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z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
9/14/17 10:33 p.m.

I want to get rid of the BRZ next spring, so I'm starting to contemplate options. It could be new or used.  It needs to not self-destruct for an occasional HPDE and be nicer than a gutted track car. 

M2? Used Cayman S? Used 'Vette? Camaro SS 1LE? GT350? E90 M3 w/DCT? RS3?

Please, PLEASE leave the "I'd buy 14 miatas and a bag of tortilla chips for another post." 

Cotton
Cotton PowerDork
9/14/17 10:38 p.m.

Man it's so hard because there's just so much in that price range.  I generally have a list of possibilities,  then just look for all those cars in online ads,  forums,  word of mouth,  etc. I remember shopping for a Viper one time and ending up with a 930.   A c6 ZR-1 might be in that range now....I've always really liked those.  GT350s are sweet,  911 GTS,  used 997TT....now that's a hell of a car.  The hunt can be a lot of fun,  so happy hunting!

G_Body_Man
G_Body_Man SuperDork
9/14/17 11:05 p.m.

This is going to sound insane, but what about a Challenger 392 T/A? The new 392s actually manage their bulk quite well, and you get comfort, toys, childhood hero-spec visuals, a hellacious soundtrack, a proper manual or a ZF auto and character in spades.

 

Cotton
Cotton PowerDork
9/14/17 11:13 p.m.

In reply to G_Body_Man :

Those are cool, but he's also in low mileage hellcat territory with that budget.

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim MegaDork
9/14/17 11:18 p.m.

A nice original Acura NSX?

rob_lewis
rob_lewis UltraDork
9/14/17 11:19 p.m.

BMW 1-series M.  Falls right into your price range.  Docile enough for every day, yet still a hell of a HPDE car.  Unique enough that enthusiast would drool over it, yet odd enough to blend in with the public (i.e. nobody hanging around your Porsche when you come out of a store or ricer kids wanting to drag race at every light).  Great resale value, even if you rack up the miles on it, it'll always be a collectable.

-Rob

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
9/14/17 11:29 p.m.

Emilio at 949Racing just picked up a GT350 and could not be happier with it right off the showroom floor. C6 Z06 for sale immediately. I'd want to check it against one of the more bonkers Camaros personally, but I suspect that would get a bit grating for day to day use.

Maniac0301
Maniac0301 Reader
9/14/17 11:48 p.m.

BMW M2 or Chevy SS.  Manual preferred for me but I understand if you opt for the auto its not like its any slower.  I personally would look for something like a 1 year old M2 with a Certified Pre-owned warranty.  You'll get more warranty bang for your buck and you'll save a bit of the big end depreciation/markup.  The 2017 and 2018 BMW M2s are likely to do alright for depreciation.  The Chevy SS will probably tank pretty badly.  These are the last years of the N55 BMW engine the replacement ones being beefier in the mid range and even faster in some cases but they don't rev or sound like the N55.  

Cactus
Cactus Reader
9/14/17 11:57 p.m.

14 bags of tortilla chips and one miata.

Seriously though, that kind of budget would have me looking at Lotus Evoras and v8 Esprits.

codrus
codrus UltraDork
9/15/17 12:45 a.m.

Exige S.

Mitchell
Mitchell UberDork
9/15/17 1:23 a.m.

The first thing I would do is take lots of test drives.  

First instinct is M2 or CPO Cayman S.  Drive worry free.  Quadrifolgios may be in that price range within a year.  

dannyzabolotny
dannyzabolotny Reader
9/15/17 1:48 a.m.

E92 M3 with a 6-speed can easily be had for well under that budget. Or a nice clean Porsche 997 911. Or a Porsche 996 Turbo if you don't mind its headlights (I love the headlights unlike most people).

If you want something simpler and more raw, a lightly used C7 Corvette would be rad. Or a C6 ZR-1 if you want absolutely insanity.

Jaynen
Jaynen SuperDork
9/15/17 6:49 a.m.

It would be between the Camaro SS 1lE or the GT350 for me I would test drive both and buy the one that spoke to me. 

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ UltraDork
9/15/17 7:16 a.m.

Does modifying it have any appeal to you?  I'd be split between something new-ish and stock-ish (probably some sort of Lotus product) and something old and loony (crazy modified FD RX7, some sort of Group B rally tribute, a Renault Alpine A310, the list is endless).

Will this be your only car?

mazdeuce
mazdeuce MegaDork
9/15/17 7:19 a.m.

I'd try to buy something that's not depreciating (or as close as I could get) so  911 Turbo, a V Wagon, Viper etc. You'll still wear some value off it by driving, but not nearly as much as you will by buying a newish car in the $55k range. I think the early Cayman S is done with depreciation or close to it and would be a fantastic car to drive for 2-3 years. Lower than what you're looking at, but great value. 

pinchvalve
pinchvalve MegaDork
9/15/17 7:24 a.m.

I think I would go for an Audi RS3.  It's small, but a lot bigger than an FR-S.  The interior is a place I could spend a LOT of hours in without complaint.  And the performance is just mind-blowing.  You can take it to a track day or  autocross it and be top-tier competitive in each, then cruise home at 150mph in comfort.  (In Germany that is) 

jr02518
jr02518 Reader
9/15/17 7:26 a.m.

I spent a weekend with a 2017 Camaro SS at a Cal Club Time Trials running at Buttonwillow Raceway.  The weather both days was very hot, classic Central Valley 105ish with a bit of a breeze.  All weekend the Corvettes were having to manage the heat and the Camaro never skipped a beat.

If I were to do it again I would not be on "run flats".  Other than that, having a auto and not messing with paddle shifters allowed me to enjoy how well the car accelerated, the 8 speed was great.  The brakes never gave any indication of fade and having the A/C going in the paddock was a luxury greatly enjoyed.    

I did experiment with different levels of "nannies" on and off.  Again, the tires were the limiting factor.  But overall a very positive experience.  

ultraclyde
ultraclyde PowerDork
9/15/17 7:33 a.m.

As a Ford guy, I'd be hard pressed not to be test driving a GT350 although they have had their track-related issues. Also as a Ford guy, I'd be looking seriously at Camaros and Vettes too, honestly. 

As much as I like the idea of a Lotus product, long term upkeep cost and durability will always go to the domestics on that choice. Having owned a BMW designed MINI, I'd consider a 1M strongly as long as it had the full factory warranty and no further. If track time voids that, it's off the list.

I'd rather get syphilis than an Audi. It's cheaper to cure and burns less. 

02Pilot
02Pilot Dork
9/15/17 7:40 a.m.

I can only offer some insight on the BMW options mentioned. Based on recent research (a few months ago) that ultimately led me to buy a 128i, I would advise caution on the turbo engined BMWs, and even moreso when combined with the DCT. When working they're fine (though not to my preference, particularly since I do most of my own work), but both are prone to expensive issues. CPO warranty would be a requirement to even consider one of these IMO.

What are your priorities here? Power? Handling? Comfort? Sure, you can have them all, but proportions of each will vary considerably from car to car.

Patrick
Patrick MegaDork
9/15/17 7:41 a.m.

1 year old charger hellcat.  I have kids, and like my wife's charger and i love power so I can't see myself not loving it

tomtomgt356
tomtomgt356 Reader
9/15/17 7:54 a.m.

$5k Miata and send it to Keith...

https://www.flyinmiata.com/V8/turnkey.php

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
9/15/17 7:58 a.m.

Thanks for all the insight gents. To answer a few questions and help with your suggestions.

1. This will be my only car. So the occasional HPDE will mean track day insurance is a given. But I still wouldn't be throwing it around with reckless abandon like I did my previous Miata track rat.

2. Challenger, I don't hate that idea as I LOVE the way they look.

3. I only go in to the office 3 days per week and when I do, it's only 11 miles round trip. Girlfriend has a 2015 Honda Fit, so we have the practical car with a bit of space covered with hers.

4. Power/handling/comfort? Basically a blend of all, but as mentioned, that blend is different depending on the car. I would be more inclined to trade FLAT OUT track pace for more comfort on the street since that's where it will be used the vast majority of the time. 

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
9/15/17 8:02 a.m.
ultraclyde said:

As a Ford guy, I'd be hard pressed not to be test driving a GT350 although they have had their track-related issues. Also as a Ford guy, I'd be looking seriously at Camaros and Vettes too, honestly. 

As much as I like the idea of a Lotus product, long term upkeep cost and durability will always go to the domestics on that choice. Having owned a BMW designed MINI, I'd consider a 1M strongly as long as it had the full factory warranty and no further. If track time voids that, it's off the list.

I'd rather get syphilis than an Audi. It's cheaper to cure and burns less. 

From what I understand, that was on previous MY on cars that didn't have the extra coolers of the track pack. 

Those coolers are all now standard on 2017+ MY.

Keith, yeah, I've been following his post on MT and on TrackHQ regarding the car. 

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
9/15/17 8:05 a.m.
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ said:

Does modifying it have any appeal to you?  I'd be split between something new-ish and stock-ish (probably some sort of Lotus product) and something old and loony (crazy modified FD RX7, some sort of Group B rally tribute, a Renault Alpine A310, the list is endless).

Will this be your only car?

I'd prefer something new/newish, with a warranty that doesn't need to be messed with other than occasionally changing the oil, swapping brake pads, etc. 

If I was going to go the modifying route, I'd find a 2001-2005 Miata, call the gents at Exocet, then K24 swap it and have an NA 4 cyl Exocet, running E85. So a 1600lb car with somwhere between 250-300whp depending on how far you build the K engine.

The main reason I'm not too interested in this route, being realistic with myself, I don't really want to mess with the constant maintenance (and expense) it takes to have a track only car and use it frequently. I don't really want to commit the financial and time resources it takes anymore.

Something like an M2/GT350/SS 1LE, where "Hey, I've got some time and money this month, I'll do a track day" and all I have to do is grab a few foldy chairs, ice chest, bare tool kit, and go...............that's really appealing.

Huckleberry
Huckleberry MegaDork
9/15/17 8:05 a.m.

An Exige would be my knee jerk answer and it will probably not depreciate anymore now so can be close to a free car when you decide to cash out.

A  '15 Cayman S, still under warranty, would be my well-reasoned advice. It's brilliant, comfortable, fast, sexy... and right in the price range after a 24 month lease.

 

 

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