Why does anyone buy a high-performance car?

I can finally afford a fancy new car. I’ve read reviews and talked to car enthusiasts, but I’m confused. Why would anyone pay big bucks for a powerful engine when you can only legally drive 65mph? Even if you speed, you can’t go over 90mph for very long. So people pay a lot of money for a V8 they’ll never use! What’s the point?

Sometimes, it’s about how quickly you go from 0 MPH to 80 MPH. Better performing cars also tend to have better brakes and better handling. This gives you a better chance at avoiding accidents.

Consider yourself lucky if they don’t interest you. There’s little logic, but for those who like them, it’s great fun!

What’s important to you is what matters. What characteristics do you want in a car?

p.s. - this is no different than why some folks like expensive wine, cigars, paintings, etc. No need to apply logic.

Some people (myself included) view cars as more than just appliances. Others just see cars a way to get from point A to point B. Me thinks the OP falls into the latter. Your Camary is waiting for you.

Simply because they can. What other reason does one need?

What use to be “high performance” years ago, is the acceptable norm today.
0 to 60 under ten seconds in cars of the 50’s and 60’s was all it took to get the blood boiling. For some of we older folk, that’s still all it takes.
In 20 years, the norm for 0-60 (not km) will be in the <7 sec range. Electrics will see to that.

Why did I spend $1500.00 for my bass guitar instead of the $400.00 for the one in the catalog ?
For the right owner the difference is absolutely justafiable. Explore the possibilities and decide for yourself. For myself, I dont think I need a high-performance car, but the bass guitar I REALLY want is $6000.00 ! ( but, after 30 years, I’m not playing every weekend anymore. )

It’s not about maximum speed. (Practically any car sold today will do 90.) More power means you can keep up the speed you want on steep hills, you can safely merge into that one open spot on a busy freeway, or you can get past a tractor-trailer in the only passing zone for the next ten miles. You may not regularly encounter these conditions, but I definitely do.

And it’s just more fun, for those of us who enjoy driving!

I got a 69 Torino Cobra Jet with a 428 CI engine for $475, which was justifiable in 1975. A 1968 GTO for $400 in 1980. Today the prices for new ones don’t interest me, and the price for parts is terrible.

Here’s a question for you - why ‘waste’ money on a ‘fancy new car’? An Accord or Camry with a v6 and leather interior would work just as well, and lack no needed options…

Now you are talking practical and sensible. That is not how we do things with cars in this country.

A large engine does not always inherently use more fuel. Fuel mileage is more a function of wind and rolling resistance, gear ratio and driving technique.

My brother has a 1969 Buick Gran Sport Stage I that he bought in 1970 and a 1960 Corvette that he restored with the correct engine. These cars,for me, are fun to drive. My son drives a 1995 Ford Mustang V-8–dual exhausts and a 5 speed transmission. His wife brought the car into the marriage and is unable to drive the car due to a severe back problem. My son regards any vehicle as strictly transportation, so the qualities of the Mustang are lost on him. I’ve enjoyed driving these cars and my son’s wife is hoping that after her surgery and recovery this week she can again drive the Mustang. I own a 1978 Oldsmobile 4-4-2. In 1978, the 4-4-2 was just a trim and handling package–the engine is only a 260 cubic inch V-8 and the transmission is an automatic–but for me, the car is still fun to drive.

When you can afford it, a car should be fun.

I have an ongoing debate with a coworker who drives a Volvo. She says she worries about me commuting on a motorcycle. My response is to ask, “When is the last time you got to work, or got home in the evening, and discovered you had a smile on your face because your commute was fun?”

It is just a difference in outlook.

How old are you, projectshave? It sounds like you have not experienced your midlife crisis yet.

i could ask the opposite question.why on earth would anyone want a bland,unexciting,appliance of a vehicle to buzz around in?i’ve only ever bought performance cars because they’re interesting,fun,a blast to rip around on back roads,and they’re NOT just the same old thing that everybody else has.just like that old saying…life is too short for cheap beer(or boring cars)

While I agree with all the replies given on the reasons for having high-perf cars, I wonder how much smaller that market would be if the car companies weren’t so good at marketing them.

Your exactly right, my 15 year old Camry is finally falling apart.

Before I buy yet another Camry (which is very likely), I want to know if I’m missing out by not getting a BMW 3 series. I enjoy driving fast when I can, but I’m too worried about speeding tickets to ever go above 90mph.

Agreed. I think status and sex appeal are a big reason for the appeal of these cars.

Buying more car than you need isn’t just about exceeding the speed limit. It is about getting to cruising speed fast enough to make your body feel it and start the adrenaline flowing. It is also about taking it on a private track to see what 110 MPH feels like. I regularly see many people driving high performance cars at a reasonable speed on public roads.

A BMW will cost more to drive, maintain, and repair. So it all depends on how tightly you clinch your pennies. Have you test-driven a BMW yet? Does it excite you or do you find the experience just as engaging as driving a Camry? Only you know for sure what motivates you when it comes to cars.

The reason I buy boring cars is because I can’t (legally) drive very fast anyway. I spend most of my time stalled in traffic. I live in NYC.