The Best Grand Touring Cars: The Perfect Blend of Style and Insanity
For car guys, when the highway calls, we answer. The open road, a little bit of speed, lots of style,...
For car guys, when the highway calls, we answer. The open road, a little bit of speed, lots of style, and a pinch of comfort are the main ingredients for an enjoyable ride across this great land we live in. So, of all the cars available at dealerships, on social media marketplaces, or even eBay, which kind should we choose for such an exercise? What type of car can get us across a paved paradise quickly, while also providing comfort and style?
Let us introduce you to the world of grand touring cars. Grand touring, or GT, cars are built for just this type of driving. These cars are powerful, beautiful, and comfortable. They’re meant to burn rubber, gobble miles, and hold luggage. They differ from most sports cars, typically being larger and more comfortable, while being much faster than the typical sedan.
We put together a list of the nine best GT cars. Making our list required meeting some specific criteria. These cars had to be fast, have two doors, be rear-wheel or all-wheel-drive, and fit some luggage in the trunk. So sit down and get comfortable and let us take you on the tour of Car Bible’s Best Grand Touring Cars.
If you’d like your high-speed, long-distance rides to include some assurance in nasty weather, the Audi RS5 might be the choice for you. This quattro-equipped GT car is fast, stylish, and relatively affordable, considering its competition.
The Audi RS5 comes with a 2.9L, twin-turbo 6-cylinder that puts out horsepower and torque numbers just shy of the 450 mark. That power and the quattro all-wheel-drive combine to rocket this $75,000 GT coupe from zero to 60 in 3.7 seconds.
While a $75,000 suggested retail price is nothing to scoff at, the RS5 is actually a fairly reasonable deal. It’s comfortable, well-equipped, fast, and ready for the track or open road. You can spend a lot more on a car and get a lot less performance and comfort for your money.
The GT-R badge is no new-comer in the world of grand touring performance cars. The first GT-R nameplate hit Skyline Sheet Metal in 1969, so the company’s current offering has a serious legacy to carry on.
Throughout all of Nissan’s struggles, the GT-R’s power and styling haven’t suffered at all. The base model’s 3.8L twin-turbo V6 cranks out a massive 565 horsepower and 467 pounds of torque. All four wheels share the workload with Nissan’s all-wheel-drive system. This all combines for a sprint to 60 of under four seconds, and a top speed of 197 miles per hour.
At over $100,000, the GT-R won’t be wearing the value crown on its head any time soon, especially considering the model hasn’t seen a significant refresh since its debut more than 10 years ago. That being said, this is still a great supercar-killer, ideal for putting miles behind you in a reasonable amount of comfort and at a very fast rate of speed.
Porsche 718 Cayman S
If German engineering is your thing, the 2020 Porsche 718 Cayman S could be just what the doctor ordered. This “entry-level” Porsche has been making waves in the automotive world for the past few years, and it’s with good reason.
This mid-engine grand tourer is no slouch. With 309 pounds of torque, the 2.5L, 350-horsepower boxer four-cylinder engine is a potent power plant. Its placement in front of the rear wheels creates a responsive chassis that begs for more than you can give it. With a 60 sprint ending in 4.4 seconds (4.2 with the PDK transmission) and a top speed of 177 miles per hour, you’re getting a lot of German goodness for $70,000.
That being said, for a long ride, this may not be the best choice. While the Cayman is a GT car, it barely slips under the rope and into the category. They’re not tremendously comfortable. Porsche’s two-seaters will always be performance-oriented first, while luxury will come second.
Bentley Continental GT
The belle of this ball, the Bentley Continental GT is also the most expensive grand touring car on our list. The Bentley GT is luxurious, fast, well-balanced, and very, very comfortable. There are two engines available, but for the sake of this article, let’s assume we’d like to save some money and purchase the $204,000 V8-option car.
Most of the 2020 Continental GT has been updated, including some awesome chassis changes. The wheelbase has been stretched over four inches from the older model, while retaining the GT’s overall length. This has allowed Bentley to move the engine back and seat it lower in the car, greatly improving handling and responsiveness.
The 4.0L twin-turbo V8 makes 542 horsepower and 558 pounds of torque. Even though the GT weighs nearly 5,000 pounds, the all-wheel-drive and brawny engine push it to 60 in under four seconds and up to 197 miles per hour. Those are really impressive numbers for a car this heavy and luxurious.
If you need a large car to get you and all your luggage down the road quickly, and you don’t mind spending $200,000, this is the car for you. The Continental GT is the quintessential grand tourer.
Ford Mustang GT
The Ford Mustang might seem silly to be listed after a Bentley, but make no mistake, the ultimate pony car belongs on this list. The 2020 Mustang GT is a serious machine, capable of blistering speeds, comfortable digs, and awesome, recognizable style. All this for a starting price of under $36,000, almost half of the next lowest-priced option on the list.
The 2020 Ford Mustang GT’s beauty comes in the form of its value. Any car can be built to be fast, comfortable, and stylish, but not many can do it for this price. The GT has a 5.0L V8 that produces 460 horsepower and 420 pounds of torque. It’s mated to a 6-speed manual that automatically rev-matches, or a 10-speed automatic that shifts like lightning. The Mustang also stays true to its rear-wheel-drive roots.
While we’ll admit that the Mustang isn’t the fastest or most luxurious car on our list, it’s still one of our favorites. Ford is at least nipping at the heels of its mega-expensive competitors with a car that nearly anyone can afford.
Jaguar F-Type R Coupe
In our opinion, the 2021 F-Type is tied with one other vehicle for the best-looking grand tourer on our list. Along with being such a looker, the F-Type R Coupe is a blazingly fast car that never falls short in the realm of comfort and luxury. It’s truly an astonishing car to experience.
The F-Type comes in a few different trim levels and prices, but the F-Type R Coupe is the best suited to compete with the other GTs on our list. The engine is a massive 5.0L, supercharged V8 that produces 575 horsepower. That translates to a 3.5-second 0-60 and a governed 186 miles per hour top speed. Of course, you’ll pay no less than $100,000 for this car, but compared to a few other cars on the list, you can consider that a steal.
Mercedes-Benz S63 AMG Coupe
The 2020 Mercedes-Benz S63 AMG Coupe is a wolf among sheep. Albeit they’re very fast, very expensive sheep, but that just proves how powerful our metaphor is. The S63 is nothing short of a modern marvel.
To start with, the S63 AMG Coupe is an incredibly comfortable ride when you’re lollygagging down the road. The interior is an amazing place to spend a road trip, with incredibly advanced infotainment and comfort settings. You can also fit several pieces of luggage in the full-size trunk.
But that’s not why you’re reading this article. You don’t care about all those features. You’re here for the specs. And specs you’ll get. The MB S63 AMG Coupe is one powerful monster. The 4.0L bi-turbo V8 is the soul of that aforementioned monster, making over 600 horsepower and a truly massive 664 pounds of torque. That powerplant is matched up to a 9-speed automatic transmission that makes short work of quick shifts. A standing zero to 60 ends in the blink of an eye—if blinking took 3.5 seconds. This car can even save you money, if you consider other comparable machines cost $30,000 more than this $171,000 bargain.
Aston Martin DB11
The Aston Martin is the other half of that two-way tie for best-looking GT that we mentioned earlier. It’s truly stunning, hulking, menacing, and sleek, all at the same time. We’re not quite sure how Aston Martin continues to follow the same formula while also impressing us every time, but they do.
Sure it’s good-looking, but how fast is it? The base model, with its twin-turbo, 4.0L V8 will reach 187 miles per hour. It will also do sixty in under four seconds, so it’s pretty fast. That being said, the base price is north of $200,000, so it really should tick all the boxes. It’s one of the most expensive cars on this list, and although it’s quite good, it’s hard to overlook that price tag.
This may be the most important entry on our list, and not only because its name literally means “Grand Touring.” The Maserati plant in Modena, Italy rolled its last GranTurismo off the floor a few months ago. They’ve done so to revamp the factory and to start producing the next generation of Maserati’s GT car, which at this point is planned to be an electric grand tourer.
While not much has changed in the 12 years that the Maserati GranTurismo has been available, it’s still a gorgeous car. It has curves, muscle, and attitude, and it’s so definitively Italian that Ferrari had to shove an engine in it. The 475-horsepower Ferrari V8 sings the way only Italian sports cars can. The slowest car on this list, however, the Maserati makes jaunts to 60 last nearly five seconds. It’s not entirely fair to call the GranTurismo slow, though, as the top speed is around 180 miles per hour.
The story that the power and speed numbers don’t tell is how comfortable the GranTurismo is. If we had to take a long drive in any car on this list, it might actually be the Maserati. While it shouldn’t come as a surprise that one might prefer a $150,000 vehicle, this list is full of cars that are more capable in every way but comfort. The Maserati makes long drives easy and enjoyable, especially considering you get to listen to that amazing Italian V8’s exhaust note.
As with any list, there are a few cars that just didn’t make the cut. Among these are the Lexus RCF and LC500, BMW M4 and 850i, Chevrolet Corvette, and the Ferrari GTC4Lusso. These are all incredible automobiles, but we felt the cars we selected provided the best possible sampling of an amazing automotive category.
The next time you’re considering what the best car to run across a continent might be, refer back to this list. It’s an excellent homologation of some of the finest cars the world has to offer. Imagine taking on the open road in a beautiful GranTurismo, rumbling through a tunnel listening to the Ford GT’s exhaust note, or heating the tires up in the Cayman S on a perfectly manicured coastal road. While these grand tourers will get you to your destination in style, their performance is all you’ll talk about when you get there.