5 Best Sports Cars Under $50,000

When it comes to sports cars, there are two trains of thought. Some believe that vehicles like the Ford Focus RS and Jaguar F-Pace count as sports cars, while others, like me, think that the term only applies to cars with two doors that are concerned with one thing – performance driving. With that in mind, here are five of the best sports cars under $50,000.

1. Mazda MX-5 Miata

Mazda MX-5 Miata

There’s a reason why Mazda has built over one million MX-5 Miatas and why the saying “the Miata is the answer to every question” exists. The lightweight convertible may not be the fastest or the quickest car on the road, but when it comes to cornering, few machines can put a smile on the driver’s face like a Miata. Performance comes from a peppy 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that puts down 155 horsepower and 148 pound-feet of torque, which is more than enough to have a good time.

2. Subaru BRZ / Toyota 86

Subaru BRZ / Toyota 86

Sadly, the Scion FR-S is dead, but the Subaru BRZ and Toyota 86 are still alive and kicking. At a time when automakers are concerned with fuel economy and saving the environment, Toyota and Subaru teamed up to bring enthusiasts a lightweight, rear-wheel-drive car that puts an emphasis on having fun. Drivers have 205 horsepower on tap, thanks to a 2.0-liter Boxer engine, which doesn’t sound like a lot, but the skinny tires fitted to both sports cars makes 25 mile-per-hour drifts possible.

3. BMW M240i Coupe

BMW M240i Coupe

The BMW M2 may be the best M-badged car to come from the automaker in recent years, but enthusiasts can get 90-percent of the M2’s performance for less in the M240i Coupe. The replacement for the M235i features an all-new 3.0-liter inline-six pumping out 335 horsepower that provides enough oomph to get the sports car to 60 mph in approximately 4.3 seconds. That’s just a few tenths off of the more expensive and powerful M2’s time, making it a heck of a bargain and an enjoyable sports car.

4. Nissan 370Z Nismo

Nissan 370Z Nismo

The Nissan 370Z Nismo has been around for seven years now, but its aggressive bodykit and tuned engine aids enthusiasts in reliving their Fast and the Furious dreams. The fourth generation of the VQ engine makes an appearance under the hood for 350 horsepower and a screaming redline of 7,500 rpm. Handling is managed by Nismo-tuned suspension, while braking comes courtesy of high-performance sport brakes. The 370Z Nismo is a great package for enthusiasts that want something that feels like a traditional sports car.

5. Audi TT

Audi TT

The only thing that’s better than a sports car is having the ability to drive one all year. The Audi TT, with its all-wheel-drive system, 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that generates 220 horsepower, and ability to get to 60 mph in just over five seconds, is an enjoyable car regardless of what Mother Nature has in store. While the TT is a sports car in the traditional sense of the word, its high-tech interior makes the athletic two-seater straddle the line between being sporty and luxurious.