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TPolen

Would like to buy a car for HPDE

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TPolen

Hello everybody: I'd like to buy a car than I can drive during the week and take to the track on the weekends for HPDE and eventually TT. I've got $3000 to work with and I'm ready to go. I'm in Northern California and I'd be willing to travel 500 miles for the right car. Would prefer rear wheel drive but I'm willing to compromise.

 

My name is Thaddeus

707-484-1743

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Cheap_Thrills

I bought a Porsche 944 for $2000 just to use for track days, it's turned out to be the most dependable and cheapest on gas in the family. My kids use it to drive to school all the time, instead of their cars. Plus their freinds think it looks cool to drive up in a completely stripped out street legal racecar with full cage and seats. And its rear wheel drive, great balance, plenty of used parts around.

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Robnie0723

There's been several good threads here on this topic, might be worth search for them.

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TurboShortBus

944, 5.0 Mustang, Miata...any of them will work fine, and aftermarket parts are fairly cheap and readily available. If you have any experience with one of them, then go with what you know, as you will be spinning wrenches on them from time to time.

 

Mark

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TPolen
I bought a Porsche 944 for $2000 just to use for track days, it's turned out to be the most dependable and cheapest on gas in the family. My kids use it to drive to school all the time, instead of their cars. Plus their freinds think it looks cool to drive up in a completely stripped out street legal racecar with full cage and seats. And its rear wheel drive, great balance, plenty of used parts around.

 

I've thought about a 944 or a 924 but repairs are very espensive...as you know. Thanks

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nasaregistrar

E30 or E36 BMW are cheap and easy enough to have some track fun with.

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gotboost

I have an 1985 mustang for sale...full cage, good mods, extra tires etc. if your interested give me a call 201-316-3069

 

Brett

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ucfbrett

I recommend a Miata. Full disclosure: I own one, and all I use it for is HPDE, and eventually TT when the NASA guys tell me I'm ready.

 

It's the best-handling car for the money and $3,000 can get you a fairly decent example, maybe even one that already has a hard top and a roll bar, which you should have. Repairs are reasonable, if and when they break, but what is most important is that it is a very forgiving car that can teach you a lot about going fast.

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DarkSideDE
I've thought about a 944 or a 924 but repairs are very espensive...as you know. Thanks

 

They can be. If you can do most of the work yourself, then it's fine. There are great places around the States that sell rebuilt or aftermarket parts.

 

If you go to a mechanic - hopefully, it's one that will know about a 944 or 924. Example: 944 timing belt - could run you as much as $1400 (just like an Audi). Also, if you have a mechanic that doesn't know the car, here is an example we went through. We were told we needed our transmission rebuilt (approx. $3500) however, we brought it to someone we trust and found out the linkage needed a good cleaning (yes, we got 3rd gear back, it was missing for so long...) and our trusted mechanic in the know of 944s did many other things the car needed for a total of $486. Sure beat out having a new transmission put in - and the car is fantastic once again.

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Scany

I've got a 1991 E30 318iS which is track ready with rollbar, seats and harnesses etc. But I'm in DC so you'd have to get it shipped. I was asking 4-5k when I was selling but I could let it go for 3 + shipping. The car (like all prepped cars really) took 12k to build. I'm putting it in storage for another day, but nothing is better if it can serve someone on the track.

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LGBesse

Why not a MK III GTI 2.0. The engine is reliable, bullet proof, cheap to fix. There is a strong aftermarket for that car. It weighs only 2400lbs with the full interior. If you wanted better brakes there are upgrades like the 2 piston girling calipers on larger rotors and rear european disc brake conversion that will fit under 15" wheels. Wheels are cheap and light for 4 lug cars. The factory seats in a GTI, Sport, or K2 are nicely bolstered. Coilovers are cheap. Suspension parts like bushings, ball joints, control arms, and tie rods are cheap. In my opinion its a great car for the person on a budget. I have a MK IV turbo, but I wish I had a MK III for a track car.

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sonny

Another recommendation for the Miata. And, yes, I have one. You can start with a very basic set-up -- bone stock even -- & learn the ropes. When you're ready to start upgrading, the sky's the limit. There are upgrades for anything and everything for that car & most of it is dirt cheap. The car is also super simple to maintain, has a bullet-proof engine & any shadetree mechanic can do mostly anything on it.

 

And if you ever want to run with "the big boys," you can always bolt on a turbo or supercharger with an aftermarket ECU. There are guys out there running 16psi boost on 100 octane gas with the Hydra ECU using STOCK internals & making >260rwhp.

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mwest

The Miata is a great HPDE car. Cheap to buy, cheap to maintain. Brakes, rotors and misc. other parts are pretty inexpensice vs. other cars. I've been using a Miata as my track car for 3 years, before that it was a daily/driver track car. But, now it's got no interior, a full cage etc. Only down side is power or should I say lack of. But, it's always fun catching the big boys through the corners. Every year I think about getting a Vette or 911 or Subie, but the cost to fun ratio of a Miata can't be beat. And incredibly durable. They take a licking and keep on ticking.

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