What is the Coolest Car for under $15K US?

Post your favorite cheap car here and include pics if possible. I think:


IMHO you should look for used cars.



If cool is a sports car to you, you should be able to get a decent mid-80s 944 or early 80s 928 Porsche. Remember though, the more exotic you go the more its going to cost to maintain.

You could possibly also get a early 90s 300ZX…preferebly a turbo.

If you want something more practical, I love my Cherokee :slight_smile:

Regardless, if you go the used route I highly recommend a professional inspection if you do not have much of an automotive background.
What is a new/newer Civic going for nowadays? They’re a damn good car.

People seem to like those new Focus’s (Focci?) from Ford. I think they have a “Jetta-ish” look that some people find attractive.

The new Neons are pretty good too, but they have a lousy 3spd automatic if you go away from the manual.

Just a few toughts…

For under $15, I recommend the 1984 Honda Civic my friend just sold to the junkyard. The floorboards were rusting out, and it didn’t start any more, but otherwise, it was a great car.

If you’re willing to go as high as $100, I’d recommend the 1986 Dodge Lancer I just traded to the dealership. The flywheel was missing teeth, so to start it you had to put it in fifth gear and push it until you found a spot with some teeth left. Gas-rich exhaust was leaking into the passenger compartment (probably because the floor was rusting out). On the way to the dealership to trade it in, the timing belt broke. Considering the fact that the Saturn dealer towed it for me, I really got more than $100 for it. (It may have been pity.) :slight_smile:

Since this is a question of opinion, and not of fact, it really belongs in our “In My Humble Opinion” forum, not here in General Questions. I’ll move it over there later this evening, as soon as the server starts moving a little faster than its current snail’s pace.

I shall pick… the Mclaren F1 with 15 $1,000 bills on the roof. Sorry, couldn’t resist.

The Mazda RX-7, Toyota Supra Twin Turbo, and Nissan 300ZX are all relatively new cars that go very fast and look exotic. If I had $15,000 to spend, I’d probably pick up one of those three.

If I had to buy a new car for $15,000, I’d probably go with the Ford Focus. The US doesn’t have very many exciting small cars. There are plenty of European and Japanese cars not sold in the US that are cheap, sporty, and fun.

FWIW, I drive a Toyota MR2 Supercharged right now. It’d probably be my choice for the coolest car under about $7500.

i think you can get a base mustang for not much over that if you shop around. edmunds says invoice is $15,730.
get the stick and it will be a fun car even with the 6banger.

Luckie, you are da man! (or woman. What are you?)
While the others are recommending wimp mobiles like the Focus, Neon, or used cars, you say Mustang. Now that’s the by far the coolest:cool: car under 15K!!

That’s right,UNDER15K. I saw a brand new one advirtised for **$14,888[b/]!!:slight_smile: They come with a/c, power everything (steering,brakes,locks,windows)and CD player…all STANDARD! I’ve owned 2 Mustangs in my life, and intend to own another, possibly a 2002 in the fall.
Okay Mod, this GQ has been answered! The coolest car for under 15k is the Ford Mustang!

I have to chime in on this one. I’m just sad I got to it so late. How can you pick a Mustang with a itty bitty 6 cylinder engine? My 91 Grand Am w/ a 4 cylinder whooped the pants off of one of those in an out and out race. Although I also beat a Corvette with it also but who is counting :smiley: For real come on pick something decent. Actually I’m just joshin’ around with ya here. If that is your pick go for it man although I’d go with a Neon…

I paid $1700 for my MR2. For $15,000, you could get approximately nine of them. Then you wouldn’t just have a sports car, you’d have a sports car league!

Chronos must have overlooked this one, contrary to his earlier promise. I’ll be a good sport and help a colleague out. Off to IMHO it is!

You can get a nicely-loaded recent-year Mustang for under 15 grand. Probably a '99, convertible, if you find the right dealer.

Although I’m not a Mustang person… my best friend has a '99 convertible, and I barely fit in it. Even though it’s more of a “family car”, I like Ford’s Taurus. It’s one of the few cars that a large bloke like me actually fits into. And a '99, or even a '00, will go for around $15K.

You can get a Honda Civic DX for around $15,000. Damn reliable cars, I have a 10 year old one with 185,000 miles on it that’s been through all kinds of abuse, still runs like a charm. Back when it was new, it was quite a bit less than $15,000 - of course, the '92 model had something like 90 HP, the '01 DX has 112. I liked it so much that when I got my first new car it was a Civic - but the EX, which has the sunroof, power windows, and a 127 HP engine.

The 2001 Mazda Protege has an MSRP of $14,525. The reviews of this car have been phenomenal. It makes 130 hp and 135 ft-lbs. of torque from the 2.0L 4 cyl. engine.

I have a 1994 Protege LX. It won’t beat a Z28 or a Porsche, but it’s a damn quick car. I have a 5 speed so, I can’t speak for the automatic. It has been a VERY reliable car as well. All I’ve had to do is replace the clutch and change the oil (and of course change tires and brakes) and I’ve got over 125,000 miles.

The styling of these cars is really great. They look like they’d cost much more. It has the most interior space of any car in its class.

If I were buying a new car and was wanting to spend less than $15K that’s what I’d buy. My $0.02.

Mild clarification, that’s the 2001 Mazda Protege ES.

No offense, but if you are going to go new I would rather shy away from most N.A cars. Their value just goes to crap way to fast. Never buy a new car as an investment, but the Mustang is not a -good buy- and hasn’t gotten the best reviews…the Neons don’t hold their value either but they are a decent, solid little car, as does the Focus.

If you insist on “New” car, I would really seriously consider a Honda Civic or as also mentioned the Mazda is good too.

Bang for the buck though, no doubt get something a few years old. Let someone else swallow the depreciation.

bladeohlsson First, welcome to the boards. Second, I’ve got your back on the VW choice. If you are:
a) A german engineering car enthusiast
b) Have good taste in cars (which you obviously do)
c) Like to drive a new car but don’t want to break the bank to do it
d) Want to look like you could afford a more expensive car but want to show off your chic and frugal side.

The VW Golf is deffinately the car to buy/own/drive.

But for heaven sake, please keep us german engineering car enthusiasts in mind and take good care of that VeeDub of yours. Keep it clean, and mechanically sound. There is nothing sadder than an abused and neglected VW. Even the older ones deserve respect and attention.

You can find a Saturn for less than that, if not right around. I paid $10,000 for my '97 coupe, I think the new ones went for about $15 grand. They’re built good, run for a while, and look cute. Hey, works for me!

VWs are overpriced.