Looking for a new car!

Hey, I’ve been looking around for a fun car to drive around on the weekends. I found a few that I liked, especially the Honda S2000, but there are just so many different cars it’s hard to know what would give me the experience I want. I figured I could post what I’m looking for on here and maybe some people would have suggestions.

I’m looking for a coupe that is fun to drive. I don’t care about top speed but I would like nice acceleration. Manual is a must, I’ve always wanted a manual car. Budget is around $50,000, I’d love to stay as far away from that number as possible but if the perfect car comes around that’s what I’d be willing to pay for it lol. New or Used

Well, the last Honda S2000s were built in 2009 so you are starting off with a 13 year old car. The engines last a long time if they’ve not been abused. Rust can be an issue and the convertible top will need replacement if it is original.

I owned one and really enjoyed the car. Acceleration was decent but I don’t know what you have as a comparison. I bought a 2007 Mustang as its replacement and it accelerates much better. My 2013 Mustang is even better. The transmission and clutch in the S2000 were wonderful. One of the best I’ve ever used. The drivers compartment is a little tight for anyone over 5’10’’ and 200+ lbs. They can be found for $30K or so but be very wary of cars with modifications. Buy the best, most original car you can find.

That said, $50K buys a LOT of Mustang or Camaro acceleration with much newer models. Any Mustang GT or Camaro V8 will pin you into the seat. Shelby Mustangs or Camaro SS or ZL1 models will provide even more.

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Driving enjoyment is such a personal thing that you might not even like what I would like. Have you ever driven a manual ? I ask because manual transmission vehicle’s will limit your choices . For a weekend vehicle I would want Corvette convertible.

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The current Miata matches up pretty well with the S2000. You might also consider a Toyota 86/Scion FRS/Subaru BRZ, or a used Cayman or Supra. If you’re after strong acceleration but still want a measure of practicality a Camaro SS or Mustang GT will do.

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Ah true, my idea of an enjoyable drive is thrill over comfortability and style tbh. And no I haven’t driven a manual and that’s really why I want a manual vehicle.

ooo okay thank you! I’ll look into all of these, I do prefer the super car look over muscle though. Like I love how the new supra looks

thoughts on the 400z?

As a comparison I have a 2015 Honda Civic Coupe, not much punch behind that one sadly. I like the idea of a Mustang or Camaro, it’s just how they look. I’m more a fan of the super car type look over the muscle look.

Amazing tips though, thank you a lot, especially the warning about modded cars, I had no idea about that.

Any opinions on the 400z? I love the look of it

I don’t love the looks of it but everything else ticks the right boxes. Careful selection of options should keep the price, as delivered, just below $50K.

Keep in mind that resale of manual transmission cars is difficult and will lower the price you get for it. Great if you buy used, but it is a hit if you buy new.

You have not driven a manual . Does that mean you don’t know how ? Someone who has never driven a manual can destroy a clutch in a very short time .

A guy bought his 16 year old daughter a very nice Fox body 5 speed Mustang because he always wanted one . She had to stop going uphill at a traffic light , killed the engine and rolled back into the vehicle behind her.

Probably going to be tough to get one for your budget. I have little doubt that for the first 6-9 months or so they’ll sell for well over sticker.

I know the mechanics of it so I’m sure I can get it with some practice.

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You need to have someone teach you how to drive and shift a manual before you ever buy a vehicle equipped that way or have some who does drive it home for you .

Just curious , how old are you ?

I second the opinion about getting a learner’s car for six months of clutch experience. A carefully driven manual by an experienced person can last 300K miles. A poorly driven manual by an inexperienced driver can fail in 6 hours.

Get an old Civic and a good teacher. I taught my daughter when she was twelve.

The car saleswoman with whom I was friendly told the tale of a young woman who bought a new stick-shift Impreza, and attempted to drive it after getting “instructions” from a friend–over the phone. :open_mouth:

She managed to burn-out the clutch in 3 days. The dealership was only too glad to take it in trade–at a sharply reduced price–when she wisely replaced it with an Impreza with automatic trans.

Turning 19 soon. I’m a big fan of doing research before I buy anything, especially something like a car. So all this is just me obtaining more information and opinions. I fully plan to have AT LEAST a few hours experience driving stick before I purchase a car with a manual transmission for myself. I have a few family members willing to assist me as well.


That means you are in the age group that pays the very highest auto insurance rates.
A “fun” car–by definition–usually means a performance car. I strongly suggest that you run a few different possible makes and models past your insurance agent to find out how much you would have to pay for coverage on some of those “performance” models.

Even though your car insurance is going to cost a LOT no matter what you choose to drive, insurance for a performance model is going to cost a whole heap more than what you would pay to insure… let’s say… a Corolla.

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Yea, that’s the sad truth. I’m in a fairly stable financial situation at the moment and this new car idea is just that, an idea. I have a home and afford all current expenses pretty comfortably. This could end up going no where, or I could come out of 2023 with a new 400z and and $1,500 less in my bank account per month. Whatever happens happens but trust me, I know this idea isn’t a cheap one.

Journalists have driven the 400z on the track and roads, from this video it seems that Nissan made needed improvements over the 370 while still focusing on the driving experience. Starts drivng around 6:00 in.
The 2023 Nissan Z Delivers on its Promise - YouTube

Around 2006 or so, a friend of mine just had to have a brand new Scion tC coupe. He insisted on having a manual transmission in it. Apparently that was such a rare bird that the car had to be shipped specially from Japan.

Anyway, he got it and loved it at first. Then over time, come to find out his wife either couldn’t or wouldn’t drive a manual transmission. That proved problematic when it was the only vehicle available for her to drive. Last I checked, friend had to sell it at a loss.

So think real long and hard about getting a brand new manual transmission car. It’s not for everyone.

You own your own home, at the age of 18?