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Best cars

Top 10 best four-door sports cars 2024

Want practicality and performance? These four-door sports cars offer the best of both worlds

Best four door sports cars

Buying a car with space for the family needn’t mean you have to sacrifice exciting performance and rewarding handling. The current breed of super-saloons are mightily powerful and are stuffed with tech to make them as fast and as good to drive as possible. That technology also makes the cars easy to drive quickly.

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At Carbuyer, we appreciate the extra practicality that sporty saloons offer over traditional sports cars. You can use them for everything, whether you want to carve up a racetrack or take the garden rubbish to the tip. All of these cars also have plenty of room for adults in the rear seats and all come with ISOFIX child-seat mounting points too.

You might expect this list to be full of fire-breathing monsters with enormous power outputs – and there are plenty of those to choose from – but some of the cars might surprise you. Several of the best four-door sports cars on this list are available with diesel engines, while the latest EVs are some of the fastest machines on the road and are more than deserving of a spot on this list.  

The best four-door sports cars on sale today

If you’re interested in other practical and fast cars, check out our guides to the best fast estates and best hot hatchbacks, or carry on reading to explore our best four-door sports cars.

Skoda Octavia vRS hatchback review

Skoda Octavia vRS hatchback
Carbuyer rating

4.4 out of 5

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  • Priced from £TBC
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You might have expected a more powerful and more expensive car to top our list but the Skoda Octavia vRS has such a broad range of abilities that it’s impossible to ignore. It uses a 242bhp 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine for a 0-62mph time of 6.7 seconds, and even this engine returns almost 40mpg. For cheaper running costs, you’ll want to look at the 181bhp diesel version, which manages 50mpg yet still hits 62mph from a standstill in under eight seconds.

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The Skoda Octavia hatchback has a much bigger boot than the Volkswagen Golf it’s based on, and you might question whether you need the estate seeing as the hatch’s boot is so big. The interior is smart and well-equipped, too, and it helps that the Octavia vRS is one of the cheapest cars on our list. A facelift for 2024 brought some sharper styling and a completely overhauled interior, too.

BMW i5 review - refined and good to drive

BMW i5 UK
Carbuyer rating

4.2 out of 5

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  • Priced from £97,745

The BMW M5 has long been the brand’s flagship sports saloon, but the new electric i5 M60 xDrive offers equally impressive performance with zero emissions. You won’t find a V8 under the bonnet here; instead, it uses two electric motors connected to an 84kWh battery, delivering 592bhp to all four wheels. That’s enough power to launch the i5 M60 to 62mph in under four seconds – plenty quick enough for a car that weighs 2,305kg. Despite that tank-like mass, the adaptive air suspension endows the i5 M60 with a surprising sense of agility, handling far better than most electric sports saloons.

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Of course, being based on the regular i5/5 Series, the M60 gets a lavish cabin, complete with a widescreen curved digital display and swathes of leather. It’s a large car, but that translates to masses of interior space, especially for the rear seat passengers, making this one of the most well-rounded four-door performance cars. At nearly £100,000, however, it ought to be.

Porsche Taycan review – one of the best EV driver’s cars

Porsche Taycan UK
Carbuyer rating

4.3 out of 5

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  • Priced from £86,500
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Not long ago, this list would have exclusively featured models with big, thirsty petrol engines. The Porsche Taycan was one of the first to change that, showing that electric cars can still be revered by car enthusiasts. Porsche, known primarily for its petrol-powered sports cars, has managed to make the Taycan as good to drive as you’d expect from the badge, despite the electric powertrain and the car’s heavy weight.

The Taycan is rival-in-chief to the Tesla Model S and offers similarly rapid performance. Thanks to a mid-life facelift, top-spec Turbo S models now produce 939bhp and scorch from 0-62mph in well under three seconds, while even the basic Taycan is fast enough to beat a hot hatchback off the line. Our pick would be the driver-focused GTS version, which slots in the middle of the range. The Taycan is no more expensive than the Porsche Panamera but feels like the more rewarding four-door performance car.

Audi e-tron GT saloon - Range, charging and running costs

Audi e-tron GT saloon
Carbuyer rating

4.5 out of 5

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  • Priced from £88,365
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The Audi e-tron GT shares many of its parts with the Taycan and even looks quite similar – albeit with a more aggressive front end. You’ll notice that it sits above other fast Audi saloons in our list and that’s down to both its straight-line speed and cornering agility. The fastest is Audi’s first electric RS model, which can hit 0-62mph in just 3.3 seconds. There’s an optional sound package that makes the e-tron GT sound more like a traditional Audi RS model.

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Like the Taycan, it offers 800-volt rapid charging, enabling a top-up from five to 80% charge in just 23 minutes, provided you can find a charger powerful enough. On a full charge, you can officially achieve nearly 300 miles. Inside, it feels like any other posh Audi, which is no bad thing.

BMW M3 saloon review

BMW M3 Competition saloon - front on view
Carbuyer rating

4.1 out of 5

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  • Priced from £85,715

A new BMW M3 is always likely to make it onto this list, unless BMW does something drastic to mess it up. We’ll leave you to make up your own mind on the styling but the driving experience is spot on. Power is up to 523bhp in the Competition version (the only version available in the UK), while xDrive four-wheel drive ensures that every one of those horses is transmitted from tyre to tarmac.

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While a rear-wheel drive model was offered initially, this has since been dropped in 2024. It’s a decision that may put off some enthusiasts, but we think it makes a lot of sense, especially with our inclement British weather. One small issue is that the new M3 is much more expensive than its predecessor; a car with all the options can cost more than £100,000.

Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio review - stylish saloon that’s great to drive

Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio
Carbuyer rating

4 out of 5

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  • Priced from £78,315

Italy’s answer to the BMW M3, the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio is one of the finest sport saloons on sale. Despite approaching a decade old now, the Giulia’s Ferrari-developed 2.9-litre V6 is just as energetic as the day it first arrived, with its 513bhp enabling some supercar-baiting performance. While it doesn’t lack straight-line speed, the Giulia really shines when you reach a corner. It’s agile, communicative, and accessible, meaning you don’t have to be a seasoned race car driver to enjoy a twisty B road.

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Importantly, the Giulia is more than happy to perform saloon car duties when you’re not gunning it. Sure, the BMW M3 has a more upmarket and visually interesting interior, but a facelift in 2024 brought the Giulia’s build-quality and technology up to date, meaning its cabin no longer feels like a compromise alongside its German counterpart. We know it’s not cheap, but when compared to the M3 above, you could argue that the Giulia is good value.

Porsche Panamera review – a tech-packed sports saloon

2024 Porsche Panamera front quarter dynamic
Carbuyer rating

4 out of 5

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  • Priced from £83,568
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The first Porsche Panamera wasn’t a pretty car but this latest one is much more of a looker. It’s more of a four-door 911 than ever before, and all models in the Panamera range hit 0-62mph in 5.3 seconds or less. You won’t find a diesel engine in a new Panamera, the German marque instead turning its focus to plug-in hybrid models which are capable of nearly 60 miles of electric running. The most powerful of these, the Turbo E-Hybrid, gets from 0-62mph in just 3.2 seconds on the way to a top speed of 195mph.

Despite its longer and larger bodywork, it still feels like a finely honed sports car and is much better to drive than the Porsche Macan and Porsche Cayenne SUVs. The hatchback boot makes it practical and all models are well-equipped, but check the specs list – some items you’d think would be included are expensive optional extras.

Mercedes-AMG CLA 45 saloon

Carbuyer rating

4 out of 5

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  • Priced from £68,260
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There are few angrier-looking saloons than the Mercedes-AMG CLA 45 S, and it has the performance to match. Sharing its underpinnings with the Mercedes-AMG A45 S, the CLA 45 S has a turbocharged 2.0-litre engine producing an astonishing 415bhp – 0-62mph takes just four seconds. If you compare it to some of the cars on this list, the CLA 45 S suddenly looks good value – and we think it makes more financial sense than the A45 S hatchback.

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Also shared with the A-Class is its luxurious interior, which feels more premium than some cars double the price with Mercedes’ two-screen layout. The standard four-wheel drive helps generate huge grip in all conditions, unless you hit the ‘drift mode’ button to enable dramatic smokey powerslides.

Mercedes C-Class saloon review

Mercedes C-Class saloon driving
Carbuyer rating

4.3 out of 5

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  • Priced from £97,530

Mercedes-AMG has an impressive track record for shoe-horning giant V8s into small saloon cars, including the C-Class. Read the spec sheet for the latest AMG C 63, however, and you’ll spot that it uses a four-cylinder plug-in hybrid powertrain. No, that’s not a typo – the V8 really is extinct – but you’d be mistaken for thinking that the new model has gone soft. With 670bhp, this is the most powerful C-Class ever by quite some margin, and will hit 62mph in just 3.4 seconds from a standstill.

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Being a plug-in hybrid, it’s also one of the most economical cars on this list, achieving up to 40.9mpg. All that tech does come at a cost, though – both financially and dynamically. At over 2,100kg, the AMG C 63 is a heavy car, and it struggles to disguise this mass under braking. The BMW M3 feels like a more precise and polished performance saloon, something that’s hard to overlook considering it’s the cheaper of the two. That being said, the AMG C 63 is still devastatingly quick, and strikes a good balance between sportiness and usability.

Audi RS 3 review

Audi RS 3 Sportback Launch Edition driving
Carbuyer rating

3.8 out of 5

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  • Priced from £57,675

The Audi RS3 may have its origins as a hot hatchback, but subsequent generations introduced a four-door saloon variant that offered just as much performance in what we think is a more handsome bodystyle. The latest model packs the same 2.5-litre five-cylinder engine that’s powered RS3s since 2011, producing 395bhp in this guise. There’s no doubting its effectiveness – it can launch the RS3 from 0-62mph in sub-four seconds – but that prodigious speed is also accompanied by a unique, sonorous soundtrack that’s unlike anything on this list. 

In the past, things started to fall apart a bit when the RS3 reached a corner – after all, it’s essentially a Volkswagen Golf underneath. Thanks to some new four-wheel drive trickery, the same can’t be said for the latest RS3. It’s genuinely fun to drive, feeling far more agile than its less powerful S3 sibling. There’s even a driving mode that lets you slide sideways should you want to – something unthinkable in Audi RS models of the past.

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