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Something to satisfy my itch for a sporty car, but with good reliability and reasonable price point

The Right Car for Me | TrueDelta

jakehrobinson

I've driven a Tahoe for the last 3 years and can no longer fight the itch to get into something sporty and more fun. My main concern is: If I want something that fits what I'm looking for in a performance oriented coupe or sedan, but also is decently reliable/durable and is at a reasonable price point, what are my options? So far I have considered the BMW 2- and 3-Series, Lexus IS F Sport, and Audi S3 (which, by the looks of it, would be above my price threshold). I'm not in it to be brand-y or impress anyone, my impression is just that those are some of the best options to fit the performance levels I'm looking for. If they're not the best options, I wouldn't argue with anyone over the logo on the front. I'm good with sedans or coupes, doesn't matter. I just want to find something I can get excited about every time I get behind the wheel, but that won't make my bank account hate me for it, either up front or long-term.

Need minimum of 4 seats

Will consider both new and used cars
Maximum mileage: 50000
Maximum age: 3 years

Maximum price: US $ 30000

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Response from Dnslater

7:29 am April 25, 2017

You should be able to find lightly used BMW 3-series for this price point. The Audi A4 and Lexus IS-F that you mentioned would also be solid options. If you can find a certified pre-owned version of one of these, it will help your piece of mind, given the potential cost of maintenance. Infiniti sedans in this price point should also be considered.

If you don't care about brand and like the S3, you should consider a lightly used VW Golf R. It has the same terrific drivetrain as the S3 and is less expensive. You can find them with very low miles for around $30k. Interior quality and features is on par with the luxury brands. Look for one 2004 and newer for the new body style and excellent MQB platform.

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Response from ccd

10:32 am April 25, 2017

I would also suggest the VW GTI which is, IMHO, the hot hatch for adults. My golf instructor, who is very much into cars, just bought a GTI and is very impressed with it. I'd also suggest a lightly used BMW M235i.

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Response from Dnslater

12:08 pm April 25, 2017

I drive a GTI and was going to suggest it as well in my post, but I suggest it far too often..... I actually was considering a used 3 series wagon but chose the GTI because it had more room, cheaper service, better performance (compared to 328) and gets better mileage. The R gets you AWD and a touch more class, but isn't really any more fun than the GTI and the interior is mostly the same. A loaded GTI Autobahn or SE is a pretty nice place to be. The 2018 gets a new digital dashboard that is similar to what Audi uses and is a nice upgrade.

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