Test: Which New $20K Sporty Car? [Archive] - Glock Talk

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nucleus
06-28-2006, 23:55
Okay, you have twenty grand to spend, and the car must be new, fast, good handling, and practical, ie must have at least four doors.

Notice I said good handling, so no crossvers or SUV's. Upcoming models okay.

Post Away!

Nucleus

bac1023
06-29-2006, 05:42
It might sound boring, but I'd go with the 4 door Honda Civic. The Accord is over the price range.

epsylum
06-29-2006, 07:04
The same one I chose, Corolla XRS. I got mine for $16,000 used with only 5k miles.

It has the Corolla GTS engine and 6-speed, 8200 rpm redline, and 4 wheel disc brakes with ABS. It will run 15s in the quarter, is limited to 135mph. I have gone past 100 and it was still pulling.

Plus it is a Toyota, so it will last.

http://www.photodump.com/direct/epsylum/IMG_1427a.jpg

Rob1035
06-29-2006, 07:37
Subaru WRX, Civic Si, Neon SRT4, maybe even a Miata or Solstice?

ProfMoriarty
06-29-2006, 07:44
Originally posted by Rob1035
Subaru WRX, Civic Si, Neon SRT4, maybe even a Miata or Solstice?

He wants 4 doors.

nucleus
06-29-2006, 19:06
Originally posted by epsylum
The same one I chose, Corolla XRS. I got mine for $16,000 used with only 5k miles.

It has the Corolla GTS engine and 6-speed, 8200 rpm redline, and 4 wheel disc brakes with ABS. It will run 15s in the quarter, is limited to 135mph. I have gone past 100 and it was still pulling.

Plus it is a Toyota, so it will last.



Wow, I didn't know this car existed! Thanks for the tip, I'm off to go build one online.

Nucleus :supergrin:

WellArmedSheep
06-29-2006, 19:32
Originally posted by nucleus
Okay, you have twenty grand to spend, and the car must be new, fast, good handling, and practical, ie must have at least four doors.

Notice I said good handling, so no crossvers or SUV's. Upcoming models okay.

Post Away!

Nucleus

Check out the Mazda 3...or if you can find one used in the most recent itteration, a Mazda 6. My wife and I test drove the Mazda 6 a while back. It was the most fun I've ever had (driving ;) ) in a four door automobile. This particular one had the 6 speed semi-auto transmission...what a hoot!

ETA: the only reason we didn't buy it was because at $28,000 it was a bit out of our price range.

epsylum
06-29-2006, 22:11
Originally posted by SCRCTeach
Check out the Mazda 3...or if you can find one used in the most recent itteration, a Mazda 6. My wife and I test drove the Mazda 6 a while back. It was the most fun I've ever had (driving ;) ) in a four door automobile. This particular one had the 6 speed semi-auto transmission...what a hoot!

ETA: the only reason we didn't buy it was because at $28,000 it was a bit out of our price range.

The 3 is another choice, but the 6, unless it is the bare bones model, is out of his price range also.

I still think my XRS can take a 3 though ;)

I am one of those guys that knows what he has (as in, no I don't think it can take a vette), but is willing to find out first hand. I am not too proud to loose. I keep wanting to race my buddies '00 Mustang GT, but he keeps making excuses.

There is a guy on Toyotanation that has an XRS with simple bolt-ons that is staying with RS-X Type Ses and regularly beats Sentra SE-R Spec Vs and SVT Focuses at the track. All that and he has 4 doors, roomy interior, a nice sized trunk, etc.

If you can test drive the XRS. That is what sold me. I went in to get a Scion tC and left with a Corolla XRS. The Corolla fits me better and gives me more room. Plus, I LOVE the six speed manual (VERY short throw for an OEM shifter). Once I dorve it, I had to have it.

One last thing. One downside is it takes premium gas only. IIRC it has around an 11:1 compression ratio. I only fill it up with Shell premium and only run Mobil 1 synthetic oil w/ a Mobil 1 filter.

JosieWales
06-30-2006, 00:16
Originally posted by bac1023
It might sound boring, but I'd go with the 4 door Honda Civic. The Accord is over the price range.

Should be able to do an Accord for 20

arrowdriver
07-05-2006, 08:08
With some of the deals Mazda is making on the RX-8 now, it should be getting close to 20K for a base model......

97guns
07-08-2006, 06:13
VOLKSWAGON JETTA TURBO

epsylum
07-08-2006, 16:29
Originally posted by 97guns
VOLKSWAGON JETTA TURBO

That or the TDI for the even better MPG.

My dad's friend has a TDI Jetta. He likes it so much he is planning on getting another one for his wife.

I hate to brag agian, but the XRS stays with the new Jetta GLI through the quarter. ;)

I am a VW fan too though and wanted a Jetta GLI pretty bad.

adamgh81
07-10-2006, 13:57
I know you said NEW, but I've always purchased used cars with low mileage that are only a year or 2 old. I love my 2000 Nissan Maxima SE...4 door, V6 222hp, 5spd(or auto if you'd like), great styling and performance. 2000-01 have 3.0l v6 and 2002-03 have 3.5l v6. I'd get a 2003 if I were to get ride of my 2000. But if your looking for better gas mileage, my 2000 gets 27-30mpg highway, 24-26 city with A/C cranked.

ShipWreck
07-10-2006, 14:08
Love my Toyota Matrix. Have had it over 3 years now. 1st car I could ever say that I plan to buy another one eventually.

epsylum
07-10-2006, 16:46
Originally posted by ShipWreck
Love my Toyota Matrix. Have had it over 3 years now. 1st car I could ever say that I plan to buy another one eventually.

I hope you aren't waiting for that thing to wear out. You may not be around to get another one. :supergrin:

ShipWreck
07-10-2006, 17:18
Why is that?

WellArmedSheep
07-10-2006, 23:48
I think he's insinuating that Toyotas are very durable and reliable automobiles, and that you're probably not gonna wear it out anytime soon.

ShipWreck
07-11-2006, 07:57
Originally posted by SCRCTeach
I think he's insinuating that Toyotas are very durable and reliable automobiles, and that you're probably not gonna wear it out anytime soon.

That's kinda what I thought he meant - I realized it after my post

GroovedG19
07-13-2006, 07:59
Sporty 4 door? How about a used Mitsubishi Evolution?:supergrin:The sound of the turbo hissing when you shift gears is very addicting.

nucleus
07-15-2006, 20:08
Well I thought the answer would be the Mazdaspeed 3, but I am afraid that it is going to come out at like 23K rather than 20K. Nice little pocket rocket with about 250 HP. Check it out here (http://www.mazdausa.com/MusaWeb/displayPage.action?pageParameter=upcomingMS3).

I have looked at the Corolla, but I think it is too slow for the money. A better choice would be the Yaris or the Fit, and put the money difference into a turbo kit. Smaller cars are inherently sportier and funer to drive.

I noticed that the Yaris has an option of 18 inch wheels from the factory, that little car could be a good autocross car in stock class with such big wheels from the factory.

Nucleus

Rob1035
07-15-2006, 20:21
Originally posted by nucleus


I noticed that the Yaris has an option of 18 inch wheels from the factory, that little car could be a good autocross car in stock class with such big wheels from the factory.

Nucleus

From my autocross experience, the last thing any 1.5 liter powered car needs is 18" wheels, tires, and the weight that goes along with it. For autocross, the smallest wheels you can fit over the brakes and the stickest tires available in that wheel size is the name of the game...MHO of course.

epsylum
07-15-2006, 23:14
Well nucleus, I am in the same boat as you now. That white car posted above is no more thanks to someone running a red light.

I seriously like that car so much, I might try to get another if no other viable alternatives come up.

nucleus
07-16-2006, 11:44
Originally posted by epsylum
Well nucleus, I am in the same boat as you now. That white car posted above is no more thanks to someone running a red light.

I seriously like that car so much, I might try to get another if no other viable alternatives come up.

Bummer, I lost my 350 HP Turbo RX-7 to a girl not yielding to me when turning left ten months ago. Still hasn't gotten paid by her insurance company by the way.

If you can hang tough until the fall, I think the Civic Si sedan would be a nice car:

Key Civic Si Sedan Concept Features:
A 197-horsepower, 16-valve, DOHC i-VTEC engine with an 8,000 rpm redline
A close ratio 6-speed manual transmission
A helical-type limited slip differential
18-inch cast aluminum alloy wheels
225/40ZR18 high performance tires
4-wheel disc brakes with large cross-drilled brake rotors
4-piston Brembo calipers



Best of luck, look out for hidden whiplash.

Nucleus ;)

nucleus
07-16-2006, 11:59
Originally posted by Rob1035
From my autocross experience, the last thing any 1.5 liter powered car needs is 18" wheels, tires, and the weight that goes along with it. For autocross, the smallest wheels you can fit over the brakes and the stickest tires available in that wheel size is the name of the game...MHO of course.

Well, it definitely will make a car slower to accelerate, but in the end the more tire you can fit on the car the more speed you can carry through the corners which is everything in autox.

I had my 92 Civic Si tuned in good with super light fifteen inch rims and 205/55 racing tires used to whup up vettes all the time. Then I switched to super wide thirteen inch Keizers 13x9's I think, and the acceleration was crazy, but they changed everything about how the car handled and I never did get it dialed in again.

In stock class you are limited to what size the factory offered so 18 inch rims while not ideal could be a winner.

Nucleus

spober
08-01-2006, 18:22
Originally posted by arrowdriver
With some of the deals Mazda is making on the RX-8 now, it should be getting close to 20K for a base model...... maby for a 2003 model.the problem with the rotary engine is it has so little tourque.this is due to the little moving mass,comparred to a piston ricip engine.yes it developed 230 hp at 9000 rpm but has about 150 foot pounds of tourge.not good.the tourque is what presses you back at accelleration.a 2003 nissan 350 z is a better car by far.270-300hp and a goc of low end toque

spober
08-01-2006, 18:26
im looking in the 25000 doller cap.all i can find that has power ,good looks and is desirable in my eyes is a Mustange GT.I rather have a GT convert but thats 30 large.too much.
ill be mildly intrested in the solctice and saturns version.saw one yesterday .very nice.small almost meata like.id have to have the turbo .177 hp in a 4 banger that weighs 3500 lbs is not my idea of powerful.the turbo will have 250 HP, more respectable for sure.

nucleus
08-01-2006, 23:31
Originally posted by spober
im looking in the 25000 doller cap.all i can find that has power ,good looks and is desirable in my eyes is a Mustange GT.I rather have a GT convert but thats 30 large.too much.
ill be mildly intrested in the solctice and saturns version.saw one yesterday .very nice.small almost meata like.id have to have the turbo .177 hp in a 4 banger that weighs 3500 lbs is not my idea of powerful.the turbo will have 250 HP, more respectable for sure.

You can get a 2004 or 2005 Mazdaspeed Miata with a turbo easily aftermarketed up to 250 HP.

The Mustang is a looker, I'll give you that. Three words sum up the problem with the Mustang: Solid rear axle. That and 800 pounds heavier than a 2005 Miata.

Nucleus

amd4me
08-02-2006, 12:58
An SRT-4 or a Cobalt SS will fit the bill nicely.
You can get a preowned one with like 500 miles on it for alot less VS brand new.

IslandHopper
08-18-2006, 09:58
Originally posted by nucleus
You can get a 2004 or 2005 Mazdaspeed Miata with a turbo easily aftermarketed up to 250 HP.
Nucleus

That doesn't fit the 4-door theme, but...

I just bought an old Miata, racing it in SpecMiata class... most fun I've EVER had in a car. And it's still street-legal to boot!

nucleus
08-18-2006, 15:31
hey I love the idea of Miata Spec racing... Tell us more about this, what did you pay for the car of what vintage?

Ron3
08-18-2006, 20:49
Originally posted by IslandHopper
That doesn't fit the 4-door theme, but...

I just bought an old Miata, racing it in SpecMiata class... most fun I've EVER had in a car. And it's still street-legal to boot!

I've thought about doing this too!

Either Miata or Spec Focus.

I've read cars are $7000-10000 ready to race.

How much is it per event, though?

With entry fees, gas, (during race and travel) tires, brake parts, food, hotel stays, I could see it being $1000 a race.

Ron3

Ron3
08-18-2006, 21:03
Didn't read the whole thread, but a used Subaru WRX would fit your criteria.

They are $25500 new.

4 doors, or a 5-door wagon. All wheel drive, manual or auto (You'd be wrong to get the auto) 227hp (2006 models). The 2.5 liter flat four with turbo provides good torque too, (something most other 4-bangers lack) which is what really gets you moving.

They also have sporty looks, good reliability, sporty suspension and brakes, and can get 29mpg highway. They do use 91 octane of higher gas, but hey, if you want a performance car your going to pay more for gas. (Well, unless you buy a Lotus Elise or something)

http://www.carseek.com/car_images/04-impreza-hero-wrx.jpg

http://jfab.com/wrx/wrx03.jpg

http://stellae.mystica.free.fr/test/Subarriere.jpg

Ron3

IslandHopper
08-18-2006, 23:40
http://www.glocktalk.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=579683

to avoid hijacking this thread, lets move the Miata / racing discussion to it's own thread.

http://www.glocktalk.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=579683

nucleus
08-19-2006, 15:57
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Ron3
[B]Didn't read the whole thread, but a used Subaru WRX would fit your criteria.

They are $25500 new.

Ron, WRX'x are an awesome little car in many ways. For me I decided against one for one reason only, the lack of window frames on the doors makes for super-bad wind noise on the highway. Since I live in Montana, 115 MPH cruise speeds are not common, so all the subbies are out for me.

Nucleus

Ron3
08-20-2006, 21:00
Well, at least you considered it!

Ron3

waktasz
09-03-2006, 23:07
I don't notice any abnormal wind noise in my Subies :/

And as for teh 350z vs rx-8 debate...if the only deciding factor is torque, go with the 350, but the rx-8 is clearly the better handling car.

.223bark
09-10-2006, 01:42
20k, 4 doors, sporty, sensable....

-corolla xrs 1.8L vvtiL 2zz from a celica loves to rev high about 170hp

-dodge srt-4 2.4L turbocharged & intercooled, lsd, abou 230hp...good for high 13sec 1/3 miles

20k and four door thats probably the best out there

epsylum
09-11-2006, 15:29
Originally posted by .223bark
20k, 4 doors, sporty, sensable....

-corolla xrs 1.8L vvtiL 2zz from a celica loves to rev high about 170hp

Not to mention you get more money when you wreck it, at least I did. ;) I totaled my XRS in a no fault wreck (girl ran a red light) and my insurance company valued it at about $5000 more than I paid for it. I got the loan paid in full and got $5000. I wish I still had that car, but I came out alright in that deal (especially since I walked away from the wreck).

.223bark
09-12-2006, 23:07
as they say...any wreck you walk away from is a good one. Sux to lose a car you love though

dbrowne1
09-21-2006, 17:01
Neon SRT-4 or a Jetta 2.0T would be my two choices for ~20K and 4 doors. Both have very good power and handling and can be upgraded cheaply to produce much more than their stock power.

5252
09-21-2006, 17:37
Guy, hate to break it to ya, but the Corolla XRS is no more. 2005 was the last year. Other than plastic cladding, there's no more sport in the Corolla.

For $20K NEW sedan, the Civic Si Sedan fits the bill. It comes out soon. There's the coupe, also, of course.

The Fit is also the fastest of the "little" new cars and it's pretty practical.

The Mazda 3 2.3L is also a great car for the money. Four doors or five door hatch.

The Cobalt SS, WRX, et al are significantly more than $20k.

nucleus
09-22-2006, 22:39
I was poking around on autotrader and realized that you can buy a pretty nice used BMW for 20K, like a 2003 325i sport package with fifty thousand miles.

For 23.5K you can buy a 2003 330i sport and premium packages and only twenty-five thousand miles.

I am leaning in this direction.

Nucleus

Warp
09-30-2006, 11:59
Originally posted by nucleus
Okay, you have twenty grand to spend, and the car must be new, fast, good handling, and practical, ie must have at least four doors.

Notice I said good handling, so no crossvers or SUV's. Upcoming models okay.

Post Away!

Nucleus

Don't think it can be done. You are going to have to spend more, buy used or sacrafice in at least one of those areas.

ScoPro
10-10-2006, 13:00
Pontiac G6 GT Sedan - 3.5 liter 201 hp. Just bought one for the wife.

http://www.ecu.com/cars/images/P2414_2.jpg

Very nice car....lists for $24.4k (w/sunroof & 17" chrome rims), got it for $19.5k.

Genso
10-31-2006, 15:47
I have a 2004 Mazda 3s 4-door. No regrets. I think generally the Mazda3 is the best new car for under $20k for the money. And they're pretty sporty for 4 cylinders.

Nucleus, did you make your purchase yet? Check your PMs.

Rob1035
10-31-2006, 17:44
I agree, although for a little bit more money, the Mazdaspeed3 appears to be the single best bang for your buck ride on the market today...