothing to do with the fact that it's easier to pick up chicks when I'm the one driving.




Tesla Model S
Early to mid-2011. Maybe.
Price: $49,900 (after $7,500 tax credit)
Zero to 60 mph: 5.6 seconds
Cool detail: It sounds too good to be true: An electric car that seats five adults and two children, has a range of up to 300 miles and costs $4 to fully charge.
Statement: I'm a gearhead, a greenie and a family guy. If only everyone could be so sexy.




Fisker Karma
Sold out through mid- 2010
Price: $87,900
Zero to 60 mph: 5.8 seconds
Cool detail: This plug-in hybrid is so quiet it has a pedestrian safety feature: External speakers blast a sound that's a cross between a jet plane and a Formula One car.
Statement: My hybrid is trimmed with wood from non-living trees and the glass is made from naturally recyclable sand. Now eat my dust.




Aston Martin Rapide
Spring 2010
Price: $200,000
Zero to 60 mph: 5.1 seconds
Cool detail: Rapide-branded child seats plus a screen for each kid and temperature controls to soothe antsy passengers: Best minivan setup ever.
Statement: James Bond and Kate plus eight (or two, anyway).




Porsche Panamera Turbo
October 2009
Price: $132,600
Zero to 60 mph: 4.0 seconds
Cool detail: When you're not trying to hit the 188 mph max speed, there's an engine stop-start function that allows you to, um, reduce emissions.
Statement: Black Label sports jacket? Check. Ray-Ban aviators? Check. Clients admiring my formidable driving skills on the Malibu hillsides? Aaaand check.

Jennifer Wang is a staff writer at Entrepreneur magazine in Southern California.

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This article was originally published in the December 2009 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: The New Status Symbol: Four Doors.

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