Who doesn’t love a little speed? Performance cars can be had for a lot less than you might think, and they don’t need to be hard-hitters from well-known manufacturers like Ferrari or Lamborghini. Not only are those brands far too expensive for the regular buyer, they’re also pointless if you live in a typical city environment. You’ll waste money on petrol, you’ll have nowhere to hit the gas and go full-speed, and you’ll need to find race tracks to get the most out of your investment. Let’s face it, no one wants to buy a performance car that will never see use, so instead of wasting your money on those flashy sports cars, here are a couple of budget performance vehicles that most people can afford—even as their first vehicle!
Mazda has a winning formula on their hands with the MX-5. It’s a cheap no-thrills two-seater convertible which boasts decent fuel economy, a great top speed for cruising across the countryside, and responsive driving. For its price, there’s plenty of luxury to be had and it’s an incredibly nimble vehicle. Sadly, it’s not the most practical vehicle due to its two seats and the small boot. This means it’s not very good as a family car, but if you just want a vehicle for you and your partner or a second vehicle in your garage, then the MX-5 is a car you don’t want to miss.
Though not a very cheap offering compared to the MX-5, the Audi S1 boasts more speed and power with more customisation options. The fuel economy is a little worse than the MX-5, but for the price and customisation options, there’s not much to complain about. It grips incredibly well to the road and handles incredibly well. There’s also the option of a 5-door variant, making it an option for a small family car as long as you’re fine with a smaller boot. Unfortunately, the rear only has two seats, so unless you’re set on getting a family car that also doubles as a performance vehicle, you may need to look elsewhere. But for a small and speed vehicle that offers some practicality, there’s no complaining with the Audi S1.
Porsche 718 Boxster
If you want a budget car that looks a million dollars, then look no further than a brand new Porsche 718 Boxster. Compared to the other two offerings on this brief list, the 718 Boxster is a much more expensive vehicle that is around twice the price. However, you get fantastic fuel economy, great acceleration and handling, and also more practicality than the MX-5. The boot is surprisingly spacious and it has a top speed of around 170 mph. You won’t be able to hit this on conventional roads, but it’s still good to know if you’re after performance. If you’re after a speed car that looks fantastic and you have a fairly flexible budget, put the Porsche 718 on your shortlist when you start looking for a vehicle.