First, a Vauxhall VXR8 GTS for your time:
So I’ve made no secret how much I hate my 2001 MB C240 (rust, anemic power, crap fuel economy with required premium fuel, cramped cabin, other reasons why I hate it that are a story for another time). Its only saving grace is it is RWD. I don’t dislike FWD. Just sick of the torque steer, especially since I prefer an engaging, sporty driving experience.
I’m at a little more than $1000 left to pay off the C240 (like I said, long, painful story for another time) and although I would love to not have a car payment, my current car is a total liability (repairs that are needed and my left shoulder is against the B-pillar — just waiting to get t-boned).
Pending an auto accident (or Powerball/Mega Millions/State Lottery win), I have time on my side to decide. I’ve come up with a list to start with that’s pretty much in order of desirability but of course, subject to change:
1) 2009-2014 Infiniti G37S, G37xS (7sp AT or 6sp MT; most bang for bucks and reliability of the VQ engines)
2) 2010-2014 Infiniti M37, M37x (7sp AT; still a little concerned about fuel economy, may not be as sporty as the G, still has a VQ)
3a) 2008-2012 Lexus IS350, IS350 AWD (6sp AT; the IS250 is such a performance dog, Lexus in general hold their value better, which makes it harder to find a newer model in price range)
3b) 2007-2011 Lexus GS350, GS350 AWD (6sp AT; see IS350)
3c) 2008-2012 Acura TL SH-AWD (5 or 6sp AT; Acuras hold value making getting a newer model difficult, can I get by that awful beak?)
3d) 2007-2012 Acura RL SH-AWD (5 or 6sp AT; see TL SH-AWD, also is it sporty enough and am I not old enough for it yet?)
4a) 2009-2014 Subaru Legacy or Outback 2.5i (6sp MT; JUST SAY “NO” TO CVT); 3.6R (5sp AT; I love wagons, always wanted a Subie but will I fit?)
4b) 2009-2014? Subaru Legacy or Outback 2.5GT (6sp MT or 5sp AT; Yay, turbo!, I SAID I LOVE WAGONS!!)
4c) 2008-2013 Volvo XC70 (5, 6, or 8sp AT; ALSO WAGON!!!, I *heart* Volvo and always will, but who’s going pay for the service!?)
4d) 2011-2013 Volvo S60 T5 or T6 AWD (6 or 8sp AT; see XC70)
5) 2009-2013 Volvo S80 AWD (6 or 8sp AT; see XC70, am I an old professor?)
6) 2010-2013 Cadillac CTS Wagon 3.6, CTS4 Wagon 3.6 (6sp AT; MOAR WAGONS!!!!, but more importantly, can I trust GM?)
7) 2009-2013 Cadillac CTS 3.6 Sedan, CTS4 3.6 Sedan (6sp AT; SERIOUSLY, CAN I TRUST GM???)
8) 2012-2014 Fiat 500 Abarth (5sp MT; super cheap fun, kinda want to avoid FWD torque steer, will only get one doing a “DeMuro”, am I getting too old for this shit?)
WC#1) 2009-2012 BMW 335d (6sp AT); 2009-2015 VW Jetta TDI, Golf TDI, Passat TDI (6sp MT or 6sp AT); 2007-2009 MB E320 BlueTEC (5sp or 7sp AT), 2010-2013 MB E350 BlueTEC (7sp AT), (Always wanted a diesel, prefer RWD/AWD but can make an exception for FWD diesels, love German cars, HATE German car repair prices outside of warranty)
WC#2) 2014 Chevy Cruze Clean Turbo Diesel (6sp AT; multiple WTCC wins, but typical GM hard plastics especially on the doors make it suck, something something GM something something TRUST)
EDIT: I forgot to add the 2014 Mazda 6, wishing an AWD version was available in the U.S.
Extra unobtainium for your time, an Audi R8 LMS