No Time
No Time Dork
8/14/20 2:02 p.m.

Disclaimer - I have no immediate plans to put any of this information to use, but looking towards next spring or summer it will give me some ideas of what to keep an out for. 
 

Problem statement:

Looking for ideas for vehicles that could potentially be used for auto cross, rally cross, or drifting. 

While I am looking to explore trying rallycross and auto cross, my son is certain he wants to learn to drift, especially after recent ride-alongs.

What vehicles could potentially be set up to do all three? And are budget friendly for consumables?

Obviously not at the same time, but maybe easily switch between setups?

Like i said, just a thought exercise. Initial exploration will be using my Elantra or his sx4, but neither one can be used to tryout drifting.

The options I came up with are:

Miata, Mustangs, Cramits, BMW 3-Series, older vetted, Thunderbird (TC or SC), mini truck (maybe?)

What did I miss that I should eventually watch for?

 

 

Mr_Asa
Mr_Asa Dork
8/14/20 2:12 p.m.

For a kid's first enthusiast vehicle, I think I'd look at the mini-truck.  

Placemotorsports
Placemotorsports GRM+ Memberand Reader
8/14/20 2:14 p.m.

The answer is usually Miata

dps214
dps214 HalfDork
8/14/20 2:19 p.m.

I'm not one to recommend miatas to people, but for that set of requirements it is probably the best choice. Honestly the setup could probably be the same for all three activities aside from tires and hardtop.

trigun7469
trigun7469 SuperDork
8/14/20 2:21 p.m.

E36 BMW or Nissan 350Z?

No Time
No Time Dork
8/14/20 2:22 p.m.

In reply to trigun7469 :

Those seemed to be the most popular at the drifting event we went to last weekend. 

captdownshift (Forum Supporter)
captdownshift (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
8/14/20 2:25 p.m.

What's your budget? 

A frisbee twin, rx7, 318ti, second gen supra, 240 Volvo or Nissan, Lexus IS, starion are you other than Miata answers

No Time
No Time Dork
8/14/20 2:25 p.m.

In reply to dps214 :

That's what I'd be hoping for, at least at the novice level. I'm sure as you go up in the ranks the setup becomes more specialized, but that's a future problem. 

No Time
No Time Dork
8/14/20 2:30 p.m.

In reply to captdownshift (Forum Supporter) :

Thinking challenge budget or lower to start. 

Looking long term so a roller might be a good starting point. 

Sweat equity is a good thing for him. It will help reinforce the need for mechanical empathy. 

dps214
dps214 HalfDork
8/14/20 2:30 p.m.

Might be worth looking into 350Zs as well. Seem to be popular among drifters, I assume the drivetrain is a bit more robust. I imagine they'd pretty much have to be more fun to autocross though they're not really classed decently these days. Seem to be decent at rallycross. More modern chassis and actual crash structures can't hurt. Don't know enough about them to know how much the setup would have to change between activities.

parker
parker Reader
8/14/20 2:42 p.m.

240sx if you can find one in your budget.  The best answer is an 86 but don't think you can get one for challenge money.  A mini-truck will suck at all those things.

captdownshift (Forum Supporter)
captdownshift (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
8/14/20 2:48 p.m.

Also, will this vehicle be his daily driver? If so consumables, stoutness, parts availability and ease of working on it become paramount to performance. Then it becomes Miata and P71, with him learning to do a manual swap on the P71 if he wants more engagement. The availability of cheap wheels will want to be taken into consideration as well, as you'll be looking at 4-6 sets of wheels and tires for all the activities if also daily driving. 

No Time
No Time Dork
8/14/20 3:23 p.m.

We have a Suzuki SX4 as his daily, so that may open up possibilities. 

The info from this thread will be used to start putting together a watch list for FB/CL in the spring for potential candidates, and give him some savings goals to work towards. 

Mr_Asa
Mr_Asa Dork
8/14/20 3:24 p.m.

In reply to captdownshift (Forum Supporter) :

Crown Vic may indeed be a good choice.  I still think a mini truck would be the easiest to find cheap offroad as well as onroad performance stuff though.

parker
parker Reader
8/14/20 4:09 p.m.
Mr_Asa said:

In reply to captdownshift (Forum Supporter) :

Crown Vic may indeed be a good choice.  I still think a mini truck would be the easiest to find cheap offroad as well as onroad performance stuff though.

I guess a mini truck would make him appreciate any fun car that much more in the future.

dps214
dps214 HalfDork
8/14/20 4:16 p.m.
parker said:
Mr_Asa said:

In reply to captdownshift (Forum Supporter) :

Crown Vic may indeed be a good choice.  I still think a mini truck would be the easiest to find cheap offroad as well as onroad performance stuff though.

I guess a mini truck would make him appreciate any fun car that much more in the future.

There might be an abundance of cheap parts, but you'd need to throw the entire catalog at it just to maybe keep up with a stock miata. And that's coming from someone that's not really a miata fan these days.

GTwannaB
GTwannaB GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
8/14/20 9:00 p.m.

Old Celica circa 83-85. I don't get P71s. They will always be taxis to me. 

captdownshift (Forum Supporter)
captdownshift (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
8/15/20 9:02 a.m.

I'm also not familiar with the AWD set-up on the sx4, is there a way to trick it electronically or disconnect something (even a front axle shaft) to make it RWD? 

No Time
No Time Dork
8/15/20 1:48 p.m.

In reply to captdownshift (Forum Supporter) :

The SX4 is primarily fwd, and uses an electronic clutch to engage the rear wheels. I don't think it would hold up to a lot of abuse if forced into a RWD only mode. 

Since Im not in a rush, and just looking for ideas, I can watch for the right vehicle at right price. 

Even if it's a major project, the Suzuki could be tweaked to be a reliable auto/rally cross to let him get his feet wet while working on a longer project. There is some aftermarket for suspension to allow incremental upgrades. 

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