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Texasmade

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Me and my wife are thinking of getting a used sports car just for short trips around EU. Not more than 3 hours drive to destination.

We would prefer something special that provides not just fun ride, but real experience. So we are considering 2 door coupe or convertible. Has to be fast and reliable. Max budget 55K Eur

I searched on google and so far I see Cayman and Audi R8 recommended, are there other options?
What would you recommend ?
Answer is clearly Volvo
 

am55

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Me and my wife are thinking of getting a used sports car just for short trips around EU. Not more than 3 hours drive to destination.

We would prefer something special that provides not just fun ride, but real experience. So we are considering 2 door coupe or convertible. Has to be fast and reliable. Max budget 55K Eur

I searched on google and so far I see Cayman and Audi R8 recommended, are there other options?
What would you recommend ?
Morgan plus 4 used
 

clee1982

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Take a look at the Lotus range if it's going to be a second car just for fun, lightweight, fun to drive, good owners clubs and used ones tend to be well looked after/cherished, a bit more special than anything German and cheaper to maintain
cool, but is it going to be “uncomfortable GT car”, though I suppose max 3 hours will make it bearable
 

am55

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How about more unpractical, Aerial Atom…
The plus four (2020) is supposed to be more reliable and safer than the 4/4 or +4 (last century), and they use modern engines. For 3 hour drives on European roads in summer it is perfectly practical. Plus who has not wanted a giant crate tied to the back with real leather straps.

The Atom or a Catherham might be more suitable for an afternoon. A friend just drove the latter in the south of France and quite enjoyed it.
 

am55

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I've lusted after a 4/4 ever since one of my engineering profs drove one to the department every day. Just amazing things in the flesh that keep turning your head long after you get bored of passing 458s and GT3s (peak what?).
 

Thrift Vader

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yah, Caterham would be fun. .



Ford escort mexico?
 
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am55

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Unless you lovingly restored and maintain the classic car yourself, it is certainly going to be an experience but perhaps not a positive one. Source: lived next to multiple classic car owners, know one rusting away on a relative's driveway, heard too many stories of gushes of oil blanketing alpine roads...
 

Dino944

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Me and my wife are thinking of getting a used sports car just for short trips around EU. Not more than 3 hours drive to destination.

We would prefer something special that provides not just fun ride, but real experience. So we are considering 2 door coupe or convertible. Has to be fast and reliable. Max budget 55K Eur

I searched on google and so far I see Cayman and Audi R8 recommended, are there other options?
What would you recommend ?
Don't over think it, get a Porsche Cayman or Boxster from 2009 or newer with a manual transmission - simple and reasonably inexpensive to maintain. Good looking, quick, fun to drive, comfortable, plenty of dealerships and independents for service, enough space for bags to take the Mrs for a long weekend getaway. If you like club events Porsche always has active clubs with rallies, auto cross, track days, and social events.

I've looked at and driven other cars, or know people who have owned and serviced some of the competition, and most have some significant draw backs. Pre-owned Astons - the guys I know that bought them used without an extended warranty or service plans had huge repair bills, and most dumped them in 2 years or less. At 55K Euro I'd imagine the Astons you'd consider, are probably too old to get a warranty/service plan. Also, probably limited dealerships/independents-although maybe that's less of an issue in the UK than in the US.

Lotus, Elise super fun to drive - terrible air conditioning, no space to hold bags for a weekend getaway (tiny compartment in the back will hold a nap sack, and whatever you can fit around your passenger), getting in an out with the top on - you better take up yoga - I'm not very tall but the low roof and very wide sill (plus inability to hold the steering wheel to help get in or you may bend/ damage part of the steering system) - resulted in my pulling muscles in my neck on the 2 occasions I drove one...and I was only 35 years old when I drove them. Again limited number of dealerships and independents for service - at least in the US. Even their optional hardtop has a disclaimer saying that having the top in place does not guarantee the cabin will remain free of water, which could limit use of the car. Also avoid early Evoras...low build quality, and the engineering just isn't there...if you get one definitely get an extended warranty. A friend had one and one of his turn signal burned out - you can't just replace the bulb- it was $4,500 to fix it because the turn signal is part of the headlight assembly and the entire assembly including xenon headlight has to be replaced. He also had to have the transmission replaced at about 40,000 miles....thankfully his extended warranty covered that and the "Turn signal replacement." He eventually traded it towards a BMW.

Alfa 4C trying to be an Elise but it isn't, and it's not as well built as a Boxster/Cayman.

The MR2 @Thrift Vader mentioned isn't particularly attractive, or special, but it would be affordable to maintain, and you'd have enough space for bags for weekend getaways.
 
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