07 October 2008

Spoilt four choice?

Looking for a four-door supercar, sir? Step this way...

Porsche Panamera

If you’re a gadabout billionaire looking for a totally indiscreet way to transport your mistress and two illegitimate offspring without resorting to a butler, there’s never been a better time to be alive.

The unveiling of the Lamborghini Estoque at the Paris Motor Show was just the latest in a slew of insanely expensive cars designed to cater to the sort of people whose idea of a family runabout starts with a six-figure price tag and ends with extensive use of carbon fibre and super unleaded fuel.

Lamborghini, generous souls that they are, let us spend some quality time with their four-door, four-seat supercar, and you can read all about it in the latest issue of Top Gear magazine.

When it reaches the road – yes, they’re calling it a concept, but our shiny mag feature reveals all – it might just be the most outlandish way to ensure that your entire family can experience extreme motion sickness. It’s not the only way, though.

Fancy something a bit more British? How about the Aston Rapide, set to arrive at the end of next year? OK, technically the gorgeous four-door won’t be built in Britain – Aston is outsourcing production to Graz, Austria – but just look at those lovely lines and tell us that’s not as British as, er, Queen Victoria. Oh, and it’ll have a hatchback, too, so it’ll be properly practical. Maybe.

Speaking of Queen Victoria, if you’re of a more Teutonic bent, you’ll probably be keeping a close eye on the Porsche Panamera, the front-engined four-seater set to launch next year to the widespread tutting of the Classic Porsche Owners Society. It’ll be followed in 2010 by a hybrid version. Because even billionaires like to do their bit for the environment.

Of course, if you’re not prepared to wait for your family supercar, there are a few options around – the revised Maserati Quattroporte has just been launched in the UK, while a Merc S65 (V12 and all) never looks shabby in the golf club car park.

And we couldn’t let a quick round-up of ultimate four-doors pass without mention of the Bentley Arnage. It’s shortly to depart this mortal coil, but worry not – there’s a new, bigger, even more expensive V8 Bentley on the way to replace it.

Tsk. Those billionaires have it easy, eh?

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