Allen: I spent all night working on this. Here’s the list in order of importance to me:
1. Rear Wheel Drive (Limited Slip differential should be an option.)
2. 28 mpg (Preferably, a 4 cylinder)
3. Around or Under $25,000
4. Manual Transmission
5. Must be classified as a compact and have 2 doors.
All of the other options I can live with. A Turbocharger would be a great option but is not necessary (See “F** Front Wheel Drives and you will get an idea of what makes a Turbo great.) You might be wondering at this point if any car like this ever existed? The answer is yes. Most cars produced up until the 1980s were rear wheel drive. The production of front wheel drives came into play in the mid-1980s due to cost. They can produce a front wheel drive compact cheaper then a rear wheel drive and, due to the gas crisis, more economically.
That leaves me with used cars at this point. I like fuel injection which cut my choices down further if I don’t want to do a motorswap. What’s left? The Toyota Corolla GT-S, Nissan 200sx, 240sx, and Ford SVO mustang (I think this might be pushing the economical envelope but I like the car), the Mistubishi Starion/Chrysler Conquest, and that’s all I can think of. (Feel free to add to the list if you think I’m missing something. Remember to look at the list for specifics).
The problem with all of those cars are they old. The last year of the 240sx is almost 10 years old. Drifting is getting popular and the top two choices for drift cars are the Toyota Corolla GT-S and the 240sx. The Toyota is getting exceedingly rare to find especially one that has not been gutted, mutilated or destroyed and on top of that, it is still a twenty year old car in need of a lot of work (I should know I spent several months finding one and over a year getting it into shape). I did recently read an article that said Toyota may release another AE86 type car but that has been a long fabled rumor. I guess we’ll see.
The 240sx is a little easier to get a hold of but it is also hard to find one in good condition but is a great choice because parts can be used off of all models of the 240sx (S13, S14, and S15 Silvia (not sold in America)), the 300zx and the Nissan Skyline (not sold in America).
Then there is the Mistubishi Starion. A four cyclinder rear wheel drive with a Turbo. It also has fuel injection. It seems like a winner but (Why is there always a but?) they are a least as hard to find if not more then the AE86.
Finally there is the SVO mustang. It was only produced for a few years in the mid-1980s and has now become a collector’s car. As with any turbo car of that age it is likely in need of a restoration and engine rebuild. To sum up, some manufacture some where please, please, build a car that fits this profile (I hope that doesn’t sound too desperate).