The Ex-Wall Streeter's Guide to Recession Rides

Instead of: a 2009 Bentley Arnage, consider: a 2009 Chrysler 300C

Okay, this one is a little jarring. Bentley is pretty much at the top of the luxury-sedan food chain, whereas Chrysler, well, isn't, so the first thing you'll need to do is quit the automotive name-dropping. (For practice: Instead of saying, "We took the Bentley," say, "We drove here.") But look beyond the badge, and you can see that the 300C travels in the same tire tracks as the aged British grandee. Both are large, comfortable, front-engine, rear-wheel-drive sedans. Both use big-displacement, high-torque V-8s and five-speed automatic transmissions (the 300C's designed by Mercedes-Benz, as a matter of fact). And the Chrysler's styling makes clear - from the four round headlights up front to the upright, chrome-heavy grille to the long hood and classic proportions - that the 300C's designers were keen admirers of the Bentley. If you're still worried that the 300C is too common, you can turn up the wattage on its appearance by having your local custom body shop install a few special, aftermarket items (there are plenty available for this car). Finally, we could point out that the Chrysler will just as capably take you back and forth between Greenwich and lower Manhattan, or wherever it is you're going these days.

Arnage R: $232,085

300C: $37,585

Savings: $194,500

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