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If you’re looking for a sporty coupe as a daily driver or even a weekend toy, the 2022 Subaru BRZ is an excellent choice. Its front-engine and rear-drive configuration make for great driving dynamics and its 228-hp engine is a blast to rev to the redline. However, the car does cost nearly $30,000, which is not for everyone’s budget. In that case, here are five cheaper alternatives that provide similar driving fun.

A blue 2022 Subaru BRZ Limited at the 2022 Chicago Auto Show
A 2022 Subaru BRZ Limited | Matthew Skwarczek, MotorBiscuit

The Mazda MX-5 Miata offers some drop-top fun

2017 Mazda MX-5 RF Sport in red
2017 Mazda MX-5 RF Sport | National Motor Museum/Heritage Images via Getty Images

When it comes to cheap and reliable sports cars, Miata is always the answer. And while a new 2022 Mazda MX-5 Miata costs more than a new BRZ, you can find 2019 models for around $25,000 nationwide. The beauty of buying a Miata that’s a few years old is that you’ll get the same body style as a new one and still reap the rewards of its rear-drive configuration and drop-top nature. Also, under its hood is the same 181-hp, 2.0-liter engine that is an utter hoot to drive, especially when it’s connected to the slick-shifting six-speed manual transmission.

The Fiat 124 is a unique alternative

If the Mazda MX-5 Miata’s styling isn’t really your speed, then the Fiat 124 Spider might be. It shares the same underpinnings with the Miata but ups the ante with classic Italian styling and a turbocharged engine. That 1.4-liter powertrain produces 164 hp and can be mated to either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission. Best of all, you can buy a used 2019 model for around $25,000 as well.

A used Nissan 370Z is a far cheaper alternative

 Nissan 370Z in red
Nissan 370Z | PAL PILLAI/AFP via Getty Images

If you want to get out of the $20,000 price bracket and get something cheaper, then a used Nissan 370Z could fit the bill. The 370Z’s body style and the engine haven’t really changed much in the past decade, so even if you buy a 2010 model, you’ll still get a sleek-looking coupe with a 332-hp V6.

The 370Z also has tight-handling characteristics, but its suspension won’t beat you up when cruising around town. Additionally, a convertible body style is available if you would rather be one with the world around you when driving.

Infiniti Q60 offers understated performance and luxury

Infiniti Q60 3.0T
Infiniti Q60 3.0T | Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images

If you want a coupe that adds a dose of luxury to go with its performance, then the Infiniti Q60 is a great choice. The Q60 has a 300-hp V6 that’s eager and energetic, but its interior appointments offer a luxurious appeal that you would expect from a class above.

In the Q60, you can tear up canyon roads and then take in a long road without ever feeling sore or fatigued when you get to your destination. To keep costs low, check out a 2017 model, which is selling for around $25,000 nationwide.

It’s hard to beat a used Ford Mustang GT

2016 Ford Mustang GT Equipped with the Black Accent Package driving on banked high speed course
2016 Ford Mustang GT | Ford

There’s almost nothing better than hearing the rumble of American muscle and a Ford Mustang GT will sure give that to you. Under its hood is a 5.0-liter V8 that pumps out 435 hp and 400 lb-ft of tire-spinning torque. That massive powerplant can be mated to a six-speed manual transmission, but an automatic is available as well. As far as cost goes, we recommend checking out the 2015-2017 models if you want to keep your budget in the low $20,000 range.

The five cheaper alternatives could be better than a 2022 Subaru BRZ

While there’s no denying that the all-new 2022 Subaru BRZ is a great car and is sure to provide smiles for miles, there are some cheaper alternatives out there. You never know, spending $5,000 to $10,000 on one of the aforementioned cars could suit you better than paying close to $30,000 for a new BRZ.


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