5 Good Used Cars to Use for Autocross

Are you planning to go autocross racing? If so, there are plenty of cars in the market that will make those tight turns around the cones a ton of fun. You don’t really need a lot of speed to get through a coned course quickly, but some cars can provide that for you. Check out these five popular car platforms that maximize your driving skill behind the wheel at your next autocross event.

1. Volkswagen GTI

Front angle view of gray 2022 Volkswagen Golf GTI
2022 VW Golf GTI | Volkswagen

If you’re looking for a car you can use daily while going to autocross events on the weekend, the Volkswagen GTI is it. This little hot hatchback has enough power and practicality to provide plenty of fun and utility when running errands and commuting. But it also has the perfect front drive and lightweight configuration to make it just as fun on the track. There are many different VW GTI generations to choose from, so finding one in your budget should be easy.

2. Honda CR-X

1991 Honda CR-X SI
1991 Honda CR-X SI | Wikimedia Commons

We’ll admit that finding a clean, un-modified Honda CR-X could be tough nowadays. Fortunately, it doesn’t really matter what condition it’s in to make it a great car for autocross racing. Out of the box, the CR-X makes around 100 hp and is super lightweight and tossable. However, it can be quite the track terror with a few modifications.

3. BMW M3

A BMW M3 drifting
A BMW M3 drifting | Wikimedia Commons

While any BMW M3 would make a great autocross car with its powerful engine and rear-drive configuration, Road and Track recommends the second-gen E36 platform. According to the publication, the E36 “stands out as the best bang for your buck,” as many of them can be found for less than $20,000 nowadays.

4. Mazda Miata

A first-generation Mazda Miata in white
Mazda Miata | Wikimedia Commons

Of course, we had to include the Mazda Miata on this list. Again, it doesn’t really matter which generation you choose, considering every one of them follows the same formula. Every Miata comes with a spritely four-cylinder engine, a rear-wheel drivetrain, and an available slick-shifting manual transmission that makes every track day a fun one.

5. Chevrolet C5 Corvette

A c5 Chevrolet Corvette
Chevrolet C5 Corvette | Wikimedia Commons

Although a lot of power isn’t needed when cornering tightly around cones in a parking lot, it’s nice to have. If power is what you seek, the Chevy C5 Corvette can give it to you. This generation of the Corvette was outfitted with an LS1 5.7-liter V8 engine that generates 345 hp and 350 lb-ft of torque.

That power is routed through the rear wheels via an automatic or manual transmission and provides plenty of thrust to power this sports car through the corners and down straightaways. With the combination of that power and the Corvette’s spry handling characteristics, no autocross course will be an issue.   

Good used cars for autocross events

If you need a car to attack the autocross course on the weekend, any of these five examples will get you through the cones gates in a speedy way. Some of them are fast, while others are made to handle like nothing else on the road. No matter which one you choose, you’re sure to have a ton of fun.

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