For anyone who owns and runs a business, December is the month when many of us start thinking about the holidays, eating more desserts, and taking time off. Your accountant? He or she might start advising you about year-end purchases to help with tax deductions. I'm here to help with the process. Since I follow the automotive market so closely, I've included a few of the techiest, most svelte business sedans to consider before we slip into 2015, highlighting the most impressive feature to consider.
1. 2015 Infiniti Q50 ($37,150)
The Q50 is sleek and sporty, but the most interesting features are all digital. The first car to have fully electronic steering (most cars use mechanical steering), you'll notice right away that driving the car feels a bit more computer-controlled with smarter steering. Everything feels more precise, and the car even adjusts steering for you if you hit rough road patches.
2. 2015 Acura TLX ($30,995)
Like the Infiniti Q50, the Acura TLX is a sporty business sedan with a few digital tricks up its sleeve. One is that, if the car senses you are leaving a lane on the highway without turning on the blinker, it will nudge you electronically back into a center position. If you really don't respond, the car will apply a little brake pressure to keep you in the lane.
3. 2015 Volvo S60 ($33,750)
For business users, every tech advantage you can get will help stay one step ahead of the competition. This curvy sedan is one of the only cars you'll find (other than a few BMW models) that lets you pull up a full Web browser in the dash display. You can browse to any site, like Inc.com, and read the news--when parked on the side of the road, of course.
4. 2015 VW Passat TDI ($26,825)
The Passat TDI offers tight handling and a smooth ride, but the main perk for business users is that you won't have to go to the pump as often. The diesel engine gets upwards of 50MPG in real-world highways driving scenarios and as much as 800-900 miles per fill. (That's after a break in period, according to VW engineers.) The extra mileage will come in handy not only for long business trips but also in cutting costs when you don't have to re-fill as much.
5. 2015 Chevrolet Impala ($27,060)
This popular business fleet vehicle has good reliability ratings and a new sleek look, but what you'll appreciate the most is the new 4G LTE service from OnStar. It means multiple passengers can connect to a hotspot in the car that runs as high as 12Mbps or more. Future updates could feed diagnostic issues directly to a mechanic as you drive.
6. Audi A3 TDI Premium ($32,600)
This smaller sedan was the first model from any company to offer fast 4G service within the car. Passengers can tap in with your phone, a tablet, or a laptop at speeds around 10-12Mbps or higher. An even bigger bonus? The TDI means this is a turbo-diesel with 150 horsepower and plenty of power to jet in front of that guy driving his Mercedes too slow.
7. 2015 Toyota Camry ($22,970)
The most unique feature on this new Camry is a charging pad for your phone. You just drop the phone onto a pad for charging. Note that you need a phone like the Google Nexus 6 that supports the Qi wireless charging standard. TYLT makes inserts for other phones like the Samsung Galaxy S5 that can also take advantage of Qi charging pads.
8. 2015 Nissan Altima ($22,300)
My favorite tech feature on this sporty sedan is that the car can handle texting duties for you. Called the Hands-Free Text Messaging Assistant, it means the car can automatically send a custom message like "Be there soon, driving" to anyone who sends you a text. This is a major safety feature and a time-saver because you don't have to pull over to text someone back.
9. 2015 Hyundai Genesis 3.8 ($38,950)
There's a curious tech feature on the Genesis luxury sedan you might not notice until your first time parking at night. When you use the keyfob to unlock the car, a logo shines down from both sides of the car, illuminating your path. It's a distinguishing feature you normally only see on a Jaguar or other higher-end models. Plus, it makes parking a bit safer.
10. 2015 Lincoln MKZ ($35,190)
It's not the most expensive business sedan compared to a Mercedes-Benz or a BMW, but the MKZ has one of the coolest tech features. As you drive, the suspension can sense when you hit a pothole in the road and automatically stiffen to lessen the impact. It actually works. Driving one over a pothole feels like the car has lifted the wheel up for you.