3 of the Most Reliable Sports Cars Under $40,000 According to Consumer Reports

There’s nothing more thrilling than taking the wheel of a new sports car and embarking on the open road ahead. But what if you’re in the market for a sports car that’s both reliable and affordable? While you might think your car buying options are slim, that’s not true at all. Let’s talk about the three most reliable sports cars under $40,000, according to Consumer Reports. 

The 2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata is the most reliable sports car under $40,000

A grey 2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata Parked on the street, the Miata is one of the most reliable sports cars under $40,000
2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata | Mazda

There’s a lot to like about the 2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata. It comes powered by a 181-hp 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and, according to Car and Driver, can move from zero to 60 mph in just 5.7 seconds. The Mazda MX-5 Miata is also an extremely affordable sports car. In fact, this year’s soft-top Miata starts at $26,830. Opt for the range-topping Grand Touring model instead, and this year’s Miata costs approximately $31,770.

But the 2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata has more going for it than a 181-hp engine and an affordable price tag. According to Consumer Reports, this year’s model also finds itself among the most reliable sports cars under $40,000. The organization gave this year’s model a five out of five predicted reliability rating, which is nothing to scoff at. Though, the Mazda MX-5 Miata has always been a reliable sports car.

In fact, Consumer Reports has given the Miata a five out of five reliability rating several times. Consumer Reports isn’t the only one to have given the Miata such high marks either. RepairPal gave this year’s model an Above Average reliability rating, adding that repairs are both less severe and less frequent, making the Miata one of the more reliable new cars on the road today.   

The 2022 Subaru BRZ is an affordable sports car that puts reliability first

A silver 2022 Subaru BRZ driving, the BRZ is an affordable sports car under $40,000
2022 Subaru BRZ | Subaru

Now, the 2021 Mazda MX-5 Miata isn’t the only reliable sports car under $40,000. The 2022 Subaru BRZ makes for another excellent choice if you’re in the market for an affordable sports car that puts reliability at its forefront. In fact, Consumer Reports gave this year’s new Subaru BRZ a four out of five predicted reliability rating.

As for what it’s like to drive the 2022 Subaru BRZ? According to Car and Driver, this year’s new BRZ is similar to the original but also “feels tighter and considerably more powerful.” Though, that shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise. Subaru replaced the BRZ’s current engine with a 2.4-liter engine that boasts an impressive 228 hp at 7000 rpm and 184 lb-feet of torque at 3700 rpm. According to Car and Driver, that’s equal to 18% more torque and at a much lower rpm.

The bad news is that the 2022 Subaru BRZ hasn’t arrived at dealerships just yet. In fact, you won’t see this affordable sports car in dealerships until the fall. The good news is that the 2020 Subaru BRZ is also a reliable sports car under $40,000. In fact, Consumer Reports gave the 2020 model a four out of five reliability rating. As for how much the 2020 model costs? Opt for a base model, and you can anticipate spending roughly $28,845. 

The 2022 Toyota GR 86 is one of the most reliable sports cars under $40K

A red 2022 Toyota GR 86 parked near a grassy field, the 2022 Toyota GR 86 is a reliable sports car under $40,000
2022 Toyota GR 86 | Toyota

Much like the 2022 Subaru BRZ, the 2022 Toyota GR 86 hasn’t arrived at dealerships just yet. That being said, it’s still one of the most reliable sports cars under $40,000, according to Consumer Reports. The organization even gave it a four out of five predicted reliability rating. And if you don’t want to wait around for the 2022 model to arrive at a Toyota dealership near you? You’ll be pleased to know that Consumer Reports also gave the 2020 model a four out of five predicted reliability rating.

Reliability aside, let’s talk about what else this affordable sports car has going for it. The Toyota GR 86, previously known as the Toyota 86, arrives in the new model year with a fresh look and a more powerful engine. While the vehicle keeps its sporty silhouette and long hood, its sleeker design makes it appear lower than previous models, U.S. News reports. 

As for what’s under the hood? According to U.S. News, the 2022 model benefits from a 2.4-liter four-cylinder boxer engine that delivers an additional 23-hp. Toyota estimated the engine’s total output will reach 228-hp. The GR 86 will also be available with your choice of a six-speed manual transmission or a six-speed automatic transmission with steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters. Opt for the manual, and the GR 86 can move from zero to 60 mph in just 6.1 seconds.

How to choose the best reliable sports car for your budget

Buying a reliable sports car doesn’t have to be expensive. In fact, as Consumer Reports’ data shows, there are several reliable sports cars under $40,000 out there. To find out which is the best fit for you and your budget, we recommend getting behind the wheel for a test drive. 

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