Timothy Moore
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NAIAS Luxury Car Seats: My Definitive Ranking of Places You Put Your Butt

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While checking out all the action at NAIAS, it occurred to me that on an editor’s salary, I’d probably never afford a Benz or Bentley of my own. In fact, this trip was full of a lot of firsts for me, as I had never sat in a majority of the luxury (and other awesome) cars I often dreamed of, until I got to Detroit. Since I’ll probably only ever sit behind the wheel as a reviewer and not a millionaire cruising the town for a good time, I made sure to take a moment to think about what it’d be like to really enjoy these cars, not as a reviewer, but as someone with an alligator briefcase, a seven digit salary, and a house in the Hamptons. I recorded my thoughts as I parked my rear, and below, on a scale of King of the World to Bottom of the Atlantic, I give you exactly how it felt to sit behind the wheel of each one.

BMW Z4 sDrive35i

Even though I felt like the biggest d-bag on the planet (and keep in mind that Pauly D is still here on Earth), I’ve got to admit that sitting behind the wheel of the Z4 felt pretty flippin’ awesome. It was sleek, and the cabin was really accessible. Because I was able to overcome my wariness of the Beamer brand, I give it an 8 out of 10 stars.


NAIAS Luxury Car Seats: BMW Z4 sDrive35i

The BMW Z4 sDrive35i


Kia Cadenza

I didn’t expect much out of Kia’s new luxury entrant because, well, it’s from Kia. But the Cadenza is actually quite regal inside and out. Sitting in the driver’s seat felt like when you sink into a recliner and prepare for a squeaky spring and a funky back pain afterwards, but instead are rewarded with a comfy reclining experience. I give the Cadenza a solid 7 out of 10.


NAIAS Luxury Car Seats:

The Kia Cadenza


NAIAS Luxury Car Seats: Kia Cadenza

Me behind the wheel of the Cadenza


Porsche Boxster

I felt so close to the ground in the Boxster that I’m not even sure there was a seat. I might have just been sitting on the squeaky clean showroom floor for all I know. I really liked how easy it was to engage the paddle shifters, but I did kind of feel like it looked like I was compensating for something behind the wheel of this baby. Still, it was a memorable stagnant ride. I give it an 8 out of 10.


NAIAS Luxury Car Seats: Porsche Boxster

My view from behind the wheel of the Boxster


Chevy Corvette Stingray

Climbing inside of the Car of the Year was like a second Christmas. I honestly felt like a NASCAR driver, except people were actually watching me as I sat behind the wheel. Chevy got this one spot-on, which is why I give it the Stingray one of only two perfect scores, a 10 out of 10.

NAIAS Luxury Car Seats: Chevy Corvette Stingray

The Chevy Corvette Stingray


Dodge Challenger SRT Core

I was pleasantly surprised when I sat behind the wheel of the Challenger SRT Core, and by pleasantly surprised, I mean that I used several unprintable expletives of enjoyment upon sitting down. I’m not exactly sure what I meant when I said it, but I definitely recorded myself saying, “I feel like a mountain lion in this thing.” So we’ll just go with that. The Challenger SRT Core gets the second 10 out of 10.

NAIAS Luxury Car Seats: Dodge Challenger SRT Core

The Dodge Challenger SRT Core


NAIAS Luxury Car Seats: Dodge Challenger SRT Core

Me behind the wheel of the Dodge Challenger SRT Core


Cadillac XTS

While the XTS was probably the most sophisticated interior in which I sat, it felt underwhelming. Bland, almost. I mean, it sure beats my own car (sorry, Bartleby), but it didn’t compare to the other models I sampled. I give it a 6 out of 10.


NAIAS Luxury Car Seats: Cadillac XTS

The Cadillac XTS


Mercedes-Benz SL550

The Mercedes-Benz SL550 front seat was my last throne of the day, and I rightly described the feeling in the wise words of early twenties Leo: “I’m the king of the world,” although I again doctored the phrase up with some expletives. The top down was the icing on the cake; it left me wishing for a beach to drive alongside with my hand outstretched catching the air. It easily gets a 9 out of 10.


NAIAS Luxury Car Seats: Mercedes-Benz SL550

The Mercedes-Benz SL550


There were plenty of other models I wanted to try on for size, but with just one day to visit, we were in too much of a hurry to make room for every cushion my tush wanted to test. Maybe I’ll warm a few more seats up in Chicago, but until then, be sure to check out all my posts about my first NAIAS experience, here at The News Wheel.

Check out all the pit stops on my tour through NAIAS:

My First Experience at NAIAS General Motors NAIAS 
Kia NAIAS Honda/Acura NAIAS
Volkswagen NAIAS Infiniti/Smart NAIAS
Porsche NAIAS  Chrysler NAIAS
Ford NAIAS Lexus/Scion NAIAS
Lincoln NAIAS Toyota NAIAS
Mazda/Volvo/Jaguar/Land Rover NAIAS Mercedes-Benz/Tesla NAIAS
NAIAS Luxury Car Seats: My Definitive Ranking of Places You Put Your Butt

  • Timothy MooreManaging Editor

    Timothy Moore hails from Dayton, Ohio, and tries to bring that Midwestern flavor to his writing. (But as it turns out, no one really likes the Midwestern flavor.) He has been covering the auto industry for years, with several national auto shows under his belt, but he’s been writing about lots of other things (like dragons and Mickey Mouse and cows drowning in milk) since he was just a tot. Outside of the land of cars, Timothy enjoys watching The Office and consuming excessive amounts of peanut butter and beer, and is on the board of an up-and-coming Dayton theatre company called The Playground. And when he’s not on stage (or three jars into a peanut butter binge), Timothy spends time with his mischievous dog, Greyson. See more articles by Timothy.