Eh, personally I've never been a huge fan of the miata. As far as pocket rockets go, I can name a few well priced cars you may want to look into as cars are my real passion, flashlights being secondary.
1. 2003 Ford Focus SVT
$10,000 - 13,000 Used
2. 2004/5 Nissan Sentra SER SPEC-V
$10,000 - 15,000 Used
3. Volkswagen GLI
$20,000 - 30,000
4. 1998 Nissan 240SX (rear wheel drive!)
$8,000 - 10,000
5. Subaru Impreza WRX
$12,000 - 20,000
6. Acura RSX-S
$18,000 - 25,000
7. Toyota Celica-S
$19,000 - 26,000
As far as brakes go, Volkswagen is by far one of the leaders. I owned a Jetta a couple years back and it was a standard 2 litre piece of crap slow car, but the brakes were incredible!!!!
I have driven every one of the cars I specified above but I would have to say that the Ford Focus SVT gives you everything you could ever want at a great price, including two tone leather, 17/18 inch alloys, rear disk brakes, center differential slip deal great for twisties, 2.0 litre 175 HP naturally aspirated high revving engine with a 6 speed manual transmission. Best of all, the blue color the car comes in is beautiful. I almost bought this car but I decided to go for the 2004 Ford Focus ZX3 with the california "green engine" which is a 2.3 litre 4 cylindar engine pumping out about 155 HP + exhaust and intake and short shifter I have about 165-170 HP and even more torque. I have kept up with SVTs, but I do not think I could smoke one. Anyways highly recommended! Out of all of them though, the Subaru Impreza WRX is the quickest with a 0-60 MPH time of about 5.6 seconds and best of all...ALL WHEEL DRIVE!!! If you want an experience going through the backwoods and twisty turns with no wheel slip the Subaru is amazing. Real quick!
I mentioned to the others that my mind was drifting off in this direction...
I got [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/rolleyes.gif[/img] and that's about all.
I still want to talk about it. The badest a$$ car I ever drove was a V12 BMW 850. We only moved cars from the dock to a make ready/ship facility about 2 miles away. There was a new 3 series body style at the time, and a few old style convertibles. All had killer brakes, most MOVED when pedalled!
We had Stealths and other Mitsubishi stuff too.
And even Yugos [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/knight.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/sick2.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/thumbsdown.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/jpshakehead.gif[/img]
I think it was about 88 or 89...
I quite imagine 10K or more is WAY WAY out of my price range. I need a truck replacement pretty soon ya know!
If such a thing as a clean late 80's Integra exists, it's far more likely to come into my life!
Who has or has had one or more of the cars spoken of so far?
I just bought a Dodge SRT-4 two weeks ago. This thing is pretty quick. At first I wanted to stick with a Toyota so I started looking for a Toyota Corolla XRS. They were too hard to find with the options I wanted so I went and got a Dodge SRT-4. So far I believe I made the better choice. Quality and reliability from other manufacturers have gotten better so I hope my pick on this Dodge is a good one since I'm straying from Toyota this time.
Earlier in the day a ~1966 Chevelle SS 396 flew by me. I tailed it all the way to a light. The driver saw me behind him and floored it when the light turned green. Although he tried, he did not even manage to lose me. This SRT-4 is nice. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img] [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/happy14.gif[/img]