A reliable and affordable sports car? It can be done. Some of the cars noted on this list include the Subaru BRZ, MX-5 Miata, and the Scion FR-S. These options all came in under $15,000 and got fairly good gas mileage.
Though the FR-S and BRZ are arguably very similar, both qualified for this list by Consumer Reports. The Miata has quite a following already, but the 2012 MX-5 is at a great price these days. Or is a Subaru sports car more your type? Which one would you pick?
2012 Mazda MX-5 Miata – $15k
The 2012 Mazda MX-5 Miata ranked high on this list for reliability and owner satisfaction. The MX-5 Miata gets around 26 miles per gallon and can be yours for anywhere from $10,500 to around $15,000.
The reliability scored five out of five, and most of the other factors received a similar score. The reliability trouble spots all got a perfect score, as did braking and emergency handling.
The cargo space received a one out of five, but that’s pretty obviously the case with any of these.
Overall, the Miata is a fan favorite, and the 2012 year is an affordable but fun buy. One with fewer miles might bring you over the $15,000 mark but try for a private sale over a dealership. The Miata has quite a fan base, so if you see one at a good price, jump on it!
2013 Scion FR-S – $13k
The 2012 Scion FR-S is another good option under $15,000. This vehicle has an owner-reported overall mileage of 29 miles per gallon. The reliability scored four out of five, and the owner satisfaction was at a three out of five.
Most on the resale market are prices from $12,125 to $13,450. The transmission, braking, and emergency handling all received perfect scores. Those who drover the FR-S said it was fun and handled well. The trunk/cargo space received two out of five.
Consumer Reports says this is a fun-to-drive car that handles well and gets good mileage. “The rear-wheel-drive coup features a 205-hp, 2.0-liter four-cylinder teamed with a choice of a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmission,” author Jon Linkov noted. What’s not to like?
2013 Subaru BRZ – $14k
The most expensive option in the bunch, this Subaru sports car, was priced around $13,675 to $14,250. This car reported a 25 miles per gallon owner-reported mileage.
The rear-wheel BRZ came with a 2.0L four-cylinder engine that got 200 hp. It was available in a six-speed manual or automatic. Consumer Reports gave it a four out of five for reliability and three out of five for owner satisfaction.
Like the others, the BRZ was fun to drive, and the price isn’t bad. The trunk/cargo space also received two out of five.
In conclusion, any of these cars would make for a fun weekend car. These might not be the market’s roomiest cars, but what these sports cars lack in cargo space, the cars make up for in gratification.