When it comes to automobiles, arriving at the plateau of luxury can come in one giant leap or in measured steps up the ladder of achievement. There are those that exist at the very top, at the rarefied level of a precious gem, that bear the name "exotic," offer incredible performance and power and wear six-digit pricetags for the privilege of traveling at that level. Some come laden with amenities that define a personal sense of accomplishment and purpose. And others wear refinements that assure their standing as part of the luxury class status that can seem to be impervious to the claims of limitation.
Such qualifications come in a variety of packages. A touch of cashmere-soft suede. The caress of pliant leather. Wood inlays running smooth under the fingertips or the precision of crisply defined bright metals and chrome. With their boldness of design, or subtle suggestion of craftsmanship, they hold up to scrutiny no matter how many layers deep one looks. They can be defined by their fit and finish, perfectly aligned proportions, exciting new technologies or the throaty rumble of a premium-fueled engine earning envy before it ever drives into view. Above all, they exude the magic of an elitist name.
No matter what mantle of achievement these autos have earned, they all can be called special. We define them as the many splendid facets of luxury and offer a peek at some that have achieved such a ranking.