How to drive fast while sparing the planet?
June 7, 2007 3:02 AM Subscribe
Hypothetical-sensible-dream-car-boyzone-filter: After a long phase of big-city living, I may have to drive a lot. I don't want to be a total pig about fuel consumption or emissions. But I want serious performance. Let's say I have $25K . . . .
posted by spitbull to Travel & Transportation (53 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
So, let's say you were an old (as in 40-something) gearhead who hasn't owned a car (or shopped for one) in 10 years, because you live in a major metropolitan area where a car is only a pain in the ass. But let's say you faced the prospect of relocating to a place where the driving is not only easy, but fun (mountains!).
And let's say your heart belongs to products of the Chrysler Corporation ca. 1968-1972, the glory years of the 318ci small block V8, which kicked up an enormous amount of dust very, very quickly when seated under the hood of a (he wells up) 71 Plymouth Sebring you loved like a bride once upon a time (not that you'd kick a Charger out of bed either. Or a suitably juiced Duster, even).
Sigh. But suppose further that you were a sensible person, and not the sort to want to get 14 miles per gallon and spewing a superbly noxious cloud while the sea swallows up the coasts. And even though you liked working on cars, you didn't want to spend *every* weekend under the hood. Safety ain't a bad thing either, I guess, though it's not a top priority.
And let's say you could drop something around the mid-20s, which is to say, not that much for these days. Something used -- up to 4 or 5 years old -- would work fine (I'd prefer it, actually, especially if I can work on it). Availability of manual gearbox a must. FWD is fine (once I would have laughed at that), or AWD if the mileage is OK. Otherwise I am open to suggestions. Power, handling, road-feel, and general hotness, in that order, are my priorities, but I won't accept less than 25mpg average fuel economy, and would like to do better. Small is fine, too.
What Would Burt Reynolds Do? Would he drive a Subaru WRXsti (one that caught my eye, I like their looks ca. 2002-4)? A similar pocket rocket with character is probably the right category.
Gentlemen (and Lady Speedsters), start your engines, rev up your biases, and let the arguments fly.