Top 10 Cheap Sports Cars under $60,000
These days you do not have to shell out $100k plus to own a nice sports car. Yes, we all dream of owning and driving the high end sports cars like a Lamborghini or Ferrari. The reality is these vehicles cost more than a single family home! But there are a ton of cheap sports cars on the market for the 2012 model year and these vehicles can provide lots of tire shredding fun. Take for instance a middle of the road muscle car or a base model Corvette; these cars can accelerate as fast as many exotic cars at a fraction of the price.
The sports car line has become increasingly blurred over the past decade. In the past, the term sports car usually meant a rear wheel drive vehicle with two seats. Now there are big V-8 muscle cars, turbocharged sedans, and even some front wheel drive automobiles that are considered sports cars. This might irritate the pure enthusiast but for the rest of us, cars have been evolving for a while now. And 400 horsepower is still fun no matter the shape, size, number of seats, or engine configuration. So sit back and strap on your seat belts as we take a look some of the cheapest sports cars for 2012.
10. 2012 Honda Civic Si - $22,205
09. 2012 Hyundai Genesis Coupe - $22,250
The 2012 Hyundai Genesis Coupe comes with a turbocharged 4-cylinder engine or a 3.8L V-6 engine. The V-6 is good for 308 horsepower and 266 lb-ft or torque and the power is put down to the pavement through the rear wheels. The base price is $22,250 and the R-Spec V-6 costs $26,750. Some of the more sporty features you will find on a Genesis Coupe are a track-tuned suspension consisting of stiffer spring and dampener rates, large Brembo brakes, and lightweight 19-inch alloy rims. That is some serious performance hardware for a cheap sports car. But what really helps the 2012 Hyundai Genesis to stand out from the crowd are the car’s good looks. With 0-60 MPH times in the upper 5 second range, the Genesis Coupe is cool ride that will surprise many. And gas mileage is not too shabby either with the Genesis Coupe netting 17 MPG in the city and 26 MPG on the highway.
08. 2012 Nissan 370Z - $31,450
The 2012 Nissan 370Z has a couple of things going for it. First the Z has a very storied and prestigious history spanning all the way back to 1969. The Datsun 240Z was cheap sports car that is still a real favorite among many enthusiasts. Many different iterations of the Z have spanned a couple of decades all culminating in the 370Z model. The second major factor the 370Z has in its corner is the technology that Nissan possesses. The Nissan GTR is considered one of the ultimate sports cars in the world and plays the role of big brother to the 370Z. Thus the 2012 Nissan 370Z gets all kinds of goodies (technology) passed down from the mighty Godzilla. Like a true sports car; the 370Z features something never seen before on a mass marked car. SynchroRev Match is a down shift rev-matching system in which the computer automatically blips the throttle when downshifting. This helps keep the car right in the sweet spot of the powerband. The base model 2012 Nissan 370Z has a starting price of just over $31,000. This Japanese sports car is powered by a 3.7L V-6 engine that provides 332 horsepower and 270lb-ft of torque. A 6-speed manual or 7-speed automatic transmission can be had. 0-60 MPH fly’s by in 4.5 seconds making this one cheapest fast sports car you can buy. Fuel economy is not bad either with the 370Z getting 18 MPG in the city and 26 MPG on the highway. The exterior of the car is something different with the arrow style lights and the severe slope on the roofline. But overall the 370Z makes a bold visual statement.
07. 2012 Chevrolet Camaro SS - $31,850
06. 2012 Audi TT - $38,300
The Audi TT has been around since 1998 and has remained relatively unchanged since then. Sure there have been performance updates and technological upgrades over the past 10+ years. But why would Audi mess with a good thing? The 2012 Audi TT is a very capable and cheap sports car. The look of the Audi TT speaks volumes in regards to its performance heritage. Beneath the modern design of the exterior lurks Audi’s famous Quattro all-wheel drive system. The motor is a small 2.0L 4-cylinder engine. While this may not sound very sports car like, the Audi TT benefits from turbo power. With a base price of $38,300 and the ability to run from 0-60 MPH in 5.8 seconds the 2012 Audi TT is a great choice for those looking to buy a cheap sports car that is not you ordinary run of the mill ride. Total power output is 211 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque. The Audi TT is not only a skilled handling automobile but it is also quite luxurious on the inside. The small engine helps the 2012 Audi TT get 23 MPG in the city and 31 MPG on the highway which is by far the best cheap sports car fuel economy. Audi also makes a special TT RS version of this vehicle that costs a heck of a lot more at $56k but it also features 150 more horsepower.
05. 2012 Dodge Challenger SRT-8 - $43,995
Practically every sports car or muscle car comparison out there has the 2012 Dodge Challenger SRT-8 as one of the contenders in the mix. This car not only looks the part; it has the firepower to back it up. With a base price of $43,995 the Challenger SRT-8 is almost $20k more than the base model V-6 version but it is still considered a cheap sports car compared to the high end exotic vehicles. The Challenger SRT-8 is the pride and joy of Dodge’s Street and Racing Technology division and these guys have delivered one strong muscle car. The vehicle is motivated by a 6.4L HEMI V-8 engine that produces 470 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque. 0-60 MPH flys by in a mere 4.4 seconds. The HEMI features fuel saver technology which allows the engine to switch-off four cylinders in order to conserve fuel. The Challenger gets 14 MPG in the city and 23 MPG on the highway. Some other great features present on the 2012 Dodge Challenger SRT-8 are a TREMEC 6-speed transmission, Brembo Brake kit, 20-inch rims, and cool old school sports stripes.
04. 2012 Ford Shelby GT 500 - $48,800
Take one part Mustang, one part supercharger, one part madness, and blend them together. The result is a cheap sports car that produces a mind boggling 550 horsepower and 510 lb-ft of torque. The 2012 Ford Shelby GT 500 has a base price of $48,800. For that amount you get more horsepower than a $187k Lamborghini Gallardo! The Shelby GT 500 is loaded with tons of goodies including huge 14-inch Brembo brakes with four-piston calipers, a TREMEC 6-speed transmission, limited-slip differential, sports stripes, and 19-inch rims. Performance wise the 2012 Ford Shelby GT500 ranks among some of the fastest sports cars with a 0-60 MPH time of 4.3 seconds. Take this cheap sports car to the drag strip and the GT 500 can rip off quarter mile times in the mid 12-second range. Ford has packed all their technological wizardry into the GT 500 and you will get everything from the famous SYNC system to traction and stability control. Fuel economy ratings are mediocre with the GT 500 getting 15 MPG in the city and 23 MPG on the highway. But who cars about fuel economy when you have 550 horses prancing around under the hood!
03. 2012 Chevrolet Corvette - $49,525
Ah the 2012 Chevrolet Corvette; a cheap sports car that is the pride and joy of America. The first generation Corvette debuted way back in the 1950’s and there have been many iconic vehicles along the way. Now the Corvette is in its 6th version dubbed the C6. The base model 2012 Chevrolet Corvette costs $49,525 and comes with a 6.2L V-8 engine that produces 436 horsepower and 428 lb-ft of torque. Rest assured the Corvette is a dyed in the wool sports car. Everything about the 2012 Chevrolet Corvette speaks to its performance and history. Top speed is 190 MPH and 0-60 zooms by in 4.2 seconds. These are serious numbers for a base model Corvette indeed. Oh and the fuel economy numbers are not half bad at 16 MPG in the city and 26 MPG on the highway. If you feel frisky there are other models like the Gran Sport, Z06, and ZR1 but these are all much more expensive. The base model 2012 Chevrolet Corvette coupe provides more bang for you buck than any other cheap sports car on the market today.
02. 2012 Porsche Cayman - $51,900
In a sea of Porsche sports cars that include the 911, Boxster, and Panamera; the Cayman seems to often get ignored. But the 2012 Porsche Cayman is a cheap sports car that offers incredible performance coupled with great looks. From the front the Cayman looks like the Porsche 911 but a bit more refined. Out back the Cayman features a more sloped roof line that almost gives it a fastback feel. In fact the Cayman is considered one of the best looking cheap sports cars on the market today. With a base price of $51,900 the 2012 Porsche Cayman is one of the least expensive Porsche automobiles you can buy. Power comes via the flat-six boxer engine that Porsche is famous for. This 2.9L 6-cylinder engine produces 265 horsepower and 221 lb-ft of torque. Fuel economy checks in a 19 MPG in the city and 27 MPG on the highway. The power numbers may be some of the lowest on the list but Cayman features a lightweight chassis that is more at home on the track than on the road. That’s not to say the Porsche Cayman is a track only car. Instead the Cayman is one of the most pure sports cars you will ever drive. It is nimble and has lightning quick reflexes. There are more expensive trims that feature a larger engine with more horsepower like the CAyman S or Black Edition. But the base model 2012 Porsche Cayman is one of the greatest cheap sports cars out there.
01. 2012 BMW M3 - $59,900
The 2012 BMW M3 is priced at $59,900 which it the upper end of the cheap sports car scale. But the amount of performance that comes from the M3 coupe is extraordinary. Can you think of any one car that has been the measuring stick of both performance and luxury for so many years. Month after month, year after year, the M3 reigns supreme in almost any contest it enters. Power comes via a high performance 4.0L V-8 engine that produces 414 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque. While not the most power on the list of cheap sports cars; the 2012 BMW M3 does has a few tricks up its sleeve. With a high 8400 RPM redline the M3 can run 0-60 MPH in 4.8 seconds. The Double Clutch Gearbox is a 7-speed transmission that is operated via paddle shifters. The 2012 BMW M3 features an M Dynamic Mode which tweaks the response of the car in a more aggressive manner. Good luck finding the limits of this car! The 2012 BMW M3 is so poised and confident it can handle anything you throw its way. Fuel economy does suffer though for all this performance. The M3 gets 14 MPG in the city and 20 MPG on the highway. Beyond the performance of the M3; you can enjoy tons of comfort, convenience, and technology all rolled into one modern cheap sports car.