Big spender? Uber luxury BMW 760Li and Volvo XC90 Excellence
ARE you a dictator with a need for speed, or a very wealthy family man demanding safety and off-road potential? Maybe you're both?
If so, there's been plenty of movement this week on the new car front to appeal to your varied and oft expensive tastes.
Let's start with something so extravagant even President-elect Donald Trump would raise an orange eyebrow: the BMW M760Li xDrive. This flagship monster has just been confirmed for Australia priced from $419,000 before on-road costs, and will arrive early in 2017.
This is the first ever M Performance 7 Series, and the first time we've seen all-wheel-drive in BMW's flagship limo in Australia.
A mighty barge it may be, but with a 6.6-litre twin-turbocharged V12 engine good for 448kW and 800Nm, it'll surge to 100kmh in just 3.7 seconds. That's quicker than an Aston Martin V12 Vantage S.
It's the same engine as found in the $595,000 Rolls-Royce Ghost, which will be a high-priced rival for the long-wheelbase 760Li alongside the $448,325 Mercedes Maybach S600. Decisions, decisions.
So what's BMW offering for the money? You'll have a decent blend of sports handling and utmost comfort thanks to air suspension and dynamic damper control at each corner, you score giant 19-inch brake discs behind the 20-inch light alloy wheels and sporty M aerodynamic package.
Inside is Merino full leather upholstery with heated, cooling and massaging electric seats front and rear, gesture control for your entertainment, wireless phone charging, two individual monitors for rear passengers and a front passenger seat that folds into a footrest.
Such cabin niceties can almost be matched for half the price if you don't need the V12 performance bit in your luxury transport.
Volvo Australia is now taking orders for its range-topping XC90 Excellence, a car we begged to be made available on the strength of its Child Seat Concept (see main picture).
While the Excellence model has been confirmed, the removable front passenger seat making way for the brilliant child seat concept has not.
We dearly hope it's available ultimately though, as it allows a pampered child to ride in a rear-facing position beside the driver and have eye-to-eye contact with a rear passenger.
Loading the child in would be simple thanks to the baby seat swivelling on its luxurious base, while storage for nappies, bottles, wipes and the like is ample and all part of the capsule system.
But don't bring too many kids. Designed as a four-seater and featuring massage and ventilated fine Nappa leather seats and chilled drinks cabinet (with custom crystal glasses) for the rear passengers, it seems this XC90 is more for CEOs than little darlings.
The XC90 Excellence shares its 300kW/640Nm plug-in hybrid petrol/electric powertrain with the current range-topping T8 R-Design, and is priced from an eye-watering $172,200 before on-roads.