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Top 10 Best Practical Sports Cars Under $30,000 – TopSpeed

by Nov 7, 2022Blog0 comments

Here’s a list of 10 cars that can do anything thrown at them!
Everybody who loves cars wants something fun and interesting to drive, the fact of the matter is that most of us don’t have an unlimited budget for cars and we also have a life outside of our love for the automobile. Here we are going to discuss 10 affordable do-everything sports cars.
Whenever you think of a sports car from Porsche, your mind most likely goes to a 911, and most definitely not a large five-passenger SUV. While it may not have the lightweight feel of a 911 or Cayman, it most definitely has the performance of one. With a 0-60 time of under six seconds and a top speed approaching 160 mph, this car means business. This car also has the off-road capability that rivals a stock Jeep Wrangler Sahara, and it can tear up a racetrack. Good luck finding a car that can do both for under $30,000. Even more appetizing is the fact that the '08-10 Cayenne GTS models came with a six-speed manual in addition to a six-speed automatic; although good luck finding a six-speed manual in that price bracket. Luckily, automatics are quite easy to find for under $30,000, so you can pursue your Porsche dreams.
Let's say hatchbacks and SUVs aren't your forte, but you have the wagon itch. Luckily, BMW may have the ointment. BMW unveiled the all-new (at the time) F generation 3 Series Touring in 2013. It featured an all-new four-cylinder turbocharged engine with 240 horsepower and 255-pound feet of torque, a step away from its inline six-cylinder route. Unfortunately, the new engine was only mated to an eight-speed automatic and although not as fun, gave the new wagon a 0-60 time in the mid-five-second range, rivaling the Ferraris of the 80s. Sharing a chassis with the 335 and the M3, the wagon keeps its composure in the corners better than you can believe. Featuring all-wheel drive and an incredibly large cargo capacity, consider this car your do it all. To add, you are one Dinan Stage 1 tune away from giving your 328i wagon 335i performance.
VW practically invented the hot hatch segment with the Mk1 GTi. It was fast, reliable, fuel-efficient, and practical, a textbook-perfect car. The Mk7 Golf R is nothing but an evolution of the original GTi (except for adding all-wheel drive). Released in 2014, the Mk7 Golf R, took the world by storm due to its immense tuning possibilities, tuners were extracting 500 horsepower pretty easily out of its 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder (ea888.3 engine). In stock form, the Golf R has 300 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque, quite a lot for a 3,300-pound hatchback, especially for 2014. The car has heaps of luggage space and even ample rear seat space in both two and four-door variants. Both transmission options were available with adaptive cruise control making long-distance drives a breeze, especially for those long-distance commuters. Take your kids to school, rip around a racetrack, go visit the lake house, and bomb through snow banks, all can be yours for under $30,000.
Alright, so maybe you’re a V-8 guy but can’t wrap your head around an SUV; not to fret, BMW has your answer. Unveiled in 1999, BMW released the Touring variant of its E39 generation 5 Series. The U.S. spec Touring models came in a six-cylinder 525i and then the range-topping 540i featuring a 4.4-liter naturally aspirated V-8. Just like the F31, the E39 540i solely came with a five-speed automatic transmission although you could buy a 525i touring with a five-speed manual (the six-cylinder E39 also comes with rack and pinion steering rack instead of the recirculating ball found on the V-8 models). The V-8 touring is still the one to get as they have almost 300 horses and a tremendous exhaust note, all while hauling the family around and entertaining high torque V-8 rear-wheel drive capabilities.
V-8 wagons are your thing huh, just not automatics? Audi’s got your back with the B7 S4 Avant featuring a 4.2-liter naturally aspirated V-8 shared with none other than its supercar, the R8. Due to not sharing an aluminum crankshaft and flywheel with the R8, the S4 “only” produces 340 horsepower. 340 horsepower in a family wagon that has the exhaust note of a supercar AND has a manual transmission, what else needs to be said? Oh yeah, it comes with Audi’s Quattro all-wheel-drive system, meaning you can take the car anywhere and checking the weather is optional.
Released for the U.S. market in late 2012, the Ford Focus ST packs a punch that you can expect from the likes of Porsche, not Ford. A swift four-cylinder engine that produces 250 horsepower coupled with solely a six-speed manual transmission. Combine that with new front springs, firmer dampening, and a quicker steering rack, it truly creates an enjoyable driving experience. Not to forget, the car can also seat five and fit your bikes in the trunk… take that Mazda Miata!
Fast wagons are rare, and fast wagons from Volvo are even rarer. Powered by a five-cylinder turbocharged engine and combined with a six-speed manual transmission (or five-speed auto), you can spring from 0-60 in under six seconds. Not bad for a family hauler, right? When the roads start dancing, you will be thankful to the all-wheel drive system from Haldex, a similar system found in the Bugatti Veyron. You also strap a trailer hitch on the back and tow your Miata to the track (3,300-pound towing capacity), and if the Miata breaks down at the track, don’t worry, the Volvo would love to get some track time. One more benefit is the Swedish steel coupled with Volvo’s brilliant safety record to ensure that you and your loved ones will be kept safe in the event a Mustang driver is nearby.
Want a car that will never fail to amaze you every morning when it actually starts? Welcome the Honda Accord V6. The Honda Accord V6 features a similar engine to the original Acura NSX – a 3.5-liter, naturally aspirated V-6 that produces 271 horsepower and 251 pound-feet of torque. It is even available with a six-speed manual. In a car that weighs less than 3,500 pounds, it is remarkably fast and a true sleeper. Huge rear seat room, great fuel economy, a performance that will shock you, and a promise to start every day, what's not to love?
There are many different Porsche Panamera sub-models but for your budget, we are going to discuss the base model V-6, which is not a base model at all. Many believe that the early 3.6-liter V-6 was the same VR6 engine that originated from VW and then put in the base model Cayenne, but that is not the truth. Porsche made its own 3.6-liter V-6 from the ground up that was based on the V-8 engine found in the Panamera S. Producing 300 horsepower, the V-6 Panamera can rocket from 0-60 in about 5.8 seconds while engulfing the driver with ultra-luxurious amenities, such as available massaging seats and adaptive cruise control. Not bad for under $30,000.
BMW’s bread and butter is a sports sedan with an inline-six, the same one also found under the hood of the F10 BMW 535i. Released in 2011, the 535i featured an all-new n55 single turbo inline six-cylinder engine that produced 300 horsepower. It was even offered with an optional six-speed manual transmission to form quite a combo. Optional all-wheel-drive along with fairly decent fuel economy makes a great combination for a fast manual luxurious sports sedan from BMW, and a wise purchase as manual transmission models are climbing in price.

The Softail as a model was announced in 1984. It is still in production today.
Yes, it would. It’s got a low seat, low center of gravity, and easily accessible power without being too over the top.
The original Softail Custom had a blacked-out engine with chrome covers, more chrome overall on the bike and a 21-inch front wheel.