Underneath the opulence, comfort, and cutting-edge technology they offer, luxury cars feature complicated mechanical and electrical systems. These intricate systems can incur significant costs when it’s time for maintenance or repairs. Considering the high sticker prices of brand-new luxury cars, many people consider buying a luxury used car an attractive option. This allows them to enjoy a deluxe car without draining their wallet. However, potential buyers should be aware that owning these cheap used luxury cars can be quite expensive when it comes to maintenance and repairs. The best luxury used car to buy is usually one that combines great reliability and low maintenance costs with creature comforts.
In this article, we’ll explore 10 used luxury cars that are notorious for their expensive upkeep. While these cars provide lavish interiors and outstanding performance, they also saddle their owners with eye-watering repair and maintenance bills. Unlike the models here, the most reliable used luxury car is one with sturdy build quality, high-reliability rating, and few or no manufacturer recalls.
10 2011 Porsche Cayenne
Used Price Range: $8,113 – $11,049
Thanks to a redesign, the Porsche Cayenne entered 2011 as a more refined and street-friendly SUV. With its powerful engines and standard AWD, it was one of the most nimble SUVs on the market back then. Alongside the BMW X5 M and X6 M, it was also the fastest.
However, this great car also has several reliability issues that result in expensive repairs. According to CarEdge, the Cayenne’s estimated cost of maintenance for the first 10 years is $4,838 above the industry average.
- Average Yearly Maintenance Costs: $1,252 (RepairPal)
- Est. Maintenance Costs During First 10 Years: $20,552 (CarEdge)
- Recalls: 5
- Best Porsche Cayenne Year To Buy Used: 2017 (For strong acceleration, superior agility, and a stylish well-made interior)
9 2011 BMW X5
Used Price: $17,990
For 2011, the BMW featured improved powertrains that offered from 265-400 hp worth of motivation, depending on the trim you choose. Back then, it was one of the most nimble midsize luxury crossovers on the market. It also had an “M” variant that could do 0-60 mph in 4.5 seconds.
Reliability isn’t one of the 2011 X5’s strong points. It has 14 recalls to its name and high repair and maintenance costs. In addition, it is likely to develop a major fault in its first 10 years.
- Average Yearly Maintenance Costs: $1,218 (RepairPal)
- Est. Maintenance Costs During First 10 Years: $18,389 (CarEdge)
- Recalls: 14
- Best BMW X5 Year To Buy Used: 2016 (For exceptional reliability, muscular engines, and agile handling)
8 2014 Audi Q5
Used Price Range: $12,700 – $22,990
Boasting an impressive list of strengths, the 2014 Audi Q5 is a well-rounded cheap, used luxury car. For its compact size, it has a spacious and lavish interior. It is also fuel-efficient and fun to drive.
Despite its good qualities, the 2014 Q5 has a below-average reliability rating. With an annual maintenance cost of $1,058, it is also an expensive car to run. According to CarEdge, the 2014 Q5 has a 36.25% chance of developing a major problem in its first 10 years.
- Average Yearly Maintenance Costs: $1,058 (RepairPal)
- Est. Maintenance Costs During First 10 Years: $12,068 (CarEdge)
- Recalls: 5
- Best Audi Q5 Year To Buy Used: 2017 (For ample passenger space, brisk acceleration, and agile handling)
7 2015 Cadillac Escalade ESV
Used Price Range: $30,998 – $35,590
The 2015 Cadillac Escalade ESV is a land yacht that can haul eight people and their luggage in quiet comfort. Thanks to the 420-hp 6.2-liter V8 mill under the hood, the Escalade ESV can also tow up to 8,100 pounds.
But the big Caddy’s impressive credentials come at a cost. Besides a thirsty V8 engine, it also comes with high annual repair and maintenance costs. Moreover, it has a 36.55% chance of developing a major issue within the first 10 years of ownership.
- Average Yearly Maintenance Costs: $1,277 (RepairPal)
- Est. Maintenance Costs During First 10 Years: $12,938 (CarEdge)
- Recalls: 7
- Best Cadillac Escalade ESV Year To Buy Used: 2002 (For its cavernous cabin, muscular engine, stout towing capacity, and smooth ride quality)
6 2016 Volvo XC90
Used Price Range: $26,990 – $30,990
With the redesign in 2016, the Volvo XC90 added sharper exterior styling and greater efficiency to its list of strengths. Though it is not the quickest in its class, it attacks corners with confidence. It offers a snappy, intuitive infotainment system in a handsome, high-quality cabin.
The 2016 Volvo XC90 also has several weaknesses, including high maintenance and repair costs. According to CarEdge, within the first 10 years, there is a 36.25% possibility that the XC90 will develop serious issues.
- Average Yearly Maintenance Costs: $1,020 (RepairPal)
- Est. Maintenance Costs During First 10 Years: $12,359 (CarEdge)
- Recalls: 7
- Best Volvo XC90 Year To Buy Used: 2014 (For outstanding reliability and a handsome well-built interior)
5 2021 Mercedes-Benz S-Class
Used Price Range: $73,817 – $80,956
From an ultra-lux interior to an abundance of cutting-edge tech, the 2021 S-Class truly reflects Mercedes-Benz’s reputation for refinement. The top-of-the-line infotainment system contains everything from a 12.8-inch touchscreen to a 30-speaker Burmester sound system.
Sadly, the 2021 S-Class already has 14 recalls against its name. Also, there is a 31.57% chance that it will need a major repair in its first 10 years on the road.
- Average Yearly Maintenance Costs: $2,471 (Edmunds)
- Est. Maintenance Costs During First 10 Years: $12,306 (CarEdge)
- Recalls: 14
- Best Mercedes-Benz S-Class Year To Buy Used: 2009 (For outstanding reliability, longevity, and performance.)
4 2017 Audi Q7
Used Price Range: $26,590 – $33,990
When the redesigned 2017 Q7 hit the stands, it earned praise for its potent powertrains, agility, and lavish cabin. Also, there is no shortage of cool infotainment features in the 7-seater used luxury SUV.
But all the bells and whistles come at a high cost. To keep the 2017 Q7 on the road, one needs deep pockets to take care of the costly repairs and maintenance.
- Average Yearly Maintenance Costs: $1,230 (RepairPal)
- Est. Maintenance Costs During First 10 Years: $12,489 (CarEdge)
- Recalls: 7
- Best Audi Q7 Year To Buy Used: 2020 (For reliability, longevity, high safety score, and advanced tech features)
3 2017 Porsche Macan
Used Price Range: $27,958 – $47,990
For 2017, Porsche’s entry-level SUV impressed drivers with an engaging driving experience thanks to excellent traction and balance. But apart from the outstanding driving dynamics and acceleration, the 2017 Macan also featured a well-crafted cabin with comfortable seats.
In addition to its strengths, the 2017 Porsche Macan is a very expensive car to maintain. According to CarEdge’s estimates, in the first 10 years, the Macan will cost $4,423 more than other luxury SUVs in maintenance.
- Average Yearly Maintenance Costs: $1,208 (RepairPal)
- Est. Maintenance Costs During First 10 Years: $20,137 (CarEdge)
- Recalls: 7
- Best Porsche Macan Year To Buy Used: 2020 (For high safety rating, great consumer reviews, and a high-quality interior)
2 2017 Land Rover Range Rover
Used Price Range: $40,590 – $49,995
Few SUVs offer a blend of top-class luxury with impressive offroading capability like the Range Rover. The 2017 model came with a lineup of powerful engines that included a 5.0-liter supercharged V8 rated at 550 hp.
One would need deep pockets to keep the 2017 Range Rover in good running condition. Within the first 10 years, it will cost $2,514 more than other luxury SUVs in maintenance. Besides, it also has a 49.63% chance of needing a major repair during that period, according to CarEdge.
- Average Yearly Maintenance Costs: $1,250 (RepairPal)
- Est. Maintenance Costs During First 10 Years: $18,228 (CarEdge)
- Recalls: 6
- Best Years To Buy Used: 2019 (For a well-crafted interior, solid build quality, and advanced tech features)
1 2018 BMW X6
Used Price Range: $33,999 – $48,590
Sporting a polarizing coupe-like design, the 2018 BMW X6 offers the luxury trappings one would expect in a highly-priced high-end vehicle. It has a well-insulated cabin that keeps out road and engine noise.
The 2018 X6 is not among the most reliable BMWs in the used car market as it comes with a high cost of ownership that is not very friendly with the bank account. Apart from high maintenance costs, the 2018 X6 is 54.61% more likely to need major repairs in its first 10 years.
- Average Yearly Maintenance Costs: $1,206 (RepairPal)
- Est. Maintenance Costs During First 10 Years: $18,148 (CarEdge)
- Recalls: 4
- Best Years To Buy Used: 2016 (For great reliability ratings, few owner complaints, and a single manufacturer recall)