The late model Pontiac GTO (technically a 3rd generation Holden Monaro) was simultaneously lauded for being a rip-roaring hootenanny of an LS1 powered beast and maligned for its staid styling. It is the exact opposite of Pontiac’s G6 GXP, which was a exercise in unhinged styling with a ho-hum V6 pushing around the front end…which is exactly why I’d much prefer a GTO over a G6 in any shape, even with some bumper rash. Find this 2004 Pontiac GTO offered for $6,750 in Canton, GA via craigslist. Tip from Rock On!
The consensus from the crowd is that the 740 horsepower Volvo 240 from the other day was too much power for the car and the 300ish horspower Cummins 6BT Torino Wagon was too much torque for the power (and probably too much soot for the air), so how do you feel if we split the difference and find something that has as much power as torque and won’t melt tires or the polar ice caps. The only thing this wagon needs is an injection of manual gearbox. Find this 1990 Volvo 240 Wagon offered for $6,500 in Sarasota, FL via craigslist. Tip from Cory.
The E81/E82/E87/E88 BMW 1-series was introduced for the 2005 model year as an entry level BMW to slot under the then current 3-series, but it was really a replacement for the outgoing E46 (1998-2006) generation 3-series, since the E90 (2005-2013) was such a big car (closer in size to an old 80s E28 5-series). Naturally BMW fudged with the model nomenclature and replaced it with the F22 2-series in 2014, but for a short few years, if you wanted that compact sport-executive experience that only a BMW 3-series can provide, you got a 1-series. Find this 2009 BMW 135i E82 offered for $15,000 in Chicago, IL via craiglsist. Tip from Michael.
Voice of the world’s most interesting man; I don’t always drive an El Camino, but when I do, it should have a big stonkin modified V8, a Muncie 4-on-the-floor, a gigantic cowl induction hood scoop, and matte-black paint. Drive thirsty, my friends. Find this 1986 Chevrolet El Camino offered for $13,000 in Danbury, CT via craigslist. Tip from Cory.
After mentioning in the last post that a late model TSX was probably a better car versus a 90s Ford Taurus SHO in every possible measure except style…I decided to put my mouse where my mouth was (does that expression work…or keyboard where my mouse was…I dunno…I’m gonna work on that one) and feature a late model TSX. Here ya go, better than the SHO in acceleration, speed, braking, turning, reliability, and usability. Find this 2005 Acura TSX offered for $5000 in San Francisco, CA via craigslist.
Is a late model Dodge Dart the perfect car? Not likely. It was launched (with supposed Italian DNA) as a replacement for the hideous Caliber in 2013 and was canceled by the end of 2016…hardly the fate for the perfect car. Since then Dodge has been out of the economy car game, and here is the funny part…I didn’t even know that the Dart had been canceled. This means one of two things — either, I live in a cave, or the Dart was so forgettable that zzzzzz…hey, wake up, this thing has a turbo and a manual gearbox. Can you even hear me with all the cave noises (bats and dripping water) in the background? Find this 2013 Dodge Dart Rallye offered for $5,300 in San Jose, CA via craigslist.
The automotive press acted like it was the Second Coming when the Saturn Sky and Pontiac Solstice twins were released into the world for the 2006 model year. Automotive “journalists” raved about how great it was to finally have an affordable American sports car with a turbocharger and a manual transmission…and that it was going to bring about the American automotive Renaissance…but they got it totally wrong and the ensuing automotive apocalypse of 2008 pushed Saturn and Pontiac into an early grave….and for whatever reason the Skystice is dirt cheap, even in Redline or GXP trim. Find this 2007 Saturn Sky Redline offered for $4,995 at a small used car dealer in Long Island, NY via craigslist. Tip from FuelTruck.
I keep hearing crazy stories about blistering cold weather from people in places from Texas to Oregon, and how much it is impacting their day-to-day lives. Meanwhile, everybody in Minnesota or Alaska (where it is 10-to-20 degrees colder) keeps going to work and the store and acting like this is normal. The problem is that people in Texas or Arizona tend to drive vehicles that are setup for warm weather or imported from California, but what they need to do is to start car shopping up North. If you tried to bring some little summer rubber shod convertible to Alaska, you are going to die on the side of the road when the first storm comes through in October (and they won’t find your carcass till next May), but if you bring a 4WD SUV from Alaska to Texas…that is a recipe for getting places on-time and in-one-piece. Find this 2005 Saab 9-7X offered for $5,400 in Wasilla, AK. Tip from Zach.
I know this next car is just a headache waiting for a new head. It cost more than $70k from the factory, was the fastest Mercedes-Benz ever sold in America when new, and will drain your bank account with repairs on complex suspension components, high-strung V8, and pricey electronic gizmos. But somehow, despite all that, I can’t help but want to drive a classic AMG with prices as low as they are. Am I the idiot here? Find this 2004 Mercedes-Benz CLK55 AMG offered for $8950 in Scottsdale, AZ via craigslist. Tip from FuelTruck.
Do you know who needs a late model sedan with a supercharged V8? Everybody. At least once in your life, you should own something that is modern enough to not be worried about it falling apart, fast enough that it should scare you if it does fall apart, but cheap enough that if it does fall apart, you can just leave it on the side of the road. Yeah. Jag to the rescue. Find this 2003 Jaguar S-Type R offered for $4,500 in Matawan, NJ via craigslist.