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Old     (ponyh8r)      Join Date: Dec 2004       05-22-2011, 11:57 AM Reply   
So for some reason, my entire family has decided to start racing again. I feel a little left out and am going to jump back into to it. They mostly do SCCA racing on weekends as a family. I have owned several sportish cars in the past such as an 06 Mustang GT, 2002 WS6 Trans Am, 2002 Camaro SS and several other F-bodies.

I have several criteria in the new car that must be met. It must have 4 seats. I have a daughter and although we have other vehicles, there may be times when I need to pick her up from daycare in a pinch when I take it. It will double as a daily driver. My daily driver right now is my 06 F-250, I paid it off a while back and will keep it, but am not wanting to drive it everyday as diesel prices are high and its gas milage is horrible. It must cost less than $40K. I need to have a reasonable payment. It must be reliable enough to race once or twice a month and still be drivable as a daily driver. Also, it must be capable of not getting completly embarassed by a 10' Porsche Cayman S (dad), 10 RX08 (brother in law), 09 370Z Nismo (brother) and a 2008 M3 (father in law). I don't have to be the fastest, but want to be competitive w/ the fam. I also really don't want the same car as the one's listed above. Its more fun to have variety.

So far I have test drove the 2011 Lancer Evolution X MR and the 2011 Mustang GT 5.0. I spent several hours with each one and was able to even keep the Mustang for a whole day.

I will admit, I liked both of them for different reasons. I like the Evo's handling. I also liked the SST automatic transmission and the fact that it has four doors. The Evo seems like it can do everything very well and that it could be fast in all types of weather conditons, road conditions and can be driven fast by anyone easily. I did not like the cheap interior materials, the smallish trunk and will admit that I don't like the image the car has as being a teenager's car.

The Mustang was great. So much faster than the a large margin. It handled great too, but did not seem as crisp as the Evo. The Mustang remined me a lot of the old F-bodies I owned, but more refined. The rearend can get away from you pretty quick especially with all that power on tap. I thought the Mustang's interior was better with the exception of the seats...they lacked side support. The six speed transmission is a piece of work and I really liked the feel of it. The Mustang's back seat is also very small.

Any other ideas of cars I should be considering? I am not in a hurry to make this decision and want to really take my time and pick the best car for my needs. Also, between the two listed above, does anyone own one and have further input?
Old     (shawndoggy)      Join Date: Nov 2009       05-22-2011, 12:26 PM Reply   
the 4 door M3 or 335i with sport package are at the top of my list. But with the FiL rocking the m3...

Should also check out the suby offerings. If you've got the scratch and liked the evo, the STi needs to be considered too, especially because it's so different from the evo, while filling the same niche.

Late model GTOs go for CHEAP if you'd consider used.

VW r32? Dunno how it does as a track car tho.

sounds like a fun problem to solve!
Old     (sidekicknicholas)      Join Date: Mar 2007       05-22-2011, 3:04 PM Reply   
Maybe take a look at a Lexus IS350 ... I just got a 250 (definitely not a sports car because of the engine) but the 350 hauls ass. 0-60 in under 5 seconds, comes in an AWD, fair amount of room in the back

when I was looking for cars I wanted:
sporty - awd - 4 doors - creature comforts .... didn't have nearly the budget you did, but test drove a 350 (no 250s at the dealer's lot).... and the car as awesome
Bone stock:

Also could look at the following:
IS-F (stupid fast) - seen lightly used for 40k
WRX sti

* some of these you may have to dive into used to hit 40K
Old     (bendow)      Join Date: Sep 2005       05-22-2011, 3:40 PM Reply   
I know this Mustang GT P51 will eat the cars you listed above in 1/4 mile, not to sure how well it handles for SCCA...I'm sure it'd be a handful on the track.
Old     (ponyh8r)      Join Date: Dec 2004       05-22-2011, 3:53 PM Reply   
Ben.....Holy Crap! Not sure that thing would double well as a daily driver. Really nice car though.

Shawn, I am not opposed to used cars, but there just seems to be so many endless choices. I'm not sure about the R32 but will look at the STI. I have heard from a lot of my buddies that still race that the STI is a bit slower on a track than the Evo. I do like that the STI has a hatchback option though.

Nick, honestly I never even though of the luxery cars you listed, specifically Lexus and Cadillac. I know that they would have to be used, but I can live with that if they are certified or still under warrenty. That IS350 seems really quick. I have read that they generally do 0-60 in low 5's. Power is important, but being able to be fast and handle well is the most important priority. Thanks for all the advice.
Old     (sidekicknicholas)      Join Date: Mar 2007       05-22-2011, 4:09 PM Reply   
for what its worth my IS250 AWD handles like a dream.... but I've never really owned anything high end until this.
... when I was shopping for a car I had that checklist and it met all what I wanted, great cars - worth a look... and if it is going to be a daily driver I would not underestimate having creature comforts - I love have the full touchscreen w/ nav, bluetooth (always could be aftermarket) and the rain-sensing wipers are AWESOME.... perfect timing on the wipers, always - It bugs the **** out of me when its just a little to fast or slow.

A lot of the luxury brands have some nice cars - I know you mentioned a family member has a 370z - but maybe like a G37 sedan or something
Acura has the TL-SH AWD has 300+ hp in a V-6,
Old     (MattieK27)      Join Date: Mar 2010       05-22-2011, 4:13 PM Reply   
Here is my take...

First off, you said Scca racing. What exactly do you mean? Track days, or autocross? If it's autocross, any of the cars listed here will be fine; it's more dependent on the driver. If it's track days, I think it is pretty foolish to drop that amount of coin on something you could damage if "things get away from you." I stopped tracking my Evo for that reason.

You mention racing as the reason for this purchase, if that's the driving force here I have some input regarding the Evo. First off, who cares if it has a cheap interior when your hot lapping? Second, I would shy away from the SST equipped MR and get a regular Evo with the 5 speed. That transmission will be much better on the track in terms of reliability.

As far as the Mustang being much faster, from the tests I have seen I guess I disagree. It might feel faster with the low end torque, but in acceleration tests the Mustang looks to be marginally faster.

If it were me, I would get a previous gen Evo or STi, add some new rubber and possibly suspension tuning, and call it a day. (throw on some bolt ons for hp if you really want) Your going to end up with a car that should be quicker than the family cars, and a lot less demanding on your check book. If you are more concerned with daily driving, any of the cars listed here will be enjoyable.

Back to the Evo MR you drove, if you enjoyed the crisp handling, do yourself a favor and at least drive a previous gen Evo VIII/IX. To me, the steering on those cars is the only thing I have driven under 60k that comes close to the steering feel in the Lotus Elise. The Elise is still my meter stick for how steering racks should be.
Old     (snwmot)      Join Date: Sep 2006       05-22-2011, 4:14 PM Reply   
you might also consider the Cadillac CTS-V
Old    codi_scott            05-22-2011, 6:18 PM Reply   
I would definitely go for an 06 Evo IX or an 05 sti if I were in your situation. You could probably pick them up with low miles for less then 20 thousand, and throw a couple thousand in it if you wanted. From what I've read the Evo handles a bit better than the sti, but they are still both great.
Old     (patrick232)      Join Date: Aug 2008       05-22-2011, 6:22 PM Reply   
I second the used GTO idea, had one this week out for a test drive. It was a 2004 with 44k miles, holding out for a 2005 or 2006 for the larger engine. Looking at a 2005 June 4th with 30000 miles for $13,500. It will either be a cream puff or a dud.

FYI we have owned a few quick cars in the past:
1998 Z28 auto
1998 Z28 6 speed
2007 350 Z
Not so far, but still fun
2007 Maxima SE
2010 Maxima SV Sport

Last edited by patrick232; 05-22-2011 at 6:26 PM.
Old     (norcalmalibu)      Join Date: Jun 2004       05-22-2011, 7:18 PM Reply   
The GTO is a good pick and cheap! I've always been a big fan of the CTS-V they are extremely easy to modify and out of the gate fast. Make sure to get an 05 and newer with the 6.0L The beauty of GM is everything is based on the LS motor so the aftermarket community is abundant. Id stay away from any used EVO or STI they are almost always beaten and like you the stigma it carries is boy racer. My ex had a IS250 and it was a great handling car but small. I'm 6'2 and it was an uncomfortable care to drive. Good luck and make sure to let us know what you decide.
Old    codi_scott            05-22-2011, 8:51 PM Reply   
27CDB6E-AE6D-11cf-96B8-444553540000" id="SFID1306119026724">
Mitsubishi EVO VIII V.S. Lamborghini
Old    codi_scott            05-22-2011, 8:55 PM Reply   
the video is kinda long, but the actual test vs. the lambo starts off at around 4 minutes
Old     (ponyh8r)      Join Date: Dec 2004       05-22-2011, 8:55 PM Reply   
Thanks for all the great ideas and info. I have never driven the GTO, but owning several F bodies, I am a little worried as to its capability to take the turns. I could be wrong, but how well do these things handle? If I remember correctly, they are on the heavy side. I do like the aftermarket support for the cars and am familiar with them since I have owned 3 LS1 powered cars and 2 LT1 powered cars. I will for sure give them a look and drive.

Matt, thanks for the wealth of info. I should have clarified that it will be autocross and some race days at the dragstrip. The family will sometimes do dragracing for fun, but I am mostly concerned w/ the cars capability to autocross.
Old     (shawndoggy)      Join Date: Nov 2009       05-22-2011, 9:52 PM Reply   
LOL, if you are worried about heavy why is the mustang under consideration? GTO is big american (aussie) rear drive muscle. Like a mustang. And I'm a big fox body fan too, but it is what it is, ya know?

A few sentimental entries:

late 80s 951 or 944/S2
late 80s saleen
86 Mustang SVO
98 M3 sedan
E30 M3
early 90s M5
Old     (barry)      Join Date: Apr 2002       05-22-2011, 11:06 PM Reply   
I just picked up a used Miata to run Spec. For the money, nothing beats it. I would never buy a new vehicle to track.
Coilovers, wheels and race tires tomorrow! I'm running with the Porsche club at Buttonwillow on Friday!
Attached Images
Old     (bendow)      Join Date: Sep 2005       05-23-2011, 6:32 AM Reply   
Barry, that car looks like fun!

Mike, I agree with Barry. If you want a car to take out on the track and have fun with I wouldn't go for a new car...or really expensive car.

My GF had a Honda S2000 (just traded it in for a Mercedes C300..boring), and that car was sooooo much fun, very reliable too. Everytime I drove it, I felt like I was on a go-cart track with a really fast go-cart. The only thing that sucks is I'm 6' 1", and it was really cramped. Matt provided some good info on the Evo. I wanted an Evo so bad when I was younger, but being older now, I just don't like the boy racer look of the previous version. Looks aside, it's definitely a capable car on the track and will give your family's cars a run for their money.

Since you want to do autocross, I wouldn't go with any Mustang.
Old     (jeff_mn)      Join Date: Jul 2009       05-23-2011, 7:08 AM Reply   

Did anyone read the first post?

He wants to keep up with M3's, Caymans and Nismo Z cars and you are recommending GTO's and IS350's?? Really?

The only car listed that would be competitive is the IS-F.. The GTO and CTS-V wont be able to even keep you in their mirrors in the turns and the IS350 will be lost on the straights and the turns.

The EVO and STI are both quick as you found in your test drive but give the teenager appeal. If you're family are driving M3's and Caymans and you're trying to "keep up with the Jonses" you'll be in the doghouse with an Evo in the driveway..

I'd go IS-F, used aroun $40k.. The new STI is a great option. It's a bit more solid built than the Evo and has more utility with the hatch and fold down rear seats. it fits all of your criteria.
Old     (slipknot)      Join Date: Aug 2001       05-23-2011, 8:21 AM Reply   
ISF all the way no question
Old     (buffalow)      Join Date: Apr 2002       05-23-2011, 8:39 AM Reply   
I am rocking the Chrysler 300 SRT8. I have it up around 463 HP with some bolt-ons. Probably a little heavy for serious racing, but the power, handling and braking is fantastic. I have had it on sears point(Infinion) and done pretty well. I was all set to get an M series or a 7 series until I drove this thing. Rear wheel old skool power. Lots of guys are super charging them for serious power. It met my needs - Tons of Power, great handling, but DVD player big enough for me and the family. large truck for insane stereo (not great for racing) and it still looks good. When I got it the performance numbers exceed almost ever car on the market and especially in it's price range.

Good luck. I loved looking for mine. I took the salesman for the ride of his life. Doing like 60 in a full drift on a country rode. Dude came back white as a ghost which says a lot because he was from india. Once I drove it, I bought one the next day. No other car felt that way to me except the viper and that car is way to small for a guy my size and nor 4-door.
Old     (sidekicknicholas)      Join Date: Mar 2007       05-23-2011, 9:28 AM Reply   
Did anyone read the first post?
He wants to keep up with M3's, Caymans and Nismo Z cars and you are recommending GTO's and IS350's?? Really?
He said:
I don't have to be the fastest, but want to be competitive w/ the fam.
I have a daughter ... It will double as a daily driver. ...It must cost less than $40K. I need to have a reasonable payment.
I think everything listed would be COMPETITIVE - doesn't have to be the fastest... especially where the 350/GTO a little used could be purchased for 50% of the cost he listed, certainly not bad options

and the IS350 has an amazing safety rating, which my guess is most important if his daughter is in the car
Old     (jeff_mn)      Join Date: Jul 2009       05-23-2011, 10:57 AM Reply   
Originally Posted by sidekicknicholas View Post
He said:

I think everything listed would be COMPETITIVE - doesn't have to be the fastest... especially where the 350/GTO a little used could be purchased for 50% of the cost he listed, certainly not bad options

and the IS350 has an amazing safety rating, which my guess is most important if his daughter is in the car
An IS350 is not competitive in ANY area other than price with the cars listed above - especially when the SCCA bucket is added to the mix.

I like the IS350.. It's not even in the same category with those kind of cars - especially from a handling perspective. The GTO on a tight autocross course is a f'ing joke.

Great cars listed - nothing even in the realm of competing with his family in any aspect.

Saferty, 4 doors, etc etc etc - completely different argument.
Old     (flackpack)      Join Date: Feb 2004       05-23-2011, 11:01 AM Reply   
Mike - I have run in or instructed in many of the cars you have listed. I personnaly campaign a '09 CTS-V in NASA TT and some SCCA local events. I would say that the cars your family are runing are really a great bunch of cars for dual street/track running. Many people have offered the IS 350, GTO and a few others. They make nice street cars, but don't really do terriffic on a track. In your $40k limit, 4 seats and a good track car, you have already tried out two of the better cars. The RX8 handles great, but eats gas for such a small car/motor. The Mustang is full of Torque and HP, but the solid rear axel makes it tough to drive on a small tight track. The Mitsubishi is nice, but runs out of breath on a longer straight track.

I suggest - find a 3-4 year old M3 but be prepared to spend money on modifications
IS-F is okay, but the 8 speed trans is a bit of a pain on the track
a '06 - 07 CTS V with the LS2 motor is pretty good, but not a ton of parts. This car is actually very good in the corners, especially with the ground control kit and coil-overs.
a Newer Mustang GT ('10 or newer) is fine and a lot of parts are available for suspension and brakes to help out now. But it only has 2 doors.
A car you may not expect to be fast - Chevy Cobalt SS with the 2.0 Ecotec turbo motor. Cheap, VERY fast and will blow by a lot of cars that cost 2-3x as much.
The Mitsu or a WRX STi are fine, but the $4ok budget runs out really fast, and I would only buy one new if you want to depend on the car.
Old     (ilikebeaverandboats)      Join Date: Jul 2007       05-23-2011, 11:28 AM Reply   
Why not snag a new STi and call it a day? they are like 35K new... mess with the suspension a little, intake, exhaust, some tuning if you want.
Old     (shane97210)      Join Date: Jan 2007       05-23-2011, 11:50 AM Reply   
if you liked the mustang power and want to keep up have you thought about a Roush trak pak mustang. I've seen used for around 40k. it was designed for what you are looking to do
Old     (jeff_mn)      Join Date: Jul 2009       05-23-2011, 12:01 PM Reply   
Agree with Joey.

New sti for $35k, $2k in suspension, $3k in turbo back, intake and tune, call it good and "hang" with all of the cars in your list.
Old     (trio)      Join Date: Jan 2010       05-23-2011, 12:35 PM Reply   
I would consider getting a Porsche 911 (996 Model). Get a 6 speed coupe. Look for one with the X51 package. 2001-2004 You can find them all day for $40k and under. You could even get a C4S or maybe even a Turbo for around the 40k mark.

They are super fun on the track and fun to drive everyday!

The 911 has 4 seats and will fit a booster or even a car seat in the back. I know because I have a 911 Carrera S (997).

Good luck!
Old     (guido)      Join Date: Jul 2002       05-23-2011, 1:28 PM Reply   
I'll keep this as brief as I can. It sounds like you're not actually racing, but rather racing the clock. Head to head road racing is totally different. It's much more driver and suspension than horsepower. Autocrossing and Drag racing are different beasts. The Mustang GT is the current king of it's class for auto x-ing. If you want to win your class that's your car to start with. If you're looking to beat your family, then a AWD car will be king. They are by far the easiest to drive, especially for auto-x.

I think you're on the right track with the GT and Evo. The new Boss 302 just put a good whooping on the BMW M3 at Laguna Seca. They're a bit of a handful to drive, but with the right driver they can be quite formidable. Evo's are just flat easy to drive. Get one and go fast.

An older M3 or 997 Porsche are good options, but can be expensive for maintanence and mods. Both will run quite fast in the right hands. 911's are notoriously a handful. The 997 is much better than earlier cars, but they still have a tendency to let the tail lead. As far as I'm concerned a 911 is no fun for auto-x. To heavy in the rear and too hard to get turning. They're good on road tracks, though.

Miata's are the class to get into if you want competitive road racing. It's darn near pro racing with 50+ car fields as the norm around here. BMW spec e-30 class is on the come-up. I've recently built one and they run pretty well (though a fast Miata is still quicker at the track). Again, this is road racing.
Old     (ponyh8r)      Join Date: Dec 2004       05-23-2011, 3:12 PM Reply   
Thanks for all the great info. It looks like there are several cars that I am going to go look at this weekend. One is a lightly used IS-F. Looks like a nice car, and chalked full of technology.

I guess I should have been more clear, but I am not trying to "keep up with the Jonses" in terms of car status, but rather just performance. Like I said before, I also don't have to be the fastest car, just want to have fun and not be totally left behind (not literally as it will be autocross so in terms of time). As said above my wife's brother has a RX-8. It is a great autocross car, but is by no means that fastest. He bought it used for around 17K.

I have warmed up to the idea of buying a used car. The Roush trak pak car looks to be a good option. When I started this research, I didn't think there would be so many cars that would fit the bill, but the more research I do, I realize there really are many choices out there. My last sporty car was a 2002 Trans Am WS6 that I sold in 04. That car had 345 hp and was considered fast at the time. I did not realize that since then every other car on the road has 300

I really do appeciate all of the great info and all of the discussion. I am learning a ton and getting new ideas all the time. Right now, I think that the Evo or STi is still very much at the top of the list. As i discover new rides, that might change, but for now these two seem to be the cars that can throw down in a parking lot with cones, do marginally well at the strip and a car that I can live with everyday.

Last edited by ponyh8r; 05-23-2011 at 3:21 PM.
Old     (jeff_mn)      Join Date: Jul 2009       05-23-2011, 3:30 PM Reply   
My 2010 Maxima has 305hp.. LAWL

Go with an STi or an IS-F.. It will fit all your needs. I think you'll regret an Evo - their build quality is less than awesome. Good luck
Old    SamIngram            05-23-2011, 4:32 PM Reply   
Old     (brycejb328)      Join Date: Aug 2009       05-23-2011, 10:40 PM Reply   
Originally Posted by jeff_mn View Post
The EVO and STI are both quick as you found in your test drive but give the teenager appeal. If you're family are driving M3's and Caymans and you're trying to "keep up with the Jonses" you'll be in the doghouse with an Evo in the driveway..
I have nothing insightful to add.

But LOL @ being concerned what someone else thinks of the whip you have sitting in ur driveway
Old     (barry)      Join Date: Apr 2002       05-24-2011, 12:24 AM Reply   
I know you didn't ask and it's probably going to fall on deaf ears, but I would never A-X/RR a daily driver and expect long term reliability. I don't care what anyone tells you, it's very tough on the car. Things wear, get strained, loose, break and it would be a bad gig for your daughter to be stranded somewhere.
If you have 40k to spend on a dual purpose car, why not buy two cars? A reliable daily and a track car you can flog all weekend with zero worry. You could built a sick little Miata for under 10k and buy a 30k daily. You understand that your insurance will not cover track/A-X days, why risk 40K?

People laugh at the Miata, but it's generally those who have no idea what they're capable of on a track. These things are stupid fast- think go-cart. Not to mention never ending aftermarket support.
It's a win-win.
Old     (jeff_mn)      Join Date: Jul 2009       05-24-2011, 8:04 AM Reply   
Originally Posted by brycejb328 View Post
I have nothing insightful to add.

But LOL @ being concerned what someone else thinks of the whip you have sitting in ur driveway
Tough to comment when you have a 16 year old girls station wagon in the garage I suppose, huh?
Old     (wakecumberland)      Join Date: Oct 2007       05-24-2011, 10:07 AM Reply   
1996-1998 Porsche 911 Carerra S. This is the last of the air cooled Porsche's and will hold its value and whose classic styling will always look great. Obviously as a track car, the 911 should do all you ever need. If I had $40Gs burning a hole in my pocket, i wouldn't even blink on what to do. Not only does it meet your needs, it is a good investment as well compared to buying new or something less collectable.

Old     (guido)      Join Date: Jul 2002       05-24-2011, 11:28 AM Reply   
Adam.... man, those cars are hard to find. If you find one, jump on it. Probably one of the most desirable Porsche's built.

I agree with Barry, somewhat. Road course driving is hard on cars, but not the end of the world. I've put thousands of miles on my street cars on the track at full race pace. I've never once broken anything at the track (mind you, these have all been BMW's which are bomb proof track cars in my experience.... I've seen the japanese and american cars break plenty). Autocrossing, on the other hand, absolutely destroys street cars. I've repaired many a broken car from auto-x'ing. Ripped out suspension mounts, broken motor and trans mounts, broken diffs... You name it.
Old     (brycejb328)      Join Date: Aug 2009       05-24-2011, 11:32 AM Reply   
Originally Posted by jeff_mn View Post
Tough to comment when you have a 16 year old girls station wagon in the garage I suppose, huh?
Ouchie... i hope none of my neighbors think i am a 16 yr old girl based on my car.

Get a WRX... it wont look like a little teenager car unless you do some sloppy modifications to it (falling off spray painted body kit, disgustingly loud exhaust that sounds like crap, decals on the window to show all that awesome mods you've done)
Old     (dakid)      Join Date: Feb 2001       05-25-2011, 4:26 AM Reply   
how 'bout a B5 S4?
Old     (sailing216)      Join Date: Oct 2007       05-25-2011, 9:18 AM Reply   
I have a new Evo X MR for my wife. Took it to My dealer had no problem with the warranty as the car runs much smoother. Considered a STI, 335i and pontiac G8 when shopping. Evo/STI with some light mods are heck of a car, but fugly imo. Track day with the porsche club the Evo gets big respect, and carwise can hang with those others--comes down to the driver at that point.

I also have a new IS modded and it's fun but no where near an Evo or friends porsche or M3.
Old     (sailing216)      Join Date: Oct 2007       05-25-2011, 9:32 AM Reply   
"A car you may not expect to be fast - Chevy Cobalt SS with the 2.0 Ecotec turbo motor. Cheap, VERY fast and will blow by a lot of cars that cost 2-3x as much.
The Mitsu or a WRX STi are fine, but the $4ok budget runs out really fast, and I would only buy one new if you want to depend on the car. "

Great advise. Only buy a new Evo/STI. Cobalt SS is such a great sleeper car and much cheaper.
Old     (phatboypimp)      Join Date: Apr 2005       05-25-2011, 4:01 PM Reply   
C63 amg?
Old     (guido)      Join Date: Jul 2002       05-26-2011, 1:38 PM Reply   
B5 S4 understeers like a big dog. Straight plowing fields. A B7 with a modded 2.0t would get it done. You can get a S4 to handle right, but it takes some serious set-up. Coil overs right away and a lot of front camber and roll stabilization. The engine is placed in front of the front axle. Big weight distribution issues.

C63 is a tire destroyer. Haven't tracked one yet, but imagine they'd get it done.
Old     (TurboFan)      Join Date: May 2011       05-29-2011, 4:47 PM Reply   
2011 GT 5.0 can keep up with an e90/92 M3 with a very skilled driver. I have an e92 M3, even for the money I'd take it over the Mustang, and it's easier to drive fast. But skilled drivers have been able to hustle the M3 and the GT around a track within a couple tenths of one another.
Old     (ponyh8r)      Join Date: Dec 2004       06-23-2011, 7:41 PM Reply   
Sorry it took me so long to decide here. After a lot of debate, test driving and second guessing, I have finally settled on a Mustang GT 5.0. I am currently in the process of researching and figuring out what options I want.

I found what I think is a good deal on a 2012 Mustang GT 5.0. It is Grabber Blue (so far this is my favorite color). It is far from loaded having cloth seats without power adjustments. It does have power windows and locks and backup sensors. It does not have Sync either. It is a six speed and is pretty basic. The price is $28,000. To me this seems to be the best bang for the buck that I have found.

I do have several questions for those who know about these cars. The 3.73 rearend gearing is a pretty cheap option, but many of the lower priced GTs, is it worth ordering a car to get the better gears? I know I can always order the gears and have a shop put them in, but then I have to worry about the warranty claims and such. Also, how good are the stock brakes? I would love to have the Brembo brake package, but just don't know if the added cost will be worth the benifit. Again, I have not been around cars in a little while. My other thought was to order a bare bones GT with 3.73 gears and the Brembo brake package. My local dealer quoted me right at 30,000 for a car built this way. Any thoughts?

As for how I came to my conclusion to buy a Mustang over the other cars, it took a long time to weed out all of the choices. My wife and I made several long lists of pros and cons for about 5 cars that made the short list. The Mustang, the Evo, the WRX Sti, Camaro SS and the RX-8. My original list of 10 or so cars was narrowed down to these five due to several competing requirements. Again, the car had to have 4 seats. The wife insisted that we buy new, her theory was that with sports cars, you are generally buying a car that someone else beat on.

Keep in mind, I drove all of the cars on several different occasions to try to get a feel for them. I kept each one for several hours and drove them in many different conditions. The RX-8 was the first to go. Looking back, this was sort of odd in my mind, because of what I want the car for. The RX-8 seemed to be one of the better track cars, but its lack of power put it out of the race early. I guess after driving the faster cars, I just feel in love with the power that they had.

The next car to go was the Camaro SS. It was a fast car for sure, but felt heavy and was a PITA to see out of. I have owned 5 prior F-bodies in the past and have always loved Chevy, but after driving the other cars, this one just felt like a boat. It had tons of torque though and easily made me smile around town.

The WRX was the next off the list. Mainly because my wife hated the styling...especially the hatchback, which was my favorite body style. I liked it more than the sedan. It was also pricey when compared with some of the other rides. It was overall one of the better cars in terms of all around performance in both acceleration and in handling.

The last two were the first two I started with. The Evo and the 5.0. This was a tough decision but ultimatly came down to price. Because Ford offers so many different options with the 5.0, you can get one for sub $30,000 or load one up to over $40,000. All of the Evos I looked at were in the upper $30's to low $40's.

I also really loved the torque in the Mustang. There was also a few points that my wife and I noticed about the Evo that further helped sway our decision. The Evo, for the most part, seemed sterile while driving it. I am sure that when pushed hard, the car is a blast, but there is little feedback to the driver. The car is super fast and handles like its on rails, but to me it was missing some of the fun of driving. We could never put our finger on exactly what it is about it. I am not sure if it was the safety nannies or if was just that the car was so well balanced that it made it feel too safe. There was just something more fun about driving the Mustang.

At any rate, thank you to all who have helped out so far. As soon as I figure out exactly how much I want to spend on options I will either be ordering a new one or picking one up off alot somewhere. Thanks agian.
Old     (magicr)      Join Date: May 2004       06-23-2011, 8:50 PM Reply   
My first car I owned was a 65 Mustang, and I hated it, (and Fords in general). I have stayed away from Ford cars for 35 years.

With that being said, I took a 2012 Mustang GT for a test drive just for the heck of it, and holy crap, what an awesome car. Great choice, in fact if I could convince my wife that we needed one, there would be one in my garage.

Have fun!
Old     (jeff_mn)      Join Date: Jul 2009       06-24-2011, 12:59 PM Reply   
ironic user name is ironic
Old     (andy_nintzel)      Join Date: Sep 2004 Location: Minnesnowda       06-24-2011, 3:39 PM Reply   
Well I have been watching this thread devleope for the last month or so, and now that I picked up a new beauty that I have always dreamed of, I can now post. The Wife and I just nabbed this bad boy from my work. Car you believe that some one would trade this thing. I got it for a song! SO EXCITED TO take her home today.

The new Nintzel NSX! It should only take my ride home to get a ticket!
Attached Images
Old     (ponyh8r)      Join Date: Dec 2004       06-24-2011, 7:48 PM Reply   
Originally Posted by jeff_mn View Post
ironic user name is ironic
Good catch. I used to be into racing and loved the older F-body Camaros. I used this login for many of the boards that I use to visit. So, when I got into wakeboarding and joined this forum, I kept the same login so that I could remember what it was. It was actually taken from the plate number off of my 2002 WS6 which read "PONYH8R" and my 2002 Camaro SS which was "PONYHTR". I guess now I am sorta of a pony lover. LOL.


Very Jealous! That car is so beautiful. I have never been in an NSX but have only ever heard great things about them. I am sure it handles like it is literally on rails. Great buy. Let me know what your driving impressions of the car are. I would be interested to hear how it runs, rides, handles etc. If you get time, let me know what your likes and dislikes are. Great car!
Old     (ponyh8r)      Join Date: Dec 2004       06-24-2011, 7:50 PM Reply   

If you don't mind me asking, how many miles are on that thing? It looks brand new.
Old    djstasevich            06-25-2011, 5:34 AM Reply   
Ponitiac G8 GXP, nuff said!
Old     (andy_nintzel)      Join Date: Sep 2004 Location: Minnesnowda       06-25-2011, 8:37 AM Reply   

It was owned buy the same owner since its birth. Believe it or not its a 1994. The guy who traded it in, drove it primarly on a track in norrthern MN. The Odmeter just clicked past 89,000 miles last night. Obviously it has loads of Mods, the seats are insane. Once i have some more time to drive it over the weekend I will give you a whole write up on it. The one issue I have already having is getting it in my driveway with out catching the front end. The has no clearance.
Old     (sailing216)      Join Date: Oct 2007       06-29-2011, 7:55 AM Reply   
NSX I will have one day. Just the car I fell in love with as a kid. More show than go compared to todays cars, but that's ok for me. Don't want the maintenence of an Italian. Wife's EVO X MR modded up is the first choice to take to the track.

@Mike: sounds like a great choice for you. The Evo can be civil unless you take off the nannies and keep the rpms up in super sport mode. Ours is strictly my wife's car so it's good to know it's more car than she'll use. The stang gets really tail happy which can be fun, but not for an unexpecting driver. Enjoy the beast.

Just upgraded tires and wow does the car hook up with the road. Granted auto-cross tires so not good in the rain and will only get maybe 10k miles out of them being gentle. Gotta get to the track soon
Old     (rdlangston13)      Join Date: Feb 2011       06-29-2011, 3:51 PM Reply   
call factory 5. order a cobra kit car. order a crate motor from ford. win auto cross for 30k or less


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