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The 10 Most Exciting 4-Door Sedans You Can Buy in 2023

There was once a time when four-door sedans ruled our streets, together with pickup trucks and station wagons. They used to be the vehicles of choice for law enforcement, as well as civilian families throughout the nation. While things are indeed different today, you can still find a wide range of fast, exciting sedans capable of making your driving experience more appealing.
Most exciting four-door sedans you can buy in the U.S. in 2023 11 photos
Photo: Cadillac/Stellantis/autoevolution
Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye JailbreakAudi RS 3 sedanAlfa Romeo Giulia QuadrifoglioTesla Model 3 PerformanceCadillac CT4-V BlackwingBMW M3 CompetitionCadillac CT5-V BlackwingMaserati Ghibli TrofeoBMW M8 Competition Gran CoupePorsche Taycan Turbo S
With that in mind, I've put together another Top 10 for you, this time focusing on driving excitement over anything else. To be clear, an exciting sedan is one that stimulates all senses. It’s not enough to just be the quickest, fastest, most powerful or the best looking. It has to be all those things, and more.

These are the reasons why battery-electric models struggled to find their place in our rankings, even though most of them are clearly faster to 60 mph than their gasoline-powered counterparts.

Another important distinction I'm making is the one between four-door sedans and four-door coupes/fastbacks. If that trunk lid opens together with the back window, that’s a fastback and you won’t find it on this list (sorry Model S Plaid).

Also, points will be awarded to cars with exciting power units. The noise of the engine, like it or not, stimulates the senses, making sporty cars more fun to engage with. There will come a time when this will undoubtedly be a moot point, but it is not today. Let’s get into it.

The Honorable Mentions

  • 2023 Genesis G70 ($44,900, 3.3L twin-turbo V6, 365 hp)
  • 2024 Volvo S60 Recharge T8 ($53,000, 2.0L turbo PHEV, 455 hp)
  • 2023 Infiniti Q50 Red Sport 400 ($56,500, 3.0L twin-turbo V6, 400 hp)
  • 2024 Lexus IS 500 F Sport Performance ($59,420, 5.0L naturally aspirated V8, 474 hp)
  • 2024 BMW i5 M60 ($84,100, dual motor, 590 hp)
  • 2024 Mercedes-AMG EQE sedan ($106,900, dual-motor, 677 hp w/boost)
  • 2024 Audi RS e-tron GT ($147,100, dual-motor, 637 hp)
  • 2024 Bentley Flying Spur Speed ($263,525, 6.0L twin-turbo W12, 626 hp)

I was going to arrange the honorable mentions in no particular order, but in the end, I just went by price. Now comes the excitement.

10. 2023 Tesla Model 3 Performance ($50,620, dual motor, 527 hp)

Tesla Model 3 Performance
Photo: Tesla
I’ll be honest, the Model 3 Performance nearly didn’t make the cut. Sure, it’s quick, but who on Earth would ever call it exciting? Well, if we’re being objective, the truth is, some people might.

It’s not as heavy as the likes of the EQE sedan or the i5 M60, so it’s more “chuckable” into corners. The steering feel, meanwhile, is accurate and responsive; well weighted too. Naturally, you could do much better in that sense, and the Model 3 Performance is still not as agile as most high-end sports sedans, but it stays flat through corners, allowing you to carry a great amount of speed with precision.

It truly can be fun to drive, and in a straight line... forget about it, it’s awesome. Zero to 60 mph takes just 3.1 seconds. Heck, even the mid-spec Long Range model is crazy quick, needing 4.2 seconds to hit 60 mph.

So there. It’s an exciting four-door sedan from a driving dynamics standpoint. The only downer here is the appearance. It’s not exactly the type of car you drool over because of its aggressive and sexy styling. But it’s still worthy of making this Top 10 – barely. I was going to give the tenth spot to the RS e-tron GT, but that wouldn’t have been fair since its faster twin sibling is already on this list.

9. 2024 Audi RS 3 sedan ($61,700, 2.5L inline-5, 401 hp)

Audi RS 3 sedan
Photo: Audi
It cannot stress enough just how fun-to-drive the RS 3 can be, whether you’ve got the sedan variant or the 5-door hatchback. Either or. They’re both stupid quick, easy to use, fast, and super responsive on the go.

The price is what it is... maybe a bit too steep, given alternatives like the Infiniti Q50 Red Sport 400 (which also happens to be a larger car), but neither the Infiniti, nor the previously mentioned Lexus IS 500 or Volvo S60 Recharge T8 can match the Audi in terms of agility. If you can’t have fun in an RS 3, then you probably shouldn’t be driving a sporty car to begin with.

The RS 3 sedan is the smallest car here in terms of overall footprint, and that certainly works to its advantage in the corners, where the rear-biased quattro all-wheel drive system really comes to life.

I could have easily ranked this baby RS Audi higher, but the truth is, there are some major heavy hitters on this list and outranking them in a $60k car would be a nearly impossible feat. Then again, there are no losers on this list, since all 10 cars are the absolute cream of the crop.

8. 2024 Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing ($61,495, 3.6L twin-turbo V6, 472 hp)

Cadillac CT4\-V Blackwing
Photo: Cadillac
Most people aren’t even aware of just how tremendous of a car the Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing really is. Some of you probably dismiss it outright when it comes to conversations about compact or mid-size sports sedans.

Yes, its 3.6-liter twin turbocharged V6 unit doesn’t have a world of power, and those 472 horses feel more like 300-something when it comes to putting the power down, but the chassis is sublime at all times. You can drive this car comfortably on the highway or put it into Track mode and powerslide flat out in the corners at your local racetrack.

You’ve probably seen a bunch of reviews yourselves where people have ranked the CT4-V Blackwing above rivals such as the BMW M3 (the “regular” M3, to be fair) or whatever AMG-spec Mercedes C-Class they had over there.

All things considered, the CT4-V Blackwing might actually hold the best value-for-money out of all the cars here. It’s certainly way cheaper than any of its German rivals, and most European rivals too, while offering just as much, if not more, in return.

Still, you can do better - in terms of both driving dynamics and straight-line acceleration, and one car that’s arguably superior is its stablemate, the CT5-V Blackwing. More on that later.

7. 2023 Maserati Ghibli Trofeo ($122,000, 3.8L twin-turbo V8, 572 hp)

Maserati Ghibli Trofeo
Photo: Maserati
When Maserati unveiled the latest (third) generation Ghibli, they did so knowing that buyers would appreciate a reasonably sized sedan with sporty traits and a luxury badge, although the badge, unbeknown to most buyers, is more premium than luxury.

In its current iteration, the Ghibli has been out since 2013, so yes, you could say that it’s in dire need of a replacement. The facelifted variant, which came out in 2020, did improve certain aspects of the car, but nothing transcendent. Still, even as a 10-year-old machine (technically speaking), the Ghibli still demands respect, withstanding the test of time as one of the most beautiful models in its class.

Aside from looking good, the Maserati Ghibli is also exciting to drive. When it comes to the flagship Trofeo spec, it may not be “stupid quick”, but it’s fast enough, and plenty good in terms of handling and overall composure. Its 3.8-liter twin-turbocharged V8 engine may not sound as good as some of the carmaker’s naturally aspirated options of yesteryear, but it will still bring a smile to your face as you pick up speed.

You can hit 60 mph from a standstill in about 4 seconds flat. Some have even managed to do it in a little under 4 seconds, so rest assured that all your “going fast” needs would be met by this Italian sedan’s 572 horsepower.

In the end, you could argue that you’d have more fun on a race track in a Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing or even an Audi RS3 sedan. But I wouldn’t go as far as to call either of those more exciting than a Maserati. Maybe that’s badge discrimination, to some extent. Doesn’t mean it’s wrong.

6. Porsche Taycan Turbo S ($194,900, dual motor, 750 hp w/overboost)

Porsche Taycan Turbo S
Photo: Porsche
In order for an EV to get this far down our list, it would have to be something truly special, and the Porsche Taycan just so happens to qualify. Yes, it’s technically a sedan and it is, of course, a Porsche. How can it not be exciting to drive?

It’s also why I'm leaving the Audi RS e-tron GT off our list, because the Taycan is simply the better car when it comes to driving dynamics (handling, body roll, balance, straight line performance).

The flagship spec Taycan Turbo S is a beast. Aside from its 750 peak horsepower figure (its continuous power output is 617 hp), its dual motor setup also produces 774 lb-ft of torque, which will get you from zero to 60 mph in just 2.6 seconds. The only thing that’s missing is the engine note and the feeling you get when you’re the one manipulating the power unit’s revolutions.

Come to think of it, even the Taycan Turbo could have made the cut (if the Turbo S didn’t exist), with its 671 hp and 627 lb-ft of torque. It’ll hit 60 mph in 3 seconds flat, drive beautifully and it looks... the way it looks. How can you go wrong?

5. 2024 Cadillac CT5-V Blackwing ($93,495, 6.2L supercharged V8, 668 hp)

Cadillac CT5\-V Blackwing
Photo: Cadillac
It would take a mighty sedan to outshine a Taycan Turbo S, and you can bet that the remaining five cars on our list are all absolutely breathtaking in every single category.

I know what you’re thinking. There are some absentees here, like the BMW M5 CS. The thing is, we’re only ranking cars that you can purchase on the spot right now from your local authorized dealerships, and the 5 Series / M5 is in the middle of a generational reshuffling.

Anyway, back to the Caddy – everything about the CT5-V Blackwing is exciting. Literally everything. It looks sporty and aggressive, that hand built supercharged V8 sounds amazing, it handles great, and it runs like the wind once you unleash it in a straight line.

Its 668 horsepower and 659 lb-ft of torque allow you to hit 60 mph from a standstill in just 3.4 seconds, before maxing out at 209 mph. You can also get it with a six-speed manual gearbox if you want, which makes it even more appealing to driving purists. Personally, I’d get the available 10-speed auto, but whatever.

In our book, it just edges out the Taycan Turbo S in terms of overall driving excitement, and for $100,000 less, mind you.

4. 2024 BMW M8 Competition Gran Coupe ($138,800, 4.4L twin-turbo V8, 617 hp)

BMW M8 Competition Gran Coupe
Photo: BMW
With all due respect to the CT5-V Blackwing, I just had to give this next spot to the BMW M8 Competition Gran Coupe.

Powered by the same twin turbocharged V8 engine you’d find in the old/current M5, X5M and X6M, the Competition-spec M8 also comes with a modified induction system, more rigid engine mounts, a little less overall weight and greater appeal.

In terms of pure fun, you can switch the xDrive system into rear-wheel drive mode and exploit that twin-turbo V8 to the fullest. Maybe the engine isn’t particularly better than the supercharged V8 you get in the CT5-V Blackwing, but the Bimmer’s ZF 8HP76 automatic gearbox sure is.

The BMW is also a better-looking car than the Caddy, arguably. Yes, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but the M8 Competition Gran Coupe is one of the sleekest, sharpest and most aggressive-looking four-door sedans/coupes in the world.

As for straight-line performance, this will get you to 60 mph in about 3 seconds flat, and if you take the limiter off, you can max it out at 190 mph.

Whichever way you look at it, this is a better vehicle than the previously mentioned Cadillac, which coupled with its looks, justifies its presence here at no. 4 on our list.

3. 2024 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio ($81,960, 2.9L twin-turbo V6, 505 hp)

Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio
Photo: Alfa Romeo
Honestly, there’s only one reason for putting the flagship-spec Alfa Romeo Giulia ahead of the likes of the Taycan, CT5-V Blackwing and M8 Competition Gran Coupe. One single reason probably shouldn’t be enough, but then again, it’s a major one: handling.

The case could be made for this being the sharpest handling car in its class, and therefore one of, if not the most exciting to drive. It’s a baby four-door Ferrari, in many ways, and it drives and sounds like one, too.

It’s also drop-dead gorgeous from every possible angle, and given its size, weight and overall balance under load, the Giulia Quadrifoglio qualifies as a more exciting vehicle than any of the other names we’ve discussed so far.

By the way, that baby four-door Ferrari analogy isn’t as far-fetched as some might think. The engine is Ferrari-derived. It’s basically the same V8 you’d find in a Ferrari California, albeit with two fewer cylinders.

It produces 505 horsepower and 443 lb-ft of torque, and it’ll get you to 60 mph in 3.8 seconds, before maxing out at 191 mph. By all accounts, it’s one of the fastest four-door sedans on the planet, which pretty much means that it’s "fast enough", and beyond exciting to drive.

2. 2024 BMW M3 Competition ($80,200, 3.0L twin-turbo inline-6, 503 hp)

BMW M3 Competition
Photo: BMW
The second spot should have normally gone to the 2024 BMW M3 CS, but with limited availability and allocations seemingly locked in, you’ll probably have to “settle” for the Competition spec if all you want is the best M3 money can (currently) buy.

Frankly, there’s very little between the Giulia Quadrifoglio and the M3 Competition, so feel free to imagine the Alfa here at no. 2 if you must. But for the sake of being decisive, we wanted to go with the BMW simply because it is every-so-slightly more customizable and meticulous in its approach to driving dynamics.

Not only can you choose between all-wheel drive and rear-wheel drive only, but between the engine, steering, chassis, brakes, exhaust and the gearbox, you can set this car up via hundreds of possible permutations to your exact liking. In other words, you can make it your own even more so than you could the Giulia QF.

As for brute force, it’s not like you’re getting more from the Giulia than you are from the Bimmer. They have nearly identical horsepower figures and acceleration times. Both will hit 60 mph in 3.8 seconds with rear-wheel drive. However, the M3 Competition xDrive can do it in 3.4 seconds for an extra $4,000 thanks to all-wheel drive.

1. 2023 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye Jailbreak ($93,250, 6.2L supercharged HEMI V8, 807 hp)

Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye Jailbreak
Photo: Dodge
There can only be one choice for the no.1 most exciting sedan on sale right now in the U.S. (or anywhere else for that matter), and it’s the Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye Jailbreak.

How can this not be no. 1 on our list? The fact that compared to an M3 or a Giulia, this corners like an out-of-control hippopotamus, is completely irrelevant. It’s like with the Tesla Model S Plaid – the thing is so freaking fast, you can forgive any shortcomings.

Same goes for the top-spec Charger, it’s so powerful, loud and outlandish, the fact that you’re driving a four-door muscle car will likely never escape you, even in bumper-to-bumper traffic.

Speaking of muscle cars, what Dodge has done this past half-decade or so is invent a cheat code, which applies to both the Challenger SRT Hellcat and its four-door sibling, the Charger. In Redeye Jailbreak spec, the Charger’s 807 horsepower will accelerate you to 60 mph in just 3.4 seconds, but that’s a best-case scenario. You’re more likely to break traction off the line, more often than not.

Anyway, Hellcat-spec Chargers aren’t necessarily about nailing every single launch. Their sole purpose is to get your blood racing, and that’s something they can achieve not just through their performance, but also their appearance. The widebody kit is a must, by the way, for any future owners.
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About the author: Sergiu Tudose
Sergiu Tudose profile photo

Sergiu got to experience both American and European car "scenes" at an early age (his father drove a Ford Fiesta XR2 supermini in the 80s). After spending over 15 years at local and international auto publications, he's starting to appreciate comfort behind the wheel more than raw power and acceleration.
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