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Jerry
Jerry PowerDork
1/14/21 12:39 p.m.

Early March will be 7 years and about 71k miles of a whole lot of fun. Autocross, track days, multiple visits to the Tail of the Dragon...

But I'm not getting any younger at 53 and I feel like there's more to drive while I'm healthy enough to do it. I'm one bad knee away from autotragic appliances forever. (Although the Crosstrek is still ok by me.)

But what? I think a turbo MK2 MR2 would be fun, enjoyed the previous ones. Late model STI hatch? Maybe an ND Miata, I like the RF models. I  think Audi RS3 is out of range but those articles comparing to Group B rally cars spoke to me.

Alfa 4C probably still out of reach and unsure of maintenance. My peak interest would be a Lotus Elise or Exige, I keep seeing them on BAT and Wirewheel like hmmmmm.

Guess I need to start following BAT and Autotrader more frequently. And likely sell the Abarth in the spring so if I find something I'm ready.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
¯\_(ツ)_/¯ PowerDork
1/14/21 12:43 p.m.

This is skewed by my own personal interests, but... Elise/Exige is the only thing you mentioned there that seems truly special and is most likely never getting cheaper.

Jesse Ransom (FFS)
Jesse Ransom (FFS) UltimaDork
1/14/21 12:49 p.m.

Yeah, the Lotus seems the most deeply special... I wonder whether Elise forum classifieds or something like that might be a good addition to the BaT/AT routes. And I guess the more obvious addition along the same lines would be Cars and Bids?

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
1/14/21 12:50 p.m.

Boxster or even better, Boxster S will never get cheaper. 

dps214
dps214 HalfDork
1/14/21 12:52 p.m.

The answer is always porsche. I'd reccomend something as new/special as you can manage (but prioritizing special over new in most cases), but there's really very few bad choices, just "good" and "better". Elise/exige would be an interesting choice too, it's one of the only things I can really see moving to if I ever get bored of the cayman. Not sure how compatible that is with bad knees/getting older, but it would be cool for at least a few years and probably an okay investment.

Lugnut
Lugnut Dork
1/14/21 1:19 p.m.

I can't get in and out of Exige/Elise very easily, and once I'm in, the windshield header is exactly in my sight-line. Try a Boxster or Cayman. I love them.

If you love your Abarth (I loved mine) and want something between that and something like an RS3, give a Mk6 Golf R a shot. I adore mine.

mr2s2000elise
mr2s2000elise UltraDork
1/14/21 1:33 p.m.

I have an Elise (since new) and 95 MR2 Turbo also since new. 
 

depends on what you want. The SW20 is the better GT car, I love the glass roof and how comfortable it is 

 

although, I have driven plenty of 18 hour days in my Elise, the Mr2 is more the GT car in my fleet.

the Elise is more pure and raw no doubt. After purchasing the Elise my s2000 has never gotten driven. Literally made that car useless 
 

if local - feel free to check mine out in person. On BAT both of mine are of similar value today 

 

only two things I would replace either of these two with are a yellow 2004 nsx or a k20SC Ariel atom 

 

good luck 

maschinenbau (I live here)
maschinenbau (I live here) UltraDork
1/14/21 1:56 p.m.

4C on BaT ends tomorrow...under 40k right now.

https://bringatrailer.com/listing/2016-alfa-romeo-4c-spider/

Jerry
Jerry PowerDork
1/14/21 2:05 p.m.

In reply to mr2s2000elise :

I really really (really) wish you were local. The Lotus is actually my top choice, but I have yet to even sit in one, let alone drive one. I'm afraid to chase the dream and find out I hate the seating arrangement or how the controls are laid out.

pres589 (djronnebaum)
pres589 (djronnebaum) PowerDork
1/14/21 2:22 p.m.

These threads are kind of hard for me to get too serious about because it's so hard to read the mind of the thread owner.  There's not much for requirements or restrictions in the first post of the thread; budget?  age?  project vs. ready to roll?  What are some of the things you like or don't about some of the cars you've owned in the past?  

I could write a silly suggestion here as I sometimes do but I thought it would be better to try and be more helpful this time around; maybe you caught me in a good mood. 

captainawesome
captainawesome HalfDork
1/14/21 2:55 p.m.

I'm in for more Lotus info. Me and the wife are looking at getting a more exotic car for road rallies and around town tomfoolery in the next couple years. Probably track rat duty as well. Anyway the Elise/Exige/Evora are on the short list. I've also considered a Cayman S or similar but something about the Lotus is more appealing.

maschinenbau (I live here)
maschinenbau (I live here) UltraDork
1/14/21 3:16 p.m.

I'm extremely interested in the Evora, FWIW. I'm in a similar boat, looking to replace daily with something more fun, and want to experience a seriously amazing car for once in my life instead of boring DD and projects that need endless attention. 

I've seen some early Evora 2+2's (non-supercharged) listed for less than 50k in the past few months. Sure, not nearly as fast ast he 400hp ones, but I think an Evora with a N/A Toyota V6 has got to be reliable enough for daily commute use, and still plenty fun to boot.

dps214
dps214 HalfDork
1/14/21 3:24 p.m.

Cayman/boxster is basically the lotus for adults (that's not as much of an insult as it sounds like, I promise). Not as tiny, light, or raw, but same basic concept with a real interior and pretty much anyone can fit in one. If you're ever on the north side of columbus stop by auto assets, they usually have at least one or two boxster/caymans on the lot (during the summer months anyway, not so much in the winter) and are usually pretty generous with test drives. When I was cayman shopping I drove one and poked around the interior of I think three others trying to figure out if i would fit comfortably and how the 981 models compared to the 987s.

spacecadet (Forum Supporter)
spacecadet (Forum Supporter) UltraDork
1/14/21 4:04 p.m.
Jerry said:I'm one bad knee away from autotragic appliances forever.

 

Alfa 4C probably still out of reach and unsure of maintenance.

I laughed pretty hard at the first statement followed by the mention of an Alfa 4C. I've driven one on the street and autocrossed one.

they're.... interesting? but not what i would call truly great and there are a bunch of automatic performance cars with DSG's and ZF's for when your left knee does die that drive awesome.

But I would just write off the 4C now since the transmission in it is a load of blech...

But if you want mid engine and lightweight, it's as good a time as ever to go buy an elise.

as everyone said, they're not getting cheaper and they're not going to get any easier for you to get into than they are today..



 

Datsun310Guy
Datsun310Guy MegaDork
1/14/21 4:10 p.m.
fatallightning
fatallightning Reader
1/14/21 4:31 p.m.

I loved my Elise, at the time I cross shopped with S2000s (8 years ago). I wanted the more radical choice, thinking if it was too much, I could always get something less gnarly. Barring getting in and out, it's not that uncomfortable IMO. The seats do seem to disagree with some body shapes though. I also have an SW20 with a gen 2 JDM swap. Also a fun car, but definitely not in the same light, and tossable feel. I also had the early rear geometry on mine, which meant I was always in fear of lift snap oversteering to my doom. Only did it once though! Eliges are much more forgiving, let off the gas and the nose will tuck, but not in a violent way. Look on LotusTalk for classifieds. 30k will buy you a good 2005 driver. I sadly borked my Elise in the mountains. I replaced it with a Birkin S3 Seven, and that indeed was a step too extreme. Not giving up on it yet!

irish44j (Forum Supporter)
irish44j (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
1/14/21 4:40 p.m.
dps214 said:

The answer is always porsche. I'd reccomend something as new/special as you can manage (but prioritizing special over new in most cases), but there's really very few bad choices, just "good" and "better". Elise/exige would be an interesting choice too, it's one of the only things I can really see moving to if I ever get bored of the cayman. Not sure how compatible that is with bad knees/getting older, but it would be cool for at least a few years and probably an okay investment.

I'll second this. I'm 45 and through all my cars (hot hatches, tuned WRXs, old british sportscars), my Porsche (924S) is by far my favorite driver. It's not terribly fast or very modern, but there's just something about it that makes me love driving it. And it's comfortable enough to commute in if I wanted to. If I had the cash, I'd love to pick up a Cayman S, but the older transaxle Porsches are really great cars in almost every respect (other than the lame "it's not a 911" pique). 

I have a buddy with an Exige, and while it's a blast to drive, it is not even remotely comfortable on anything other than smooth roads. 

jfryjfry (FS)
jfryjfry (FS) Dork
1/14/21 4:41 p.m.

I'm not much younger than you, Jerry, and I went through a decision where I wanted something cool, but that was also very very fast around a road course.  I considered caymans and elises but ultimately wanted power and went with a c6 z06.  It doesn't have the exotic foreign name but I feel like I'm driving a super car and most of the cars that I can't pass are pretty much track-only ...not comfortable daily drivers like mine. 
 

the zr1 has more prestige and more power....

 

the worst part is the stigma.  And maybe you want more of a smaller, autocross standout but maybe worth a quick look?

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
1/14/21 4:47 p.m.
Jerry said:

In reply to mr2s2000elise :

I really really (really) wish you were local. The Lotus is actually my top choice, but I have yet to even sit in one, let alone drive one. I'm afraid to chase the dream and find out I hate the seating arrangement or how the controls are laid out.

Does Draco still own his Elise?  I dimly recall him mentioning having an Elise for autocross.

Wally (Forum Supporter)
Wally (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
1/14/21 4:51 p.m.

Have you considered trading the fiat for a slightly abused Buick? Seriously though the lotus is really tempting. As toys go it seems like a lot of fun and they're likely just going to get more expensive from here. 

fatallightning
fatallightning Reader
1/14/21 4:57 p.m.
jfryjfry (FS) said:

I'm not much younger than you, Jerry, and I went through a decision where I wanted something cool, but that was also very very fast around a road course.  I considered caymans and elises but ultimately wanted power and went with a c6 z06.  It doesn't have the exotic foreign name but I feel like I'm driving a super car and most of the cars that I can't pass are pretty much track-only ...not comfortable daily drivers like mine. 
 

the zr1 has more prestige and more power....

 

the worst part is the stigma.  And maybe you want more of a smaller, autocross standout but maybe worth a quick look?

I had a C5 with h/c/i etc too. Definitely a faster car, not a more fun car. For me anyway. C6Z obviously a different class. Maybe a Gen 3 Viper if you're looking in the 40k range?

Tom1200
Tom1200 SuperDork
1/14/21 5:22 p.m.

Keeping in mind all of my experiences with these cars are track only:

The Elise  is indeed great fun. You do have to climb in and out of it, since you said you want to drive somethings while your young enough to enjoy them I'd say now is the time. It would be my pick fro a fun chuckable car. Drive it for a few years and sell it on if it starts to be to much of a hassle to get in and out of.

The Cayman is one of my favorite cars; it's just so nicely balanced while still being comfortable. I've driven both the S and the standard model and both of them are fun. I'd by the best Cayman I could afford whether it was an S or not.

Corvettes are amazingly capable, for me they are just to big but they are bargains given the level of performance.

preach (fs)
preach (fs) Reader
1/14/21 5:31 p.m.

Boxter S or Cayman S

Pete Gossett (Forum Supporter)
Pete Gossett (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
1/14/21 5:37 p.m.

In reply to Jerry :

If you've ever been in a C4 Vette, the Elise ingress/egress is comparable. I've noticed that prices on the Elise have seem to be pretty steady over the last year or so, which surprised me. 

codrus (Forum Supporter)
codrus (Forum Supporter) UberDork
1/14/21 5:43 p.m.
John Welsh said:

Boxster or even better, Boxster S will never get cheaper. 

I think the only cars mentioned that ARE getting cheaper are the ND and the RS3.  RS3 is cool, but it's a dual clutch and still being made.

Other random thoughts:  FD RX7, E46 M3, S2000.

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